Month: January 2021

From the Office of the Superintendent

January 21, 2021

Dear Buckaroo Community,

Due to the number of students and staff in SNSD who have tested positive for COVID-19 or who have quarantined recently, the SNSD will pivot to at home instruction beginning Friday, January 22, 2021.

We have evaluated the situation over the past few days and have seen our percentages of quarantine situations grow from our usual 2-3% of students and staff quarantined or isolated to roughly 20% quarantined or isolated in some areas, with most campuses seeing higher than usual cases.

With the uncertainty of COVID-19, we believe it is best to pivot to at home instruction for a brief period of time to prevent further increases. Our community and school district staff have done a great job navigating these times and we are confident this step will help that continue.

We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause; however, we would rather be overly cautious to protect our students and staff during this time.  We look forward to seeing our students back on campus on Monday, February 1, 2021 and are hopeful these days will allow for the majority of our students and staff to return.

PARENTS

Please do not check your child out early from school today unless your child is sick, has been quarantined, or has an appointment.

We will be distributing devices and going over plans and schedules with students today to ensure a smooth transition.

Staff, Students, and Parents – Please read the information below carefully.

STUDENTS

Smackover Preschool

Smackover Preschool 3 and 4 year old students will complete the AMI work which was sent home earlier this year. (Additional paper packets will be available for pick-up between 8 am 12 pm on Friday, January 22, 2021.)

Tuition will not be charged during the closure for on-campus instruction.

K-12 Students

Electronic devices will be sent home with K-12th grade students today, January 21, 2021, so that students will be able to access remote instruction through Google Meet and digital assignments.

Assignments for tomorrow, Friday, January 22, will be given or emailed to your students today, January 21.

Please click on the links below for the appropriate campus schedule for Google Meets for the week of January 25 – 29, 2021.

NMS_At_Home_Schedule_2020_2021

SES_At_Home_Schedule_2020_2021

SHS_At_Home_Schedule_2020_2021

WiFi

WiFi can be utilized at the following locations:

  • Smackover Elementary School parking lot
  • Smackover High School parking lot
  • Norphlet Middle parking lot
  • Preschool parking lot

Please stay in your vehicle when using WiFi while on school grounds

Buses with WiFi access will also be provided during the hours of 10:30 am to 1 pm at the following locations during the week of January 25 – 29.  There will be personnel available on the buses to help students download recorded Google Meets and assignments.

  • Mt Holly:
    • Old Mt. Holly Schools parking lot
    • Midway Baptist Church (9595 Magnolia Hwy.)
  • Lisbon
    • Lisbon United Methodist Church (5870 Lisbon Rd.)
  • Calion
    • Calion City Hall (300 Mill St.)

BREAKFAST/LUNCH

The Smackover-Norphlet School District will be providing breakfast/lunch during this time.  Please contact Cafeteria Director Diann Bailey at diann.bailey@smackover.net or (870) 725-1221 to let her know which location your student’s breakfast/lunch will be picked up.

Breakfast/lunch will be available for pick-up at the Smackover-Norphlet campuses January 22 – January 29, 2021.  This is available for any PreK-12 student.

  • Pick-up times – 10:30 am – 12:30 pm (Monday through Friday)
  • Pick-up location
    • Drive through of the preschool at Norphlet
    • Smackover Cafeteria

Friday, January 22 – Breakfast/Lunch are only available at the locations listed above.

Beginning Monday, January 25, meals will also be available for pick-up at the following locations during the hours of 10:30 am to 1 pm.

  • Mt Holly:
    • Old Mt. Holly Schools parking Lot
    • Midway Baptist Church (9595 Magnolia Hwy.)
  • Lisbon
    • Lisbon United Methodist Church (5870 Lisbon Rd.)
  • Calion
    • Calion City Hall (300 Mill St.)

THERAPY

Students receiving therapies or special services will be contacted by teachers and/or therapists.

ATHLETICS

Basketball games scheduled for January 22 through January  29 have been canceled.  Information regarding ticket refunds will be made in a separate blog posting. All other athletic practices will also be postponed until after January 29.

BOARD MEETING

The School Board will meet at its regularly scheduled time on Monday, January 25, 2021.  The meeting will be held at 5:30 pm at Hobgood Auditorium.

All participants are expected to wear face masks and practice social distancing.

REMINDERS

As a reminder, please keep your child home if:

  • He/she is running fever or feels ill
  • Has been around a possible COVID-19 case
  • Has been tested for COVID-19 (Even if your child is tested after school hours, on a holiday break, weekend, etc. and receives a negative test, please call the school nurse for follow up guidance on returning to school.)

