Dear Lafayette Families,
Welcome to the 2021-2022 school year! As we approach August 30th, I’m sure we are full of mixed emotions – joy, hope, worry, wariness, uncertainty, resolve – to name just a few. Last year was beyond exceptional – as a community, we pulled together and were able to reopen our school for over 730 students. I could not have been prouder of our flexibility, collaboration, patience, and resolve to support our students, teachers, staff, and families. Our end of year data, both academic and social emotional, clearly demonstrated that our students did not experience significant learning loss and felt more loved than ever. This is a true testament to our work as a whole community.
No matter what this year brings, please rest assured that we will continue our focus on safety, joy, the social emotional needs of our students, and creating consistent and sustainable structures for learning. This year is a “remix” of sorts – bringing back some of our favorite traditions, events, and classroom activities while also adding in the best of our COVID safety protocols. We will continuously balance the need for safety with “normal” – creating the best experience we can for our kids. While other schools are “reopening”, we are striving to continue to refine our practices, using what we learned last spring to our advantage.
This year our enrollment continues to rebound from where we were last year. Although we are not yet at our projection we have over 850 students enrolled. We continue to welcome new and returning families as enrollment is ongoing. Our staff has continued to grow as well! Please take time to learn names and faces on our staff directory page.
Here are a few other important notes for the upcoming year:
- Specials will be taught in person and on a 6 day schedule! Hooray! For those of you new to a 6 day schedule, it means that every day is numbered….it’s no longer “Tuesday”, it’s “Day 3”. Not to fear – the kids always know what day it is, and it will be on the website calendar for the adults. 😉
- Flex Time is back! For students in grades 1 – 5 this is an opportunity to join a club, socialize, participate in choir, have open art, do reading buddies and more! We will have flex time from 2:40 pm – 3:10 pm every day.
- COVID Safety Protocols – I will share the full safety protocols during parent huddles and in the coming weeks. But here are the basics:
- Masks – worn at all times by students and adults (except during PK4 nap time and while eating).
- Social Distancing – Adults must maintain social distance of 6 ft at all times; students should be 3 ft apart to the greatest extent possible
- Cohorts – Student cohorts can now mix (at recess, Flex time, etc)
- HVAC – Continued HVAC improvements (classroom HEPA air filters, MERV grade filters, etc)
- Testing – Student asymptomatic and symptomatic testing
- Arrival Screening – “Ask, ask, look” protocol done by parents, but no temperature checks at the door.
- Vaccinations – earlier this week, the Mayor announced that all DC government employees (including all staff who work in school buildings) must be vaccinated. More information to come on the exact policy of DCPS.
- Lunch – we are continuing to work on how to have lunch in the safest and most sustainable way. More info to come at Parent Huddles. Also, all students are eligible to receive free breakfast and lunch this school year!
- Travel Guidance – **Updated**. unvaccinated students are recommended (no longer required) to quarantine for any travel outside the DMV.
- Complete protocols at the DCPS ReOpen Strong website.
Room Parent Sign Up – All Grades – Calling all volunteers for all grade levels for Room Parents! Sign up is NOW!!! Just send an email with Your Name, Teacher’s Name and Child’s Name to . Emails will be accepted starting 8/6 through 8/20.
School Supply List – packaged just for you by the grade levels on School Tool Box. You can also use the list if you would like to purchase supplies on your own.
Drop Off Line – It’s back! We will start running our car drop off line beginning on Wednesday, 9/1. Be ready to volunteer when it’s your grade level’s month! I’ll be teaching us how to use the drop off line (and all the arrival/dismissal procedures) during the Parent Huddles.
Upcoming Fall Dates
Mark your calendars! The following dates are going to sneak up on us!
- August 20th – Teachers return to school
- August 26th – Parent Huddles and Building Tours, time TBA
- August 28th – New Family Popsicle Social
- August 30th – First Day of School for KDG – 5th Grade
- September 1st – Drop Off line begins
- September 3rd – First Full Day for All PK4 students
- September 13th and 14th – Back To School Nights (9/13 – PK, 1st, 3rd, and 5th; 9/14 – KDG, 2nd, and 4th)
- Date TBA – KDG “meet the teacher” before the first day of school; teachers are planning a brief, outdoor meet and greet for kindergarten classes. Stay tuned for more information.
School Year 2021-2022 Calendar at a Glance – Print it out and put it on your fridge! Here’s an outline of important dates throughout the school year. Dates are subject to change throughout the year.
A-Z Directory – want to find your classmate contact information? Join the Lafayette family school directory and sign up to have your contact information including in the A-Z Directory.
Class lists – due to privacy concerns, these are not posted on the website. However, they are sent via email. Please be sure you are signed up to receive emails at this link if you don’t get them!
Here’s to an incredible year of learning and love. I’m looking forward to our continued partnership and commitment to the safety, care, and development of our students.