Riverside School PTA Newsletter
Friday, April 9th, 2021
PTA News
PHASE II OF “STEM AT HOME” HAS BEGUN!
Congratulations to the Phase I winner, Winnie McIntyre (1D), for participating and winning an Echo Dot!
 
Phase II begins today with NEW project ideas! From now until April 22 at 5pm, students can complete any of the suggested projects (visit the STEM at Home page for a NEW list for Phase II), or pursue their own ideas. Participants who upload a photo of each completed project by the deadline will be entered in a raffle to win a 4th Generation Echo Dot! 
 
STEM at Home gives students a chance to sharpen their STEM skills as they explore their world or create solutions to real-world problems. Participation is voluntary and all students in grades K-5 are welcome!
STAFF APPRECIATION WEEK IS COMING UP (APRIL 19-23)!
The week we return from spring break, we will shower the staff with love and thanks! Mark your calendars! More information coming from your Class Parents shortly.
RIVERSIDE IS CELEBRATING EARTH WEEK 2021!
Join the Town of Greenwich and Riverside School for Earth Week 2021: Restore Our Earth from April 19-23! Please look for daily notices starting Sunday, April 18 that will share how Riverside students can celebrate Earth Week through food, art and science. Let's go green and celebrate together! 
TEXTILE DRIVE YIELDED 833 LBS OF DONATIONS
A most sincere thank you to the Riverside school community for making the PTA's first Textile Drive a sucess! The 833 lbs of donated textiles are being sent south to support border areas and proceeds generated from the donated textiles are helping fund town-level recycling education efforts by Waste Free Greenwich. 
5TH GRADERS, AS PART OF THEIR VOLUNTEERING PROJECT, DELIVERED 14 DINNERS TO KIDS IN CRISIS
Our awesome 5th Graders completed a super successful volunteering project last week! Together, teams of three people from the 5th grade classes prepared and donated 14 days worth of 3-course dinners to Kids in Crisis during the month of March. 39 fifth graders cooked and baked dinners, salads, sides, desserts and personally delivered these prepared items to Kids In Crisis nightly for two weeks. We are so proud of this project and were happy to give back to a local organization in our community! We would like to thank all the parents who assisted with this effort and helped educate your children about this important organization.
VIRTUAL FOOD DRIVE TO SUPPORT FILLING IN THE BLANKS
The Riverside School Community Service Committee is hosting a virtual food drive for the month of April to support Filling in the Blanks, which helps to fight childhood hunger by providing children in need with meals on the weekend. Since the onset of COVID-19, Connecticut's food insecurity rate has risen from 13.4% to 22.8%. Now more than ever, we need to give back and help provide 3,600 children with the nutrition they need. 

Donations can be made by simply clicking on this link. Just $6 provides one complete weekend bag of food. What a great way for our school community to continue giving back! We hope you will make a donation! 
ENJOY THE PLAYGROUND WHILE STAYING COVID SAFE
We are excited that the playground equipment at Riverside School is now available for use by the community… just as the spring weather begins to set in! As we continue to prioritize safety in and out of school, we encourage families using the playground to adopt the COVID-related playground protocols currently in place for children during regular school hours. These guidelines include:

  • Using hand sanitizer upon entering and exiting the playground
  • Wearing a mask at all times
  • Maintaining a 3-foot distance from others

Thank you!
GPS WANTS YOUR FEEDBACK ON PPT MEETINGS
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 SES FAMILIES
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. 
UPCOMING ENRICHMENT PROGRAMS
April 23: Author visit with Alyssa Capucilli (Kindergarten)
April 26 & 28: Animal Embassy's Endangered Species program (Grade 3)


From the Office
A REMINDER TO FAMILIES WHO MAY BE TRAVELLING OVER THE APRIL BREAK
From Dr. Jones in her GPS Note to all families on March 26:

April Break: Negative test due upon returning from travel
GPS will continue to request families and staff to provide a negative COVID-19 test if there is planned travel over the April Break. This will be very helpful to keep our students and staff safe. 
 
All Current Connecticut Travel Advisory Information can be found at:
STUDENT HEALTH ASSESSMENT SCREENINGS
Nurse Luiso will be performing Vision and Hearing screenings in the health office for grades 1,3,4 and 5. A Scoliosis Screening will be performed for grade 5 girls. Any students with current Health Assessments are encouraged to submit to the nurse to avoid being screened again.

Also, if any parents would like to opt out of the screenings, please email Nurse Luiso with the student(s) name and teacher.  Student screenings will begin next week (April 5-9). Any screenings not performed next week will be continued after Spring Break.
FAMILY MEMBERS WHO ARE COVID TESTING
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.
ORDERING LUNCH (IN-PERSON STUDENTS)
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
RAISE YOUR HAND AND JOIN PTA COUNCIL
The Greenwich PTA Council (PTAC) is still in search of volunteers and would love for you to get involved. PTAC is still in search to fill the roles below for the 2021-2022 school year. If interested, please contact Nerlyn Pierson at vp-nomininating@greenwichptac.org by Monday, April 19.     
 
Board Positions: VP of Nominating (1 year term)
Committee Positions: Curriculum Enrichment, Digital Learning, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Financial Review (must be an Elementary School parent), Health & Wellness and Student Activities (must be a High School parent). Click here for a description of the PTAC committees.
iPAD SCREEN TIME AND PRINTING TIPS FOR PARENTS AND STUDENTS
Curious about how your student uses their school-issued iPad? Learn how to set up screen time monitoring here. Is your home printer compatible? Look for AirPrint on the box or check out the list from Apple Support here. No home printer, but still need to print for school? Media Specialists can assist students in finding the closest printing location to your home! Every GPS School has its own Media Specialist.
NOMINATE SOMEONE FOR THE PTAC ESSENCE AWARD BY APRIL 30
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.
BOE MEETINGS NOW VIRTUAL
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, April, 22, 2021
  • Thursday, May 13, 2021(Retreat, no public comment)
  • Thursday, May 20, 2021
  • Thursday, June 3, 2021
  • Thursday, June 17, 2021
GPS WEEKLY DISTRICT DIGEST
Subscribe to receive the Greenwich Public Schools weekly "District Digest" e-newsletter directly to your email inbox.

Community News
Review the RTM News , BOE News, and the Community Calendar 
National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is Saturday, April 24
Turn in your unused or expired medication for National Drug Take Back Day on Saturday, April 24 from 10am-2pm at the Greenwich Public Safety Complex (11 Bruce Place). Greenwich Together will be at the event to provide information, resources and FREE safe medication lock boxes with their logo and website on them. Please spread the word by sharing this flyer!
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.
Help the Family of a Former Riverside Student Battling Cancer
Julian McRandal, a second grader at Glenville School (and former Riverside School student), is currently battling a late-stage brain tumor. He dreams of growing up to be a scientist and father, just like his dad! The McRandal family is currently dealing with Julian’s diagnosis and treatment, as well as remote schooling Julian’s fourth grade sister – all without local family support. Friends have created a meal train so that friends, neighbors and members of the community can bring the family food or purchase a meal for delivery. If you’d like to help out, please sign up for a meal slot or purchase gift cards for the family via their dedicated GiveInKind page. No contribution is too small!

COVID Resources from the School
IN-SCHOOL COVID-19 SYMPTOM PROTOCOL
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. 
PEEK AT THE WEEK
Access Peek Archive for past issues
If you are not receiving an issue every Friday please email constantcontactriv@gmail.com 
SUBMISSIONS
Have something to add? Email us at: peekweekriv@gmail.com Deadline for submissions is 3pm on Wednesday of the school week