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September 3, 2020
In This Issue



Week two is almost finished! Thank you for a great start to the school year!!! As a reminder, the Staff Communicator will be distributed each Thursday that school is in session.
District Closed for Labor Day, September 7
As a reminder, the district will be closed Monday, September 7 for Labor Day. **Teachers, please remind your families of this.**
RepMO Return to Learn Plan
The RepMO Return to Learn plan is in full swing! The district's goal is to remain in phase 1 as much as possible throughout the school year. Below are links to several resources we've shared previously that will assist with how to navigate the COVID19 situation.
RepMO Hero Nominations Open!
The Republic School District looks forward to honoring staff members who go above the call of duty through the RepMO Hero program! Each month (September-April) either a certified or classified employee from each of the building/department groups listed below will be honored for their part in implementing our district mission of preparing each student for a successful future. Those individuals will be recognized individually by their building/department group and by Central Office. 

Then, a committee will review the nominations of those individuals and one employee will be chosen as the RepMO Hero of the Month. The RepMOHero will receive $500 to be used at his/her discretion to purchase resources for his/her building/department. In addition, the RepMO Hero of the Month will be recognized at the following month's Board of Education meeting and through district communication channels.

There is no limit on how many different employees you can nominate per month.
Nominations will be accepted throughout each month using the deadlines below. Nominations will carry over.
You can nominate ANYONE! They do not have to be a part of your nomination group (listed below).

1. Custodial, nurses, aides/paras and food service building employees will be nominated by schools.
2. Departments will nominate staff members according to the schedule.
3. Central Office (including SPED office, Federal Programs office, and Food Service office), Elementary & Secondary Learning, Professional Learning, Data and Assessment, School Resource Officers, Maintenance, and IT will combine for the nominations.
4. Transportation will nominate staff members according to the schedule.
5. STRIPES 360 Staff members can be nominated by STRIPES or sites.
6. Sites can nominate an additional person from any of the departments in numbers 2 through 6.

Per the above schedule, classified employees will be honored for the month of September. Between now and September 30 use the link below (form link also under the "Staff" tab on the website) to nominate a classified employee for RepMO Hero.

Sign Up for Your Flu Shot by September 10!
Contact your school nurse to sign up by September 10! You will complete the forms needed to participate at the time of your flu shot appointment.
CLICK THE IMAGE for a larger version.
Mornings with Matt
Below is the schedule of meeting times for "Mornings with Matt." For those who remember from the past, Dr. Wistrom hosted "Chats with Chance" and "Mornings with Matt" will be an extension of that. Each month Dr. Pearce will visit a building to host conversations with employees. These meetings are casual opportunities where employees can visit with Dr. Pearce regarding any topic of their choice. Building libraries will be the location of these meetings with the exception of EC (classroom) and the Transportation Department (meeting room).

ALL employees are invited to EVERY meeting, if you'd like to attend! Dr. Pearce looks forward to visiting with many of you through this opportunity!

September 22: McCulloch library at 7:30 a.m.
October 13: Schofield library at 7:30 a.m.
October 27: RMS library at 6:30 a.m.
November 24: Sweeny library at 7:30 a.m.
December 8: Transportation meeting room at 8:30 a.m.
December 22: RHS library at 6:30 a.m.
January 12: Lyon library at 7:30 a.m.
January 26: Early Childhood classroom at 7:30 a.m.
February 23: RMS library at 6:30 a.m.
March 30: Price library at 7:30 a.m.
April 27: RHS library 6:30 a.m.
Human Resources Information
Last week an email with important human resources information was distributed to all employees. CLICK HERE to reference that email.
 Daily Wellness Check
Each day we are asking all employees and students to do a wellness check before they come to school. Following these guidelines will help everyone stay healthy!   

Staff Accolade
Congratulations to Assistant Superintendent, Mr. Overstreet for being named the Southwest Missouri Association of Secondary School Principals/Walsworth Consummate Professionals of the Year! This accolade was for the 2019-20 school year when Mr. Overstreet was the RHS principal.

Lockout vs. Lockdown
To appropriately communicate various situations that could potentially take place throughout the school year, two specific terms will be utilized: lockout and lockdown. These terms have very different meanings and very different procedures that will take place when implemented. Our goal is to effectively communicate what is taking place in our buildings during these various situations, and we felt these two terms most accurately will help in achieving this goal. 

A lockout will take place when there is an incident or situation where there is no direct danger or threat perceived toward students, employees, or school facilities. Business as usual will continue to take place within our school building walls. However, students are brought inside from any outdoor activities and
doors are additionally secured.

