On behalf of the Aspen Ridge
eam (CRT), I hope everyone is well and continuing to enjoy summer. My family recently visited the Black Canyon, south of Glenwood Springs, and we are making every effort to be outside and enjoy the fresh air. It's been a semi-successful way to not binge watch the news every night and to avoid thinking about of all of the "what-ifs" that are upon us. I think we can all agree that it feels like a roller coaster from day-to-day. Please know that our team is focused on safe practices, limiting exposure and creating policies to present to our Board for a successful school year.
I recently read an article published by Harvard that states:
We recognize there are immense challenges. There is no perfect plan to reopen schools safely, only ‘less bad’ options. There is no ‘one size fits all’ strategy that works for every school. Schools have limited budgets and staff. Compliance will be imperfect. Learning will be different. There will be disruption. Schools may need to reclose unexpectedly depending on local conditions. No one knows with certainty what the fall will bring in terms of this pandemic.
While uncertainty tends to create anxiety (since most of us are planners by nature), knowing that we have the ability to create a plan that works for our school and for our community, knowing that we don't have to follow a "one size fits all" plan and knowing that we have a team of people dedicated to evaluating possible scenarios, outlining processes and thinking of each logistic possible, helps settle those uncertain feelings and makes me proud of our school. This is not going to be an "easy" year, but as we lean into each other for support, it's bound to make it easier to digest. Let's don't forget that it is also the TENTH year of Aspen Ridge's existence. We are in the midst of creating legacies for years to come.
To keep everyone as current as possible, here are some of the topics we have discussed to date during our CRT meetings, along with some areas that still need to be finalized and taken to the Board of Directors.
- Student ratio to class size (square footage)
- Masks and Face Coverings
- Building Entry
- Shared Materials
- Learning options for families (on premise and virtual)
- Sick Policies as related to extended absences, quarantines, traveling, etc.
- Policies around enrichment/elective classes, intramural sports and after school clubs
- Lunch, recess and traffic flow around the building
- Visitors, volunteers and substitute teachers
- Before and After School Care (Owl's Nest)
- Special Events
- Sanitizing and Health Practices
- Field Trips
- Student academic support
We WILL have two options for student learning this fall, based on your families needs. On-premise learning (with safeguards and precautions in place) AND virtual, asynchronous learning. An email will be sent in the next few days for you to make a preliminary choice, with the details and logistics for what each will look like. These preliminary choices will be vital for us to plan accordingly and to ensure we have the right staff in place.
This continues to be an unprecedented time across the nation and it's important to keep in mind that decisions we make will look different from other areas around the nation, based on our local health climate, our local/state government and our specific needs. However, our focus will continue to be on growing our children into problem solving young adults who are not only academically minded, but socially and emotionally secure. It's a great time to be an Owl!
As always, please don't hesitate to reach out if you have any questions or ideas. We are in a draft phase, working to ensure safe and strong policies, all the while well aware that fluidity and flexibility are key understandings as we plan for this school year.
Thank you for investing in:
Charla Salmeron, Principal