Transitional Reopening
How Students Benefit from 5-Day-a-Week In-Person Instruction

These last few weeks have been some of the most encouraging that we’ve experienced in the Natomas Unified School District since the beginning of the pandemic. Here’s why:

  • The district’s number of COVID-19 cases are the lowest they’ve been since October as reflected on our COVID dashboard.
  • Sacramento County is back in the red tier after being purple for months.
  • The majority of our staff have received the COVID-19 vaccination and all were offered an opportunity for vaccination.
  • Our elementary and secondary students have been able to return to their school sites for in-person instruction.
  • Based on new research and science, the state and county have updated their guidance to reflect that it’s perfectly safe for students to be 3-feet apart in a classroom rather than the original 6-feet allowing districts to accommodate more students for in-person instruction.
  • New guidance has allowed school playgrounds to reopen, more sports to continue, and music/band to take place in person.

All of these milestones combined have brought us a significant step closer to a more normal setting at our schools and have allowed NUSD to begin offering 5-day a week in-person instruction beginning April 12.

Please click here to continue reading the message on the significance of a 5-day in-person week and what it will look like and to get access to a decision form to switch your child from distance learning to in-person instruction.
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NUSD Spotlighted in New York Times for Mental Health and Social-Emotional Support for Students

Natomas Unified School District’s efforts to support students with mental health and social emotional needs during the pandemic received national attention in the March 24, 2021, edition of The New York Times. Take a moment to read how our district has been able to support 2,700 more student referrals than what we had the year before the pandemic.
Keeping Students Connected
Enrollment begins Monday for New K-12 Virtual Academy

We are excited to announce that starting Monday, March 29, parents and guardians can enroll their students in NUSD's brand new K-12 Virtual Academy launching in the fall of 2021. To enroll your student, visit the NUSD website following the same process as our traditional schools. Current NUSD students may file for an intradistrict transfer to attend the Virtual Academy. Non-NUSD students may file an interdistrict transfer request which will be considered. If your family is new to the district, start by finding your boundary school by visiting the School Locator tool or contacting the Enrollment Department at (916) 567-5819.

If you are considering this innovative option for your student(s) and would like to learn more or enroll, we invite you to visit the Virtual Academy website.
New Department to Focus on Deeper Connections with Families

Making deeper connections with families that influence positive outcomes for students will be one of the primary focuses of a newly created department in the Natomas Unified School District. Communications and Family Engagement will provide families with education, resources, tools, and various opportunities tailored to meet the unique needs of our diverse school community. Click here to learn more about this new department and meet the team leading this effort. 
Meet NUSD’s Newest Leaders 

We are proud to announce the recent selection of four leaders and what they plan to bring to their new school communities. We invite you to get to know them by clicking on the links below.

Suzen Holtenmann - Principal of Bannon Creek School
Heather Gohn - Principal of Paso Verde School
Lori "Grace" Strickland - Principal of Inderkum High School
Esther Perez, Ed.D. - Executive Director of K-12 Virtual Academy
Paso Verde School Opens Permanent Campus

On Monday, March 22, 2021, Paso Verde School opened its new, permanent campus - a place Puma scholars can officially call home! Explore Paso Verde's new campus in the video below or click here to take a virtual interactive campus tour where you can get a closer look at each classroom.
Celebrations
Location and Dates Announced for In-Person Graduation Ceremonies

The excitement of walking across the stage at graduation is back! As mentioned previously, we were looking at all options that would be available to hold graduation ceremonies during the week of June 7th-June 10th, whether in-person or virtual. We are pleased to announce that based on current guidelines and space capacity, Natomas Unified’s four high schools will host in-person graduation ceremonies in June at Sutter Health Park formerly named Raley Field in West Sacramento. Click here for more information. 
Natomas Unified Celebrates Women's History Month

As we conclude Women's History Month, we want to shine a spotlight on Savanna, a senior at Natomas High School. Savanna is in the AP Capstone program, where she is excelling by leaps and bounds. She shares that her motivation to excel comes from wanting to join her brother in being one of the first people in her family to finish high school. Her teacher Mr. Finch refers to her as a Rock Star! “She is the first one to arrive in the morning. Whenever she is called upon to participate and answer a question, her answers show a depth of understanding and a rigorous focus on the content and skills of AP Research and AP Seminar.”

