Messages From Mr. Wolfe

APRIL MESSAGES

April 12, 2021 - 4th Quarter Instruction

April 12, 2021

Dear Aldrin Families,

We are happy to have students back for virtual and in-person classes this week as we jump into the fourth quarter journey together. I know many of you may have questions about our plans to expand in-person learning and we want to help clarify some information for you. 

The impact of social distancing going from six (6) feet to three (3) feet will look different at every school. Unfortunately, we are not able to extend an invitation to everyone who wants to be in school four (4) days a week due to a variety of reasons. Here are a couple of pieces of information we think may be helpful to you:

How did we decide on who will be returning and how many students we can safely accommodate in-person four (4) days per week?

  • We used our MTSS (Multi-Tiered Systems of Support) process to identify students for four (4) days of instruction. (You can read more about MTSS here.)
  • We reviewed our challenges including current occupancy of each space, size of classrooms, furniture, and lunchroom space.
  • We had to find sufficient space for all students to eat lunch without a mask, remain six (6) feet apart, and all face in the same direction.  *Due to changing weather conditions, outside isn’t an everyday option.  Although, when it’s nice outside, you will see students and teachers eating and learning outdoors.
  • The plans also must be masterfully designed to meet our current school-wide schedule for PE, Music, Art, Band, Strings, STEAM and Library. 

Given this information, and the tireless work of the Aldrin staff, we can share the following: 

  • We will be welcoming all current two (2) day per week in-person students to school four (4) days per week of in-person learning beginning Tuesday, April 20th
  • We will also invite students found eligible through our MTSS process to attend in-person four (4) days/week. 

What if I don’t want to send my child all four (4) days in-person?

If your child is invited to attend four (4) days per week in-person, and you have decided to NOT send them back all four (4) days in-person, please notify your child’s teacher ASAP.    We must have this information accurate for student accounting, transportation, and attendance.  

My child is returning four (4) days per week.  Now what do I do?

If your child is currently two (2) days per week and will be attending four (4) days per week, there is nothing further for you to do.     

We are very grateful for your continued grace and compassion as we navigate the latest modifications. We really do want to have students in the building, but we will continue to be limited by the factors above.

Sincerely, 

Shane Wolfe

Principal

 

April 7, 2021 - In-Person Learning

April 7, 2021

 

Dear Aldrin Families,

 

You recently received a communication from Superintendent Brabrand regarding changes to in-person learning for many of our students throughout Fairfax County Public Schools.

 

Specifically for Aldrin, we are continuing to review the capacity of each classroom given the new guidelines.  Rest assured, we are planning to maximize the number of students we can invite to in-person learning, four days per week for the remainder of this year.    It is very important that you please understand not all of our current two (2) day per week in-person students will be able to return four (4) days per week, in-person.    Each of the classrooms at Aldrin are different sizes and shapes, so the numbers of students returning will vary from classroom to classroom as we keep the safety of the students and staff as our top priority.   We must also take into consideration when student(s) eat lunch, they will need to be six (6) feet apart.  The spacing limitations and the CDC guidelines, among many other factors,  will play into our considerations as we make decisions over the coming days.     

 

Please don’t change childcare or day-to-day plans that accommodate your child’s current 2 days per week of in-person learning, or  your child’s 100% virtual learning, until you have heard specifically from my office, or your child’s teacher, regarding any changes.    We expect the notifications to go out to families, electronically, by Monday, April 12th.

 

Thank you for understanding.

 

Shane Wolfe

Principal

MARCH MESSAGES

"Specialist Wish-list" - March 2021

"Specialist Wish-list"


Thank you for the purchase of additional jump ropes and balls for recess last week!


Many of you have contacted the school to ask if you can help us with additional needs to enhance student learning as we bring more students back to school.   We reached out to our Team of Specialists and created a “Specialist Wish-list”.   The following Teachers included instructional enhancing items for you to consider:  Mrs. Reedy (STEAM), Mrs. Dimatulac (Speech), Ms. Bodenhofer (Advanced Academics), Mrs. Davies (Technology), Mrs. Kraehe (Art) and Mrs. Sowers (Music). 

We appreciate your willingness to help us maximize the learning for our students.  We want you to know anything you purchase through this list goes directly to supporting additional fun and exciting activities for your kiddos and / or provides each child with something they specifically need (e.g. headphones).

 Also, it is not an expectation that you purchase anything when we send out our Amazon Wishlist(s)—we understand many of you are also impacted financially at this time.  

 https://a.co/1i9jJsj 

Thank You!

In Memory - March 16, 2021

Mary

Dear Aldrin Community,

It is with a heavy heart that I reach out to share some sad news we recently found out.  Mary Wright, our darling and much-loved SACC Supervisor until she retired from Aldrin following the 2013-2014 school year, died on December 31, 2020. 

For many years, Mary strongly supported her SACC students in every way; they loved her, and she loved them; they all loved participating in her SACC Variety Show that she coordinated and hosted in May annually.  As an art teacher, day care provider, and SACC Supervisor, Mary loved all her kids unconditionally. She lived her life demonstrating that “It is better to give than it is to receive.”

To sign the guest book, please go to this link:  https://www.legacy.com/funeral-homes/obituaries/name/mary-wright-obituary?pid=197904298&v=batesville&view=guestbook .

In the coming days, I will reach out to Mary’s family to find the best way to recognize her many years of service to our Community.   

Please keep Mary and her family close in your heart. 

Shane

Shane Wolfe, Principal

 

Town Hall Recording - March 11, 2021

March 5, 2021 - Appreciation and Gratitude

March 5, 2021

Dear Aldrin Families,

I wanted to take a moment to write to you to express my most sincere appreciation for helping us weather the storm that we never expected to happen, and certainly not go on for this long. It’s been hard on all of us, including so many of you, and we appreciate the grace you have shown us throughout this time. We hope we have done the same for you.

I’m also writing because I need for you all to know the entire team at Aldrin is working hard to support your kiddos, balance their own family responsibilities, their COVID scares, and deal with their own loved ones lost to this virus. Personally, I lost a great friend of mine. He was a healthy 35 year-old police officer and community advocate. The last time we saw him, he was greeting students as they entered their school for tutoring on a Saturday—something extra he did on the weekends. One of our teachers lost her mother after only being able to talk to her through glass for the last few months of her life. A support team member has a great friend who is struggling, but luckily surviving, COVID. Some of our teachers have had their own scares with positive COVID results, some were hospitalized, and at least one teacher was rushed to the emergency room because they were struggling to breathe. Many others supported their family members who tested positive for COVID 19, and sometimes didn’t sleep day or night, but still showed up to teach the next morning. We have some who continue to have lingering impacts of having COVID themselves, but never miss a day of teaching.

A lot of our teachers and staff members are still struggling with the emotional toll and fear of COVID, the scare of returning to school and taking the virus home with them to their vulnerable family members, their partners, their own kids. We are asking a lot of our teachers and our support team right now, both physically and emotionally. It’s weighing on them—it’s taking a toll. We also understand we are asking so much of you all too. We understand that so many of you, like us, have very full plates. Many of you are dealing with some of the same tragedy that we have experienced. It’s hard and it has an emotional drain on all of us.

Over the past year, I have watched how teachers were called heroes on TV programs, and told how wonderful they were, how we could have never survived this without them, how they were the cream of the crop and should be paid more, respected more, etc. Teachers were celebrated, honored and loved, the way an educator should be loved. Then, something changed. In recent weeks there has been a bit of a negative slant against teachers in the public eye, and that is unfortunate because teachers are working harder now than they were when they were being called heroes. Staff members are being told they “jumped the line” for vaccines, are being selfish, and now don’t want to come back to work--among many other unkind things. It was disappointing and sad to see the fall from celebration happen so rapidly as we approached the return to in-person learning with excitement and hope. I want to reassure you—at Aldrin, our teachers want to return to in-person learning.

