July 13, 2021

Parent Letter.pdf

Hello and Happy Summer!

We have been busy with numerous projects – replacing carpet in upstairs classrooms, replacing the kitchen floor, repairing the parking lot, replacing the PA system, removing dead trees, and rolling over enrollment to the new school year, just to name a few.

Now that PowerSchool has been updated for the new school year, we have been working on class placements for the incoming Kindergarteners from St. Edwards, incoming PreK children, our students returning from virtual school and home study, as well as our new enrollees. Placement letters for these students should be emailed to parents by early next week.

We recently tested our water for the presence of lead. Unfortunately, several taps (sink and drinking fountain fixtures) in our school show the presence of lead. We have taken immediate action and are developing a remediation plan to start the school year lead free. A letter is attached with more information.

June 15, 2021

School's Out Spirit Week.jpg

We have 4 days of school left in the school year, and we are “pivoting” yet again. Given the Governor’s order, and the Superintendent’s message sent yesterday, all restrictions are lifted. This includes the Daily Health Check forms for the bus and entrance to school, as well as physical distancing in the classroom, halls and recess. Masks are still recommended for those that are not vaccinated. We are teaching tolerance and compassion and acceptance of all, masks or not. We are encouraging children to follow the recommendation of their parents.

We are keeping our same arrival and dismissal procedures (except for the Daily Health Check forms). Fieldtrips and Field Days will go on as planned, as it is too late to “pivot” these well planned events at this time.

However, our 6th Grade Celebration is on for tonight, 6-7pm, rain or shine. If it is raining, we will “pivot” and move the event inside. Masks are recommended for those that are not vaccinated.

Friday is our last day, with an early dismissal after lunch at 12:00 pm.

School’s Out Spirit Week: information is attached!

Next year’s class placement: Children will meet next year’s teacher on the last day of school. Students entering Kindergarten and PreK as well as those returning from Virtual School will receive their class placements this summer via email.

Progress Reports: Children will be bringing home their progress reports on the last day of school with next year’s teacher noted on the report. (see note above for Kindergarten PreK, and children returning form Virtual school.)

Children enrolled Virtual School should return devices and any reusable instructional materials to DES on Monday, June 21st.

The Final Countdown: Here is a link to our school calendar: https://des.ncsuvt.org

Staffing Changes for next year:

After 41 years, Mr. Hugh Handley is retiring and will no longer be with us.

Mrs. Nadeau is moving to a literacy coaching position.

Mrs. Fortier is moving to 4th grade Literacy.

Mrs. Raymond is moving to 5th grade Science and Social Studies.

Mrs. Phylicia Kennison has been hired for 3rd grade.

Mrs. McKenny is moving to an intervention position.

Mrs. Karen Fillmore has been hired to teach 2nd grade.

June 9, 2021

School's Out Spirit Week.jpg 6th Grade Celebration 2021.jpg DreamBoxSummerLearningFlyer (1).pdf The Lunch Box.pdf

We are ROARing with Tiger Paw Pride! We are celebrating the number of Mega Paws our children have earned this year! After the first half of the year, the children were challenged to earn 500 Mega Paws as a school. Today we have 498! We will have a special treat for all children in recognition for achieving this goal. A Mega Paw is earned when each class works together to fill their bucket with paw poms. Paw poms are earned in the classroom for following the ROAR expectations (Respect, On Task, Always Safe, and Responsible). When a class earns a Mega Paw, the achievement is announced to the school at the end of the day, and the class gets to do something fun. Examples include: PJ day, no shoes day, dance party, popcorn day, extra recess, etc. Mega Paws are one part of our Tiger Paw Pride PBIS system. (Positive Behavior Intervention and Support)

Spirit Week is next week, sponsored by our Tiger Paw Pride Work Group! Join us each day in showing your Tiger Paw Pride Spirit! Information is attached.

6th Grade Celebration: June 15 @ 6 – 7pm. Information is attached.

Last Day of School: PreK is done on Friday, June 11. K-6 is done Friday, June 18 at 12pm.

Fun Summer Math: Your child has access to their Dreambox account for the summer. Information is attached.

Your child has access to their Dreambox account for the summer. Information is attached.

End of year events can be found on our school calendar at this link: https://des.ncsuvt.org

Courtesy Post: Information about free summer meals is attached.

