Riverside School PTA Newsletter
Friday, October 23rd, 2020
PTA News
Tickets have sold out to THE GREATEST SHOWMAN. If anyone wishes to relinquish their ticket, please contact Brielle or Kelly. All ticket holders should look out for an email coming soon with event details and rules for the night of the event. 

We also need volunteers before and at the event! Please sign up if you are able! We are looking forward to a safe and fun Halloween event for the kids!
Thinking about Halloween costumes? Need new boots and coats? Want to get rid of old costumes, boots and coats? Riverside’s Green Committee invites you to participate in this year’s COSTUME, BOOT & COAT drive. 

For the week of October 26-30, collection bins will be outside the front of the school from 8:30-9am and 2:30-3pm for gently used, clean items. Collected boots and coats will be available for ALL families and staff FOR FREE November 3 from 8:30am-1:30pm at 32 Hendrie Avenue. Unclaimed boots and coats and all Halloween costumes will be donated.

Remember to bring your own bag or feel free to purchase a reusable Riverside School tote for $5.00. REDUCE, REUSE & RECYCLE!
Whether it's to take a trip down memory lane, relive the year that was, or you'd like a peep inside this year's Covid friendly classrooms! Whether you are an old-timer or new to our community. We now have an online gallery of 100's of Riverside Photos. The Riverside Reel is a member-only website for photos and videos on rivpta.shutterfly.com. Access is by invitation only for registered users on rivpta.org.

Keep a lookout for an email from Shutterfly with the subject line 'Riverside PTA has invited you to join rivpta Shutterfly Share Site'. Please visit our Riverside Reel webpage for more details.   
Our 3rd annual Holidays for Haiti community service event will be virtual this year. Riverside School has been a generous supporter of Danita’s Children orphanage in the impoverished country of Haiti for the past two years and we look forward to continuing the tradition a little differently this year in accordance with CT guidelines.

Registration will open on Monday, November 2 and close on Friday, November 16th. Please visit the Holidays for Haiti page on RIVPTA for a full description, video and a step-by-step guide to how this virtual event will work.
Save the date for this year's Riverside School Book Fair “Fall Into Reading” virtually from Monday, November 16 through Sunday, November 22. 

Back by popular demand, Main Street will be offering their extraordinary selection of reads for all ages, including Riverside’s featured author, Dan Gutman and his exhilarating Flashback Four series. Mrs. Browning’s Best list and teacher classroom certificates will also be available. 
Please join us virtually for all your holiday book shopping needs and help support the Riverside PTA! Any questions, please contact Laura Stahl or Susan Matsko
vote badge
Each election year, the PTA sponsors an Election Extravaganza Assembly for all grades (about the election process - NOT specific candidates!). All programs are happening virtually this year. The election assembly for grades K-2 is all pre-recorded, and will be accessed by teachers October 26-30. Older grades have both a pre-recorded portion as well as a live virtual portion with Carol Glynn. Grades 4-5 will do their live virtual portion on October 28.

Grade 3 completed their virtual session with Carol Glynn on October 21. In addition to learning about the election process, third graders learned about the Constitution, the three branches of government, and how the three branches work together to govern our country. They also learned about our local and state governments. Ask your third grader "What is The Legend of the Charter Oak?"  

This program is sponsored by the Arts Enrichment Committee of the PTA and is paid for by your generous donations. Thank you!
New York Times bestselling author Dan Gutman will be speaking to Riverside School students in grades 2-5 on November 20. 

In preparation for his visit, the PTA Arts Enrichment committee purchased a set of The Flashback Four books for each 5th grade class, giving students the chance to read the books in advance of Dan's talk with them.  In The Flashback Four series, "which blends fascinating real history with an action-packed and hilarious adventure, four very different kids are picked by a mysterious billionaire to travel through time and photograph some of history's most important events." 