Our teachers are working overtime to support and provide children with meaningful lessons that engage them, keep them interested and motivated, and above all, show them that they are still loved and part of our school community. I can say with 100% confidence the teachers and support team members at Aldrin have put your children as their top priority, even when that means putting their own health and well-being aside to do so. I see firsthand the work teachers are putting into the lessons, their tears when a lesson goes wrong, their fear that they have let you or your kiddo(s) down, and the fear that they have to pick between the safety of their own family or returning to in-person learning, or leaving the work they love so, so much. The fear is real. And yet they get up each day, put on a smile and make magic happen. So many of our teachers have visited students, dropped off supplies at your homes, ordered books to send to students, put signs in your front yards, delivered computers, set up desks in homes, made 100-day bags, valentine gifts, cards and so much more. Yet, so much of their work is not visible and, because they don’t expect it to be recognized, it goes without notice. We are very lucky at Aldrin—we have the hardest working group of professionals you’ll find anywhere. They never say “no” when it comes to what is good and right for our students. Our teachers and our team need you right now. Because when it comes down to it, we are all in this together.

In closing, I want you to know that we all love your children and I want to reassure you that we want ALL of them back in school as soon as it is safe to do so, five full days per week. That goal has never changed. I ask you to please help us pull together, support each another, give grace, receive grace, and understand that our next phase of the rollout is not going to be perfect. We are going to make mistakes along the way, and we must know that you, our community, will be there to support us through the good times and even, the bad times. We are #AldrinSTRONG!

Thank you, Shane Shane Wolfe, Principal

FEBRUARY MESSAGES

Planning for Monday Learning and Interventions - February 21, 2021

February 21, 2021

Dear Aldrin Families,

As we prepare to welcome another group of students back into the building, we want to share our plan for Monday learning and interventions. 

As designated by Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS), our teachers will provide a 30-minute Morning Meeting every Monday, followed by time for staff collaborative team meetings, professional development, staff meetings, and planning.  With our new concurrent style of teaching, our teachers need this additional planning time to best prepare for their weekly lessons. 

We will continue to offer a variety of interventions for identified students on Mondays. Classroom teachers will create lessons that will be delivered synchronously by an Instructional Assistant (I.A.s) assigned to that grade level.  We are fortunate to have highly qualified I.A.s at Aldrin who have been working daily with your children in small and large group settings.  This is intended to be a seamless adjustment to the largely asynchronous Monday schedule.  If your child has been identified for a Monday intervention group, you will be notified by their classroom teacher.  The groups will change as we progress through the year.  As groups change, the teachers will keep parents informed.

All intervention planning takes place with the classroom and Special Education teachers who meet with the IA to ensure the specific needs of students in each group are being met. 

Additionally, as teachers welcome new cohorts into the building, FCPS has provided the following preparation days:

  • March 4 and 5 - Grades 1 and 2; Preparation Days for teachers, Asynchronous Learning for students (March 5 is an Early-Release Day.)
  • March 11 and 12 - Grades 3-6; Preparation Days for teachers; Asynchronous Learning for students

We appreciate your flexibility as we transition many of our students back into the building over the next several weeks.

Sincerely,

Shane Wolfe

Principal

“Return to In-Person Learning” at Aldrin Elementary School! - February 9, 2021

February 9, 2021

Dear Aldrin Families,

Welcome to “Return to In-Person Learning” at Aldrin Elementary School! 

The classrooms at Aldrin will soon be filled with teachers, support staff, and classroom monitors preparing for one of the most exciting times of the year (and especially this year) --welcoming our students back into their home away from home.  Aldrin Elementary is an extraordinary place for our children, staff members and families.   Every year we are reminded that we are very lucky to partner with such a supportive community. 

Based on the latest guidelines from the Virginia Department of Health and the Department of Education, FCPS will begin to bring back groups of students and staff into the buildings for in-person instruction on February 16th.  (according to this plan and timeline ). 

Students will return to Aldrin in this order: 

Group 4:  Preschool, Preschool Autism Class (PAC), and Enhanced Autism Class (EAC) return on February 16.

Group 5:  Kindergarten and Non-Categorical Elementary (NCE) return on February 23.

Group 6:  Grades 1-2 return on March 9.

Group 7:  Grades 3-6 return on March 16.

As some of our students return to in-person learning, they will attend in-person two days a week, either Tuesday and Wednesday (Cohort A) or Thursday and Friday (Cohort B).  Monday will be an all asynchronous day following Morning Meeting.  You may also elect to continue having your children remain all virtual.   When you look online, the schedule you will see is Cohort A and B broken into specific schedules for each day of the week.   Please follow Cohort A or Cohort B for your child.  If you have any questions, please reach out to your child’s teacher. 

When your child walks through the doors of Aldrin Elementary, every staff member will make certain that your child’s learning is active and challenging and will afford every one of them the sense of safety and security associated with our Aldrin Family.  Our staff will continue to create meaningful instructional learning experiences designed specifically for your child that are experiential and creative.

As we return to the physical building, we will miss our traditional back to school events, like Open Houses and Popsicles on the Playground but we know through our collective effort, Aldrin Elementary will continue to be a wonderful school community where we value diversity, promote inclusion, and celebrate individuals.

Please do not hesitate to contact the school if you have any questions. For more information, please refer to the Family Guide for Return to School:  https://www.fcps.edu/returntoschool/familyguide   We have also attached the FCPS “Talking Points.”  SB Talking Points_rev.pdf    We had a great turnout for the Principal’s Town Hall on February 3rd, but if you couldn’t attend, you may view the program Aldrin Town Hall - recording_5.   We look forward to supporting each one of our kiddos and to continuing our partnership with each one of you. 

Thank you for allowing us the opportunity to be part of your children’s lives.   Please know that each of us will do our very best to create a safe, enjoyable, and whole-child focused learning environment for each one of them!    We ask that you please continue to be flexible and know we are doing our absolute best to support your children and look forward to better days ahead.   

Sincerely,

Shane Wolfe

Principal

 

 

GETTING STARTED - WITH SOME HELPFUL INFORMATION

 

SCHOOL HOURS

Monday– Friday (9:45 am – 4:15 pm)

Bus routes and bell schedules have been adjusted to allow for social distancing on buses. 

Our new schedule begins February 16th—for those in the school building and those at home.

Staff members are assigned to the lobby from 9:25 to 9:45 am.  Students should not arrive at school prior to 9:25 am.  At 9:25 am children may enter the building.  At first, when Kindergarteners and 1st Graders return, the Kindergartners will be met in the lobby and 1st Graders in the Cafeteria by their teachers and escorted to their classrooms.  It is important that the protocol of 6-feet distance be maintained.  When Grades 2-6 students return, they should go directly to their classrooms.  All students (in person or virtual) are marked tardy if they are not in their classroom by 9:45 am.  They should be in class, physically or logged on, and ready to learn by 9:45 am. 

SCHOOL SCHEDULES

Aldrin’s newest Concurrent Daily Schedule can be found here: 

Daily Schedule on Aldrin Site

The FCPS School Year Calendar can be found here:

https://www.fcps.edu/calendars/2020-21-standard-school-year-calendar

TRANSPORTATON

Bus routes are still being finalized by Transportation; Aldrin will send them electronically as soon as they are available.  If you don’t receive them electronically, please contact your child’s teacher or the Main Office.

