Parent/Guardian Issue 2
August 27, 2020
On the Tarmac
I don’t know about you but the tarmac is always the worst part of the trip for me. It’s hot, it’s crowded, there are no snacks or drink cart, and you just want the flight to take off. It seems to take forever and you need some communication from the pilot. In that spirit, I want to communicate a quick update on the take off of Flight 2020-2021.

The first thing I want you to know is that we are all in this together. The teachers are incredibly eager to begin. I have jumped around from breakout room to breakout room this week and all I hear is excitement but also concern that they will be unable to do this perfectly. Worried because they want time to make the AVA the most amazing learning opportunity for your children. Everyday, I hear so many ideas and conversations about ways to ensure your children are supported, engaged and welcomed beyond words. The dedication and passion for your children I observe among our teachers actually hurts my heart at times because we want so much to ensure this voyage goes smoothly.

We are working tirelessly to prepare for our take-off but as I said last time, we may encounter turbulence and it may be messy. We are doing our best to anticipate the rough skies and we will pivot as needed. We are all in this together and we will sort it all out. In order to calm some nerves, I have compiled some key takeaways to help you prepare for our upcoming trip.
Week 1
Monday, August 31 is the first day of school for 1st grade - 8th grade.
August 31-September 4 is Kindergarten screening and iPad pick-up (pick-up will also include headphones, a stylus, a charger and materials).
Tuesday, September 8 is the first day Kindergarten students will join their teachers online:
– Join us on the first day for our first all-school launch in a Google Meet. Get your camera ready. We will normally be live streaming announcements and the kick-off to our day but we want this first experience to feel alive so we will all join together. Please mute yourself upon entry but we would love it if you would show your faces so we can see your beautiful smiles. (We don’t mind if you are in your PJs with crazy hair).
– Grades 1-4 – join us at 7:40 sharp at this Google Meet link.
– Grades 5-8 – join us at 8:40 sharp at this Google Meet link.
– After our all school kick-off, we will help direct you to where you need to be. We are anticipating this to be messy but know that we will have a lot of tech support on hand. If you can’t get in, please don’t worry. We know this may be the case, so we will be waiting and ready to help you. You can always contact us via: More details to come on this on Friday.
Week 1 will look very different. Teams will not be following a strict academic schedule. While your child will have access to their schedule next week, we will not be following it strictly. We will be doing a lot of team building activities, community building, getting to know each other, learning about digital competencies, taking a lot of screen breaks, scheduling 1:1s with families and just enjoying our time together as we prepare to dive into learning.

Coming Soon
• Look for class lists for K-4 coming out later this evening, Thursday, August 27.
• Details about the Fly By, material pick-up and other fun coming next week.
• Details on how to connect live with your teachers on the first day.
• More information to come regarding what synchronous versus asynchronous learning may look like this year.
To Do List
1) Fill out this form so I can get to know you better.
2) Consider setting up a learning space for your child at home. This is one example of a learning corner a teacher has already set up to welcome your child.
3) Sign up for my Twitter (@ReneeFitzEdu) so you can follow our journey this year.
4) Consider joining the AVA Facebook Pages brought to my attention by fellow parent, Tiffany Anderson. Thank you!
• Lake Forest 4th grade AVA learners.
• Lake forest 2nd grade AVA learners.
5) Take a look at The Map on our website to find some of the parent and community resources we have curated for you through our fantastic district SEL COVID Task force. Scroll down to resources.
6) Stay tuned this week and weekend for other communication regarding class lists and information from your child’s teacher(s).

Stay safe and be well,
Renée Fitzsimmons
AVA Principal
Lake Forest School District 67
cell 847.721.8376
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