June 3, 2021

6th Grade Celebration 2021.pdf Derby FTS Newsletter Template _ Spring .pdf Survey.pdf DreamBoxSummerLearningFlyer (1).pdf TSG flyer.png

It’s June! Kudos to children, parents, and staff for persevering during this challenging year. While the statewide guidance may change before the end of the school year, we have been advised by the VT Agency of Education to continue following the “Strong and Healthy Year” guidance they have provided for us this past summer. Therefore, we will end the school year with this guidance in place, and continue to follow it as we have been.

6th Grade Celebration: We can’t wait to celebrate our 6th graders before they leave us for a new journey. Parents are invited, more details are attached.

The Final Countdown: link to our school calendar: https://des.ncsuvt.org

Our Tiger Garden has been planted, and attached is the final Farm to School gardening and annual newsletter. If you’d like to volunteer to help with upkeep in the garden this summer, complete and send in the attachment or follow this link to sign up: survey www.tinyurl.com/GMFTS2021

Fun Summer Math! Your child has access to their Dreambox account for the summer. Information is attached.

The June menu link is here: https://des.ncsuvt.org

Tech Savvy Girls Summer Camp: NCSU is hosting for girls in grades 5-12. See attached information. Here is a link to registration: https://sites.google.com/site/techsavvygirlsvt/home

May 25, 2021

Derby Preschool Summer Program.pdf Jr Falcons Football.jpg

We had our Corn Field Mile yesterday. It was so great, and the weather certainly cooperated. Our first graders and Kindergarteners ran a modified course and not one of them gave up! We posted pics on Facebook, and results of our top finishers will be published soon.

Our PreK is running a Summer Program for 5 weeks. Information is attached.

Coming Up at Derby: https://des.ncsuvt.org

Thursday, May 27

K-6 Early Release Day: Dismissal will be at 12pm. Our teachers will be collaborating and planning with their grade level colleagues from across NCSU.

No School for PreK

Friday, May 28

PreK – 6: Full Day of School

April/May Birthday Party

Monday, May 31

No School: Memorial Day

Friday, June 11

Last Day PreK

Friday, June 18

Last Day of School

Early Release Day: Dismissal will be at 12pm.

Courtesy Attachment: Jr Falcon Football

May 20, 2021

down to 5 busses.pdf 2021 Encore Derby.docx

Bus Changes for Friday, May 21 (tomorrow): Due to a shortage of bus drivers, Bus 1 will arrive an hour later in morning, and Bus 5 will be an hour later going home in the afternoon. Those children that ride Bus 5 will be provided with a snack and entertainment. If you’d like to pick your child(ren) up from school on Friday, please call Mrs. Mager in the office and let her know. This change is ONLY for Friday, May 21.

We have all been spending extra time outside this week and soaking up that Vitamin D! We have also been busy planning what the end of the year will look like:

Mr. A and Ms. J have planned a safe Corn Field Mile Run and Field Day for our children. While the COVID safety guidance from VT Agency of Education (AOE) does not allow us to have parents to attend, we are so glad we can continue to hold these events for our children after last year’s hiatus.

The VT AOE is making exceptions for some special end of year celebrations, so our 6th grade team is planning a safe 6th Grade Celebration that includes parent attendance! We are so glad we can honor our 6th graders as they leave for the Jr. High next year.

Dates for these events can be found on our school calendar on our website: https://des.ncsuvt.org

COVID Guidelines: You have probably heard or read about the CDC and Governor Scott lifting the mask mandate in many situations. Unfortunately, school is not one of them. We are still obligated to follow the guidance of the VT Agency of Education (AOE). There has been no change in mask wearing and physical distancing in school, as well as the other guidelines in our Family Handbook. We do expect that the VT AOE will be reviewing all the information and letting us know if there are any changes, which of course we will let you know.

Early Release Day: Thursday, May 27. Children will have breakfast and lunch here at school, and be dismissed at 12pm.

Summer Encore Program registration has begun for children currently in K - 8 grades. See attached brochure.

May 13, 2021

Book Fair.png STOP MEANS STOP.png

Hello, I hope you will have a chance to enjoy this beautiful day today!

Below is some important information about upcoming events:

Brief Parent Survey: You may know that the federal government has allocated money to schools through the Elementary Secondary Emergency Relief Act (ESSER). Derby will be receiving quite a bit of money that has to be used for specific purposes to help us in our COVID relief efforts. We’d like to get parent input on our use of the funds. Please take some time to complete this very short survey at this link. https://forms.gle/RNrVYXW9tfDr6Dup8

Our children will also be taking a short survey: In an effort to gather information regarding our students’ wellness and engagement, we will be administering the “Engage” survey between now and May 21. This survey was developed by Vermont educators, and has become a valuable tool for many schools across the state. Our students’ wellness has always been a focus, and as a result of the effects of the pandemic on our students and families, it has become a priority.

