October 4, 2020

Dear PS9 Families,
Thank you for your partnership as we pivot to manage ongoing school operation variables. The first week of school 2020 was like no other. It was great being able to welcome students back to school and getting to see parents at Tuesday’s SLT meeting and our community meeting on Friday. Below are most recent key updates to highlight:

Program Updates

Please be advised that school program (remote to blended) changes occur quarterly, and this is set by the NYC Department of Education. Families have the option to be fully remote at any time, for any reason, but to change from fully remote to blended, there are specific windows.

As shared, student programming looks very different than it has in years past.  In order to be flexible for the evolving programming needs of our families and ensure all students, whether in-person or fully remote, receive their core instruction in literacy and math, this can look different in the various grades, as the number of students working remotely varies and as well as the needs of various age groups in a Pre-K-5 school. In all grades, there is team-wide coordination and collaboration amongst teachers to create lessons, resources, and pacing to ensure all our students remain on track to master key learning as per the NYC Literacy and Math Priority Learning Standards as shared with teachers in professional development sessions.

Fully Remote Students

In response to recent staff changes and an additional 145 students opting into fully remote learning, we have created new remote student programs that went into effect on Monday, October 5.  We have added an additional 6 fully remote teachers for a total of 13 fully remote teachers assigned to support the current fully remote program. We have updated student programs for fully remote students in grades K-5, which may involve a change to the primary teacher that your child was most regularly meeting with last week. Teachers are having conversations with students about the changes, including time and space next week for the new primary teacher to support students with this transition. Please refer to the list below for all fully remote teachers, along with their contact information.

The updated student programs for remote learning, including student access codes for live sessions, are posted in your child’s Google classroom by your child’s teacher. The remote classes are evenly divided to ensure a lower class ratio. In addition, teachers meet students in smaller pods daily to provide scheduled live instruction for Literacy and Math for at least an hour in addition to small group support and daily office hours. The live instruction will be complemented by asynchronous instruction as well. Students will work on virtual platforms assigned by the teacher such as Exact Path, Freckle and myON, in addition to their assigned cluster teacher’s classwork and independent tasks. Teachers will continue to use the school’s core curricula, adapt lessons, and provide ongoing feedback to support student learning.

Should your child need additional support during this transition, please contact our support team by emailing our Guidance Counselor Ms. Shaw-Taylor at: kshaw@schools.nyc.gov

Pre-Kindergarten
Ms. Silvestry TSilves@schools.nyc.gov
Ms. Melendez mabdelazizny@yahoo.com

Kindergarten
Ms. Shaw Murphy yshawmurphy@schools.nyc.gov
Ms. Rice mrice8@schools.nyc.gov

Grade 1
Ms. Morales smorales15@schools.nyc.gov
Ms. Sabbagh lsabbagh@schools.nyc.gov

Grade 2

Ms. Napoles MNapoles@schools.nyc.gov
Ms. Ouyang COuyang3@schools.nyc.gov

Grade 3
Ms. Soso TSoso@schools.nyc.gov
Ms. Basovitch NBasovitch@schools.nyc.gov

Grade 4
Ms. Gibbs JCattousegibbs@schools.nyc.gov
Ms. Walters AWalters11@schools.nyc.gov

Grade 5
Ms. Peralta MPeralta25@schools.nyc.gov
Ms. Pinckney  EPinckney2@schools.nyc.gov
Ms. Salem TSalem@schools.nyc.gov

 

Blended Students

To date we have had an increase in our number of remote students in our K-5 ICT classrooms. On any given day, our in person number of students across 6 grades fluctuates from 27-31 students. Based on this observation, and in an effort to provide equitable support across our school community, we are utilizing a few teachers to support our fully remote students.  The teachers in the ICT classrooms are both dually certified and can provide services that our students need in the ratios that are now as low as 1:1. We have requested additional teachers and when we receive them we will place them in the appropriate setting based on the needs of the entire school.

Health & Safety

Daily Health Screening: Please use the Online Health Screening Tool (healthscreening.schools.nyc) each day that your child is scheduled to attend in-person learning so you can show your screen or a printout upon arrival.  If you need a thermometer, please contact Ms. Jacob at cderrell@schools.nyc.gov.

If you or your child is not able to pre-screen using the online tool, you may use the Paper Health Screening Questionnaire and have your child bring the completed form to school and show it upon entry. If you or your child forgets or is unable to pre-screen, someone will be available at the school’s entrance to assist your child in completing the form and checking your child’s temperature.  For additional details about this daily health screening process, you can review the Chancellor’s letter here: schools.nyc.gov/messagesforfamilies.

Random Covid-19 Testing Updates: Random testing for staff and students begins on October 9th across New York City. The testing will take place once a month for staff. The only way students will be tested is if their parents have given written consent.

Arrival & Dismissal Information

Locations and times remain unchanged, but here’s a reminder as we welcome students back into the building.

Arrival Time: 8:30 am
Dismissal Time: 2:00 pm

Pre-K – lower yard
Grades K – upper yard (red door)
Grade 1 – upper yard (green door)
Grades 2 – Bergen St. (heart door)
Grade 3 – Bergen St. (blue door)
Grades 4-5 at main entrance on Underhill Ave (blue door)

General Reminders

Assessments

K-5 students will take assessments this week in Reading and Math on Exact Path. If you select to administer the assessment at home this week, please see the steps below for support.

    1. Set aside 35-70 minutes to complete the assessment independently.
    2. Find a comfortable quiet place to sit.
    3. Go to Teach Hub (make sure you’re signed into your child’s email)
    4. Click on Clever
    5. Click on Edmentum Courseware Assessment
    6. On the left-hand menu click “Tests”
    7. Finally, choose Math or Reading assessment. Complete each assessment in one sitting.

Curriculum

Teachers are sharing their monthly curriculum letters with parents this week via Google classrooms. Please ask your teacher if you have not seen it.

Communication

Please note that moving forward, all school-wide and class-specific communications for parents will be sent through Konstella. All assignments and communications for students will be posted on Google Classroom. Please make sure that you are receiving Konstella emails to your inbox (not junk mail folder). If you need help setting up your Konstella account, please contact the PTO Comms and Web teams (pto-communications@ps9brooklyn.org and WebTeam@ps9brooklyn.org).

School-wide communications (sent via Konstella) and resources, including Parent Engagement Session videos, support links, and community updates will continue to be posted to our school website, ps9brooklyn.org

We will continue to offer Parent Engagement Sessions led by Principal Ali, Assistant Principal Renovales, and Parent Coordinator Ms. Jacob. Note that our next session will be on Thursday at 4 pm. Invite forthcoming.

For any other questions, assistance, concerns, or suggestions, please contact our Parent Coordinator Charmaine Jacob at cderrell@schools.nyc.gov, or the PTO Communications Team at pto-communications@ps9brooklyn.org. This team meets weekly with Principal Ali to share feedback from the community and keep parents connected to the pulse of the school.

Thank you again for your partnership.

Best Wishes,
Fatimah Ali
Principal