A Message from the Principal
September 1, 2020
Dear Ithan Families,
Welcome to the 2020-2021 school year. I am happy to share that our Ithan staff returned for in-service yesterday. Many of our teachers and staff members have put in extra hours over the summer to create a virtual class that meets the needs of our students while we are in Phase 3 opening. We appreciate your patience and support as we worked to design a comprehensive plan for the reopening of all RTSD schools. During the summer, the school district has worked diligently to ensure all students can return to school safely and as soon as possible. This work is ongoing and constantly changing.
I am pleased to share that Mrs. Heather Gillan-Esposito will be joining our Ithan team as an Assistant Principal. Mrs. Esposito will share her time between Ithan and Radnor Elementary Schools and comes with many years of experience in the school district as a classroom teacher and most recently as a Dean of Students at Radnor and Wayne Elementary Schools. We are excited to welcome Mrs. Esposito and look forward to her help and support.
Your child’s teacher assignment with a.m. and p.m. specification will be shared today. We have received an enormous number of requests for specific student pairing and grouping. While we understand why these requests were made, there is no way we could satisfy all these requests and maintain a class or session size which would allow for safe social distancing. We appreciate your understanding.
Schedules: A generic schedule was shared with families. Classroom teachers will share a specific schedule once school begins. Your child will participate in whole and small group synchronous (live) sessions and will have asynchronous learning throughout the school day.
Virtual School Day: 9:10-3:40, Attendance will be taken during Morning Meeting each day.
Home Access Center (HAC): HAC only opens for elementary parents when progress reports are available at the end of each marking period. There is no information in HAC for elementary parents at this time. We will provide support for logins and passwords at a later date.
The First Week of School: The start of the 20-21 school year will be unique and different and will require us to think and act with flexibility and creativity. We believe that an investment in building relationships and a healthy and positive classroom culture is paramount to the start of any year. This year, it may be more important than ever. For that reason, we are planning to host an in-person experience for our students and teachers on Tuesday, September 8th (AM and PM) and Wednesday, September 9th (AM only). With a remote start to the year, this may seem like a contradiction to our district-wide phase plan. Please know that we feel that an early in-person introduction with students is incredibly important, and our plan will ensure the highest level of safety.
In advance of the 8th-9th, we will send all families an online sign-up genius on Wednesday, September 2, to schedule a time to meet their teacher and pick up their school supplies and technology device for the year. This process will occur in very small groups and will be situated outside (weather permitting). We will send further details on how we will facilitate this process as well as our masking and social distancing guidelines.
We hope that our families and students will see this opportunity as an efficient means of picking up school materials and student district-issued technology, and a positive beginning to an ongoing investment in our classroom communities. Beyond the visit on the 8th and morning of the 9th, our teachers will be hosting an online classroom meeting on the afternoon of the 9th. Our specialists will also be offering open live sessions to engage with them as well.
Our community and relationship-building work will continue on the 10th and 11th through virtual experiences through Zoom and Schoology. Our teachers will spend the 10th and 11th working with their individual classes to build understanding and practice with online routines, procedures, and expectations. An investment in how school will operate remotely will help reduce anxiety and stress, support student independence, and build a foundation for the start of the year. Please understand that an investment in procedures and expectations is important for our students, families and teachers and it is something that usually occurs during a traditional year in the classroom. Some grades may need more time and others may take to the guidelines more quickly. We appreciate your support along the way.
- Device Descriptions and Distribution Schedule
- Day One Success (Logging On)
- Each child will receive a Password Passport which will contain login information for all district supports.
- IES School Supplies
- Many of these will be used at home and when we return to in-person learning. We will no longer need an art smock as art instruction will be virtual.
- Ithan Webpage
- Subscribe to Radnor Reader
- Kindergarten Orientation: Thursday, September 3 at 11:30 a.m. A Zoom link will be sent to all kindergarten families.
- Virtual Open House for Grades 3-5: Wednesday, September 9 at 7:00 p.m. Teachers will send a zoom link.
- Virtual Open House for Kindergarten: Thursday, September 10 at 6 p.m. Teachers will send a zoom link.
- Virtual Open House for Grades 1 and 2: Thursday, September 10 at 7:00 p.m. Teachers will send a zoom link.
We look forward to having our teachers meet your children in the coming days. During this challenging time, I encourage grace and respect as we work together to navigate changes as they arise and meet the needs of our students while focusing on Ithan CARES.
Tronya Boylan, Principal
Ithan Elementary School
RTSD Elementary Administration
- Device Descriptions and Distribution Schedule