KISS N RIDE

If you will be utilizing the Kiss N Ride, please email Mrs. Julia Dowsett at @email.  She will provide you with a placard to use in the front of your car.  We will be following the usual Kiss N Ride procedures.  Students should have their masks on before they exit the car.

WALKERS

If you can walk to school, we encourage our families to do so!  The fresh air is good for you and gives you the chance to talk about what’s happening at school.  Walkers should enter/exit at door #5.  Students and staff (only) will be allowed in the building. 

Sometimes families make different arrangements; please make sure your child knows the plan for returning home each day.

VISITORS

We love visitors at Aldrin, but unfortunately, because of our safety mitigation procedures, we are unable to enjoy your visits, probably for the remainder of this school year.

PARENT PICK-UP

Be sure to bring a photo ID whenever you want to pick up children from Aldrin.  Ring the bell at door #1; someone in the Main Office will retrieve your child from their classroom and bring them out to you.

WATER BOTTLES

Please be sure your child has a water bottle every day as they leave the house—a personal re-fillable type is ideal.  If you need assistance to purchase a water bottle, please contact your child’s teacher.  Your child will be able to refill their bottle at designated water fountains or sinks in the building.  Don’t worry if your child forgets one day.  The school will maintain some extras.

MASKS  

Students MUST always wear 2-ply masks on the bus and in the building, except when they are eating breakfast, lunch, or snack.  Please send in a spare mask with your child just in case they need one during the day.  If your child has not been wearing a mask regularly, please be sure they start so they are comfortable by the time their group returns to in-person learning.

PLACEMENT

In preparation for students’ return, Aldrin created attendance plans based on the number of students who selected in-person instruction earlier this school year. Students who have already selected to return to in-person instruction will be able to do so for at least two days a week. Due to social distancing requirements, schools may not be able to accommodate additional students who wish to change their selection from virtual to in-person instruction.

The biggest questions of the Return to In-Person Learning is:  Which cohort is my child in?  How do I find out?  The classroom teachers have emailed parents their child's assigned cohort.  If you have not heard from your child’s teacher, please contact them.  Currently, it is not possible to find this information in ParentVue.

FOOD SERVICES

ALL children will be provided a breakfast and a lunch every day—the food will be delivered to each classroom.  Students will not eat in the Cafeteria.  All food will be free to all students throughout the remainder of the school year, brought to their classroom for distribution.  There is only one option for meals; the link to the menus can be found below.  If you know your child will always bring their lunch and not ever want a school lunch, please notify your child’s teacher so we can notify the cafeteria and limit waste.

CAFETERIA MENU

School breakfast and lunch menus are also available via the FCPS mobile app or web at

http://fcps.nutrislice.com/. Both options provide quick and easy access to menus and nutrition information

IMPORTANT PHONE NUMBERS

Main Office                                  703-904-3800

FAX                                                703-904-3897

Health Room                               703-904-3810

Attendance Line Recorder        703-904-3818

Cafeteria                                      703-904-3821

IMPORTANT EMAIL ADDRESSES

Principal Shane Wolfe             @email

AP Barbara Gist                        @email

AP Katie Friedman                   @email

AA                                               @email  

Registrar                                   @email 

 Office Assistant                      @email

To reach a teacher or staff member via email, you can refer to the on-line directory at https://aldrines.fcps.edu/staff-directory

CLINIC INFORMATION

Cynthia McKee, RN will be our Public Health Nurse (PHN) this year.  James Chrisman continues to lead the Health Room and will return to Aldrin full-time when his Fairfax County Health Department duties have concluded.

If you need to leave medication for your student, please call the Main Office to make an appointment.  Julia, Linda, or Lesley will meet you outside of door #1 at the appointment time to take the medications and fulfill the necessary paperwork requirements.

SCHOOL-AGE CHILDCARE (SACC)—NOT AVAILABLE CURRENTLY

For now, the Aldrin SACC remains closed.  We will keep you informed.

SIS PARENT ACCOUNT

Not Sure How to Access Your SIS Parent Account?  It’s EASY! If you have misplaced or never received a SIS Parent Account activation letter, please e-mail Linda Adgate (@email) and she will be happy to e-mail you a new activation letter.  If, after you receive the SIS Parent Account letter from FCPS you are unable to log on to your Parent Account, please click the HELP button located on the right side of the page.   You will be e-mailed a response to your question.   

SUPPLIES

Please bring in any supplies you purchased for the beginning of the year.  The school will have what is needed or will let you know if we need you to send anything in.

LAPTOPS

Students in grades 1-6 who are returning to the building need to bring their laptop every day. FIRST WEEK OF SCHOOL/ADJUSTMENT

We will ensure that all our children feel welcome and safe.  Younger children may find it difficult to detach at first, but they will be fine once they’re in the classroom and see their teacher and friends.    Unfortunately, we cannot allow parents or caregivers to go into the school hallways at this time.

Many staff members will be located throughout our school during arrival and dismissal times to assist all children.   Staff will help children learn their way around the school and make sure that all bus riders board the correct bus each afternoon.

Walkers will be dismissed and exit through door #5.

Students using the Kiss and Ride will be dismissed from their classrooms.

Please speak with your children about following the arrows and signs.  It is important that we keep the hallways and exits one-way to maintain safe distancing.

MITIGATION STRATEGIES

Aldrin will be following the FCPS reopening plans, which are based on the Virginia Department of Health and CDC guidelines for ensuring safe and healthy learning and working environments. FCPS is actively collaborating with the Fairfax County Health Department (FCHD) to determine criteria and guidelines for school operations in 2020-21. Together, staff have established a joint school and health department COVID-19 response plan covering FCPS and Falls Church City Public Schools.  For more information, visit this site. 

https://www.fcps.edu/return-school/reopening-schools-plan-complete-information/health-criteria

The five (5) major strategies Aldrin will be using are:

  1. Hand-washing
  2. Masks and PPE
  3. Social Distancing of 6-feet
  4. Increased Cleaning and Disinfecting
  5. Encourage students and staff to stay home, when sick.

THE THURSDAY RECORDER

The “Thursday Recorder,” will NO LONGER be used to send papers back and forth between school and home.  Most communications will be done electronically.  Each classroom teacher will determine the best way to distribute information and ensure student papers are sent home in a timely fashion.

ALDRIN ES BIRTHDAY TREAT POLICY

At Aldrin ES, like many other schools, we have quite a few students who suffer from life-threatening allergies.  To reduce the chance of allergy reactions and the transmission of germs, we will no longer allow birthday treats like cards and pencils in the building.

ALDRIN METHODS OF COMMUNICATIONS Web Site:               https://aldrines.fcps.edu

Twitter:                  @AldrinEagles

Facebook:               Aldrin Elementary – Home of the Eagles

SPECIAL THANK YOU TO ALL OF OUR BUZZ ALDRIN MOSAIC SPONSORS!

  • BrightSpot
  • SkyNRGSolar
  • CST Group
  • Space Adventures
  • The Reston Project
  • Scott Cary & Dawn Edwards
  • The Wilt Family
  • The Shelley Family
  • Glory Days Grill
  • Worldgate
  • Elan Designs
  • The Storm Family
  • The Morrison Family
  • The Oruncak Family
  • The Brickhouse Family

Town Hall Recording - February 3, 2021

JANUARY MESSAGES

January 25, 2021 - Return to School Information and Proposed DRAFT Schedule

Dear Aldrin Community,

I’m excited to share with you that we have a Return to School schedule that  Dr. Brabrand presented to the School Board last night.  It looks very promising.  Many of our staff members signed up and have received their first dose of the COVID vaccine as you may have seen on our Aldrin Twitter account.   We are so thankful to have gotten our staff in for vaccines early in the plan so we can open schools with the safety of our staff as a top priority.   I do want you to know that, even with the vaccine, we will still adhere to all of the CDC and Fairfax Health Department guidelines.   The most important thing you can do is to have your child begin to wear a mask for a large portion of the day so masks become part of their school accessories.  Our school will be utilizing all of the mitigation strategies as outlined in many of the communications being sent out to you regularly. 