Savanna wants to get an apprenticeship to become a tattoo artist and eventually open her own business one day. At the rate she’s going, it’s just a matter of time until she’s open for business.

In addition, along with ABC10.com and Your California Life, we are honored to pay tribute and celebrate female-led CTE teachers throughout our District. Inderkum Teachers Katie Cichy, Melissa May, and Ellie Steele were three of the four NUSD teachers profiled this month by ABC10.com and Your California Life. We invite you to watch their segments below.

COVID-19 Vaccinations
NUSD Recognizes Unsung Heroes

We appreciate our staff and volunteers who have tirelessly worked and supported the Natomas Unified School District COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic. Because of these unsung heroes, we have vaccinated 11,200 community members since we started mid-February. Click here to meet a few of the individuals who make it happen each week.

Note: In observance of Spring Break, the Vaccination Clinic will be closed to allow our staff and volunteers an opportunity to rest and enjoy Spring Break. We will resume operation on April 15.
Scholarship Opportunities
Natomas Chamber of Commerce Scholarship Opportunities Available

The Natomas Chamber of Commerce is accepting applications for its annual scholarship award. There will be five awards given away this year. All graduating seniors are encouraged to apply. If you or someone you know is interested in applying, please visit the Natomas Chamber of Commerce website for an application and more information.
$1,000 Operation Recognition College Scholarship

The Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) is accepting applications now through April 19 for an essay contest honoring local veterans. This year's Operation Recognition Scholarship essay theme is "Why We Must Appreciate America's Veterans." The $1,000 scholarship is offered courtesy of SAFE Credit Union. For scholarship rules and instructions, click here.
Natomas Schools Foundation Announces Scholarships for Local Students

The Natomas Schools Foundation (NSF) is proud to announce its annual scholarship program. The NSF will be offering scholarships to students who attend high school in the Natomas Unified School District. It is offering multiple scholarships - some $1,000, and others $500 for current high school seniors. Click here to learn more.
Parent/Student Info & Resources
Spring Break Feeding

Nutrition Services will provide a one-time pick up of breakfast, lunch, supper, and snack to anyone 18 years and under from 10:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. on Monday, April 5, to ensure nutritious meals are distributed for Spring Break (April 5-9). Anyone 18 years and under can visit any of our 15 mobile meal locations to pick up food for the week. See below for a list of mobile meal service locations.

Note: There will be no evening meal service on Monday, April 5.
Volunteers Sought for Joey's Food Locker

Joey’s Food Locker is in need of volunteers to assist with food distribution on Friday afternoons from 2-5 pm. Every Friday afternoon, in collaboration with the Sacramento Food Bank, Joey’s Food Locker provides food for families and individuals that walk up or drive through the pick-up line at Natomas High School. The food items include fresh fruit and vegetables, milk, eggs, cheese, and other staples necessary for a family. Over the last 3 months, Joey’s Food Locker has served over 6000 people each month. Given this demand, we are in need of more volunteers in order to meet the needs of our community.  

If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Joel Schwieger at jschwieger@natomasunified.org. Joel can also be reached at (530) 312-9799. In order to volunteer, you must be over the age of 18, physically able to be on your feet for 3 hours, and able to lift approximately 20-30lb boxes/grocery bags.  
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Let's work together. We encourage parents to stay up-to-date on district developments. We provide multiple opportunities to learn about NUSD successes, plans and events throughout the school year. 

Three key sources are Facebook -- we're listed as "Natomas Unified School District" -- Twitter and Instagram under @NatomasUSD. District and school websites also are a good source of information ranging from lunch menus to parent opportunities. Thanks for taking a look. We're honored to be your partner. 
CONTACT US  
Brought to you by NUSD Communications. If you have questions, comments or story tips, please call (916) 561-5267 or email dpowell@natomasunified.org.