Riverside School PTA Newsletter
Friday, April 30th, 2021
PTA News
Next week, we'll be holding our weeklong Spring Fundraising drive! In the absence of our two annual springtime events (Pizza Bingo and Riverside Run), we are aiming to raise funds to support arts and science enrichment programming, field trips and outdoor campus enhancements...all of which benefit every child at Riverside School. 

Stay tuned for more information coming next week and please consider donating to help enrich the Riverside School experience for our children!  Please visit the Spring Fundraiser webpage for more info.
The PTA is once again sponsoring a school supply fundraiser for the upcoming school year. Order now and your child's box of supplies will be delivered directly to the classroom by the first day of school.

Starting May 1, please go to www.shopttkits.com and enter account number 83285. The site will close on May 31. Once again, earbuds and headphones, as well as PPE kits, will be available to purchase separately if new ones are required. Please note that it is strongly advised that Kindergarteners have headphones rather than earbuds. Please email Virginia Lockhart with any questions.
A reminder to encourage students to eat a balanced diet that will give them energy and the nutrients they need as they grow. Please take part in Nutrition Week by making sure your children start their day with a healthy breakfast. Starting the day with nourishing foods has been shown to increase energy and improve focus and memory.

Teachers have received activity sheets that highlight the importance of healthy eating through word searches, crossword puzzles, coloring and more, and encouraged them to share them with students next week. We also encourage you to print out the “Eat 5 Fruits and Veggies Everyday” sheet as a way to help remind students to eat nutritious foods at home. If you’d like to learn more about the latest dietary guidelines for elementary school students, visit myplate.gov.

FUN FACT: the food pyramid we grew up with is a thing of the past!
Next Wednesday, May 5, is National Bike to School Day! Join the hundreds of schools across the U.S. and consider biking (or walking) to school. Be SAFE and be GREEN
GPS has initiated a new internal feedback process (that is separate from the review being conducted by PCG) to improve their PPT meeting process. To that end, please make sure to fill out the new special education survey AFTER your Annual PPT Meeting. The survey link is in blue and can be found on the PPT Summary Page. The PPT Summary is delivered virtually, five school days after your annual PPT. It is included with your finalized IEP.

This survey is in response to the many inconsistencies that Key2Ed found regarding how PPTs are run throughout the district. These surveys are anonymous and cannot be traced back to families. If you do not receive a survey link please reach out to the PTAC Special Education Support Committee at ses@greenwichptac.org.
Calling all families of students with IEPs and 504 plans. Please sign up for the SES Message Board to stay informed and up to date on district meetings and special events that impact special education and related services. We look forward to connecting and collaborating. 
This week, the 3rd grade heard from Riverside School favorite Animal Embassy's Chris Evers about Endangered Species. In our ever-changing world, human activity can affect the delicate balance of our ecosystem. With this program, the students discussed some of the human activities which threaten the environment as well as the wildlife living within impacted habitats. They considered how we can decrease such negative environmental effects, as well as explore the meaning of habitat loss & destruction, the exotic pet trade, and human demand for luxury commodities. As part of the program, Chris introduced the students to many of his amazing Animal Ambassadors.

This program was organized by the Science Enrichment Committee and made possible by your generous donations to the Riverside School PTA.
May 3-4: HTHT's Dig It (Grade 3)
May 4-5: Animal Embassy's Animal Adaptations (Grade 1)
May 10-11: Animal Embassy's Reptiles and Amphibians (Grade 2)
May 10-11: Stepping Stones virtual field trip - Innovation Station Super Skyscrapers (Kindergarten)
May 11: Arts Field Day (Grade 5)
May 13-14: Journeys to American Indian Territory's Eastern Woodlands program (Grade 3)
May 17-20: Poetry week workshops with Ted Scheu (Grades K-4)
May 21: Dragoons (Grade 5)

From the Office
As per the Connecticut Department of Health, all current 3rd graders need to submit a CT State Health Assessment form for the 2020-2021 school year. These assessments should be based on health exams performed during the 2020 through 2021 calendar years. 

Parents of current 4th graders who were notified of needing to submit the 3rd/4th grade Health Assessments must submit their form by today (April 23, 2021). These assessments should be based on health exams performed during the 2020 through 2021 calendar years. 

Current 2nd graders will also need to submit a Heath Assessment based on a health exam performed during the 2021 through 2022 calendar years for 3rd grade "entry". These forms can be submitted during the 3rd grade year (2021-22 school year). 

In addition, the School will need Dental Forms to be fully completed by either your Pediatrician or Dentist, as per CT Department of Health requirements. 

Thank you so much for your help and time. Please let Nurse Luiso know if you have any questions: Melissa_Luiso@greenwich.k12.ct.us
As a reminder, GPS is asking that students stay home if a member of their immediate family is being tested due to exposure or symptoms. It will limit teachers and students from possible exposures, causing individuals to be quarantined. Quarantining is a great safety measure, but it can be disruptive for staff and families. We understand we have many families who regularly test as a proactive measure; staying home while awaiting results of proactive, regular testing is not necessary.
PLEASE NOTE: All orders MUST be submitted prior to the date ordering for (and up to five days in advance).  Orders entered for same day lunch may not be seen, and cafeteria staff don't want students missing out. Please visit the Lunch Page on rivpta.org for information on submitting lunch orders and a link to the school's order form.

