Principal's Message 1.22.21

Principal's Message 1.22.21

Dear Families,

This week some of our 1st and 2nd-grade students returned to in-person learning.  It has been a joy to have students back at school.  Everyone was wearing big smiles behind their masks, which were visible through “smiling eyes.”  Teachers spent Tuesday, January 19th preparing for the return to in-person learning and refamiliarizing themselves with the NEAT Bar technology, which provides a full classroom view to students at home.  Next week, we look forward to adding the 3rd - 5th-grade students who will return to in-person instruction.  

Have a wonderful weekend!


Christine Pfaff

NEW *Important Reminders for Parents of In-Person Learners*

• Parents of in-person students must submit the Annual Self-Certification Form BEFORE their student can attend in-person. 

If the Annual Self-Certification Form has not been submitted for an in-person student and the student comes to school, the student’s parent will be called to pick up the student.

• Students in Early Childhood–Grade 2 must bring their saliva samples to school on the designated day it is due.

Parents whose students do not bring their saliva samples will be called to come to the school and bring their student’s sample collection vial, barcode label, and plastic baggie and assist their student in collecting the sample.

The schedule for saliva sample collection for EC–Grade 2 is as follows:
Monday: Ivy Hall Grades 1-2 (Last names A-L); Prairie Grades 1-2 (Last names A-L)

Tuesday: Country Meadows Grades 1-2 (Last names A-L); Kildeer Grades 1-2 (Last names A-L); Willow Grove PM Students 

Wednesday: Willow Grove AM Students 

Thursday: Country Meadows Grades 1-2 (Last names M-Z); Ivy Hall Grades 1-2 (Last names M-Z); Prairie Grades 1-2 (Last names M-Z); Kildeer Grades 1-2 (Last names M-Z)

See MORE INFO regarding saliva samples and collecting them.

• Daily Self-Certification is a requirement for in-person attendance.

To access the required Daily Self-Certification Form, you need to log into TeacherEase each day your student will attend in person to submit self-certification.

This VIDEO gives instructions, including how to access the daily self-certification form using your cell phone (iOS or Android).

If you will be using your home computer to send daily self-certification, we suggest that you bookmark the TeacherEase website. The link is:

NEW *Pre-Ordering Free Meals for In-Person Learning

If your child is participating in in-person learning next week (Jan. 25–29) and you would like your student to receive free meals in the building on those in-person days, please pre-order using the Linq website.  Find info about how to create your account and order HERE.

Important Notice: The preordering opportunity has been EXTENDED for the week of Jan. 25, 2021, only. Please place your preorders by 6 p.m. on Sun., Jan. 24. Preorder ONLY for the days that your child is learning in-person in the school building. (Do not order for the remote learning days.)

For all subsequent weeks, please place your orders by 6 p.m. on Thursdays for the week ahead.  (For example, be sure you have placed your preorder for the week of Feb. 1–5 no later than Thurs., Jan. 28 at 6 p.m.)

These meals are free to all students through the Summer Food Service Program of the USDA.  This program is anticipated to be in place through the end of this 2020–2021 school year.

NEW *News From the Library*

I am pleased to announce the purchase of over 1,500 e-books for our students to check out directly from home onto their iPads. Most of the classrooms have been introduced to a new app, called Sora by Overdrive. Children are allowed to check out one book at a time. They can also place one book on hold at a time. 

Many of our books have a limited number of checkouts before they disappear forever. Because of this, we strongly encourage children to read a sample of the book before borrowing it. This way they can decide whether the book is a good fit and it will help our books last longer. In addition, we are asking students to return books as soon as possible so others may check them out. 

Finally, If you have a public library card, students can add their public library and have thousands of more books to choose from. All you need is a library card. See this video for instructions on how to add a public library to the Sora app. 

NEW *Prairie Puma Leadership Council*

Attention 4th graders!

Join us for a PPLC information meeting on Thursday, February 4th after school from 3:15-3:45 pm. We will be meeting on Zoom.    

