Tuesday, March 24, 2020

A letter from Mr. Michael Deegan, Superintendent of Schools and an announcement from NYS Education Department New York State Tests in ELA, Mathematics and Science Suspended

March 25, 2020
The Feast of the Annunciation

Dear Catholic School Families,

Catholic Schools in the Archdiocese of New York have the most dedicated principals, teachers and staff in education today. By now you and your child(ren) have been introduced to the faith home-based learning program that our educators have created and will continue to deliver until our students return on April 20th.

In providing a faith based academically superior education, we are committed to teaching the whole child; addressing the spiritual, intellectual, physical and emotional needs of our students. Never in recent history has our mission been more critical! We are blessed to be your partners in this work; most especially, we rely on the guidance counselors, social workers, and mental health professionals at the Archdiocese of New York Drug Abuse Prevention Program (ADAPP).

During this stressful and uncertain time, while many are struggling with how to manage day to day activities and adjust to a new “normal”, ADAPP will provide supports in a variety of ways. These include the attached resources for parents/teachers and caregivers to use with their families, and direct access for parents and students to our qualified staff.

During this time, ADAPP will be offering brief mental health phone consultations and support to parents who have concerns about their child(ren) and refer them, as appropriate, to additional resources. To participate in this program, please email MentalHealthsSupport@adapp.org.

We also know that there are other challenges that face our families, which is why we have partnered with Catholic Charities of NY as well as ADAPP to provide you information on community benefit and social justice programs. Many of these programs are available for all, regardless of income so we encourage you to be screened for these services. You can download the FIND HELP- NEW YORK catholic charities app on your iPhone or android or visit https://catholiccharitiesny.org/find-help. You can also send an email to FamilySupport@adapp.org.

For all emails please type in the subject section the name of the school your child attends, their grade and the city in which the school is located. In the email, please describe your concern so the counselor can be prepared to respond and leave a phone number if you would like a call back. Every attempt will be made to respond within 24 hours during the hours of 8 am to 4 pm.

 **If you have a mental health emergency, please call 911**

Please continue to check our website www.CatholicSchoolsNY.org as we update it with additional resources on a regular basis. We will continue to lift each other up, be a stronger, more resilient community of faith in the days and months ahead.

Sincerely yours,
Michael J. Deegan
Superintendent of Schools
Archdiocese of New York
The purpose of this memorandum is to inform you that the New York State Education Department (NYSED) is suspending all NYS Elementary- and Intermediate-Level State Assessments for the remainder of the school year in response to the statewide closures of schools and districts to prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

This suspension for the remainder of the school year applies to the following State testing programs:  
  New York State Grades 3-8 English Language Arts Tests
  New York State Grades 3-8 Mathematics Tests
  New York State Grade 4 Elementary-Level Science Test
  New York State Grade 8 Intermediate-Level Science Test
  New York State English as a Second Language Achievement Test (NYSESLAT) in Grades K-12.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Employee Tests positive for COVID-19 virus

Dear Parents,

The health and safety of students and staff at 
Our Lady Queen of Martyrs and all students across the Archdiocese is our top priority. We are committed to ensuring school communities have the information they need on COVID-19 (coronavirus). 

As noted, in the Superintendent of Schools, March 6th letter, “We will provide information on school operations as well as, coronavirus related guidance from government agency. However, it would be in violation of privacy laws to provide information about specific individuals and their circumstances.

We are writing to inform you that a member of the 
Our Lady Queen of Martyrs school community this afternoon 
self-reported a positive test result for COVID-19. We are handling this situation with the utmost seriousness.  At this time, it is important to listen to facts and not respond to fear or rumor. I would encourage you to visit the CDC website www.CDC.Gov  for additional factual information and resources.

We are following protocols from the CDC, NYS DOH, and NYC DOH. We have contracted with qualified, licensed cleaning professionals who will conduct deep cleaning and sanitization following CDC Guidelines using approved disinfectants.

NYC Department of Health has advised us: “Currently, there is generalized community transmission of COVID-19 in New York City, meaning there are cases that have no known link to travel or to another confirmed case. The school or workplace environment having a positive case does not put others at higher risk than anywhere else in the city, given that there is generalized transmission in the city.”

Students and Staff should self monitor for symptoms if you have fever or symptoms, call the NYC Health Department at 347-396-7990, in addition you can call 311 and your medical provider.”

During times like this, the safety and well-being of our Catholic schools families and staff, as well as those in the broader community around us, are our primary concern.

We will continue to deliver as much information as possible in a timely manner. For regularly updated information on COVID-19 (coronavirus) related issues in our schools, the best resource will always be www.CatholicSchoolsNY.org

Mr. Woods will post more information as it becomes available.