The Engage survey gathers data on several aspects of student wellness, including Academics, Friends and Life Outside of School, and Supportive Adult Relationships. The survey questions are asset-based, meaning they are stated in positive terms and focused on building upon student strengths. This is a short survey that should take students around 10 minutes to complete during their class time. It is important to note that students are asked to include their names for this survey so that we can respond to students who indicate that they are experiencing difficulty in any of the areas. While this survey is not anonymous, it is confidential and the survey is optional.

We are looking forward to gathering this important information in order to ensure that we are providing our students with the supports they need in order to be successful in and out of school. If you have any questions about this survey, please do not hesitate to contact me directly. Thank you for all your support!

Next Week’s Book Fair: Information is attached. We are pleased that because voters approved the equity funds back in March of 2020, every child will be able to choose a free book from a pre-approved list! Here are some helpful links about setting up eWallet, as we cannot take cash.

https://www.scholastic.com/bf/derbyelementaryschool1

https://players.brightcove.net/1543299976/Eyj59PHsg_default/index.html?videoId=5831064261001

May 10, 2021

tiger paw pride.pdf NCSU Virtual Wellness Fair.pdf

I hope all our moms enjoyed their Mother’s Day! So glad we had some sunshine to celebrate the day.

We have been planning the end of the year and are so glad we can have a Field Day and Cornfield Mile Run for the children this year. They may look a little different due to safety guidelines, but we want to have fun is as safe a way as possible. Unfortunately, according to the guidance from the Agency of Education, we will not be able to have parents attend, and we sure are sad about that. We will publish more information about these events as we continue our planning.

3rd, 5th, and 6th grade are taking the SBAC test this week. Good sleep and healthy breakfasts are important for each child to do their best.

On Friday, we will celebrate school spirit with Tiger Paw Pride Day. Information is attached!

Thursday, May 27 is an early dismissal day, with children being dismissed at 12pm, after lunch.

Courtesy Attachment: NCSU Virtual Wellness Fair

May 5, 2021 (Cinco de Mayo)

down to 6 busses (1).pdf

Bus Change Tomorrow, May 6: Attached is a letter for parents of children who ride Bus # 2. Tomorrow afternoon, May 6, Bus # 2 will not be able to leave school until 3:55 pm. The letter explains more in detail.

Staff Appreciation: May 3 - 7 is a nationally recognized week to pause & recognize all the staff that help to educate our students. Teachers, para educators, bus drivers, office and kitchen staff, and custodians all play a role in the success of our children. This year has been unlike any other. I cannot express in words how proud I am of our staff at Derby. During this global pandemic, each obstacle that has come our way has been solved. Changes and new guidance have been met with a positive, can-do attitude. They continue to collaborate and work together in creating the best possible positive learning environment for our children, regardless of the constraints placed upon us. Our administrative team and board will be recognizing staff with small but special tokens of our appreciation throughout this week, and I encourage you to reach out as well. Please take the time to reach out and share a positive message with staff involved with your child(ren) and let them know how much you appreciate what they have done this year.

April 30, 2021

preK & K registration flyer 2021-22.pdf Farmers to family.pdf May Menu.pdf 2021NVYSL.flyer.pdf

Happy Friday!

We are back in the swing of things after Spring Break, and are beginning to increase our efforts to plan end of the year activities and to plan for next year. Stay tuned for those plans.

COVID: Because travel guidance has changed in our state, it is not necessary to answer the last question on the Daily Health Check forms about travel any longer. We trust that community members will do the right thing to keep our school safe by completing a test within three days of out of state travel for those that are unvaccinated. We are no longer doing temperature checks at our doors, but most other precautions are still in place. We still need those Daily Health Check forms to be completed daily at home and turned in upon entrance to the bus or school.

SBAC Testing: In the coming month, 3rd, 5th and 6th grade will be completing the SBAC testing. Dates are listed on our school calendar on the front page of our website. https://des.ncsuvt.org While we’d rather not administer the SBAC testing this year due to the learning disruption experienced by the COVID closure, we are required to and therefore we will make the best of it.

PreK and Kindergarten Registration: See attached.

Lunch Menu: attached

Farmers to Families Food Boxes: see attached information for a pick up location.

