March 22, 2020
Dear SDFAS community,
We hope this message finds you all healthy and safely sheltered following the governor’s “Stay at Home” order on Thursday afternoon. Below are updates for the coming week and beyond.
Limiting and monitoring the spread of Covid-19
As Covid-19 continues to spread via community transmission throughout San Diego and the State of California, our thoughts go out to all individuals and families who have been directly affected by the virus. We ask you please to contact our Head of School if a person in your family is displaying symptoms or has tested positive for Covid-19. No potentially identifying information will be disclosed.
The leadership of the school would like to reiterate that, as of the sending of today’s message, Mr Rosenblum has not been informed of anyone within the SDFAS community having tested positive for Covid-19. For ongoing updates and resources related to Covid-19 at SDFAS, please regularly consult our dedicated SDFAS Covid-19 webpage.
Spring Break and expected continuation of campus closure
We remain committed to opening the school campus as soon as we safely can and to providing high-quality distance learning in the interim. The leadership of the school has decided, after carefully weighing many options, to reduce Spring Break vacation from seven school days to five, starting Monday, April 20 – Friday, April 24th. We therefore expect the SDFAS campus will remain closed, until at least Monday, April 27. One of the two days removed from Spring Break will be used to give teachers and students a three-day weekend from Friday, March 27 – Sunday, March 29. The second of the two removed days will be used for an additional three-day weekend in the month of May, whether or not the campus is closed or open at that point.
Reminder about the SDFAS distance learning survey #1
If you have not yet done so, please complete our week one “School at a Distance” survey (4 questions) by today, Sunday March 22 at midnight. Please know that you should now be able to take the survey multiple times (once for each of your children).
Financial challenges during Covid-19 crisis
We recognize that this unusual period will create financial challenges for multiple businesses and for some families. The school is therefore making available special financial aid for families experiencing hardship due to loss of income as a result of the Covid-19 crisis (details available here). The school will also make pro-rata credit for unused after-school activities, extended care packages, clubs, trips, transport and Girard Gourmet meals at the end of the calendar year. However, because the school continues to operate virtually and to incur all the costs of teacher salaries and the campus, we are not in a position to offer tuition refunds.
Some of you have inquired about our annual Gala originally planned for March 21 and subsequently moved to May 16. The primary focus of the school at this time is on the health, safety and wellbeing of every person in the SDFAS and broader San Diego community. For this reason, everything related to our annual Gala is currently on hold. The school does very much look forward to holding a Gala at some point, either live or virtually, and we will communicate further about plans over the next few weeks.
Parent Support Forum: “SDFASParentConnect”
Following requests from numerous parents, we have created an online forum for parents to share ideas, challenges and successes during this unusual period of time. The forum was not created for distance learning feedback, rather, SDFASParentConnect forum is a place to bring our community together to share common home challenges, useful resources, and parent-to-parent advice and tips. The forum will be moderated by SDFAS staff.
Dynamic science video for kids on how germs spread
Please click here for a dynamic Youtube science video for kids on how germs spread (and the importance of washing hands and not touching one’s face) shared with me by a parent. Very, very cool. Not frightening or scary. Well worth the 10 minutes to watch together as a family with K, elementary and middle school students.
We wish your children a smooth and engaging second week of distance learning. We miss you and we are here for you. We remain committed to providing ongoing updates as necessary as well as weekly on Sundays at noon.
Be well, stay healthy, be in touch,
Mark Rosenblum & the Covid-19 Emergency Response Team