TOWN HALL 

Please join me for our re-scheduled Aldrin Town Hall on Wednesday,   February 3, 2021  at 7:00 pm utilizing this link:  https://us.bbcollab.com/guest/f26c934151a144598ae4c4ecee774907   

Thank you,

Shane Wolfe

Principal

Poster for evening event with information stated above


Return to School

Return to School Update - My Thoughts
At our January 21st School Board Meeting, Dr. Brabrand presented an interim update to the Return to School Timeline. Currently, he has proposed the following DRAFT dates for Return to School:

Student Groups

DRAFT

Student In-Person

Start Date

VHSL Activities & HS Co-Curriculars

January 26

Intervention Cohorts—Elementary, Middle, and High

January 26

Groups 1-4 (8,000 students):  Select CTE and Special Education

New Bell Schedule Begins! (9:45 am - 4:15 pm)

February 16

Group 5 (7,000 students) Preschool - K and Special Education

February 23

Group 6 (13,500 students):  Grades 1-2

March 9

Group 7 (27,500 students):  Grades 3-6

March 16

Group 8 (24,500 students):  Grades 8, 9, 12

Poe, Glasgow, Holmes – Grade 8

March 2

Group 8 (24,000 students):  Grades 7, 10, 11

Poe, Glasgow, Holmes--Grades 6-7

March 9

January 20, 2021 - Congratulations Rachel Charlton and Katie Friedman

January 20, 2021

Dear Aldrin Families,

Please join us in congratulating Ms. Rachel Charlton, Assistant Principal at Aldrin, to her new role as Acting Principal at Dogwood Elementary School.   Ms. Charlton will do a great job filling in for the principal of the school for the remainder of this school year.   We are proud and excited for her new journey.  The staff and students at Dogwood are fortunate to have someone with her experience and expertise supporting their staff, students and community.  Way to go, Rachel!

We would also like to welcome our very own, Mrs. Katie Friedman, as the Acting Assistant Principal at Aldrin for the remainder of this school year.  Mrs. Friedman is well known in our community as she is one of our General Music Teachers and our beloved Choral Director.    Mrs. Friedman is well suited to take on this role as she has served in many leadership roles at Aldrin and other school locations since getting her administrative degree certification several years ago.   I’m thrilled to welcome Katie to our administrative team and know she will do a great job supporting us as we transition from virtual to in-person learning over the coming weeks and months ahead.   She has already hit the ground running. 

Congratulations to Rachel and Katie. 

Shane Wolfe and Barbara Gist

Administrative Team

January 7, 2021 - Return to School Groups - Currently Paused

Dear Parents and Caregivers,

As Superintendent Brabrand shared recently, the plan to bring students in Groups 1-5 back into school for in-person learning is currently paused. Groups 1-5 include:

Group 1:  Select Specialized Career Prep Classes

Group 2:  Preschool Autism Preschool Class Based

Group 3:  Elementary Comprehensive Service Sites (CSS) Adaptive Curriculum Programs:

  • Enhanced Autism Class (EAC)
  • Intellectual Disabilities (ID) Classes
  • Intellectual Disabilities Severe (IDS) Classes
  • Non-Categorical Elementary (NCE) - Adaptive Curriculum Key Center

Kilmer Center

Students with Limited or Interrupted Formal Education (SLIFE) Recently Arrived English Learners (ELs) in Grades 3-12

Group 4:  Specialized Career Prep Classes Burke School - Elementary

Group 5:  Early Head Start (infants and toddlers), PreK (three and four-year old’s), and Kindergarten

Intensive Support Needs (students instructed w/ modified curriculum for at least 50% of their core courses and instructed in special education settings 50% or more of their instructional day)

Specialized Center-based Programs- Special Education:

  • Vision Program at Robinson SS
  • Deaf/Hard-of-Hearing (DHH) Programs at Canterbury Woods ES, Frost MS and Woodson HS - students with 50% or more of core content areas in spec. ed. settings

Community transmission of COVID-19 in Fairfax County remains high. Dr. Brabrand will provide an update on the Return to School plan to the School Board on Tuesday, February 2.

Because we will not be transporting students to school during the pause in our plan, we will not be moving to the new bell schedule on January 12.  We will continue to use the current bell schedule and will communicate any future changes to the bell schedule in advance.

Monday, January 11 will remain an independent (asynchronous) learning day for students and teacher preparation day. 

Once we have a date for students and staff to return for in-person instruction in school buildings, we will need to provide preparation days for teachers. Students will be doing independent learning on teacher preparation days. We will communicate those dates once we confirm return to school dates in the future.

Sincerely, 

Shane Wolfe

Principal

DECEMBER MESSAGES

December 12, 2020 - Group 3 students and staff return to virtual instruction - Monday, December 14, 2020


Dear Families of Students in Group 3,

 

We are writing to let you know that current health metrics in our region reached a threshold where Group 3 students and staff will return to virtual instruction beginning Monday, December 14, 2020.

FCPS has been using two core health indicators, suggested by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), to guide our decisions about in-person instruction. These include the total number of COVID cases per 100,000 county residents over the last 14 days and the percentage of positive COVID tests over seven consecutive days.

For Group 3 to remain in-person, the number of cases per 100,000 must be equal to or less than 200 and the positivity rate must not exceed 10 percent.

As of Saturday, December 12, we have reached seven consecutive days of cases exceeding our 10 percent threshold and that is why we must return to virtual instruction for Group 3.

 

We know this is a disappointment to our families. Our goal is to return students to in person learning soon after winter break. We understand that in-person learning is the best option for most students. We will be sharing more information on these plans in the coming weeks. Thank you for your patience and flexibility.

Sincerely,

Shane Wolfe

Principal

December 11, 2020 - Return to School Beginning January 12th

December 11, 2020

Dear Aldrin Families,

At the school board meeting last night, Dr. Brabrand presented a draft updated timeline for bringing students back into the building beginning on January 12th.  A final decision on the health metrics used to return students to in-person learning will be made by the School Board on January 5.  Here are a few links and items of note:

  1. Return to School Update presentation slide deck can be found  here
  2. Return to School FCPS Operational Levels, Groups and VDOE Phase Guidance can be found here.
  3. Personal Protective Equipment (“PPE”) Strategies being implemented at every school can be found here.    Additionally, information on the five key mitigation strategies begins on slide 10 of the presentation above.
  4. Safety Audits began this week.  Our initial audit found we are implementing the 5 mitigation strategies with fidelity at Aldrin thanks to our awesome in-person team(s).  The county’s safety scoring rubric can be found on slide 18.
  5. FCPS decision-making on return to school and considerations begin on slide 24.
  6. In-Person Learning Updates begin on slide 45.  

table revised bell schedule

Three items to note:

  1. Groups 1 to 4 will be virtual the week of January 4th. 
  2. Groups 1 to 5, which at Aldrin includes PAC, ECCB, Enhanced Autism, Non-Cat, and Kindergarten are tentatively scheduled to begin in-person, hybrid instruction on January 12 following the revised bell schedule. The revised bell schedules are necessary to maintain appropriate social distancing requirements on buses and provide bus drivers the time needed to sanitize their vehicle between runs.
  3. Phase-in dates could change based on health metrics.  We will communicate these changes as we receive new information.