Courtesy Attachment: Summer Soccer

April 14, 2021

April 16 FRIYAY.png preK & K registration flyer 2021-22.pdf TTDC Flier.pdf wholegrains.pdf

Spring Break is near! This nice weather has us all longing for vacation. To help us along, we have a special theme day set for Friday, April 16. The flyer is attached. We’d love everyone to participate and send us in to Spring Break with style!

PreK and Kinder Registration runs through May 7. Information is attached. Please note that the first step is calling Laura in our office.

Online registration is NOT required for current DES PreK families.

Courtesy Posts are attached about opportunities for your child/family.

Coming Up in the Future:

April 16

Mrs. Gray’s class returns to in-person learning

FriYAY! Spring BreakYAY! Day

April 19 – 23

No School, Spring Break

April 26

School Resumes

April 27

Mrs. McKenney’s class returns to in-person learning

Youth Baseball/Softball sign up: https://orleans-county-babe-ruth-league.sportngin.com/register/form/309378573

April 6, 2021

preK & K registration flyer 2021-22.pdf Brochure Spring 2021.docx Summer Camp Application 2021.pdf

Hello Families,

It looks like we’re in for some great weather this week – there’s nothing like being outside and enjoying the fresh air and sunshine! As I look out my office window, I see lots of children and can hear them laughing and playing and having fun.

Important Reminder: Bus # 5 is leaving school an hour late today. We will provide entertainment and a snack.

It’s an important week – we have parent teacher conferences! If you haven’t already, please make an appointment with your child’s teacher. Information is below.

Conferences: We have conferences scheduled for April 7 and 8 from 4:00 – 6:00 pm and from April 9 from 8:00 am – 12:00 pm. You can schedule your conference through PickATime. Here is the link with instructions for scheduling your conference: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1pfHoHYb5mB1jfsuJbRB2ZHsj1i1ugvd3l6LTZnPz4A0/edit?usp=sharing

Conferences are student led, but will be a little different this year due to the pandemic. Teachers will be sending information home about the format of their conferences.

Class Placement: In late April we start to think about class placement for next year. If you would like input, please complete the form at this link and return it to Laura in the office by the deadline. https://des.ncsuvt.org/parents/class-placement

NO SCHOOL PreK – 6 on Friday, April 9 due to conferences.

Specials Classes Rotate: When we come back to school next week, your child will begin a new specials class.

PreK and Kinder Registration for 2021-22 is OPEN! Attached is information and here is the link to more information! https://des.ncsuvt.org/registration

Spring Session for ENCORE: Registration info. is attached.

Summer Camp Scholarships: Information is attached.

March 31, 2021

April Menu.pdf

It is great to have children back in the building this week, and Ms. Stewart’s class returned today! Mrs. Bonneau’s class returns April 5. None of us want to pivot to remote learning, as we believe children learn more during in-person instruction. Additionally, we know parents need to work while their children are in school. Unfortunately, there is a surge of COVID-19 in our area, and gatherings this weekend may make it worse.

COVID-19: NCSU Superintendent John Castle reminded staff today, and these are good reminders for families as well: While Easter weekend is usually a time of celebrations and gatherings, we ask that you review and adhere to the guidelines provided by the State of Vermont. Below is a link to the full guidelines which can be found on the Vermont Department of Health website. If, by chance, you choose not to adhere to these we ask that you keep your children home and quarantine out of consideration for classmates and staff. Quarantine means staying home for 14 days with the option to test out on day 7 by obtaining a PCR COVID-19 test. Please call our office to let us know if your child needs to quarantine.

While fully vaccinated households may gather, VDH guidance says you may only gather with one unvaccinated household and must wear masks and socially distance from one another. Unvaccinated households from out of state must quarantine prior to coming to Vermont or upon arrival. Homes with children are considered unvaccinated households as the state has not yet offered the vaccine to people under 50.

Key Points to remember:

  • Households with children are NOT considered fully vaccinated as the state has not yet offered the vaccine to people under 50.

  • If you gather with people from more than one unvaccinated household, or with someone who is at higher risk of severe COVID-19 or lives with someone at higher risk, everyone should wear a mask and stay 6 feet apart.

https://apps.health.vermont.gov/COVID/faq/#4761

Conferences: We have conferences scheduled for April 7 and 8 from 4:00 – 6:00 pm and from April 9 from 8:00 am – 12:00 pm. You can schedule your conference through PickATime. Here is the link with instructions for scheduling your conference: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1pfHoHYb5mB1jfsuJbRB2ZHsj1i1ugvd3l6LTZnPz4A0/edit?usp=sharing

Conferences are student led, but will be a little different this year due to the pandemic. Teachers will be sending information home about the format of their conferences.