It is important to note that our buildings operate daily in near-lockout status. Perimeter doors are locked and visitors are screened at the building's entrance.

Example of a lockout situation: A neighboring district is in lockdown. As a precaution we may put our buildings into a lockout due to community unrest until the situation is resolved.

A lockdown will take place when there is a situation or the district has received information regarding a potential threat to students and employees. Internal procedures, which are practiced throughout the year, are implemented. Emergency personnel may be called on site to assist.

Friday Early Release
Each Friday (during phase 1) throughout the school year full day preschool through 12th grade students will dismiss one hour early for teacher collaboration time. Please keep this in mind when planning your student's after school plans. For details visit
Also, Tiger STRIPES will be available at no extra cost to families already enrolled from 2:30-3:30 and/or a cost of $4.00 per weekly release day for students needing care until 4:30 p.m. To attend Tiger STRIPES, families will need to sign up in advance. Registration details can be found at
*Should we need to implement phase 2 or 3, teacher collaboration time would take place on Wednesdays and therefore school would be in session for students through the normal dismissal time on Fridays.
FERPA and Virtual Learning
**The below information has been shared and will continue to be shared with families as it's important information for virtual learning.**
As we've shared previously, virtual learning is embedded in each of the district's three phases of the RepMO Return to Learn Plan. As a district, we also have an obligation to protect the confidentiality of each student's educational records. Pursuant to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. ยง 1232g; 34 C.F.R. part 99), the written consent of a parent or eligible student is required before the education records of a student, or personally identifiable information contained therein, may be disclosed to a third party, unless an exception to this general requirement of written consent applies.

While schools and districts must ensure that FERPA requirements are met in virtual learning settings, it's important to remember that FERPA applies to the disclosure of tangible records, and does not protect the confidentiality of information in general. The intent of this letter is to make our families aware that there may be times during virtual instruction provided by the district when third parties are present in the background and may overhear information being discussed with and/or among any of the students in a group, or even see other students participating in an instructional group. This kind of information is not considered to be part of a student's educational record, but instead is similar to the observations made by parents who visit their child's school building.

Protecting student privacy is important. As the school year begins, please keep in mind the following points in anticipation of the expanded use of virtual instruction for our students:
  • Teachers are prohibited from disclosing information from a child's education records to other students in the classroom during virtual learning activities.
  • Teachers are also prohibited from disclosing information from a child's education records to the parents of another child who might be in the background during a child's virtual instruction.
  • Families are reminded that they should not record, share, post or otherwise disseminate audio or video of remote learning or related services sessions.
  • District continually evaluates the use of online educational services to determine whether or not FERPA-protected information may be implicated.

Email Signatures
Please ensure that your email signature follows the example listed below. PLEASE INCLUDE YOUR SCHOOL BUILDING! 

Also, as was mentioned in back to school training, please make sure the following message is included in your signature as well: 

Please be aware that email correspondence, its contents, and any attachments you receive from the District are for intended recipients only and may not be disseminated or forwarded unless by the District's Custodian of Records pursuant to a lawful Sunshine Request. A failure to comply with this directive may be a violation of District policy and/or laws regarding the privacy of student or personnel information.

Athletics & Activities Guidelines for Parents/Students
The graphic below indicates all guidelines for our students participating in athletics and activities this fall along with all spectators who attend school events. Here are a few highlights for our spectators:
  • Masks/face coverings are REQUIRED for those in 4th grade and older and HIGHLY recommended for those younger when social distancing is not possible. Specifically, please make sure you wear your "mask on the move" as you find your seat at events, visit the concession stand, etc.
  • Republic School District will utilize the facility capacity guidelines set by the Springfield-Greene County Health Department to determine the number of spectators allowed to attend athletic/activity events. 
  • Through October 2020 this will mean that events held in Republic will not exceed 50% capacity. Based on historical attendance data, we do not feel maxing our capacity will be an issue. However, capacity will be filled on a first come first serve basis. 
  • Take note that as students travel and compete across the region, the spectator capacity will vary by facility/community. 
  • Every Monday RMS and RHS will post a list of events for the week on their websites and social media pages. This list will include any facility capacity restrictions.

District and Community Announcements

Upcoming Dates
September 7: District Closed for Labor Day
September 11: End of Progress 1 for RMS & RHS
September 18: Progress 1 Reports Distributed for RMS & RHS
September 23: End of Progress 1 for Elementary
October 2: Progress 1 Reports Distributed for Elementary
For questions or comments please contact me via email or by calling 417-732-3605.

Josey McPhail

Director of Communications
Republic School District