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Weekly Update: November 20, 2020

Dr. Stutz

Weekly Update: November 20, 2020


Dear Grinnell-Newburg Board of Education, Staff, Families, and Friends:


Happy Friday! We have just about completed our first five days of remote continuous learning. This past week the Board of Directors accepted the waiver from the Department of Education to allow us to continue with remote learning until December 2, 2020. At this time, this measure appears to be working for us as the 14-day positivity rate continues to decrease in Poweshiek County, (12.7%). Jasper County is still reporting at 21.1%. We continue to track students and staff on our data dashboard who are quarantining or who have notified us of a positive test so that we can review our progress prior to our return on December 3, 2020. Currently, we have 59 students and staff that are quarantined and this is down from 80, a week ago. Please continue to wear your mask, do not attend large gatherings, wash your hands, social distance especially when eating, and stay home if you are ill. Together we can limit the spread of the virus.  

No school November 25, 26 & 27 for Fall Break.


Grinnell-Newburg School District and the LINK program have partnered up to assist our students who are attending the LINK program!


I feel very grateful for this collaborative community effort! Our community LINK program provides childcare services to our essential workers and has now expanded to care for school-aged children so that our parents can continue to work. We have partnered with the LINK program to serve our students. The Link Program is currently being held at Davis Elementary School. Students are grouped together by their school and we are fortunate that our Para’s who are familiar with their students from their building can assist with their remote learning. Way to go Team! This support is helping our families during this challenging time!  


If you are interested or in need of childcare services during this online/remote learning, contact Chad Nath at link director@linkgrinnell.org.   


Do you need to pick up meals for your student between now and December 2 while we are in remote learning?  

If the answer is yes, then please complete this form https://forms.gle/gDET9rDLkbg5VgQ1A by 8 pm, (only complete the form once and checkmark identified dates that you will be picking up at the high school). The location has changed since last summer. You may pick up meals off of Sunset near the kitchen entrance, between 11-12:30 pm.  (driveway near dumpsters)


If you can't make it to pick up time we will have a delivery option starting this Past Wednesday, November 18th.  Please fill out this form https://forms.gle/AdyK8itdazX4cHYJ6 for delivery to your home. This also needs to be filled out one time and checkmark the delivery dates for meals.  The deliveries within the town would be made between 11:00 am and 1:00 pm on scheduled school days. 

If these options are not working for your schedule, or you are out of town, please contact the district office at 641-236-2700 and we will work with you to make alternate arrangements. 


Staff who have “Knocked their Socks Off” recognition!    

The following staff has been recommended to be highlighted in this weekly update for their instructional practices in engaging students in learning! You too can nominate a staff member simply by emailing me at janet.stutz@grinnell-k12.org to feature a staff member. Just tell me why they should be recognized, and then I will interview them and highlight their practices in this update. This is an awesome opportunity for me to chat with the staff and tell their story to you! Each recipient will receive a “new socks” award in the near future! (once they arrive)


Each week we will highlight either a team of staff or individuals and tell their story! There are so many positive stories to be told! This week we are highlighting Fairview’s Second Grade Team of Rhonda Gohlmann, Hayley Dodds, and Becky Shaffer. We are also highlighting Jeanine Link, Middle School Choir Teacher. Take a look at their stories below.  


Second Grade Team at Fairview:

This past week I had a chance to visit with the second-grade team at Fairview. It was evident that I think they read each other’s minds and almost complete each other’s sentences. This team has formed a strong bond and have tackled teaching in the pandemic by thinking outside of the box to not only assist their students but also to help guardians as they learn to navigate the iPad. Each member of the team has taken on a specific content area in order to ensure that students are not only getting similar experiences but can quickly identify and differentiate activities based upon student progress. One highlight the team shared was their effort to assist our guardians in using the technology on the iPad.   They have created tutorials for parents on how to assist their students while learning at home. (see a link sample below)  This team is positive, full of energy, and as Rhonda expressed “ this team is very organized, and had forethought in how to move online. I joined this team again this year, and I felt prepared to teach and jump right in due to the effort and planning of this team”.  Way to go FV Second grade Team! You have knocked your socks off!  


2nd Grade Team


Here's a link to a video to help parents learn how to upload more than one picture at a time to SeeSaw!


Our second highlight this week is Jeanine Link Middle School Choir Teacher:

This past week, I had a parent reach out to me to share a story about how her daughter who is remote learning became connected to Ms. Link very quickly from the onset of the school year.  She expressed that her daughter is a remote learner and looks forward to her online lesson every week. Ms. Link keeps the kids engaged and has fun activities in each lesson. “She also takes the time to get to know my daughter”. While interviewing Ms. Link this past week, I was excited to hear about her journey as she is completing her Master’s Program. Did you know that she has written a holiday 4 part women’s piece for her 8th-grade girls to perform? 

Ms. Link also shared that online learning has enabled her to engage students in small cohort groups and have the opportunity to not only get to know her students one on one but to build confidence in students especially as some are navigating voice changes. “I can hear them clearly as they are able to sing via zoom without masks on and can quickly provide instruction during a challenging time”.  Ms. Link will be sharing a video link in the coming weeks of the virtual performance that was recently completed. Ms. Link will finish her Master’s program this summer! Thank you Ms. Link you have Knocked your Socks off!  

Link Class Zoom 2020


I hope that you have a wonderful weekend. Next week there will not be a formal weekly update, however, keep an eye out for any important messages through Infinite Campus.


Have a wonderful Thanksgiving! I hope everyone enjoys next week’s break. Remember to be safe, wear your mask, and do not attend large gathers! We are “Better Together” #WeAreGrinnell!





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