Class Placement: In late April we start to think about class placement for next year. If you would like input, please complete the form at this link and return it to Laura in the office by the deadline. https://des.ncsuvt.org/parents/class-placement

April breakfast and lunch menu: See attachment

Progress Reports: PR are being sent home tomorrow!

No School PreK – 6 Friday, April 2, 2021. Teachers will be engaged in professional learning and preparing for conferences.

March 26, 2021

2021-2022 NCSU Elementary Calendar.pdf

Greetings, Derby Families,

I am pleased to announce a return to in-person learning Monday, March 29, 2021. This applies all but two classes. However, if there is an unforeseen spike in positive cases this weekend, we may remain in remote learning. In that unfortunate event, I will let you know over the weekend.

Two classes will remain in remote learning until the quarantine period passes for them:

  • Ms. Stewart’s 1st grade class returns March 31.

  • Mrs. Bonneau’s 5th grade class returns April 5.

I know the Governor has relaxed some of the guidance, but please continue to be safe: mask up, physically distance, and wash hands frequently! We need to keep our children in school!

The NCSU Board has recently approved the calendar for the 2021-22 school year. It is attached.


March 24, 2021

Hello Derby Tiger Families,

I hope that remote learning is going well - hopefully better than last spring! Teachers worked hard this year to prepare your children for remote in case it was needed.

Tigers of the Month: Watch this wonderful video of the NCUHS Dance Team state competition performances, coached by our very own Ms. Kendra Perkins, 3rd grade teacher, as they include a celebration of our Tigers of the Month for March! https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Z1JSwHEBtKI4e_fizm79czH5nOFM16Y1/view?usp=sharing

Conferences: We have conferences scheduled for April 7 and 8 from 3:15 – 6:00 pm and from April 9 from 8:00 am – 12:00 pm. You can schedule your conference through PickATime. Here is the link with instructions for scheduling your conference: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1pfHoHYb5mB1jfsuJbRB2ZHsj1i1ugvd3l6LTZnPz4A0/edit?usp=sharing

Conferences are student led, but will be a little different this year due to the pandemic. Teachers will be sending information home about the format of their conferences.

Class Placement: In late April we start to think about class placement for next year. If you would like input, please complete the form at this link and return it to Laura in the office by the deadline. https://des.ncsuvt.org/parents/class-placement

Next week:

March 31: February and March Birthday Celebration

April 1: Progress Reports come home

April 2: No School PreK – 6; Teacher Professional Learning


March 22, 2021

Remote Learning 101.jpg K-6 Reading Menu.png PreK MIRM Menu.pdf

Hello, Derby Families,

Thank you for picking up devices and materials for your child today. We know this is not an ideal situation, but our main concern is the safety and health of our children and staff. Community spread is high right now and we may be seeing in-school transmission for the first time during this pandemic.

Devices and materials can be picked up by 4pm today. Tomorrow they will be in our vestibule from 7:00 am – 3:30 pm.

Remote Learning 101: Want to spend quality time with your child and be proud and impressed with what they know? Want to know how we’ve prepared your children for remote learning? Do you want to be prepared for Remote Learning? RSVP and Tune In to our workshops March 24 and and/or March 29. Given our circumstances, we are waiving the RSVP deadline. Info. is attached and here is the link to the first workshop. Wednesday, March 24, 2021 @ 6:00 pm Google Meet Link: meet.google.com/vqj-amsb-hao

Attendance during Remote Learning: Teachers do report attendance during remote learning. They look for children to log in each day.

March is STILL Reading Month! We have a week and a half left for children to earn points for prizes, so keep them reading at home! The menus are attached.

School meals this week: If you are interested in free school meals for your children (any children under the age of 18), we will begin providing them daily for pick up in the school vestibule at 11:00 am – 4:00 pm on Tuesday. Here is a link to sign up so we know how many to prepare. https://forms.gle/irg34ZQXT8PVBizz9 We will prepare extra, so feel free to stop by, even if you are not able to sign up.


March 20, 2021

Remote Learning 101.jpg

Good Afternoon Derby Families,

Even though the sun is shining, I don’t have the best news…..

Due to the number of positive COVID cases impacting our school in the last 10 days and the rising spread in the community, our school is pivoting to remote learning on Monday, through Friday, March 26. This was not an easy decision, but the health and well-being of our children and staff are paramount! Please renew your vigilance regarding symptoms and best practices at home and in social settings. Physical distancing, handwashing, and mask wearing has never been more important.

