Middle School Newsletter - August 26, 2020
Follow-Up to our Campus Reopening Plan
The extensive plan covered all of the major areas of school life, and I wanted to follow up on a few specific aspects related to Middle School.
- Students will be at least six feet apart in advisory classrooms, but the tables will not have plexiglass shields.
- We will also take advantage of our outdoor spaces to eat lunch outside when possible/desired.
- We will use Virex II 256 to clean rooms between each class, including lunch.
- Unlike previous years, we cannot provide/share food with any student who may have forgotten to pack lunch and snacks. A student will have to contact their parent and request that you deliver it to school. Please remember that we cannot accept outside deliveries (e.g. Uber Eats). We recommend that you send extra food to school with your child each day just in case — they are growing rapidly!
Outdoor Spaces and Mask Breaks
- Scheduling breaks outside for physical activity and a change of pace has always been part of our middle school program and will be even more important this year.
- We have access to several wonderful outdoor spaces — the playground, terrace, and turf field — and plan to use them several times per day.
- As part of this, we will structure supervised mask breaks; when students are at least 10 feet apart in designated outdoor areas, they will be permitted to remove their masks temporarily.
New Faculty, Role Changes, and Staff and Departures
While we previously shared this information in the final newsletter of the school year, we want to re-share information about the new faculty and staff joining us this year with many new families who became part of our community during the summer.
Elizabeth Croad is the long-term maternity sub for Erin Mahony. Lizzie was raised for most of her childhood in the U.K. and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from The University of Nottingham, in the summer of 2015. She stayed at The University of Nottingham for an additional year to complete her Post Graduate Certificate in Education, specializing in secondary mathematics, whilst completing her teacher training. She then taught at The West Bridgford School, a public state school in suburban Nottingham, for three years before emigrating to the U.S., in the summer of 2019, with her husband. Lizzie is qualified in teaching math both at the middle and high school level and has taught in four different continents with her previous employment and volunteer experiences during summer vacations. She tutored middle and high school students in central D.C., before joining the huskies at Flint Hill as a long-term maternity cover substitute teacher. In her spare time, she loves to travel, explore cities, go jogging and volunteer with animals.
Miles Henderson – All School Diversity and Inclusion Coordinator – was born and raised here in Northern Virginia. At George Mason University, he studied foreign languages and education. He has previously worked as a substitute teacher and a tutor, as well as a volunteer for The Trevor Project’s advocacy team. Working with the Trevor Project encouraged him to find work related to equity and inclusion in education. He is very excited and eager to join the Flint Hill community, and he hopes to see everybody in person this fall.
Vicki Knickerbocker – Grades 7-12 Innovation Department Chair and Middle/Upper School Computer Science/Robotics Teacher – is a D.C. area native. After graduating from the University of Maryland, she began a career in video production, working at a local PBS station and production houses in the metro area. From there, an opportunity at a local school system gave rise to a new adventure as a communications lead and an opportunity to teach adults and children. Teaching was Vicki’s “Ah-ha!” moment. She moved to a position at a local independent school and spent the next 15 years building a flagship STEM program, serving as the technology lead, supporting the marketing team, providing training and support to faculty and, most importantly, sharing her love of learning and all things STEM with her students. A tinkerer by nature and academic explorer, Vicki is excited to join Flint Hill’s family.
Several staff members will be taking on new roles and be more involved with the Middle School this year.
Nate Green — will now be serving both the Middle and Upper Schools in his roles as a Technology and Instructional Specialist and Innovation Teacher.
Woojin Kim — will now be an eighth grade advisor in addition to teaching Latin and serving as the Classics Department Chair.
Maia Schmidt — is the new Grades 7-12 English Department Chair role and will be teaching Middle School English.
Riki Weeks — is the new Grades 7-12 Mathematics Department Chair.
We would also like to extend our best wishes to faculty and staff who departed over the summer — Director of Facilities Dennis Giuliani, Manager of Student Transportation and the Online School Store Sharon Giuliani, and Director of AfterCare Amy McMurrer. Each of these individuals made an incredible impact on Flint Hill, and I hope you will join us in wishing them well in their future endeavors.