Draft Return to school timeline

The start and end times on the revised bell schedules are decisions made at the county level.  How we utilize the time between the start and end times (our master schedule) is a school based decision.  We know that when group 5 begins in-person learning in January, all Aldrin students, both in-person and virtual, will be moving to the revised bell schedule.  Once those transition dates have been finalized, we will communicate details of the master schedule.

We expect an e-mail to be sent to families on Monday with updates on the return to school plan from our Division Leadership Team.

 

Thank you,

Shane Wolfe

Principal

 

NOVEMBER MESSAGES

New Employment Opportunity in FCPS!

FCPS schools and centers will be hiring classroom monitors to provide in-person classroom assistance for students when a staff member remains virtual.  If you would like more information about the position, please review the job description and qualifications online and apply if interested.  If you'd like to work as a classroom monitor at Aldrin specifically, apply at the link as well as submit your resume to @email as soon as possible.


FPCS is Seeking Individuals to Serve as Substitute Teachers!

Are you or somebody you know interested in substitute teaching with FCPS? Apply here or attend one of our Friday information sessions to learn more! To sign up for a session visit our substitute information page here.  

 

 


Please feel free to share information about these opportunities with anyone else you think may be interested.


Say Yes 2 FCPS!

OCTOBER MESSAGES

October 27, 2020 - Aldrin Information Hour

LINK to presentation

October 26, 2020 - Return to In-Person Learning at Aldrin

FCPS banner

October 26, 2020

Dear Aldrin Families,

I wanted to take a moment to reach out and provide you with some updated information about our return to school and in-person learning opportunities.  Much of the information you will read may be a duplicate of what you have heard in other forums; however, there is a good amount of information specifically tailored to Aldrin.  Please read this information carefully.  I apologize in advance for the length of the letter.   

Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) is planning to bring additional student groups back to school for in-person instruction beginning in the next few weeks.  We will follow strict safety and health protocols to minimize health risks for our students and our staff.  There is additional information below about mask wearing, social distancing and what the typical school day will look like as we transition into in-person instruction. 

The following groups of children will be returning to in-person instruction (see the start dates below but note that they remain tentative and could change depending on the metrics available for COVID-19).  For the entire list of groups returning, please see Dr. Brabrand’s memo from last Friday—this list is Aldrin-specific.

Group 5 – November 16, 2020

Kindergarten and Non-Categorical Classrooms

 

Group 6 – November 30, 2020

Grades 1 and 2

 

Group 7 – January 4, 2021

Grades 3-6

FCPS will be using concurrent instruction for students who receive in-person instruction.  This means that families who elect in-person instruction will receive two days of teacher-led instruction in the school building and two days of teacher-led instruction at home.  Students will attend in-person on Tuesday and Wednesday or on Thursday and Friday.  Students who choose all virtual learning will continue to receive four days of teacher-led instruction at home.

In either format, Mondays will be a full day of independent learning for students to give our teachers additional time to prepare and plan the week’s lessons.  This schedule will begin on Monday, November 9, 2020 for Group 5 (Kindergarten and Aldrin NCE) and on November 16, 2020 for Group 6 (Grades 1 and 2).  November 12 and 13 will be teacher workdays and independent learning days for Group 5 students (Kindergarten and Aldrin NCE) to give our teachers time to prepare and plan for in-person instruction, including room set up.  November 20, 23, and 24 will be teacher workdays and independent learning days for Group 6 (grades 1 and 2) children.  All other grade-levels will continue with their virtual learning, just as we are doing right now.  Grades 3-6 will continue to have Morning Meetings on Monday and will continue to have small group instruction time on Mondays, in addition to Tuesday -Friday virtual learning until their return on January 04, 2021.     

Some elementary schools have already begun piloting concurrent instruction.  Dr. Brabrand will report the findings on the pilot programs at the November 12 School Board work Session.

Here is a video from FCPS that demonstrates how some concurrent classrooms will look.

However, I do want to caution you that each grade-level and each classroom will look a bit different and may not be exactly as you see it in this video.  And, it’s not an exact science that works for every student or every adult.  Concurrent teaching is HARD work.  It’s not as easy as setting up a laptop and having the students watch the teacher teach.  The teacher will be responsible for ensuring the students in-person are getting the same instruction that the students who are tuning in virtually are getting, and vice-versa.  We have an amazing team at Aldrin, and they will do their best.  However, please know we will probably make some mistakes along the way and we need your support as we work to make this the best possible teaching and learning environment for students and staff members. 

We expect no changes to the bell schedule for Groups 5 and 6 as they return to school throughout November.  However, as additional, larger numbers of students return to school in-person, we do anticipate some bell schedule changes.  The bell changes would be due to the limited capacity on school buses due to health and safety guidelines and the unknown number of families that will select in-person instruction for their children.  We will have a better idea of any changes needed to the bell schedule when we have feedback from parents on their instructional choices (concurrent learning vs. all virtual).

We will honor the choice you made in the FCPS July survey to determine the setting for instruction. If you chose in-person instruction, we will assume your student(s) will return to in-person instruction in accordance with the schedule above. If you chose all-virtual instruction, we will assume you will continue in that format. If your circumstances have changed, please go to this enrollment link and update your choice by 11:00 p.m. on October 30, and we will try to accommodate your request based on the availability of staff and space. 

As you consider virtual or concurrent instruction, your child’s teacher will be in touch with additional information as each will be delivered in a way that works best for their specific grade level.  Please stay tuned for communication from your child’s teacher in the coming days.  We know October 30th is a fast turn-around, and we apologize for the rapid response being requested.  Please know the dates are division-wide dates and can’t be changed at the school level.

I also want to outline for families what some parts of the day will look like for in-person learning. 

First, is our mask regulation. It requires anyone age two (2) and up to wear a mask.  This will include recess when a six-foot distance between students can’t be guaranteed.  We will have several mask breaks throughout the day.  However, please begin to practice extended mask wearing time during the day with your child(ren).   Masks are an important part in keeping our students and staff members safe and is a regulation we will enforce.  Students who can not keep their mask on, even after attempts to get them to wear it, will need to return to virtual learning.

Each student will have a defined area they must stay in during in-class learning time.  Students will not be allowed to share any of the items they use in class.  This includes pencils, paper, erasers, pens, crayons, glue, etc.  Each child will have their own tote / box to keep items in that only they will use.  There will be no communal supplies.  Classroom libraries will be closed, and teachers will give students specific books they may use while in school.   It’s going to be much different from the methods we have taught our students pre-COVID—sharing, collaborating, etc.

Lunch time and restroom rules are being worked on and will be shared as we get closer to the return of our students.  

Each pod area will have a specific custodian assigned to that area and the specific custodian will be responsible for keeping each pod area, classrooms, and restroom clean for our students during the school day.  We will also disinfect desks, doors, high touch areas multiple times throughout the day and a deep clean will happen when students leave at the end of the day.   Students will also be washing their hands before and after every activity.  We will not mix classes as we need to keep each group of students together throughout the day to limit students contact to only the children in their classrooms.   Also, we will not have any classroom volunteers or visitors at this time.   All visitors will remain in the office and will not be allowed to visit classrooms before or after school, unless specific arrangements are made with the teacher.

At this point, we can not use the playground equipment, including the swings, monkey bars, ladders, bridges, slides, etc.   They will be off-limits for the foreseeable future.   Students will be allowed to run, walk, and take a break on the blacktop and fields.  During recess, students will need to maintain a six-foot distance between themselves and their friends.   Also, we will not take any balls to the playground for kickball, soccer, basketball, baseball, etc.   We are looking into games kids can play outside while maintaining the appropriate six-foot social distancing guidance.  Stay tuned for more information about additional playground games.  Also, if you have any ideas, please share them with us.  We want recess to be fun and must be safe.

