IMPORTANT UPDATE - District to Open with Distance Learning Thursday, September 10

Alexander Wolff

Dear Pelham Families and Community Members,

Today I was made aware that a large number of our high school students have been attending parties in the woods for the last two evenings. The number of students reported to have been at these gatherings potentially totals over 100 teens and video from these parties shows students engaging in risky behavior, failing to practice physical distancing, and not wearing masks or face coverings. Needless to say, this is extremely disappointing at any time, but for students to do so just days before our schools were set to reopen potentially puts our whole school community at risk.

These parties have the distinct potential of spreading COVID-19 among the students who attended, their siblings who may attend other schools in the district, and the community at large. After consulting with the Westchester County Department of Health, I can not in good conscience place our students, staff, and families at such risk. Accordingly, the start of in-person instruction has been postponed until Monday, September 14 while we work with the Department of Health and assess the situation to determine next steps. We are asking that any student who attended these parties voluntarily quarantine for 14 days. 

Tomorrow, Thursday, September 10 and Friday, September 11, the Pelham Public Schools will operate under our Distance Learning Plan with some modifications. Please review the following information and visit the District website for specific information about the Distance Learning Plan. Additional information will follow from your respective school principals. 

Elementary Schools

  • On Thursday, September 10 Cohort A students in grades 1-5 will participate remotely from 9-11am. Students should log in to their Google Classroom at 9am using their login information for last year. Cohort B will not participate on this day as previously planned.

  • On Friday, September 11 Cohort B students in grades 1-5 will participate remotely from 9-11am. Students should log in to their Google Classroom at 9am using their login information for last year. Cohort A will not participate on this day as originally planned. 

  • On Friday, September 11 Students in the FULL VIRTUAL MODEL will participate remotely from 9-11 am, along with Cohort B. Students should log in to their Google Classroom at 9am using their login information from last year. 

  • The previously scheduled transition meetings for Kindergarten students will occur virtually. Additional information with meeting links will be communicated from your teacher.

  • Grab and go lunches will be available for pickup between 11:30am and 12:30pm on only Friday, September 11 for any student in need. Lunch can be picked up at the greeter stations at Prospect Hill, Siwanoy and Colonial and by entering the Third Avenue Doors at Hutchinson.

Middle School

  • As the first two days of school were scheduled for orientation activities at Pelham Middle School, Thursday, September 10 will be used to distribute Chromebooks and provide teachers time to set up Google Classrooms for virtual instruction to begin for all students on Friday, September 11. More information will be communicated by Principal Sabia and Asst. Principal Llewellyn. 

  • Grab and Go lunches will be available for any student in need. Lunches may be picked up at the 18 Franklin Place entrance according to your child's regularly scheduled lunch period.


High School

  • All PMHS students (regardless of cohort) will participate remotely in the Distance Learning Plan. Please log in to your Google Classroom at the times listed below:

Period

Time

0

8:30-8:55 am

1

9:00-9:25 am

Homeroom

 

2

9:30-9:55 am

3

10-10:25am

Break

10:25-11am

4

11-11:25am

5

11:30-11:55am

6

12-12:25pm

7

12:30-12:55pm

Break

12:55-1:30pm

8

1:30-1:55pm

9

2-2:25pm

Academy

2:30-3pm

Meetings/PD

3pm

 

  • Grab and Go lunches will be available for any student in need. Lunches may be picked up at the 18 Franklin Place entrance according to your child's regularly scheduled lunch period.

I fully understand the difficulties such a late change in plans presents and we are deeply disappointed to do so following months of planning and preparing our schools to welcome students and staff back to their classrooms. Please know that this is not a decision that was taken lightly, but one that was made with the best interests of our students and staff at heart. 

Over the next few days, we will continue to coordinate with the Department of Health to monitor the COVID-19 situation in Pelham. As we do so, it is incumbent upon all of us, including our students, families, and members of the community to do our part in limiting risky behavior that puts us all in harm's way. Together, and only together, can we create the safe conditions that are necessary to welcome our students back to school. 

We will provide additional information as it becomes available and look forward to starting school, albeit remotely, tomorrow. We appreciate your patience and understanding as we seek to keep our community healthy during this difficult time.

Sincerely,

  • #Reopening
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