If you are interested in being a student leader, you must attend this meeting.  The Zoom log-in information will be sent to all 4th-grade parent emails on February 3rd.  You will receive information on the application process and different leadership opportunities that will happen throughout the year.  If you have any questions, please email Ms. Heuer, Mrs. Muehling, or Dr. Yutakis

We hope to see you there!

NEW *Prairie Yearbook*

We need your help to create our 2020-2021 Prairie School yearbook. We need photos of your child learning remotely.  Send in photos of your child singing or playing their instrument, working out for P.E., creating their stop motion movie in Exploration Lab, painting or drawing, or reading a book. We could also use indoor and outdoor recess pictures.  We're looking for pictures of them doing puzzles, playing games, or playing in the snow. Please send them to us at [email protected].  In your email, please include your child’s first and last name and teacher.

PTO News: Cookie Kits

Looking for a fun Valentine's Day activity to do, the PTO is selling cookie kits from Couture Cakery with a Valentine's day theme. The kits cost $17 and are on sale through January 27th. The kits will be ready for pick up on February 11th and 12th at school. Also, all families who purchase a kit will be entered into a drawing for a $25 gift card to the bakery. Head over to MTK for more information and to place your order.

REPEAT *Kids Heart Challenge 2021!*

For the past 4 years, our Prairie Pumas have had the opportunity to participate in the “Kids Heart Challenge” (formally known as Jump Rope for Heart) whose focus is on children’s total wellness-including heart as well as social-emotional health. Covid has stopped many things but keeping active and taking care of your health is always important especially now! Please consider signing your child up for the “virtual” KHC this year. The website has tons of activities to keep your child and family active. Raising donations is always optional and much appreciated. To sign up your child on the Prairie KHC website CLICK HERE.

Thank you for being a Heart Hero,

Mrs. Lehtman & Mr. Nickle

REPEAT *Returning to In-Person Learning Need to Knows*

Lunch - During lunch, students will be seated at classroom tables and will be six feet apart.  Masks will only be off while a student is eating.

Specials Transition Times - As we return to in-person learning next week, please know that our specials teachers do have to transport the students at school to their next class by walking the group to their next location.  This may cause a slight delay in the teacher opening up the Zoom classroom.  Please be patient during this brief time frame until the teacher can admit the students to class.

Bus Route Times for In-Person Students - For students who will be attending school in-person and will be taking the bus, routing information will be emailed to parents from the District next week.

Approved Snack List - The District has not revised the APPROVED SNACK LIST from the 19-20 school year.  The items the list includes are free of the Top 8 allergens: milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, soy, and wheat. This list includes the foods that are approved for students' daily snacks eaten in the classroom.

IMPORTANT: All items for daily snacks– with the exception of fruits and vegetables– MUST be prepackaged to allow staff to easily check that snacks meet the approved requirements.

Arrival/Dismissal Procedures -

*Parent pick-up and walkers will enter and exit Prairie at door #1, the main entrance.

*Drop off by car - please utilize the front circle drive.  Please pull up as far as possible.  The driver needs to remain in the vehicle and the student will exit the car curbside.  

*Bussers will arrive and depart from Kingsbridge Circle Drive.

*As always, there will be ample adult supervision and assistance for students and parents/caregivers.

REPEAT *In-Person Learning Protocols (REVISED)

Parents whose hybrid in-person students will be learning in person, please be sure to review the Revised IN-PERSON LEARNING PROTOCOLS for information about health and safety protocols and expectations for families and their students who will be learning in-person in our schools.

REPEAT *Classroom/Specials Classes Materials Needed*

Please remember to check the Classroom/Specials Classes Materials Needed document to see which materials your child will need for class.  If you have any questions, please contact the appropriate teacher.

REPEAT  *Upcoming Dates & In-Person Learning Report Dates*

Please see the following District schedule, as announced in Superintendent Schmidt’s Jan. 13 SUPERINTENDENT MESSAGE, including the Hybrid In-Person Return Schedule/Dates:

January 25th: 1st–5th Grade students with last names beginning with the letters A–L who selected the in-person hybrid learning option will report to school

January 28th: 3rd–5th Grade students with last names beginning with the letters M–Z who selected the in-person hybrid learning option will report to school