District News
Unfortunately, due to COVID North Mianus School has had to cancel its Pow Wow Carnival for the second year in a row. However, this year the Pow Wow Raffle will return online! Top prizes include: a $2,000 Amazon Gift Card, a $1,000 Nordstrom Gift Card, an iPad Pro, and the all-in-one Virtual Reality Quest 2 by Oculus. To see all of the incredible prizes and buy tickets ($5/each) click here.
Please share this link with friends and family! Anyone is welcome to buy raffle tickets even if they aren't local, prizes will be shipped/delivered as needed. The raffle will be held Saturday, 5/1 at 3:30pm and all winners will be notified immediately after the drawing. For additional information, see this flyer or reach out to nmsptapowwow@gmail.com.
The PTAC Essence Awards recognize up to two outstanding PTA members of the Greenwich Public Schools PTA communities, who through exemplary achievement, have inspired others, demonstrated selfless spirit and made a significant difference in our school community (individual school or district wide). Parents, teachers, staff, students, principals, administrators or members of the Greenwich community may submit nominations. It would be great to receive at least one nomination from every school! The application consists of an essay of no more than 500 words, and must be submitted through this online formThe awards ceremony will take place on Wednesday, May 26 at 10am. Location to be determined based on COVID guidelines. Contact: essence@greenwichptac.org.
Board of Education meetings are easier to attend now that they take place over Zoom--stay informed! Here is a list of 2020-2021 academic year Greenwich Board of Education meetings. Information on how to access the meetings can be found on the GPS Accessing Virtual BOE Meetings page. All meetings start at 7:00 p.m. unless otherwise noted.

  • Thursday, May 13, 2021(Retreat, no public comment)
  • Thursday, May 20, 2021
  • Thursday, June 3, 2021
  • Thursday, June 17, 2021
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Community News
Review the RTM News , BOE News, and the Community Calendar 
Family Science Activity to Benefit a Former Riverside Student Battling Cancer
The registration deadline for the live virtual event benefitting Julian McRandal (a second grader at Glenville School, and former Riverside School student, who is battling an aggressive brain tumor) has passed. But families can still purchase the accompanying kit by May 17 to work on the experiment independently with the help of a pre-recorded instructional video. You can also donate a kit to a child in need. For additional information, visit www.scienceexplorers.com/julian-strong.
Greenwich Land Trust Plant Sale (May 7-8)
Join us for the Greenwich Land Trust's first ever native plant sale! Not only is all the inventory grown in house from seed collected on Greenwich Land Trust preserves, but all proceeds from the sale will support the growth of the Seed-to-Seed program. Seed-to-Seed operates with the goal of increasing the population of local, native plants on GLT properties as well as other properties in our community. The Greenwich Land Trust has donated plants to the Riverside School Native Plant Garden and several other GPS school gardens for the past two years. Help support this work and bring home some beautiful super-native plants for your garden! Please see flyer for more info.
Greenwich Cardinals Youth Hockey Tryouts
Register now at GCYHA for the 2021-2022 season tryouts. There is an Early Bird registration fee discount until April 7. All sessions take place at Terry Connors Ice Rink.

COVID Resources from the School
The Nurse’s Office has received many questions about how the school is making decisions about when the school is sending students home. Extra precautions are being taken in order to do our best to keep students in school. Unfortunately, there will be many students sent home this year even though they may have normally been allowed to stay in school and we hope all families will be understanding. 

Greenwich Public Schools COVID Symptom Protocol:  
  • If a student exhibits 1 low risk symptom (fever of 100.4 or greater, congestion/runny nose, nausea/vomiting/diarrhea, sore throat, headache, muscle aches) and has had no exposure to a COVID-19 positive person, the student may return to school 24 hours after symptom resolution (without medication for fevers) 
  • If a student exhibits 2 or more low risk symptoms (see above) or has 1 high-risk symptom (new cough, difficulty breathing, loss of taste/smell) AND has had no exposure to a COVID-19 positive person, the student must be seen by a healthcare provider. 
  • If the student has a negative PCR swab test for COVID, the student may return to school 24 hours after symptom resolution (without medication for fevers). 
  • If the student has lab testing and evaluation, or an alternative diagnosis, the student may return to school 24 hours after symptom resolution (without medication for fevers). 
  • If a student has a positive PCR swab test for COVID, the student may return to school after 24 hours without fever (without medication) AND symptoms improving AND approval of local health department (10-14 days); AND release by the primary care provider will be required 
  • If a student is exposed to a COVID positive person, the student may return to school 14 days after last contact unless symptoms develop.  If symptoms develop, the student must obtain a swab. 

Please visit the district site to access the GPS COVID Checklist and the GPS COVID-19 resource page for more information. 

Please contact the School Nurse, Melissa Luiso (melissa_luiso@greenwich.k12.ct.us) with any questions. 
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