Devices and learning materials can be picked up at school at 9:00 am on Monday, and will be available through the day until 4:00 pm. It will be “drive through style” in the bus lane. Stop at the table with your child’s teacher’s name on it and look for their labeled bag.

Remote learning will begin in the afternoon on Monday. Your child’s teacher will reach out to you with a specific time.

If you are interested in free school meals for your children (any children under the age of 18), we will begin providing them daily for pick up in the school vestibule at 11:00 am – 4:00 pm on Tuesday. Here is a link to sign up so we know how many to prepare. https://forms.gle/irg34ZQXT8PVBizz9 We will prepare extra, so feel free to stop by, even if you are not able to sign up.

We appreciate your patience and understanding as we pivot to remote learning. Your children should be well prepared for remote learning. We do happen to have an opportunity this week for parents who wish to know more about remote learning, called Remote Learning 101. More information is attached.


March 16, 2021

Remote Learning 101.jpg K-6 Reading Menu.png PreK MIRM Menu.pdf Derby Winter Newsletter.pdf

Derby Families,

Bring on the sunshine- we need it!

COVID 19: We have several children out quarantining as close contacts. We are definitely seeing an increase of cases within the community. I know the Governor has relaxed the guidance a bit, but please remain vigilant, as there seems to be quite a bit of community spread in our area right now. We want school to stay in session as much as possible, so please mask up, wash hands frequently, and stay six feet apart.

We have a short week this week for children:

Thursday, March 18 K-6 Early Release Day; No school PreK: Teachers will be working on Progress Reports

School is dismissed at 12pm, after lunch. Parent pick up is 12:10 – 12:20 pm.

Friday, March 19 No School PreK – 6: teachers have professional learning

Weds., March 24 End of Trimester

March is Reading Month: We are about half way through the month – How many points does your child have? Attached are the Reading Menus if you need to check them out.

Remote Learning 101: Want to spend quality time with your child and be proud and impressed with what they know? Want to know how we’ve prepared your children for remote learning? Do you want to be prepared for Remote Learning? RSVP and Tune In to our workshops March 24 and and/or March 26. Details are attached.


March 11, 2021

K-6 Reading Menu.png PreK MIRM Menu.pdf Remote Learning 101.jpg

Hello Tiger Families,

I certainly hope you have had/will have a chance to enjoy this beautiful, sunny, warm weather we are having! I was thinking of breaking out the sandals tomorrow……

Daylight Savings Time: Be sure to get lots of rest this week. You may need it as we “spring forward” on Sunday! Don’t forget to move your clocks forward one hour.

March is Reading Month! Attached are the K-6 and PreK March is Reading Month Menus. I’ve been talking to several children and am encouraged by the points they are earning. Keep up the good work and help your child complete the items and earn points for prizes! READ, READ, READ!

Help us stay COVID FREE! We want school to stay in session! We worry about keeping our children and staff safe from COVID.

  1. There has been an uptick of cases in the area, so please let us know if your child is a close contact or has been exposed.

  2. Please let us know if your child traveled out of state and when the quarantine period is over. For those children who traveled out of state, we do require proof of a negative COVID test prior to return to school, or children can quarantine for 14 days without a test.

Remote Learning 101: Want to spend quality time with your child and be proud and impressed with what they know? Want to know how we’ve prepared your children for remote learning? Do you want to be prepared for Remote Learning? RSVP and Tune In to our workshops March 24 and and/or March 26. Details are attached.

Important dates this month:

Thursday, March 18 K-6 Early Release Day; No school PreK. School is dismissed at 12pm, after lunch. Parent pick up is 12:10 – 12:20 pm.

Friday, March 19 No School PreK – 6

Wednesday, March 24 End of Trimester


March 5, 2021

Remote Learning 101.pdf PreK MIRM Menu.pdf K-6 Reading Menu[1].png

Thank you for voting! Our budget passed with 77% approval. Our fund balance reservations were passed as well. We will be putting out bids soon for a new public address system, new carpet upstairs, a new kitchen steam table and floor – there’s a lot of work to be done here this summer!

Remote Learning 101: Want to be prepared for remote learning? Want to see what your children have learned about going remote? RSVP for two workshop sessions, March 24 and 29 at 6:00 pm. We’ll invite you to a Google Meet, and we’ll send your child’s device home so they can show you how they do it. Derby staff members will facilitate the Google Meet. In the process, I am sure you’ll see some of your child’s work! Attached is more information.

March is Reading Month! We have fabulous prizes for children to earn. See the attached information.

