New Updates and Scheduling Reminders for November

November 10, 2020

Dear families,

I hope that you are enjoying this beautiful fall weather. Today’s school wide memo includes several new updates as well as calendar reminders for the month of November.

1) Positive Additional Prevention Measures at Milestones: As part of Milestones’ ongoing efforts to promote the health and safety for our students and staff, we have several positive preventative updates to share.

  • Installation of MERV-13 Filters: In October, our building management company completed an additional valuable upgrade to our ventilation system. The filters on all heat pumps within our building were upgraded to be MERV-13, which has been identified as an excellent standard for risk reduction. As a reminder, this supplements prior ventilation upgrades in response to COVID-19 prevention. Previously our building management company upgraded our HVAC system to increase the circulation of outside air prior to our school’s onsite reentry, and this fall Milestones separately invested in providing HEPA air purifiers for all classrooms and shared office spaces.
  • Expanded Space: We were delighted to announce to families at our fall Town Hall meeting and look forward to reviewing with families again at our upcoming Parent Advisory Group meeting on 11/20/20, that Milestones is in the process of expanding our classroom and programming space to include approximately 10,000 additional square feet on the 3rd floor of our building. We anticipate that construction for this project will be completed by January. In the interim to further support social distancing, Milestones has leased additional temporary space on the 4th floor of our building for staff’s use. When our faculty is not working directly with students, this additional space will be available to staff for planning, collaboration, lunch breaks etc.
  • Ongoing Support with Social Distancing During Programming and Instruction: Our Milestones task force and faculty are continuing to work together to best support our students with adhering to 6+ feet of distance throughout our programming. We recognize the importance of ongoing training and reinforcement, and our therapists have developed an updated social story that we will be reviewing with students. Attached is a copy of our slide deck for your reference. ** Please note that within this presentation, we offer a reminder to students to please keep any personal belongings at home as part of our health and safety preventative measures.*

2) Announcing the Retirement of our Administrative Assistant, Diane Smith: For over 15 years, Diane Smith has been integral to welcoming students, staff, and families to Milestones and has shown tremendous dedication to our full school community. Over the last few years, Diane has been preparing Milestones for her retirement at the end of 2020 to coincide with her husband’s plan for retirement. Diane’s last day at Milestones will be Friday, November 20th. Our faculty will be hosting a retirement breakfast for Diane on her last work day to recognize her contributions. If any students or families would like to directly offer a well wishing note to Diane prior to November 20th, her contact information is: dsmith@advancingmilestones.com 

3) *PAG’s Staff Appreciation Luncheon:* In light of our precautionary decision to temporarily pivot to remote instruction after the Thanksgiving and winter holiday periods, the PAG’s Staff Appreciation Lunch has been rescheduled to mid-December when Milestones will be operating back onsite. Thank you to those families who have already contributed donations to the PAG to support this lunch and other PAG activities, and families are still welcome to contribute an annual donation to the PAG in the upcoming weeks ahead. Checks may be made out to “*Milestones*” with a notation for the PAG.

4) *New Dates for our Online Annual Book Fair: November 17th-30th:* Each year Milestones hosts a Scholastic Book Fair when families are invited to purchase books for your family. Proceeds from our book sales support Milestones’ reading department. This year’s Scholastic book fair will be entirely online, and we recently requested to have the purchasing window take place slightly earlier than the dates that were originally listed on our Milestones’ annual calendar with the goal for families to receive books prior to the winter holidays. Our online Scholastic book fair will now take place from: November 17th-30th. Please stay tuned for forthcoming instructions for placing orders.

5) Cold Weather Gear for Mask Breaks, Walking Breaks, and Outdoor Recess/Social Leisure Time: As we approach colder temperatures, we would like to remind families to please send in students with appropriate gear for inclement weather. Rain coats, umbrellas, warm coats, gloves/mittens, and hats are encouraged as our students are regularly going outside for mask breaks, movement breaks, and recess/social leisure time.

6)* November Calendar Reminders:*

  • Veteran’s Day Half-Day: Tomorrow (Wednesday, 11/11/20) is a 12:00pm half-day dismissal for students and staff in observance of Veteran’s Day.

  • Online Scholastic Book Fair: Please stay tuned for ordering instructions for our online book fair that will take place from 11/17/20 – 11/30/20.

  • First Parent Advisory Group Meeting for the 2020-2021 School Year: All families are invited to our virtual PAG meeting on Friday, 11/20/20 from 10:00-11:30am. This will include discussion among families and members of our administration as well as a presentation on the topic of “Executive Functioning.” Instructions for joining this virtual meeting will be provided to all families, and parents/guardians do not need to RSVP to attend.

  • Thanksgiving Holiday Break: On Wednesday, 11/25/20 Milestones will have a 12:00pm half-day dismissal, and Milestones will be closed on Thursday and Friday, 11/26/20 – 11/27/20 for the Thanksgiving holiday period.

  • Temporary Proactive Pivot to Remote Instruction after the Thanksgiving Break For All Students: As Milestones shared last week, we are proactively scheduling 2 temporary pivots to remote instruction (each for a period of 2 school weeks) for all students after the Thanksgiving and winter holiday vacation periods as an additional health and safety precaution. The temporary pivot to remote instruction after the Thanksgiving holiday will take place from Monday, November 30th – Friday, December 11th with onsite instruction resuming on Monday, December 14th.

As always, please do not hesitate to reach out if you have any questions, and we’ll look forward to outreaching again soon with additional details for participating in our Scholastic Book Fair and November Parent Advisory Group meeting.

Downloadable files here:

 

Sincerely,
Kim