I’m sure we haven’t touched on everything in this letter and you probably have many outstanding questions. There will be more information coming as we continue to prepare for the return of our students. 

If you have questions, please join us for the first of several upcoming Aldrin Information Hour(s) on Tuesday, October 27th at 7pm.   You should’ve received a News You Choose e-mail from Aldrin earlier today with a link and information needed to join us at this meeting.  We will also send a reminder on Tuesday afternoon.   

We know that these are challenging times and we are all working to ensure our children are safe and learning.  We value our partnership and your trust in us to do the very best we can for every single child at Aldrin.  Together, we are partners in this “new normal” and we will work together to ensure the success of every one of our children.

Sincerely,

Shane Wolfe

Principal

October 19, 2020 - Playground, blacktop, fields closure 8:30am - 4:30pm

Dear Aldrin Parents and Families:

 

We are happy to bring you some great news.  Tomorrow, October 20th, we will be receiving our littlest students with open arms.  The tiny tots of Aldrin who make up our Preschool and Preschool Autism classes are the first cohort to return to Aldrin in FCPS’s Tier 2.    

 

Since we will have two (2) programs returning this week (and another program scheduled to return the following week), students will be using the blacktop and fields several times throughout the day.  The playgrounds are still off-limits to students.  Because of bus arrivals, bus dismissals, the closure of the playground, and students playing outside, we need to inform you that the blacktop, the fields, and all outdoor areas will be closed from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm. 

 

Thank you so much for understanding.  We look forward to the time when all of our students are back at school and playing everywhere.

 

Shane Wolfe

Principal

September 29, 2020 - Digital Resource--Parent Consent Form 100%

September 29, 2020

Dear Aldrin Families,

Just a reminder that we need 100% of our families to respond with their Digital Resource--Parent Consent Form so teachers can use all of their electronic tools with your children.  Please take a moment to go to the Aldrin webpage, https://aldrines.fcps.edu/announcements/2020-2021-school-year-forms , and complete the form. 

Two other forms, Emergency Care and Health Information and Student Rights and Responsibilites are also required for our students.

Directions on the web are user-friendly with links provided for all three (3) forms.

Thank you.

Shane Wolfe

Principal

 

September 29, 2020 - Universal Screener

 September 29, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians:

The Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) School Board adopted a universal screener assessment for use with all elementary school students in kindergarten through grade 6. The universal screener assessment includes a reading test and a mathematics test. Students in kindergarten will receive screening for reading only. Students in grades 1-6 will receive screening for both mathematics and reading.

The purpose of this assessment is to identify students who may have gaps in foundational literacy and mathematics skills. Based on universal screener results, some students may require an additional assessment to further diagnose the specific learning areas that may need support. The universal screener reading test, together with any necessary follow-up diagnostic assessments, also fulfills state testing expectations for primary students.

The universal screener and any necessary follow-up assessments will be given at the beginning of the school year. Depending on grade level and previous screener performance, students may receive screening again in the winter and/or in the spring. Schools set the specific dates for testing in each class. For the expected dates when your child will test, please contact your child’s teacher.

Additional information, including a short video, about the universal screener in FCPS can be found at this webpage: https://www.fcps.edu/node/33718. If you have further questions about this assessment, please contact your child’s teacher or the school’s test coordinator, Eve Davies.

Thank you.

Shane Wolfe

Principal

September 21, 2020 - Monday Morning Meetings - 5 Days of School

Dear Aldrin Families,  

 

Please don’t forget ALL Aldrin teachers have a Morning Meeting that begins at 9:20 a.m. each Monday, as well as Tuesday to Friday.

 

And, remember—we have school five days per week and Monday is an important day too. 

 

Love,

The Teachers of Aldrin ES

September 15, 2020 - Required and Optional Forms

September 15, 2020

 

Good Afternoon Aldrin Parents and Guardians,

 

We have already started our second week of distance learning!  It’s been so heartwarming to see your children excited to be back in school with their friends.    As we look ahead to what will be a year like no other, we anticipate that the skills our children learn during this time will be ones they take with them for the rest of their academic careers.  

 

By now, students have usually come home with a packet of forms to be signed and returned to the school classroom.   In view of our circumstances, we are requesting your information electronically.  Please go to the Aldrin forms page on the website to complete the required and optional forms that are normally sent home at the opening of the year. 

 

You may also request a paper copy of any needed form from the Main Office. 

 

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to your child’s teacher.

 

Shane Wolfe

Principal

September 15, 2020 - Family Life Education

September 15, 2020

 

Aldrin Parents and Guardians,

 

Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) would like to facilitate the ability for all of our families to obtain internet WI-FI.

If you need WI-FI connectivity but currently have financial issues, please contact Ms. Stephanie Williams, Aldrin’s new school counselor at @email.

She will assist those qualifying families secure the services they need.

 

We encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity.

Shane Wolfe

Principal

Family Life Education Instructional Program Information

Family Life Education Instructional Program Information

Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) provides a comprehensive, sequential Family Life Education (FLE) program for students in grades kindergarten through grade twelve.  Instruction is seen as a partnership among parents and guardians, the school, and the community in supporting the learning essential to the development of strong families, positive relationships, and a healthy community.

Parents/guardians may choose to opt their child out of all or part of the Family Life Education program.  Students who are opted out are provided with age-appropriate, non-punitive alternative health instruction, and every effort is made to foster respect for family choices.  If you wish to opt your child out of all or part of FLE for this school year, opt out forms will be included in your child’s back-to-school/orientation packets and are available online for Elementary (K-6) Elementary (K-6)  Please fill in the opt-out form and return it to your child’s school prior to Family Life Education instruction.

Detailed grade-level program descriptions are available online at Elementary (K-6) .  FLE grade level-specific lessons and media that FCPS has streaming rights for are available for parents online in FCPS 24-7 (Blackboard) Parent View https://fcps.blackboard.com/.  Account information is available at your local school or online at http://www.fcps.edu/is/instructionaltechnology/247help/parents.shtml.  Grade level-specific lessons are also available at the Fairfax County Regional Library in the City of Fairfax (this location does not have media).  Grade level-specific lessons and media that is not streamed online are available for review at your child’s school library.  Due to copyright permissions, we are unable to stream all media online.

Program questions may be addressed by contacting Instructional Services at 571-423-4550 or by contacting Carrie Reynolds, Health and Physical Education Coordinator at cfreynolds@fcps.edu.

September 1, 2020

Dear Aldrin Families,

We know you’ve received so much information from us and FCPS that it is difficult to know which end is up.  Here is a reminder of the basics you need to get started with Virtual Learning this Fall.

Virtual Orientation

This year our usual "Open House" the week before school begins will be an “Orientation” format—not just to meet and greet but learn important concepts.  During our Virtual Orientation, students/families will:

  • Get a chance to meet their teacher
  • Get to meet their classmates
  • Start to build relationships and community. 

This year they will also: 

  • Learn how to navigate and access their learning links
  • Go through their daily schedule, and
  • Get a chance to ask questions.

Our goal for our Virtual Orientations is to make sure that our student/parent transition to Virtual Learning is as smooth as possible from the very first day!

Our Virtual Orientations will take place on September 1, September 2,, or September 3, 2020 Please make sure that you log onto the Virtual Orientation promptly by the start time, so that you and your child can receive all of the information that is going to be provided to you during the session.