Questions about school supplies? Lunch? Transportation? Check out the Preparing for the 2020-2021 School Year tile on the Resource Board!
Are you ready for the new school year? We’ve been making continuous updates to our Preparing for the 2020-21 School Year tile, on the Resource Board, to help you get ready and stay abreast of changes and preparations we are making due to COVID.
You may access checklists by division by clicking on the Preparing for the 2020-2021 School Year tile on the Resource Board of Husky Hub.
To access the Resource Board, visit www.flinthill.org/app (be sure to bookmark this link!), and log in with your username and password. Once you’ve logged in, click on the Preparing for the 2020-2021 School Year tile. The tile will remain accessible through the start of the new school year.
In assessing our unique technology needs for this year, part of which involves equipping students learning virtually to effectively access on-campus classes and their classroom and advisory communities, we have made the decision to issue all middle school students both an iPad and a MacBook Air. Returning eighth graders currently have both devices and will keep their MacBooks rather than turn them in, as we originally planned. Seventh graders and new eighth graders will receive their MacBooks during orientation next week, if they will be learning on-campus, and by appointment if they will be learning virtually. Long-term, we will be 1-to-1 with iPads in the middle school, but we believe this decision is necessary to start this school year.
Dress Code Adjustment
Our Middle School Dress Code provides guidelines for regular school dress as well as Husky Pride Dress by announcement. In recognition of a school year requiring greater flexibility, all students (on-campus and virtual) are now welcome to wear either regular school dress or Husky Pride Dress any day of the week.
Health Form Reminder
Appropriately completed health forms must be uploaded to the Magnus Health system and approved by the first day of classes (September 8), or your child may not attend school. If you have any questions regarding the health forms, please contact our Director of Health Services Mary Hart at 703.584.2399.
Student Schedules Online
Specific teacher and class assignments will be available tomorrow, August 27, at 8:00 a.m. To access your child’s class placement, log in to the Husky Hub, click “Children” and select your child’s name. From the “Progress” page, scroll down to view your child’s classes and teachers.
Q&A Sessions for Parents
Prior to the week of student orientation, parents are welcome to join me in a virtual “Parent Coffee” on Thursday, September 3, to discuss the start of school.
- New Parent Q&A — 1-2 p.m. Google Meet code
- Returning Parent Q&A — 2:30-3:30 p.m. Google Meet code
First Week of School
Information regarding the first week of school is available on the Preparing for the 2020-2021 School Year Resource Board tile here. Please remember to send lunch, with on-campus students when full-day classes begin, during the week of September 14.
Please note that every family was mailed carpool signs today. Families with multiple households were mailed signs to each address. Please display your sign on your dashboard during morning and afternoon carpool.
Thursday, September 3
For students who will need to keep medication on campus during the school year, we will have a medication drop-off day on Thursday, September 3, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on the Upper School Campus.
Families will pull into the circle and a nurse will come to your car to collect the medication and the appropriate forms. As a reminder, all prescription medication must be accompanied by the physician's order on the Medication Authorization Form, which must be completed and signed by the prescribing physician. All medication must have the pharmacy label on it.
All over-the-counter medication must be accompanied by the Medication Authorization Form and must be completed and signed by a parent or guardian. The medication must be in the original packaging and must be administered according to the package instructions, including the time and route to be administered.
If you are unable to come to the School on the medication drop off day, please call to schedule an appointment with one of the nurses prior to the start of school.
Q&A Sessions for Parents
Thursday, September 3
Middle School Student Orientation
Tuesday, September 8-Friday, September 11, 7:50 a.m.-12:10 p.m.
Please see additional information and reminders above.
Middle School Parent-Advisor Conferences
Tuesday, September 8-Friday, September 11, 2-4 p.m.
Please see additional information above.
Grades JK-12 First Day of Classes (Full Day)
Monday, September 14
We will begin following our regular MS On-Campus Schedule with morning arrival 7:30-7:45 a.m. and afternoon dismissal 3:10-3:25 p.m.
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Middle School Virtual Back-to-School Night
Thursday, September 17, 7 p.m.
See and hear from your child’s advisor and teachers in our reimagined virtual format.
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