Schedule for COVID-19 on-line classes

Dear Parents,
To make your scheduling easier I have posted below the Class and times that your child needs to be online for class:

Grade 2 
8:30 AM - ELA
9:15 AM - Religion
10:45 AM - Math 
12:15 PM - Science
1:45 PM - Music

Grade 3
8:30 AM - Math 
9:15 AM - Social Studies
10:00 AM - Religion 
11:30 AM - ELA
12:15 PM - Science
1:45 PM - Music

Grade 4
8:30 AM - Science
10:00 AM - ELA 
10:45 AM - Music
11:30 AM - Religion
12:15 PM - Math 
1:45 PM  - Social Studies

Grade 5
8:30 AM - Math 
9:15 AM - Music 
10:45 AM - Science
11:30 AM - Social Studies
12:15 PM - Religion 
1:45 PM - ELA 

Grade 6 
8:30 AM - ELA 
9:15 AM - Social Studies 
10:00 AM - Math 
10:45 AM - Science
11:30 AM - Music 
12:15 PM - Religion 

Grade 7 
8:30 AM - Religion 
9:15 PM - Science 
10:00 AM - ELA 
10:45 AM - Social Studies 
11:30 AM - Music 
12:15 PM - Math 

Grade 8 
8:30 AM - Religion
9:15 AM - Science
10:00 AM - Music 
11:30 AM - ELA 
12:15 AM - Social Studies
1:45 PM - Math  

The teachers also will be outreaching to you by phone to address any concerns or questions you have. If your phone number has changed please send an email to Mr. Woods at olqm1@aol.com

Saturday, March 21, 2020

On Line Classes begin Monday March 23, 2020

Dear Parents,

First of all I hope that you and your family are well.

As you have read in Mr. Deegan's letters we along with all the other Catholic Schools are planning to do continue to teach your child through a variety of online programs beginning Monday March 23, 2020 at 8:30 AM.

In many grades we will be using Google Classroom which is a standard for students in grades 2-8. It is an online platform method we have employed for the past two years.  The teachers will be posting on their blog the times that children should be on Google Classroom for each specific class. 

I ask that you read the teacher's blog and be aware of the different times your child will need to be actively engaged in Google Classroom.  I am in complete understanding that many of you are at home working and the time frame may not work due to your need to also work.  Please communicate that through Google Classroom to your child's teacher.

In this scenario then your child must complete the work assigned for that day by midnight of the assigned date.  Your child will be able to write to their teacher (or you may also) through Google Classroom and the teacher will respond by the next business day. The teachers are hoping to use a variety of methods and assignments to assist your child in learning through technology.

What must be remembered by  parents is that this is all new to both teachers and me as the school administrator.  I have access to all the Google Classroom accounts and will be monitoring the progress that both teachers and your child will be making.

Should you have questions please email me at olqm1@aol.com. I will respond as soon as I am able due to the fact that I am holding a number of Zoom meetings with teachers each day to monitor progress, frustrations and areas of concern.

Alba is working from home as required and so is Mr. Guzman so they do not have access to records here and I am working on trying to get that also to them.

For students in sacramental classes -- The Cardinal has announced that sacramental programs as well as all Liturgical celebrations are on hold.

At this very difficult time I wish you much peace as you juggle your job, your children and your home life.

Andrew G. Woods, principal

P.S.  I have requested your child's teacher to reach out to you once or twice a week to assist you.

Friday, March 20, 2020

Letter from Superintendent of School Office

March 19, 2020
Solemnity of St. Joseph

Dear Catholic Schools Families,
First and foremost, I pray that this letter finds you and yours healthy and safe. Just like your loved ones at home, our extended family of educators, administrators and staff have been doing our very best to embrace this new normal we have been forced to accept as life in America. While there are few things that are certain, I can however promise our extraordinary principals and devoted teachers remain committed to the mission of Catholic education.

As Catholics, we know God is with us, and it is up to us to ask for knowledge of His will, and that it be done. As Catholic educators, my team and I must use that faith to lift us up to overcome the challenges we face so that we may continue what we started last September and educate your child(ren) right through to the end of the school year. Starting this Monday, March 23, that is exactly what we will do, because that day is the first day of the rest of the school year for our Catholic schools.

This week our teachers, working with regional superintendents, principals and instructional specialists, have been researching, working individually and collaborating to craft the best, most efficient approaches to serve the needs of our students. They have been utilizing all the available technology and innovative strategies which have become the foundation for our academically superior, values-infused curriculum that has moved our schools forward for centuries. Tomorrow, they will end this week of preparation with a day of professional development centered on the best practices for delivering a robust home-based learning program for as long as it takes to complete our mission for this academic year.

 This Monday, March 23, your school’s principal will share via email the overall school plans for your child(ren)’s continuity of education for home-based learning. This communication will include the specific grade level mechanisms by which teachers will be distributing assignments they have prepared and developed with family and community needs in mind. Principals and teachers will continue to revise and update plans as additional resources become available and continually communicate these changes to you in a timely manner.

 Parents who do not receive an email from their principals by noon on Monday are asked to email their child’s teacher and principal so that contact information can be updated.

