From the Principal
Hello, こんにちは, Kon'nichiwa Dear Richmond Community,
Well, it was sure a busy first week back! You may have been reading your PPS emails about omicron, teacher shortages, and schools moving to distance learning and wondered how all of this is affecting us at Richmond.
We have not been told to move to virtual yet but have been told to prepare and encourage families to keep reading the district communications. MESD is very behind on Debriefing all of the reported Covid cases which has produced a major delay in sending out the Community & Individual Notification Letters that are generated by them. The good news is that PPS has hired external contact tracers who have already begun working on the multiple reports of on-campus cases at Richmond from this last week based on the preliminary information. The Contact Tracers are now also responsible for sending the Notification Letters (once MESD supplies them) so we should expect to see several coming.
Compared to many schools, we were pretty lucky that we only had to cover one unfilled substitute job across the week though we did have quite a few staff absences of various kinds. Below are the numbers that were shared with us each morning this week district-wide.
We are also happy to remind families that fully vaccinated (2 doses completed at least two weeks prior to the exposure date) students and staff who remain symptom-free no longer need to engage in quarantine. We also now have the Test-to-Stay program for unvaccinated students who are identified as close contact exposures to on-campus cases and also Test-to-Return to shorten quarantine times. (see links below for more detail on these programs)
IF your child(ren) are identified as Close Contact Exposures from on-campus cases and do not have symptoms you may send them to the West Cafeteria Door 5 at Arrival with your Notification Information and: a copy of their vaccination card (to be reviewed for exemption date and recorded); a completed Consent Form to be tested onsite (we will have the binder of forms submitted already, but a new one would make things more efficient); or confirmation of an OHSU Screener negative spit-test taken after exposure and/or the on-site Testing Consent Form (in case the dates don’t line-up, we’d still be able to give a test.) Students whose vaccination cards show the exemption timeline will be sent to class. Students who test Negative will be sent to class, and depending on their exposure time-line, may be tested again later in the week. Students who test positive will need to return home. Only families of students who test positive will be contacted and their case entered into the system for the Contact Tracing cycle to begin again. Mornings will be even busier than usual with these new programs being implemented (we’re not anticipating extra PPS support) and we know that our families will continue to offer us their flexibility, patience, and grace as we begin to round this new wheel.
Finally, in these high-case-count days, we’re feeling super grateful again for the PTA tents, Family Volunteers, and all the families gearing kiddos up for the weather (and reminding them to avoid puddle-play please : ) AND the amazing miid mid-days we've had so we can continue to be outdoor as much as possible while we navigate the latest variant. As always THANK YOU, ありがとうございました, Arigatōgozaimashita to everyone working to make school work this year! We Have This, because We Have Each Other. All best, Be Well, and Let’s Take Care of Each Other,
From the School
PPS CALENDAR SITE
Richmond Items of Note - see below areas for any event meeting links/detail
✩ 1/15 Sat morning - PTA's Virtual Japanese New Year’s Festival (see below)
✩ 1/17 Mon. NO School - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day
✩ 1/28 Fri. NO School for Students - Teacher Planning/Grading Day
✩ Read for Richmond (dates & info coming soon)
SCHOOL NEWS, NOTES & Reminders
COVID SAFETY INFO, UPDATES & REMINDERS We hope that families enjoyed a safe and healthy Winter Break and want to remind everyone to send kiddos Well Geared-Up for Outdoor Dining & Recess, Wearing Well-Fitting Masks, and keep using the Family Daily Illness Screening tool each morning before coming to campus. Refer to this document as a guide on when to Stay Home If Ill and communicate absences to the offices since we have to symptom track with MESD. We'll continue our usual OHSU Screener practices for distribution on Monday & Drop-Off on Tuesday morning this week. Also, please read PPS email and refer back to messages on the PPS District News Site for all kinds of PPS Updates (choose month from right bar & scroll through to find topics of interest) including info about the new PPS Test-to-Stay and Test-to-Return programs (slides used to train PPS staff HERE), How to Register Children's Covid Vaccines in ParentVue and information on possible shifts to Distance Learning.