SBAC Testing: Vermont has adopted standards to provide a consistent set of learning goals for all students in all schools. These standards are our operational description of what we want our students to know and be able to do, and what level of proficiency we think they need to have to thrive in civic and economic life. Statewide assessments (SBAC) provide information on students’ mastery of state standards and allows educators to plan improvements to their teaching through a better understanding of a student’s progress. Testing window opens in March, and runs through May. You will receive information about when your child will be tested prior to the testing. We will be offering testing later this spring to those in NCSU’s Virtual School.

Other important dates this month:

March 16, 17 4th grade SBAC testing: Math

March 18 K-6 Early Release Day; No school PreK

March 19 No School PreK – 6

March 23-26 4th grade SBAC testing: English Language Arts

March 24 End of Trimester


February 26, 2021

K-6 Reading Menu[1].png PreK MIRM Menu.pdf March Menu.pdf

Happy Friday! I hope all are enjoying the break from school, as well as today’s sunshine. We have lots of excitement this month with a Virtual Town Informational Meeting (informational only, no floor votes) and voting by Australian ballot, not to mention that we are celebrating March Is Reading Month! Details for all are below.

Help us stay COVID FREE! Whenever we have vacation time, we worry about keeping our children and staff safe from COVID. Please make sure you let us know if your child traveled out of state and when the quarantine period is over. For those children who traveled out of state, we do require proof of a negative COVID test prior to return to school, or children can quarantine for 14 days without a test.

Monday, March 1, 2021 at 6:00 pm is our Virtual Town Informational Meeting. The DES budget will be explained, as well as the Town of Derby budget, and there will be time for you to ask questions. For information on how to access the meeting as well as a preview of our budget presentation, click on this link and scroll down to “Budget, Warnings and Articles Information”: https://www.ncsuvt.org/2021-annual-meeting-voting/derby-elementary-school VOTING will happen the next day by Australian ballot on March 2, 2021. Here is the link to the 2020 Annual Report for the Town of Derby and for DES. https://derbyvt.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/2020-Town-Report-compressed.pdf

Tuesday, March 2, 2021: Town Meeting VOTING by Australian ballot from 8 A.M. – 7 P.M. in the lower level of the Derby municipal building located at 124 main St, Derby Center.

Wednesday, March 3: We welcome children back to school.

March is Reading Month! Attached are the K-6 and PreK March is Reading Month Menus. Help your child complete the items and earn points for prizes! READ, READ, READ!

March Breakfast and Lunch Menu is attached.

Other important dates this month:

March 18 K-6 Early Release Day; No school PreK

March 19 No School PreK – 6

March 24 End of Trimester

ICYMI on our Facebook page: Attached is a video featuring our Tigers of the Month for February! https://drive.google.com/file/d/1oWgzEOvcAyxDSZtJkfczlpRN209tjPBV/view?usp=sharing


February 15, 2021

Brochure March April 2021.png 2021 Informational Budget Meeting Warning AC.pdf

One week to go until Mid-Winter Break. This is our long break due to Town Meeting Day. We plan on this being a great week here!

School Climate Family Survey: This is the last week to take our survey. https://www.pbisassessment.org/Anon/zkU103tw1m0 We want to hear about your experiences with your child’s education. The survey includes questions about your child’s learning, school safety, and interpersonal relationships, as well as your attitudes about the institutional environment and your personal involvement in school. Your responses will be very helpful in improving student relationships, learning conditions, and the overall school environment. All your responses are completely anonymous. We have no way to connect you to your answers, and results will only be reported as group responses. There are no right or wrong answers. We just want to know about your personal experiences. As you respond to each item, think about your own personal experiences as a parent or caregiver at your child’s school. Please answer all items, or your answers won't count. This survey should take approximately 10 minutes. Thank you for your time and participation!

Our 2021 Virtual Informational Budget Meeting is being held in conjunction with the Town of Derby on March 1 at 6:00 pm. Information on how to access the meeting is attached.

Our 2020 Annual Town and School Report book is in! If you’d like us to send a copy home with your child, please complete the form at this link: https://forms.gle/Lf9moE1yPGw9hTZy9

Encore’s March/April Registration is attached for grades 1-6.

Important Dates:

Feb. 22 – March 2 No School, Mid-Winter Break

March 1 6:00 pm Virtual School and Town Informational Budget Meeting (see attached)

March 2 VOTE

March 3 School Resumes

March 18 Early Release Day

March 19 No School for students, Professional Learning Day for staff

March 24 End of Trimester


February 9, 2021

2020 Nikole Brainard-Derby Town Report .docx-2.pdf 2020 Derby Principals Message Annual Report.docx-2.pdf

Derby Parents,

We have been busy with the Derby Select Board planning how to do Town Meeting “COVID style.” This year, we will be having a Virtual Town and School Informational Meeting on Monday evening, March 1 at 6:00 pm. The virtual meeting will include presentations of the budgets and time for questions and answers.