Additionally, if a staff member or student tests positive for COVID-19, he or she is  required to have a letter of release from the Arkansas Department of Health in order to return to school or work. This letter needs to be given to the school nurse who is also the point of contact.

We encourage all students and their families to follow the guidance of Governor Asa Hutchinson so that we can slow down the spread of COVD-19 and reduce the number of positive cases in our region.

We look forward to seeing all of our students on Monday, February 1, 2021!  Stay safe and healthy!

Go Bucks!

Jason Black

Orientation for 6th – 12th Grade Virtual Students

Today (January 20, 2021) is the deadline for parents of eligible 6th – 12th grade Virtual Classroom students to return the Virtual Classroom Agreement to the assistant principal at the student’s campus.

APEX courses will only be set up for students who meet the following criteria:

  • Are eligible to continue as Virtual Classroom students in 6th – 12th grade.
  • Have returned the Virtual Classroom agreement by January 20, 2021.
  • Have participated in the APEX orientation with their parents on January 26, 2021.

VC_Agreement_January_2021

 

The orientation for APEX will be held virtually on January 26, 2021.  Links to the Google Meet are below.  Parents and students who are continuing in Virtual Classroom are expected to attend one of the sessions so that they can learn how to use APEX.

Please contact your student’s campus if you have any question regarding Virtual Classroom.

From the Office of the Superintendent

January 19, 2021

Dear Buckaroos,

I would like to begin by saying thank you to all those who have taken the necessary precautions the school district has requested to keep all of our students and staff safe during these times.  Although this school year has presented its share of challenges and adversity, our community, staff and students have responded with great attitudes and determination!

As we move into the second semester and as cases rise in our area, it is imperative that you keep your child home if you or anyone in your household is feeling sick.

Recently, a few students were sent to school before receiving their final test results for COVID-19.  This situation caused multiple students and staff to be sent home unnecessarily.  This creates a dangerous situation for our most vulnerable students and staff.

Although these are not the only COVID-19 situations causing students or staff to be sent home, they have been occurring more often and we can do better.

We urge you to please be cautious if you, your child, or anyone in your household is sick.

Lastly, as we have had an increase in COVID-19 cases across the school district and county, we are beginning preparations for a possible pivot to remote instruction for our on-campus students.  Our hope is that our numbers stabilize and this is not necessary; however, we want you to be aware that we are evaluating the situation and will keep you posted.

Once again, thank you for all you have done to this point.  As we start toward the push of the second semester, I’m confident in our community, staff, and students as we all tackle this together.

Go Bucks!

Jason Black, Superintendent

From the Office of the Superintendent

January 15, 2021

Dear Buckaroo Family and Community,

This letter is to inform you that a student or staff member at Smackover High School has tested positive for COVID-19.  District and school administration have followed response protocols issued by the Division of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) and contacted the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH).

Students and staff who were in “close contact” will be notified by the school nurse or school administration.  The district is thoroughly disinfecting and sanitizing facilities appropriately.

As we continue to work through these situations together, know that the Smackover-Norphlet School District will be transparent if and when these situations occur.  As a reminder, please keep your child home if:

  • He/she is running fever or feels ill
  • Has been around a possible COVID-19 case
  • Has been tested for COVID-19 (Even if your child is tested after school hours, on a holiday break, weekend, etc. and receives a negative test, please call the school nurse for follow up guidance on returning to school.)
As a reminder:   If a staff member or student tests positive for COVID-19, he or she is  required to have a letter of release from the Arkansas Department of Health in order to return to school or work. This letter needs to given to the school nurse who is also the point of contact.

In accordance with confidentiality laws and HIPPA regulations, the Smackover-Norphlet School District is not allowed to release identifiable information of individuals with COVID-19.

Thank you for your flexibility and partnership as we work through these situations together! Go Bucks!

Sincerely,

Jason Black

Superintendent

Virtual Classroom Orientation

There will be a Virtual Classroom Orientation for 6th – 12th grade students who will continue in the Virtual Classroom option for the second semester.

There will be two sessions offered.  Please choose the session which will best meet your schedule.

  • TIME:  1:30 pm OR 5:30 pm
  • DATE:  Tuesday, January 26, 2021
  • LOCATION:  Hobgood Auditorium

Parents and their students who are eligible and choosing to remain in Virtual Classroom for the second semester are required to physically attend one session of the orientation.

 

Mark Your Calendars!

Please mark your calendars for the upcoming dates:

  • January 18, 2021 (Monday) – No school (MLK Jr. Day)
  • February 11, 2021 (Thursday) – Parent Teacher Conferences (Early Dismissal Day)
  • February 12 – 16, 2021 – No School (Winter break for students)
  • March 22 – 26, 2021 – Spring Break