 All teachers, students and families will be expected to maintain safe digital correspondence between home and school. Principals will convey the protocols and specific platforms allowable according to the guidelines of the Archdiocesan Safe Environment Program. If these guidelines change, principals will communicate this.

 The students’ daily lessons and assignments align with the appropriate grade level
standards and values infused curriculum we teach in our schools and classrooms every day. The only
difference will be the method by which these lessons and assignments are delivered.

 While the content of what is delivered to your scheduling will look different. Given the realities of multiple students in the same home working with one device, students working with multiple teachers, or students having to complete their assignments at different times of the day, teachers will provide directions and expectations specifically to their students that include a suggested schedule for the day, assignments, web that can support you as you support your child’s learning at home.

 The assignments and use of technology will be grade level appropriate. We will be balancing the
benefits of the use of technology with the needs of our students and families. Protocols and guidelines
aligned with the Safe Environment Program will be strictly follow teachers, students and families. Please communicate your child’s specific needs to your principal and teacher. This will help them to better support your student.

 Principals and instructional specialists will be work learning period to ensure that both the high expectations to which they hold our students and the need for flexible collaboration with families.

 The Catholic Schools in the Archdiocese of New York are made richer by the diversity of our students, families, schools and regions, and so our educational response to our regional needs will reflect that rich diversity in the careful planning from our regional leaders.
Catholic schools introduced organized education to New York in the early 1800s. Our legacy has persevered through the Civil War and the first World War, educated our Greatest Generation and then flourished as hundreds of thousands of baby boomers came through our doors injustice and civil unrest.
The challenges we face today, while daunting, will be overcome just as they were in
generations gone by. We will do so, protected by God and inspired by the love of our children.
Mr. Michael J. Deegan
Superintendent of Schools
Archdiocese of New York

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Letter from Michael J. Deegan, Superintendent of Schools

March 17, 2020

Dear Parents,

The Office of the Superintendent of Schools continues to be proactive in taking the necessary steps to address the ongoing impact of this unprecedented health crisis on your family, specifically your child(ren)’s Catholic education. Thank you for your support, understanding and patience as we navigate these troubling days together.

In keeping with our commitment to provide you with updated information during this evolving situation, I would like to address several pressing topics:

1) As a result of last week’s announcement to close our Catholic schools, teachers provided a week’s worth of home based learning information and study material. Given the extended time our schools will now remain closed, our Office of Teaching and Learning is working closely with regional leaders and instructional staff to plan for continuity of learning for your children in the weeks ahead. To best ensure clear communication of a variety of educational resources, you will be contacted soon to share some information regarding your students' access to technology at home. Our regional and school leaders are working to share quality educational materials that recognize our students' diverse needs and interests across all grade levels. Our teachers will begin sharing direct guidance with families beginning Monday, March 23rd.

2) In light of the fact that school buildings will be closed through April 20th, 2020, I recognize that questions are being raised regarding tuition. We are actively working to find ways to provide some relief and support for you and your family, while ensuring that our school communities can come through this together. I recognize that your family may have immediate financial challenges to address. To ease that burden, I have suspended late fees on all accounts for payments due March 10th and onward. If your family is in crisis, please contact your school principal. While we cannot solve every problem, we will certainly attempt to connect you with resources that can help during this challenging time. 

3) We will make available case workers, counselors and social workers through our ADAPP Program to provide guidance for families who may need assistance during this time. More information on these services will be sent in the coming days.

4) All students in New York City, regardless of family income or free/reduced lunch status, will be eligible to receive free Grab-and-Go lunches at any New York City Department of Education public school feeding sites. For students outside of NYC, we will have posted on our website feeding locations as we receive them by local public school districts. As these pick up locations are activated, please see go to our website for more information.

5) Lastly, just as Christ calls us by name our Catholic schools’ devoted principals and dedicated teachers call your child by name every day. They know their strengths and opportunities for growth. They know where they are academically and where they need to be. With New York State Test scheduled to commence next week, I notified the Governor and State Education Department our Catholic elementary school students will not participate in NYS Test Program this year. You know far better than I do, our students, your children, are much more than test score evaluations can indicate. With that said, formative data is important, and our teachers continue to utilize NWEA MAP Data, which provides assessments three times a year. In medical terms: It’s a vital check that our teachers use to keep the pulse of our child’s learning.

We recognize that life for all of us has changed important we stay connected as a community of faith as we work will endeavor to be available and to answer your questions in a timely and respectful way.

It is my prayer for you, your children, and for all of those in who confront the challenges among us.
Mr. Michael J. Deegan
Superintendent of Schools
Archdiocese of New York

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

PreK Packets and Crayons available for pickup

All PreK Classes 

Parents in all PreK Classes may come to the school office and pickets up 3 packets of work along with a free pack of crayons.
The packets have been made by the PreK teachers to assist parents in keeping their children up to date with school work.
More materials will be available as the weeks progress.
The office will be open today until 4:00 PM 
Wednesday 9:00 AM -3:00 PM
Thursday 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Friday 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM