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Districtwide Parent Emails

Sent to families on 11/18
Wildcat Family -

As you may be aware, last week Missouri Governor Mike Parson, along with the Missouri Department of Elementary & Secondary Education and the Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services, announced modifications to state guidelines for Missouri schools during COVID-19. Under the updated guidance, in schools with a mask mandate, proper mask-wearing could prevent individuals from being identified as close contacts in schools. 

Currently, our back-to-school guidelines, which are based on CDC and Cass County Health Department guidelines (at the time), say that any individual within six feet of a known positive case, even with masks, is considered a close contact and should quarantine for 14 days.


Following the Governor’s announcement, county superintendents met with the Cass County Health Department.  The CCHD supported the changes and outlined their definitions of mask mandate (which could mean increased mask wearing) and proper mask wearing (over nose & mouth).  We then asked our district re-entry task force composed of staff from all schools to provide feedback on the potential changes.

Based on the feedback we received from our staff and information from area health experts, the Board took no action to change from our current plan at this time.

With the increase we’ve seen in cases over the last couple of weeks, the Board felt like this wasn’t the time to lessen our layers of protection - as quarantine is viewed as a level of protection.  They also had concerns about the additional stress this could put on staff to make the call on whether students are properly wearing their masks.  Finally, the Board felt like the current plan is working; however, they did want to revisit this in the future.


We will continue to closely monitor our students’ and staff health and will make modifications to our guidelines if the situation warrants change.

Sincerely,
Paul Mensching
Superintendent

 

Sent to families on 11/10

Dear Wildcat Family -

We are beginning to make plans for the second semester, January 5-May 18.  In order to plan effectively, we need to know the intentions of our families & students.  At this time, we are planning to continue both in-person and virtual learning options as currently offered.  For in-person, we will continue the health & safety protocols we have in place (masks, social distancing when possible, block schedule at HMS/HHS, etc) and for virtual learning, we will continue to use the following platforms:


Kindergarten (ECC) - Google Classroom

Grades 1-3 (HES) - Launch
*NOTE:  Launch students will follow the Springfield School District calendar which runs Jan. 4-May 28. View the full calendar here - https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ZYX5woS2XV6SH-f6nxcw3HdzzGdi4yVs/view 

Grades 4-12 (McEowen,  HMS, HHS) - Odysseyware

For more information on these platforms, please visit our website - https://www.harrisonvilleschools.org/Page/1339

Once you’ve made decisions regarding your students’ learning for second semester, we ask that  you complete this form - https://forms.gle/HBTJ57UjN77FKCKE8We ask that you complete the form(s) by Friday, November 20 at 5 p.m. The selection you are making for your student(s) will be for the entire second semester, running January 5 to May 18. You will need to complete one choice form for EACH student. So for example if you have three students you will need to submit three separate forms.

A few items of note…

*Due to the hands-on nature of Cass Career Center block programs, a student may take the CCC course in-person and the remainder of his/her coursework virtually.

*Students who choose virtual are eligible to participate in MSHSAA activities as long as they are in compliance with all other MSHSAA guidelines. Questions regarding eligibility should be directed to the Activities Director at Harrisonville High School at 816.380.3273 or email brent.maxwell@harrisonvilleschools.org. 

We will follow-up with additional information for families in December based on the choices you make for your student(s).


If you have specific questions regarding learning (virtual or in-person), please contact your student’s school at the following numbers:

ECC (preK-K) - 380-4421

HES (grades 1-3) - 380-4131

McEowen (grades 4-5) - 380-4545

HMS (grades 6-8) - 380-7654

HHS (grades 9-12) - 380-3273

CCC (grades 9-12) - 380-3253

Thank you for your continued partnership as we work to ensure the health & safety of our students and staff as well as providing learning options that meet the needs of our families.

Sincerely,

Paul Mensching
Superintendent


Sent to families on 11/6

Wildcat Family -

Although this week’s weather is just beautiful, we do live in Missouri and next week is looking to be more November-like.  At the elementary schools, we go out to recess as much as we can in the winter months and at the middle & high school levels, we will go outside for mask breaks whenever possible.   Please be sure your student has a coat, jacket, sweatshirt, hat, gloves, etc. for these outdoor activities.