For more information on Dan Gutman's books, feel free to check out the author's website at www.dangutman.com. 
October is National Anti-Bullying Month! Let's help our children Stand Up and Speak Out against bullying so they feel safe and supported at school. CLICK HERE for some age age-appropriate tips on how to combat bullying, and watch these videos along with your children:

There is a new section on the RivPTA website designed for families of students with IEPs and 504 plans. This page will provide links and information on navigating your child's education and information on how you can connect with the Special Education Support (SES) PTA reps. In addition to the school-shared resources, this page will allow you to join the SES mailing list, which will provide information from the district-wide SES meetings, opportunities for feedback, local educational events, and most importantly, opportunities to be in touch with other parents at Riverside who are sharing similar journeys. We look forward to connecting!
Please go to RIVPTA.ORG and follow the steps provided to update your information, including your child(ren)'s new teacher, for the Online Family Directory. Once your info is up-to-date, be sure to join the PTA to gain unlimited access to the directory. The PTA relies on the generosity of our families via our annual Membership Drive. Funds raised go towards student enrichment programs, classroom and building needs, as well as teacher support. If you have moved or have new phone or email information, please let the school office know as well!

Please note that Class Parents will be using contact information provided on the rivpta.org login to communicate to parents this year. And thank you to everyone who has contributed a donation to join the PTA so far - this is an important fundraiser to help us get up and running for the year.
We would like to introduce our Riverside - Remote Learning School PTA Community Message Board. You can access the board directly by logging in to Rivpta.org, or you'll automatically receive an email every time a new message is posted on your registered email on Rivpta.org. Our goal is for the message board to serve as a one-stop location for important information about Remote Learning School for the Riverside community. We welcome your questions and suggestions! Please contact Emily Brown, Riverside - Remote Learning School PTA Liaison, with any questions or suggestions.
From the Office
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. 
Enjoy this year’s parent coffees with Mr. Weiss and Ms. Key from the comfort of your own home via Zoom! Each session will feature a peek inside the school to give parents a sense for what a day at Riverside currently looks like for in-person students. You should have received your grade-specific Zoom link from your class parents (or Emily Brown for RLS families).
Please see the dates by grade below (all begin at 9am):
  • Kindergarten – Mr. Weiss will be sending the recording of Tuesday's session to all K families
  • Grades 1 & 2 – Tuesday, October 27
  • Grades 3 & 4 – Wednesday, October 28
  • Grade 5 – Wednesday, November 4
Effective immediately, parents must enter any lunch orders at least one full school day in advance so that the kitchen can make sure what is ordered can be provided to students at the start of their lunch time. You can enter your child/children's lunch orders up to FIVE DAYS IN ADVANCE using the new order form that Mr. Weiss distributed to parents on Thursday, October 8. 

After submitting for one child for a particular day, just click on the "Submit Another Response" button and then enter another lunch order for a future date or for a second child, etc.

NOTE: Based on new funding from the state of Connecticut at this time, School lunches are FREE for ALL students who order lunch through December 31. This decision is subject to change at the federal government's discretion. No accounts will be charged for meals (except for $1 bottled water) during that time. Please see the new order form for information on lunch options.

Please note that next week's menu options will have Bolonga on Tuesday and Chicken on Friday.
  • Only eligible bus students are allowed to ride the bus in the afternoon. Non eligible students are not allowed to ride the afternoon bus due to the Covid restrictions, even for playdates. Other arrangements will have to be made.
  • School lunch is FREE for ALL students until December 31
  • When dropping off anything in the bin outside please LABEL everything with your child's name and teacher.
  • Parents must use School Dismissal Manager when their child will be absent or late for any reason and also if their child will be leaving early. Since parents are not allowed in the building at this time, entering an early dismissal in SDM will take the place of signing them out.
  • When you arrive to pick your child up early, please let the office know you're outside waiting. We will not call a student out of class or send them outside until we know the parent is here.
  • Picture Day Retake Day will take place on Monday, November 9. If you have any questions, please contact either Mary Garth or Maureen Stanley.
  • So far this year, we have had a number of students come into school with braces/casts and assistive devices. Our District Policy requires all students who need assistive devices, having surgeries, stitches or any injuries, to have a note from their doctor stating cause of injury, date seen, date of removal for PE/Recess. Students will also need another doctor's note to return to all activities.
District News
The CT Department of Health has shared guidance for families to celebrate Halloween this year in a safe and healthy manner. Their document includes Halloween activities that are considered safe, activities and events that should be avoided, and guidance for trick-or-treating. 

