Dear Lower School Families,
To begin, if you haven’t had an opportunity to read Mr. Luebbe’s Head of School post, please do so as it contains very important information related to communication from the SEC about a return to campus date, as well as additional information on a restructuring of administrative roles at the Pudong campus for the 2020-2021 school year. You should have also received two emails sent to your scis-parent email account from both Mr. Luebbe and Mr. Eschtruth, the Director of Schools. If you have questions about any of the content within these emails please submit your questions or comments via this form.
Virtual Learning Reflections:
This week I spent several hours reflecting on the tremendous growth our students have demonstrated throughout this period of virtual learning. Scrolling through the class Seesaw Journals and comparing student posts from the first week of virtual learning until now was an inspiring process. The quality and caliber of student work has increased exponentially, and it is readily apparent that students’ ability to demonstrate essential 21st century skills has flourished. In particular, I have been extremely impressed by student’s ability to think critically, creatively, and flexibly. There is no doubt that students have faced many challenges during this virtual learning period, however, they have also worked with their teachers, peers, and especially parents to actively develop solutions. These life skills have been cultivated because of the way in which teachers have designed learning experiences that engage and motivate students to push themselves to be independent and responsible learners. This has not been easy for many; however, the strength, perseverance, and life skills demonstrated by all members of our community during this time will inevitably stay with us and our children for a lifetime.
It has been several weeks since we have gathered Parent Feedback and it is time for us to once again seek your input surrounding your child(ren)’s virtual learning experience thus far. We greatly appreciate the support of families during this virtual learning period and wholeheartedly recognize that supporting your child with virtual learning is not an easy task. Please know we are here to help you in any way we can. Please note, the parent survey has been updated to include some targeted questions on student and parents social-emotional well-being. We believe that it is extremely important to gain an understanding of how we can better support the wellbeing of community during this time.
Additionally, we appreciate your feedback surrounding the areas that you believe are going well with regards to virtual learning, as well as the ways that we can improve.
Please complete this survey to let us know how we are doing.
Congratulations to Arul Meshram in 4B!
Congratulations to Arul Meshram in 4B who was recently published in the online version of the China Daily for his artwork. His drawing of his favorite anime, Naruto, depicted this character wearing a face-mask while also conveying an expression that states, “We will get through this.” What a beautiful and powerful piece of art Arul!
Learner Profile Recognitions:
This week we’d like to acknowledge many of our Lower School students who have been recognized by their teachers for displaying one or more of the Learner Profile Attributes over the course of the past two weeks. A big CONGRATULATIONS to all our Learner Profile Recognition recipients!
- Hera Gu in KLM is recognized by Miss Meidinger and Ms. Mount for being a Thinker.
- Isabella Auriema in 2M is recognized by Ms. Muy for being a Communicator.
- Isabella Hellestam in KM is recognized by Miss Meidinger and Ms. Mount for being Knowledgeable.
- Jaiden Chen in KM is recognized by Miss Meidinger and Ms. Mount for being Caring.
- Jesse Nevalainen in KM is recognized by Miss Meidinger and Ms. Mount for being Open-Minded.
- Kai Park in 3V is recognized by Ms. V for being a Communicator.
- Lisa Feng in KM is recognized by Miss Meidinger and Ms. Mount for being Principled.
- Lucas Buisman in 3V is recognized by Ms. V for being an Inquirer.
- Marko Mladan in 3J is recognized by Mrs. Johnson for being a Thinker.
- Mia Accad in KLM is recognized by Miss Meidinger and Ms. Mount for being a Risk-taker.
- Olivia Chen in 3J is recognized by Mrs. Johnson for being a Communicator.
- Roman Akulov in KLM is recognized by Miss Meidinger and Ms. Mount for being Balanced.
- Shravya Kumar in 2M is recognized by Ms. Muy for being Principled.
- Suhani Nagpal in 2M is recognized by Ms. Muy for being Balanced.
- Timur Akhpolov in KLM is recognized by Miss Meidinger and Ms. Mount for being an Inquirer.
- Graco Verduzco in 3J is being recognized by Mrs. Johnson for being an Inquirer.
- Nick Zhou in 3J is being recognized by Mrs. Johnson for being a Risk-taker.
- Veyron Lin in KM is recognized by Miss Meidinger and Ms. Mount for being a Communicator.
Return to Campus:
As parents, we want you to be aware that the school is undertaking all of the necessary operational preparations to ensure we are prepared to open on the first possible date allowed by the SEC. SCIS, along with all other international schools in Shanghai, have received additional clarification surrounding that the communicated May 6th date is understood to be the date by which we should be operationally ready for a return to campus, having completed all mandatory preparation work, and submitted our application for the inspection. This is not the return-to-campus date. We still do not have a specific timeline for our return-to-campus learning which would include students and teachers. If we learn of a date, we will share this with all of you.