 

Also, now that we’re a few months in, we’re noticing that students are forgetting to bring their face coverings to school.  Please remind them to grab a mask before walking out the door each morning.  Face coverings are required for all students and staff when 6’ of distancing is not possible and they're always required on our buses.

 

If you need cloth face coverings, please check with your school’s nurse as we have some donated by Bright Futures.  Please be sure to wash your student’s face coverings regularly.

 

We need to be vigilant and continue to remind our students about and exercise best practices to minimize the risk of COVID transmission inside and outside our schools. Physical distancing, wearing face coverings, washing hands frequently, staying home if you have symptoms of COVID, and following isolation or quarantine directions from the CCHD are commitments we need to continue to make as a community to reduce the risk of COVID transmission. These health and safety measures are essential for the continuation of in-person learning.

 

One final reminder, if you have an HMS or HHS student, please remind them to charge their Chromebook each night.

 

Thanks again for your support and partnership!

Jill Filer
Director of Communications




Sent to families on 10/15

Wildcat Family -

Harrisonville Schools is excited to announce that the USDA has extended their free school meals for students through the last day of school in May.

A few important notes:

  • There is only one free breakfast and lunch provided each day to students, but students may purchase additional meals.  For high school students, a second lunch is $3.20
  • Students who bring their lunch will need to pay for a milk if they want one or if a student wants a second milk, the price is 50 cents.
  • Money may be added to a student’s account through Parent Portal or sent to school in an envelope.
  • For virtual students, you can continue to use this form to request/pick-up meals daily - https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSciB-4PLi-DTJSIq17r2KWtpD0d027ApIbci3IncdVjYjueUg/viewform.  The form just needs to be complete by 8 p.m. the night before.  Pick up is at HHS from 10:30-11:00 a.m. in the front entrance drive, and will include lunch, plus breakfast for the next day. Three lunch choices will be available each day. Hot lunch, cold sandwich, or salad. The lunch choices are based on the HHS menu available here - https://harrisonville.nutrislice.com/menu/harrisonville-high

Questions?  Please contact our food service department at becky.fields@harrisonvilleschools.org

Sincerely,
Jason Eggers
Assistant Superintendent

 

Sent to families on 9/29

Dear Wildcat Family - 

The district will host Parent-Teacher Conferences October 21-22.  There will be no school on October 22-23 for both in-person and virtual learners (exception: HES Launch will have class on Oct. 22).


Harrisonville Early Childhood Center, Harrisonville Elementary School, and McEowen Elementary School plan to hold online conferences for in-person learners.  Elementary parents will receive an email from your child’s teacher with information on using Sign-Up Genius to schedule your conference time. We ask that all elementary parents schedule their conferences by Friday, October 9.  Once your conference is scheduled, teachers will send out instructions for logging into Google Meet for your conference.

Harrisonville Middle School and Harrisonville High School will host scheduled conferences online as well.  Teachers will be reaching out to parents whom they would like to meet with due to academic concerns and will schedule those conferences. If you are not contacted by an HMS or HHS teacher by Oct. 17, but would like to have a meeting, we will post Sign-Up Genius links on our website for you to schedule a conference. The HHS sign-ups will be for Thursday, Oct. 22 from 8 a.m. - 3 p.m. while the HMS sign-ups will be for remaining open slots on Wednesday, Oct. 21 from 4-8 and all day Thursday, Oct. 21.

Cass Career Center block teachers plan to call parents from 4-8 p.m. on Oct. 21. If your student attends one of the hourly courses at CCC and you’d like a meeting, please contact the teacher via email. Here’s the link to our staff directory  - https://www.harrisonvilleschools.org/domain/18

For virtual learners…
Kindergarten - The virtual learners at ECC have received regular communication regarding assignments and attended virtual meetings/calls.  If parents would like to schedule a conference call with the teacher, they can reach out to Mrs. Torres - kristen.torres@harrisonvilleschools.org

Grades 1-3 - Launch teachers will be contacting parents to schedule a conference between Oct. 26 and Nov. 6.


