I hope you are all safe and doing well!
Last weekend, I shared with you a preliminary overview of our reopening strategy. Today, I am happy to share with you our complete reopening plan. (Please click here to view the reopening plan.)
Careful consideration was taken to follow the guidelines set by the New York State Department of Education, the New York State Department of Health, and the Diocese of Brooklyn.
Thankfully, we have the space to allow all of our students to return while ensuring social distancing.
As I mentioned in my email this past Saturday, I understand that some families may not be ready to send their children back to school for in-person instruction. To meet the needs of these families, the Diocese of Brooklyn has established the Saint Thomas Aquinas Distance Learning Catholic Academy for students in kindergarten through grade eight.
Please click here to view specific information regarding the online academy, but here are a few important details:
All students who participate in the Saint Thomas Aquinas Distance Learning Catholic Academy must be enrolled at Saint Mark Catholic Academy to participate.
There is no additional cost; you continue to pay your monthly tuition to Saint Mark.
Saint Mark faculty will not be staffing the online academy. The Diocese of Brooklyn is hiring qualified teachers to provide online distance learning. They are also hiring a principal to oversee and manage the program. Both Saint Mark and the distance learning academy follow the same state standards. (According to the Diocese of Brooklyn, Saint Mark Catholic Academy does not have to create our own independent distance learning program.)
At the conclusion of the first trimester (early December) parents will have the option to return to in-person instruction at Saint Mark Catholic Academy, provided we have the physical space to do so. (At this point, we can.)
Again, these are just a few key points; please read the entire document to get a sense of what the Saint Thomas Aquinas Distance Learning Catholic Academy will offer.
The following is a link to indicate your intent to participate in the Saint Thomas Aquinas Distance Learning Catholic Academy.
Saint Thomas Aquinas Distance Learning Catholic Academy Participation Form: https://forms.gle/a3J1oXScRsKeKJMd6
Please only complete this form if you intend for your child(ren) to participate in Saint Thomas Aquinas Distance Learning Catholic Academy. The deadline to indicate your preference is Wednesday, August 19th 12pm.
In accordance with Governor Cuomo’s requirement to hold parent information sessions, we are scheduling Zoom webinars by grade level for next week. Please be on the lookout for an email with the day, time, and links for these meetings. In the meantime, please review the plan and come to the meeting to share your questions or concerns.
In the coming days, please be on the lookout for the following:
Information regarding the first day of school
Specific guidance for early childhood students, including Pre-K for All students
More details regarding early drop-off and after-school programs
Additional information regarding arrival and dismissal procedures for all students
Finally, below is a link for all families to complete to gauge their opinions about the reopening of school:
Return to School Survey (for ALL FAMILIES): https://forms.gle/HwKo3ZD9sceYx1zeA
As always, I appreciate your care, consideration, and patience as we all take this journey toward reopening together! I look forward to hearing from you and to welcoming your children back to school in September!
Mr. Mark Wilson Principal
PS: On Thursday, August 20th, the entire school building is being disinfected by a professional cleaning company procured by the Diocese of Brooklyn. The school building will close at 1pm on Wednesday, August 19th and will reopen on Monday, August 25th at 9am.