We will also provide detailed information on our preparations as well as new health and safety guidelines over the coming weeks. There are also a number of guidelines that are being published by the SEC that will prevent us at least temporarily from returning to operating as we did prior to the pandemic. For example, non-educational gatherings are currently prohibited, and outside visitors will not be allowed on campus. Once we have received and reviewed all of these directives from the SEC we will communicate them to the community.
Support for Students Outside of China
While the news of a return to campus is certainly exciting for those of us here in Shanghai, we recognize that not all families have been able to make the return trip. Please rest assured that we are making provisions to ensure that learning continues online for students that are unable to return to Shanghai. SCIS is committed to supporting all of its students wherever they are until the boarders reopen and families are able to return to Shanghai.
Message from SCIS Admissions: Revised 2020-2021 Enrollment Deadlines
During this health emergency, the SCIS Admissions Office remains open and committed to fostering the SCIS community. Of course, first-and-foremost, our priority is the health and safety of your family and our entire SCIS community. We continue to work with current and new families as we strive to effectively plan for yet another successful school year. For current families, our re-enrollment process is in full swing; and for prospective families, we have already begun accepting new students for the 2020-2021 school year. We are confident that SCIS will once again be able to foster one of the strongest and most diverse learning communities within Shanghai.
As this health emergency continues, we understand that it may be difficult to progress through the standard re-enrollment process with certainty. Thus, in order to further support our current SCIS community, we have adjusted the re-enrollment timeline in order to provide a flexible timeframe that ensures all current families have first priority to register for the upcoming school year.
Please review the adjusted re-enrollment timeline below and visit our re-enrollment webpage for more information. We thank you again for your continued support and involvement in our school community and hope to welcome your family for yet another successful year at SCIS.
If you have any questions regarding re-enrollment or need any assistance, please contact our admissions office at email@example.com or visit our re-enrollment webpage for more information.
Virtual Parent Community Circles
The SCIS Social Emotional Support Team, made up of divisional school counselors, has been working to support the SCIS community during the school closure. As we continue to transition and settle into the shifts that are taking place in the larger world around us, the SCIS-Pudong Lower School Counselor, Mrs. Laurie Luebbe would like to invite any interested parents to join in a Virtual Community Circle as a way to explore and process emotions stemming from the complex facets of Covid-19’s impact on our lives. We invite you to join this virtual circle as a way to connect with other parents and create a safe space through which to acknowledge the journey you are on, as we continue to navigate that which is unknown.
If you would be interested in joining a Parent Community Circle please let us know your preferred days and times by completing this short interest survey.
How to Talk with your Child about COVID-19
For information on how to talk with your children about COVID-19 below are several resources you can refer to:
- Supporting families during COVID-19 – Child Mind Institute
- A Toolkit for Supporting Families Impacted by COVID-19 – The Creative Curriculum
- Talking with children about Coronavirus Disease 2019
- How to Talk with Kids about COVID-19 – Stanford Children’s Hospital
- Coronavirus (COVID-19): How to Talk to Your Child – Kids Health
- Managing Children’s Fear, Anxiety in the Age of COVID-19 – Medscape
If you notice your child is still worried or anxious, be assured that this is a normal reaction, and continue conversations and providing care for your child. If you find that additional support is needed, please reach out to Mrs. Luebbe (firstname.lastname@example.org) who can refer you to outside counseling or to schedule time with you or your child to make a plan on how to support them during this time. In the meantime please also refer to the SCIS Virtual Learning Survival Guide in effort to provide some connection, communication, and resources that will support you and your child during this time.
IT Support with Virtual Learning
Given various challenges related to technology access and internet reliability please feel free to reach out to our SCIS-Pudong IT Department at email@example.com if you experience any issues or complications with Seesaw and/or other technology platforms. We appreciate your support and are here to help you make virtual learning a success in any way we can.
School Attendance and Student Participation:
During the Virtual Learning period student attendance will not be taken; however, assignment completion will be used to validate student participation and progress in virtual learning. Students will be afforded a flexible 48-hour window in order to participate in a way that allows them to complete assignments. Students / parents should communicate with their teacher(s) if more time is needed surrounding specific assignments.
Additionally, we recognize that students may not be able to complete all assignments due to families varying circumstances including access to appropriate technology and internet reliability. Please know that while students will not be penalized academically, lack of participation in the online learning platform may hinder progress against the grade level core or subject area standards. As such, if students do not partake in the learning experiences it will be difficult for teachers to assess and report on student progress which may potentially result in students receiving the achievement indicator IE (insufficient evidence), AE (approaching grade level expectation), or NME (not meeting grade level expectation) on the student’s semester report.