 

Your child’s teacher will be in contact with you introducing themselves and providing you with the information you will need to access their Virtual Orientation by Monday, August 31, 2020.   More communication and information will be coming about how to access the specialist’s links for their Virtual Orientations. Please see the schedule below for your child’s Virtual Orientation:

 

GRADE LEVEL

DATE

START TIME

Kinder

September 1st

11:00 am

1st Grade

September 1st

12:00 noon

4th Grade

September 1st

1:00 pm

2nd Grade

September 2nd

11:00 am

3rd Grade

September 2nd

12:00 noon

Multi-Age With Follow-up

September 2nd

1:00 pm

6th Grade

September 3rd

11:00 am

Preschool

September 3rd

12:00 noon

5th Grade

September 3rd

1:00 pm

 Class Schedule

Our school-wide calendars can be found at: Daily Schedule.   

To Have a Successful Year:

Students

  • Attend Morning Meetings EVERY Day and share when you feel comfortable doing so.
  • Attend 4 hours of live (synchronous) instruction Tuesday through Friday.
  • Attend Specials each day for 30 minutes.
  • Enjoy 1-hour total screen time breaks.
  • Attend small group meetings or interventions, when invited/assigned, on Mondays.
  • Work on your Asynchronous assignments, especially on Mondays.

Parents 

  • Ensure your child is ready to learn by 9:20 a.m.
  • Check in with them (at least once) during independent work time.
  • Insist they are good digital citizens!!
  • Troubleshoot tech problems (Internet connectivity, headphones, charged device, etc.).
  • Encourage them to ask their teacher for help.
  • Check your e-mail regularly.
  • Be sure your child attends daily. We will take attendance EVERY day.  (Monday - Friday) Including Monday Morning Meeting time.
  • If your child will be absent from virtual learning., e-mail the teacher and call the Aldrin Attendance Office @703-904-3818 or email @ @email 
  • If you need assistance purchasing supplies, please e-mail Principal Wolfe (@email or one of our counselors, Stephanie Williams, @email or Casey Salerno, @email .)
  • IMPORTANT--Make sure your information is correct through their Parent SIS account.  This will ensure your receive Aldrin messages.  Please check to ensure your e-mail and phone number are correct.  https://aldrines.fcps.edu/announcements/please-check-your-information-correct

 Tips for Success—Review with other parents or caretakers and your child:

  • Find a quiet place for your child to work and learn.  (**Help them set up a routine and stick to it.)
  • Post a daily schedule where your child can see it. 
  • Log into class on time with the proper links open.
  • Have supplies out and ready to use.  (when prompted by the teacher)
  • Use headphones for the best sound and less distractions, if possible.
  • Remind your child to use the chat feature appropriately. (Be a GREAT Digital Citizen!)
  • Wait patiently for a turn and use the raise hand feature to share.
  • Be a good digital citizen / follow the SR&R.  (We remind you of this—it’s important.)
  • Work on the assignments the teacher gives during independent work time.
  • Finish assignments on time or ask the teacher for assistance. 
  • Your child can e-mail the teacher to ask questions if they don’t understand something.
  • Parents:  Attend the Principal’s Coffees, Tech Classes, Open House, Parent-Teacher Meetings, and other informational meetings.
  • Parents and Students:  Give the teachers Grace and Patience, just as they will do for you.  We are all in this together and we will work hard to make it an AMAZING school experience. 
  • Everyone:  SMILE—it’s contagious.
  • Our Aldrin Family:  Appreciate each other---teacher, staff member, student, parent, and even the principals. 

Revised Supply List

We have included a copy of the updated (virtual) supplies you will need to ensure a successful on-line learning experience for your child.   The Supply Lists are linked here. 

 

**We will be providing supplies to any student who needs them during supply distribution days this week.  More information to come from your teacher.  We will also provide a white board and a marker for students if their teacher believes it will benefit their instruction.  

 

Supply Distribution:

Teachers will also be notifying you of days and times some grade levels will be distributing specific instructional supplies (white board, dry erase marker, handwriting book, journals, etc.)   If you need all supplies, please contact your child’s teacher, one of the counselors (mentioned above), or Mr. Wolfe.

Technology Support Portal for Parents **Write Down This Number, please.**

To support families who are working with their children during distance learning, FCPS has launched a new Parent Technology Help Desk. The help desk can be reached at 833-921-3277 (833-921-FCPS) and will be answered by staff members between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m., seven days a week.

Parents or guardians can call this number for

  • Basic tech support with parent accounts
  • Help with FCPS student devices, and
  • Technical assistance with other FCPS applications.

If help desk staff members are unable to solve the issue, they will enter a support ticket on behalf of the parent/guardian to escalate the issue to the appropriate FCPS team member. Parents who need help in a language other than English can inform the help desk staff when they call of their preferred language, and an interpreter will join in on the call.

 

On behalf of the entire Aldrin Team, we are looking forward to “seeing” you all very soon. 

 

Shane Wolfe

Principal

August 31, 2020

Dear Aldrin Families,

We know you’ve received so much information from us and FCPS that it is difficult to know which end is up.  Here is a reminder of the basics you need to get started with Virtual Learning this Fall.

Virtual Orientation

This year our usual "Open House" the week before school begins will be an “Orientation” format—not just to meet and greet but learn important concepts.  During our Virtual Orientation, students/families will:

  • Get a chance to meet their teacher
  • Get to meet their classmates
  • Start to build relationships and community. 

This year they will also: 

  • Learn how to navigate and access their learning links
  • Go through their daily schedule, and
  • Get a chance to ask questions.

Our goal for our Virtual Orientations is to make sure that our student/parent transition to Virtual Learning is as smooth as possible from the very first day!

 

Our Virtual Orientations will take place on September 1, September 2, or September 3, 2020 Please make sure that you log onto the Virtual Orientation promptly by the start time, so that you and your child can receive all of the information that is going to be provided to you during the session.

 

Your child’s teacher will be in contact with you introducing themselves and providing you with the information you will need to access their Virtual Orientation by Monday, August 31, 2020.   More communication and information will be coming about how to access the specialist’s links for their Virtual Orientations. Please see the schedule below for your child’s Virtual Orientation:

 

GRADE LEVEL

DATE

START TIME

Kinder

September 1st

11:00 am

1st Grade

September 1st

12:00 noon

4th Grade

September 1st

1:00 pm

2nd Grade

September 2nd

11:00 am

3rd Grade

September 2nd

12:00 noon

Multi-Age With Follow-up

September 2nd

1:00 pm

6th Grade

September 3rd

11:00 am

Preschool

September 3rd

12:00 noon

5th Grade

September 3rd

1:00 pm

 Class Schedule

Our school-wide calendars can be found at: Daily Schedule.   

To Have a Successful Year:

Students

  • Attend Morning Meetings EVERY Day and share when you feel comfortable doing so.
  • Attend 4 hours of live (synchronous) instruction Tuesday through Friday.
  • Attend Specials each day for 30 minutes.
  • Enjoy 1-hour total screen time breaks.
  • Attend small group meetings or interventions, when invited/assigned, on Mondays.
  • Work on your Asynchronous assignments, especially on Mondays.

