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    Family Update: March 18, 2021
    Posted on 03/18/2021
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    March 18, 2021

    Greetings MES Families,

    I hope this finds you all well. As we cross the one year anniversary of our closure, I want to acknowledge that navigating this pandemic and remote learning has been hard for all of us and incredibly hard for some of us. Please know that our staff is committed to supporting your student wherever they are. We are also committed to doing all we can to support your family if you are experiencing significant struggle. Please reach out if you feel there is anything we can do as a school staff to better address specific hardships you are facing.

    I am happy to report that the recent prioritization of Washington educators and child care providers in the COVID vaccination rollout plan has allowed most of our staff to receive at least one dose of vaccine. I am grateful we are able to offer this protection to our educators before requiring them to return to in-person instruction.

    I am feeling hopeful today with the recent news that SEA and SPS have reached a tentative agreement about our PreK-5 grade return to in-person instruction. If all goes well, the SEA membership and the SPS School Board will approve the agreement soon, allowing us full access to the details of a re-entry plan with an April 5th start date for our K-5 students. Soon, SPS will be sending a survey to all K-5 MES families asking you to decide if you want your child to participate in the in-person hybrid program being offered or if you want them to remain in the 100% remote learning program. With this survey, you will receive details regarding what each plan will look like for the remaining 10 weeks of the school year. As you fill out this survey and move forward with your student, I ask that you start to communicate with your student about this upcoming transition. For us adults, change is always hard and change in a pandemic is particularly hard. Your children are going to be noticing how the adults at home and at school are responding to this new development. If you choose to keep your child at home, explain that it is temporary and that we do expect to be able to be safely all together in-person at school soon. If you chose to participate in the remote hybrid, please help us teach your student that school will look and feel different than it did pre-pandemic. There are so many positive aspects connected to resuming in-person learning, but there are still significant safety concerns and thus strict CDC health and safety guidelines we will need to adhere to. Until these restrictions loosen, we will not be able to have many of the community-based activities and collaborative learning environments we did pre-pandemic. Our staff is aware of how much we will need to teach into these restricted behavior expectations and are committed to doing this in a way that maintains the mutual respect of our positive discipline philosophy and a love of learning and school for all of our students. To do this well, we will need your full support at home. We will be pushing out information and resources that support this partnership as we move forward.

    As soon as we receive program preferences for our MES students, we will work as a staff to create detailed plans for our school. Right now, we all have a lot of questions. As the staff and I learn answers to our questions, we will work hard to communicate this information with you. I will be sending information out in this update each week and you will be receivining information directly from you classroom teacher. I am also working closely with our amazing PTA Board to plan how we can best gather your questions and provide you with answers as we learn them.

    Currently, our Phase 2 construction of an additional Kindergarten classroom, two PreK classrooms and three intermediate classrooms is ¾ of the way completed! This will be something that will present a challenge to our reopening this spring, but we know if we work together and communicate clearly we can do hard things. We will not be using the three Kindergarten classrooms we used last year this spring because of their close proximity to the construction that is happening. The district expects Phase 2 construction to be complete at the end of June. By the end of August, our playground will (finally!) be installed!! There is a message from our SPS Capital Project Manager, David Jackson, below with an opportunity for student input. Please share it with your child.

    Thank you for your ongoing patience and flexibility!

    With ongoing gratitude and appreciation,

    Hello MES students –
    We are planning for a new play equipment to be installed during the current campus expansion. We’d like students’ ideas as we design the new equipment. The new play equipment will be built for students in Pre-K through 5th grade.

    Please click this link to open a survey, read it, and mark your responses, and then press “submit”.
    Magnolia ES:

    Also, if you’d like, on a piece of paper draw or write your ideas expressing your vision of an ideal new play area. Be sure to include your name and grade on your drawing. Take a photo of your work, and then email them to me at Deadline for submitting the survey is April 5th 2021.

    Your opinion matters, and we appreciate your time sharing.

    Best regards,
    David L. Jackson, PM
    SPS – CP&P