Grades 4-5 - The virtual learners at McEowen have received weekly communication regarding assignments and invitations to attend virtual meetings.  If parents would like to schedule a conference call with the supervising teacher, they can reach out to Mrs. Jimenez - caitlin.jimenez@harrisonvilleschools.org.

Grades 6-12 - You can use the Sign-Up Genius links that are posted on the website to select a conference time if you’d like to talk to your student’s virtual teacher.  Those links will be posted on Oct. 17.


The partnership with our parents is invaluable to the success of our students. We want communication to be ongoing between our staff and parents and hope that you will reach out anytime you have a concern or a celebration. 

We know that these conferences will have a different look this year, but they are just as important as ever in our efforts to build relationships for the benefit of our children.



If you have additional questions, please contact your child’s school.

Sincerely,
Paul Mensching
Superintendent

 

Sent 9/25 to all families

Wildcat Family -

I am writing to you today to ask for your help.  We are working very hard within our schools to follow health and safety guidelines in order to limit the spread of the COVID virus. In school, our students are doing a great job with wearing their face coverings and social distancing when possible.


As of this writing, we’ve had 23 positive cases with 10 current active cases.  We have had to quarantine 254 students & staff with 100 currently on quarantine.  

This is where we need your help. We can only do so much during the time we have your students in our care.  Please be vigilant about following CDC and Cass County Health Department (CCHD) guidance….

  • Practice social distancing when in public and around persons who do not live in your household,
  • Wear face coverings when 6’ of social distancing is not possible,
  • Avoid large gatherings,
  • Wash your hands regularly, 
  • Check your student for symptoms daily and do not send them to school if they have any symptoms or have been exposed to a positive case in the last 14 days, and
  • Follow isolation and quarantine directions as provided by the CCHD. For quarantining, that means staying home (no school or other activities), minimizing contact with others, and closely monitoring for symptoms.


We understand that these protocols were not part of your pre-pandemic everyday life and can be inconvenient, however, they are now essential for the continuation of in-person learning.

We appreciate your support and partnership as we work together as a #WildcatFamily to ensure everyone’s health and safety.

Sincerely,
Paul Mensching
Superintendent



Sent to Families on 8/28

Wildcat Family -

We’ve had a great first week of school!  Our students and staff have done an amazing job of adapting to the new procedures.  

 

We just wanted to provide an update on procedures (as they stand today) for quarantine (exposed) and isolation (positive) of students and staff.  

 

We are in constant communication with the Cass County Health Department (CCHD) and as of this week, we have been given the responsibility of in-district contact tracing for positive cases in staff or students. The CCHD will be responsible for outside contact tracing student & staff cases.  

 

As of the sending of this email, we have not had any positive cases in our students or staff since the beginning of school.

 

Per guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control, a close contact is anyone who was within 6 feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes. An infected person can spread COVID-19 starting 2 days before the person had any symptoms or tested positive for COVID-19.  Close contacts will need to quarantine for 14 days.

 

A team of nurses and administrators will form the contact tracing team for each building to determine close contacts and will receive assistance from CCHD. If the contact tracing occurs during the school day, students and staff identified as close contacts could be sent home in the middle of the day. Once the team has completed the contact tracing and building nurses and principals complete the notification of close contacts, an email will be sent to all families & staff in that building.  If you have not been personally contacted by a building nurse or principal, there is nothing further you need to do when you get the email - it is just for information purposes. Due to privacy requirements, we will not release the name of the individual or details that may identify them.

 

Students who are placed on quarantine or isolation, and are able, can continue learning based on Scenario 4 in our Back-to-School plan. 

 

Virtual Learning for Quarantined Students (Scenario 4 - short term)

Students excluded due to positive test or exposure and, who are able, can use Google Classroom to continue school. Students will work directly with their teacher(s) to continue completing assignments from home.

 

Families will receive information from their student’s school/teacher regarding the continuation of learning in the event quarantine or isolation becomes necessary.

 

We just wanted to provide updated information and will continue to do so as changes & updates happen.  Please let us know if you have questions and enjoy your weekend.

 

Paul Mensching
Superintendent