Parents 

  • Ensure your child is ready to learn by 9:20 a.m.
  • Check in with them (at least once) during independent work time.
  • Insist they are good digital citizens!!
  • Troubleshoot tech problems (Internet connectivity, headphones, charged device, etc.).
  • Encourage them to ask their teacher for help.
  • Check your e-mail regularly.
  • Be sure your child attends daily. We will take attendance EVERY day.  (Monday - Friday) Including Monday Morning Meeting time.
  • If your child will be absent from virtual learning., e-mail the teacher and call the Aldrin Attendance Office @703-904-3818 or email @ @email 
  • If you need assistance purchasing supplies, please e-mail Principal Wolfe (@email or one of our counselors, Stephanie Williams, @email or Casey Salerno, @email .)
  • IMPORTANT--Make sure your information is correct through their Parent SIS account.  This will ensure your receive Aldrin messages.  Please check to ensure your e-mail and phone number are correct.    https://aldrines.fcps.edu/announcements/please-check-your-information-correct

 Tips for Success—Review with other parents or caretakers and your child:

  • Find a quiet place for your child to work and learn.  (**Help them set up a routine and stick to it.)
  • Post a daily schedule where your child can see it. 
  • Log into class on time with the proper links open.
  • Have supplies out and ready to use.  (when prompted by the teacher)
  • Use headphones for the best sound and less distractions, if possible.
  • Remind your child to use the chat feature appropriately. (Be a GREAT Digital Citizen!)
  • Wait patiently for a turn and use the raise hand feature to share.
  • Be a good digital citizen / follow the SR&R.  (We remind you of this—it’s important.)
  • Work on the assignments the teacher gives during independent work time.
  • Finish assignments on time or ask the teacher for assistance. 
  • Your child can e-mail the teacher to ask questions if they don’t understand something.
  • Parents:  Attend the Principal’s Coffees, Tech Classes, Open House, Parent-Teacher Meetings, and other informational meetings.
  • Parents and Students:  Give the teachers Grace and Patience, just as they will do for you.  We are all in this together and we will work hard to make it an AMAZING school experience. 
  • Everyone:  SMILE—it’s contagious.
  • Our Aldrin Family:  Appreciate each other---teacher, staff member, student, parent, and even the principals. 

August 26, 2020

August 26, 2020

Dear Aldrin Families,

Our teachers and staff are back at work—mostly virtually.  They are working hard getting things set up for what we are confident will be a VERY successful school year.  As you all know, we will begin 100% on-line.    

Within the next few days, you will be contacted by your child’s new teacher.   Some teachers will call, some will e-mail and others may do a combination of both.  If they call and you don’t answer the phone, they will leave you a message.   Please know that each teacher will be calling between 20 and 25 families, some with multiple calls, so they won’t have a chance to get into large scale details about your child’s schedule, etc.  All of the information you will need to start the school year will be provided during the Virtual Orientation.  The schedule is hyperlinked here for your convenience Orientation Schedule Please remember, this call should be a simple 1-2 minute call for them to say hello, introduce themselves, and hear a little about your child.  Please help us make it a success for the teacher and for you.   Hold your big questions for another time when they can focus on answering the questions; many will be answered in the coming days via e-mail.   Also, please know that the teachers will call the numbers we have listed in our Student Information System.   If your numbers are not correct, take a few moments today to log into the Student Information System Parent Vue system and make your changes.  The link to Parent Vue is hyperlinked here:   https://sisparent.fcps.edu/PVUE/PXP2_Login_Parent_OVR.aspx?regenerateSessionId=True

Some of our Aldrin Team Members were promoted or changed grade levels.  Below is the new place you’ll see them showing up at Aldrin:

Shannon Perry was promoted from Instructional Assistant to Enhanced Autism Teacher.

Katie Lauer is moving from Kindergarten to First Grade.

Dawn Edwards is moving from 3rd Grade to 2nd Grade.

Jennifer Bullen is moving from 3rd Grade to 2nd Grade.

Sara Spizzirri is looping to 3rd Grade with her students from last year, with only a few changes. 

Caitlin McBride is moving from 2nd Grade to 4th Grade.

Ivette Retrey, one of our Special Education Teachers, is moving from 3rd Grade to 4th Grade.

Rosemary Walsh is continuing in the role she started last year as our Lead Special Education Teacher and Local Screening Chairperson.

Evan Donegan is moving from 1st and 2nd Grade to 2nd and 3rd Grade.

Ana Giraldo was promoted from PHA to PAC IA.

Paulina Ttito was promoted from PHA to PHTA.

We are welcoming some new faces to Aldrin this year:

Lara O’Sullivan is joining our Special Education Team.  She will support 1st Grade students.

Kelsey Preston is our new Preschool Autism Teacher.

Kelly Kraehe is our new Art Teacher.

Casey Salerno is our new Part-Time School Counselor.

Stephanie Williams is our new Full-Time Counselor.

Melissa Weinhaus will be our ABA IA.

Olga Prytkov as a PHA.

The school instructional week is five (5) days, not four (4) as in the spring session...  The Monday Schedule will start with a Classroom Morning Meeting and a review of the expectations for the day.  Teachers will then go into small group intervention time while students work asynchronously.   We know many of you may have made alternative plans for Monday and understand the importance of activities for families; however, we want you to know the school work being provided on Monday(s) is important.  Also on Mondays, we will have small group intervention time for students.  Teachers will share more information about who is included in the small group sessions during their Virtual Orientation.  Most likely, the small groups will change every couple of weeks.   The Monday Morning Check in and Morning Meeting is new to some of you.  We wanted to provide this to students for a sense of normalcy in a very unusual time.  We will take attendance five days per week, including Monday morning.   Full school-wide calendars can be found at: Daily Schedule.   If your child will be absent, please notify the main office at: 703-904-3818 or by e-mail at:  @email .  Please note that our bell schedule remains the same as last year. 

Specials Classes (PE, Music, Art, Band, Strings, Library, and STEAM) will all be provided synchronously (in person).  The Specials Teacher will join your child’s homeroom class, thus eliminating another link for you to manage in BbCU.  We hope this is helpful.    All Specials Teachers will also provide students with asynchronous learning opportunities for students to participate in each week. 

Grading:  We will be grading all work this year.   Grades will be given just like we would when we are in a regular session of school.   All assignments are important and should be completed.  Your child’s teacher will work with you about their specific guidelines, but please know we will be extremely flexible and no grades of “0” will be given.  If the teacher assigns the work, then it’s expected to be completed.   Teachers will work with students who are not completing their work some time within the Monday small group learning session. 

Flexibility and Grace:  Just as we will ask you for flexibility and grace, we will provide flexibility and grace.  This is all new to us and we understand this will be challenging and difficult for all of you.   Please know we are here to help.  We will continue to provide you with virtual learning technology classes to continue to expand your own knowledge of BbCU and our learning platforms. 

ST Math and Imagine Learning will both be provided to students at Aldrin to be used both synchronously and asynchronously.  Teachers will assign students' time on both programs to be completed during their asynchronous learning times, including Monday. 

Homework will only be given to students on Monday and can be completed during the asynchronous learning times or when it’s convenient for your family.    Homework will not be busy work and will be authentic to the in-person learning taking place Tuesday to Friday, as it always does at Aldrin.  Some of our Project Based Learning (PBL) assignments will require Tuesday to Friday work, but we don’t expect our students to be on line all day and then continue with more on-line work in the evening.   Projects will allow students to collaborate with their peers, virtually, and provide them with a chance to use and show their creative abilities in a way that best matches their learning style. 

Library Books will be allowed to be checked out from our school library.  Stay tuned for more information from our wonderful Librarian, Ms. Haydock.

We are also looking into having virtual PTA after-school classes for our kiddos.   More information will be coming from our PTA President, Eden Schneider and our PTA Board.  Please don’t forget to become a member of the PTA.  The link to our PTA website is:  https://aldrin.ptboard.com/

We have also included a copy of the updated (virtual) supplies you will need to ensure a successful on-line learning experience for your child Class supply lists Supply Lists.  We will be providing supplies to any student who needs them during a supply distribution day next week.  More information to come.  We will also provide a white board and a marker for students if their teacher believes it will benefit their instruction. 

Thank you all so much.  Look for additional information next week. 

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask. 

Shane

 

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