A few important points about face masks from this state’s document: 
  • A costume mask (such as for Halloween) is not a substitute for a cloth or surgical mask. A costume mask should not be used unless it is made of two or more layers of breathable fabric that covers the mouth and nose and does not leave gaps around the face.
  • Do not wear a costume mask over a protective cloth or surgical mask because it can be dangerous if the costume mask makes it hard to breathe. Instead, consider using a Halloween-themed cloth mask.
  • Do not wear a costume rubber mask over another face covering of any kind.
Visit www.Nextdoor.com "Treat map" for a guide to your neighborhood's haunted decorations, interactive experiences and contact-free fun.
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, November 5, 2020 (Budget)
  • Wednesday, November 18, 2020
  • Thursday, December 3, 2020 (Budget)
  • Thursday, December 17, 2020
  • Thursday, January 21, 2021
  • Thursday, February 18, 2021
  • Thursday, March 25, 2021
  • Thursday, April 8, 2021 (Retreat, no public comment)
  • Thursday, April, 22, 2021
  • Thursday, May 13, 2021(Retreat, no public comment)
  • Thursday, May 20, 2021
  • Thursday, June 3, 2021
  • Thursday, June 17, 2021
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 
Round Hill Volunteer Fire Company Halloween Event
It's not going to be an ideal Halloween for Greenwich kids this year, so the volunteer firefighters at Round Hill Fire Company decided to try and save the day. The Fire Company will be hosting a "Safe but Spooky Haunted Halloween Trail" on Saturday, October 31st from 3-8 pm at its firehouse, located at 166 Old Mill Road in Greenwich. We have received approval for our plans from both the Town and State Health Departments. This is a free event to the community.

Attached is a press release and flyer for our planned Halloween event.
Jackson's SOCKTOBER Sock Drive
Last year, ten-year-old Jackson Bogardus was inspired by the local charity, The Undies Project (a charity that provides underwear to our low-income neighbors) and decided to start a local sock drive, “SOCKTOBER”, for the month of October. Jackson feels this is especially important as we approach the colder months. He also learned that socks are one of the items most needed in homeless shelters so he is collecting new socks for both adults and children and donating them to Inspirica in Stamford. 94 million people in the United States live in or near poverty. That's almost 1 out of every 3. Inspirica is more than just a homeless shelter. Inspirica seeks to break the cycle of homelessness by providing the programs and services that help their clients achieve - and maintain - permanent housing and stability in their lives. 

Jackson's SOCKTOBER donation bins can be found throughout the Greenwich community and at his house. In addition, socks can be purchased and donated at Threads and Treads. Please help Jackson reach his goal of collecting 2000 pairs of socks to help those in need this winter and spread the word about SOCKTOBER. 
Please call (203) 273-0511 if you have any questions or would like to learn more about Jackson's SOCKTOBER Sock Drive. 
YMCA of Greenwich
Fall Programming Registration is open. The YMCA has developed new programs and services to keep our community engaged and active as we navigate through this ever-changing climate. Classes are limited in size allowing our instructors to focus on each participant and maintain social distancing guidelines. You can find more information in the YMCA Program Brochure.
Neighbor to Neighbor Food Donation Drive
Every Thursday at St. Paul's Riverside from 10-11:30am. The need right now is particularly high. Items of greatest need are proteins such as beans, peanut butter and canned tuna, but all non-perishables are gladly accepted and appreciated. Just drive up, pop open your trunk and St. Paul's will get your donations to N2N.
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Have something to add? Email us at: peekweekriv@gmail.com Deadline for submissions is 3pm on Wednesday of the school week