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From the District Oct. 16, 2020
They're Back! K-2 Students Return to Schools
This week, the halls of the district's elementary schools once again rang with the voices of children, for the first time since last spring. Kindergarten through second grade students in the district's Responsive Learning Plan returned.
While much has changed because of health and safety requirements, they received the same warm welcome as ever from WGSD staff members. The district also offered a Virtual Program for the semester; students in that format will continue working remotely through the end of the semester.
- The decision to open schools came following continued review of local cases and transmission data, which have dropped considerably in the last few months; the continued success of in-person student and adult experiences in district schools and workplaces; the success of districts that have returned to in-person learning; feedback from stakeholders and guidance from public health and medical authorities
- The district has safety measures in place for all students and staff members returning to school buildings. These measures include a requirement for screening all students and staff who return; face coverings for everyone indoors and outdoors at all times except when eating, drinking or during specific breaks when masks can be removed; minimized sharing of equipment and learning materials; social distancing and keeping students in cohort groups.
- The district has ensured adequate space within the buildings for proper social distancing and has put in place disinfecting protocols for shared spaces and high touch areas. In addition, the district has improved air quality by circulating 10-20 percent outdoor air through the air ventilation system and ventilating buildings two hours before and after occupancy.
The district is making plans for older students in the Responsive Plan to return gradually in the next several weeks, so long as health indicators continue trending in the right direction. Grades three through five are scheduled to return to full-time in-person learning on Oct. 28. The district is planning to bring back grades six through eight Nov. 11, with the details still to be determined. School and district officials are also planning for the return of WGHS students in the not too distrant future, also with details still being determined.
Even as students return, the district is prepared to remain flexible, since it may have to change directions at very short notice.
Please note that on Nov. 16, the district will send all K-12 families a form on which you'll be asked to designate which learning model you'd like for each of your children in the next semester - either the Responsive Learning Plan or the WGSD Virtual Program. So that we can make the necessary adjustments to classes, teachers and other staff, the form must be completed and returned by Nov. 20. If the form isn't completed by that date, the student will automatically be placed in the Responsive Learning Plan.
In the photo at top, Principal Pam Retzlaff of Givens School welcomes children to their first day back.
Custodian Johnny Lapsley disinfects throughout Steger Sixth Grade Center and Givens.
Transparent tri-fold barriers separate Edgar Road students.
What You Can Do to Help WGSD Keep Students and Staff Safe and Healthy
Please take a moment to watch this video from the school district's nurses regarding health screening for students returning to in-person learning, virus symptoms, contact tracing and more.
Board of Education Candidate Registration
The Webster Groves School District will accept declarations of candidacy from any person interested in running for a position on the School Board in the April 6, 2021 election. Persons interested can file at the district offices at 400 E. Lockwood Ave., Webster Groves. Filing will begin Dec. 15, at 8 a.m. and will continue through regular business hours, Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (except for 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. each day). Filing will not occur on days that the school district offices are closed for inclement weather, Dec. 23-Jan. 1 for winter break as well as Jan. 18 for Dr. Martin Luther King Day. Filing will end Jan. 19, 2021 at 5 p.m.
For those filing on the first day (Dec. 15), ballot order will be determined by a random drawing. Those filing after that date will appear on the ballot in the order in which they filed.
There are two positions available with three-year terms.
An information session for people interested in running for the School Board will be held Dec. 3 at 6 p.m. in the district’s service center, 3232 S. Brentwood Blvd.
WGHS Fall Sports Have Begun
All fall sports teams at Webster Groves High School have been given the green light to begin by St. Louis County. Please be aware that all games will have spectator restrictions. At this time, all athletic events at WGHS are closed to the public and only parents of participants will be allowed to attend.
Our #TeacherFeature this week is Ann Cook, who has been a beloved teacher at Givens Elementary (previously the Webster Groves Elementary Computer School) for 30 years now and has known since 3rd grade that teaching was “where [her] heart was.” Outside of her second grade classroom, she’s a lover of reading, yoga, dogs (even her classroom is filled with weiner dog pictures, stuffed animals and posters) and family time.
Run For Webster
The annual Ivory Crockett Run For Webster has gone virtual! Run one (or several) of our 5k routes around each of our schools or choose your own 5k anywhere you want! There are always fun family activities at the run and this year is no different! On Saturday, October 17 from 1-4p.m., there will be scavenger hunts at all of the WG elementary schools. We hope you can join us for fun and maybe even a few special guests!
Registration for runners closes on Oct. 17, but you have until Oct. 31 to complete your run. For more registration and information, visit the Webster Groves School District Foundation at www.wgsdfoundation.org
or email RunForWebster@gmail.com
Did You Know?
- Sixty-six percent of the High School class of 2020 planned to attend a four-year college/university and 24 percent a two-year college.
- In 2020, seniors graduated with over $33 million in scholarship awards
- Seniors in 2020 were accepted at 199 colleges and universities.
Free Meals for Children
Webster Groves School District has free meal pick up at Steger/Givens and Webster Groves High School this semester, as well as free meals at school for children who have returned for in-person learning. Meals are available for any child 0 – 18 years of age. Meals can be picked up Monday-Friday from 10:45 to noon. All meals will include that day’s lunch and breakfast for the next day.
Steger/Givens pick up will be by the covered awning next to the doors by the cafeteria
High School pick up will be by Roberts Gym
In addition to meal pick up, you can opt for free meal delivery, where you will receive that day’s lunch and breakfast for the next day. If you opt for delivery of your meals, you will be registered to receive meals Monday thru Friday until you contact the Food and Nutrition office to cancel your deliveries.
Please complete the survey only if you plan on picking up or registering for delivery of a meal. The survey results help us to plan accordingly for meal preparation and in order to reduce any possible food waste. You have the option on the form to select certain days for pick up or delivery based upon your students’ meal choices. You can find the survey form here https://forms.gle/D8jwiM8dKfLDSVGS7
Bond Issue Progress: Avery Elevator
Today's photo shows progress in the construction of an elevator for Avery School, made possible through passage of the Proposition E bond issue last year. Among other things, the bond issue is paying for greater accessibility to buildings such as Avery, as well as more space and safety enhancements in the district.