ONGOING FAMILY IMMUNIZATION CLINICS The Multnomah County Health Department is offering twice-weekly Immunization Clinics for families and children to obtain COVID-19 and school-required vaccines. Clinics will be held on Wednesdays from 11 am - 2 pm & 3 pm - 6 pm at the Gateway WIC Building, 131 NE 102nd Ave., Portland; and on Saturdays from 9 am - 12 pm & 1 pm - at the NE Health Clinic, 5329 NE Martin Luther King Jr Blvd. #322, Portland. Appointments are required for children aged 5 - 11. No appointment is required for family members to receive the COVID-19 vaccine and flu shots. Call 503-988-8939 to make an appointment. More info is available at: multco.us/vaccineclinics.
LOST & FOUND If your child lost an item between September and December and you were not able to check the lost and found on Wednesdays, please fill out this form for a staff member to look for your item(s). Please note that we will only contact you if we CANNOT find your item(s) or need clarification. If we can find it, we will send the item home with your child. This form will be reviewed roughly once a week and will be closed at the end of January, 2022. Items lost the last week of December and moving forward will still be collected in the Lost and Found (by the Dance Studio during the day) and brought out in front of the school on Wednesdays (volunteers permitting, please sign up in Konstella if you can help with this).
CHILDCARE SURVEY Portland Public Schools is interested in learning about your child(ren)'s experience in before and after school care. Please complete this survey by Friday, February 18, 2022. For best results, complete one survey for each child. This survey is completely anonymous and results are shared with the child care provider and school principal for program improvement and continued student and family support. Thank you!
From the Community
Japanese New Year’s Festival 2022!
Let’s celebrate 2022 together!
When: Saturday, January 15th 10:00-10:45 AM.
Where: Zoom https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82942557089?pwd=ellwV21kSkNZVWEvQkI4TlhDYkxZdz09
Meeting ID: 829 4255 7089, Passcode: 854874
Join us for traditional Japanese new year’s games, Temari-Sushi cooking, and Japanese music from Special Guest Japanese Cultural "Edutainer", Yumi Torimaru (founder/director of Takohachi, and a creator of Kotori Japanese Music) www.KotoriJapaneseMusic.com www.takohachi.org
To be prepared and follow along with the Japanese cooking session, be sure to check out the ingredients list here. All the ingredients are available at your local supermarket.
The traditional Japanese new year’s game Fukuwarai needs some light preparation, too, so please take a moment to review the instructions here
PTA Focuses on Equity
Please visit our newly created Richmond Equity Space. This is the place where we will share the Equity Term of the Week with Learn More links, as well as previously posted equity terms and links.
Equity Term of the Week: Racial Literacy
Dates and meeting links for the Affinity and Anti-racist Learning Spaces in January can be found in the Richmond Equity Space as well.
Oya No Kai
Become a Host Family!
We have 18 new Japanese teaching interns arriving in March, and we need your help to host them!
Being a host family is one of the most fun, rewarding, and popular parts of our Japanese Dual Language Immersion (JDLI) program. When you welcome an intern into your home, you learn about each other’s culture and language and build friendships that last a lifetime.
You can be a host family if you:
- Live within a 45 minute bus ride of one of our three JDLI schools (Richmond, Mt. Tabor or Grant).
- Have a separate bedroom for the intern. Bathrooms may be shared.
- Can host an intern for six months (from March-October or October-March).
- Accept, welcome and treat your intern like a member of the family.
- Provide a comfortable, safe and supportive environment for your intern. (All interns are fully vaccinated.)
To learn more about becoming a host family and the interns who are coming in March, look for program manager Midori Yamanaka next to Rich Coffee on Wednesday and Friday mornings, or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you!
Take the Westwind Survey by Jan. 14
Oya No Kai is considering hosting three community-building weekends at Camp Westwind in May 2022. To help us gauge interest, please take this short two-question survey by Jan. 14.
You can learn more about Westwind and the new Covid protocols for 2022 on our website.