To join by Google Meet: https://meet.google.com/yzx-rero-zjw To join by phone: dial 1 (716) 710-7739 enter the PIN: ‪699 348 505#

There will be not be an in-person Town Meeting with floor votes, so all articles and voting will be on an Australian ballot at the Derby Town Offices on Tuesday, March 2, 2021.

Attached are the reports from the Board Chair and the myself. I will let you know when the books with the budgets and the Town and School Annual Reports are available.

Coming Up:

Friday, February 12, 2021: No School due to professional learning for teachers

Monday, February 22 – Tuesday, March 2: No School, Mid-Winter Break

Monday, March 1: Virtual Town and School Informational Meeting, 6:00 pm

Tuesday, March 2: Town Meeting VOTING at Derby Town Offices


February 2, 2021

Flannel Friday 2021.pdf

At Derby, we have had training in Restorative Practices. Restorative practices are an intentional set of practices that foster positive relationships and lead to the development of a safe, trusting, and caring environment for all in our school community. Restorative justice at Derby is the commitment to building a loving community that is sustainable and growing. If someone in the community hurts someone else, we focus on communicating, understanding, and solving the problem instead of on punishment.

Restorative practices in our school are based on restorative justice principles instead of punishment. They aim first to build classroom communities which support a pathway to repair harm. To repair without judgement and shame rewires the brain to build better behaviors and choices. It helps a child understand the value in doing the right thing.

Some restorative practices you may see:

  • Restorative Circles

    • Community building

    • Problem solving

    • Reentry following extended absence or disciplinary matter

  • Calming Corners

    • A small designated space within the classroom that is used to help support self-regulation while keeping students in the classroom if they need a break from instruction time or a group activity.

  • Responsive Classroom

  • Developmental Designs

  • Mindfulness

  • Zones of Regulation

  • PBIS

  • Movement Breaks

February Family Fun! We miss seeing our families having fun at school, so we’d love to see families having fun at home! Be on the lookout for a February Family Fun Pack being sent home. Every family will receive a kit that includes fun, free activities to complete in February. You'll also find a few treats in there to enjoy as too!. Be sure to email your pictures to tigerslearningathome@ncsuvt.org We would love to post them on Facebook.

Flannel Friday is coming fast! It is Friday, February 5, 2021. This year, in light of the unusual circumstances we are all facing, we are focusing on participation. Please help your students find a way to participate – we are hoping for 100% participation this year! If bringing in $1 is not feasible, that’s fine. Please encourage your students to wear flannel, in some form. Perhaps you can have a roll of flannel ribbon available for those who don’t wear flannel to school. They can wear a bow or a tie, or a belt, etc. Anything to include them in the flannel fun! Obviously, we would love to raise a nice amount of money for the foodbanks, but this year the focus is on fun.

Bus Drop Off: Bus drivers will not drop off students in grades PreK – 4 at homes unless they see an adult or other responsible person, gr. 5-12 to confirm that children are going to a safe place. In this situation, a parent (or emergency contact if parent can’t be reached) will be called and asked to pick up the child at the bus garage after the bus route.

No School Friday, Feb. 12: It is a professional learning day for teachers.


January 26, 2021

February Menu.pdf Annual Meeting & Voting Flyer.jpg Flannel Friday 2021.pdf

I saw a quote the other day that really made me think of what we do here at school with social emotional learning (SEL) and why we teach SEL skills. There was no author, but here was the quote, “The best thing we can do for kids, instead of teaching them how to always be successful, is to teach them how to respond when they are not successful.” Of course, it is important to teach children how to be successful! However we cannot lose sight of teaching them how to respond when things don’t go their way. This is why we teach the growth mindset and the Zones of Regulation at school. Preparing children to appropriately handle disappointment, frustration, sadness, anger, and lack of success is an equally important gift we can give our children.

Birthday Party: We will be recognizing December and January birthdays on Friday at 2:25 pm with some special treats!

Change in Specials: On Thursday, we will be rotating to a new special. Be sure to ask your child what their new special is.

School Climate Survey: Our school’s Leadership Team would like your feedback about our school. We want to hear about your experiences with your child’s education. This survey includes questions about your child’s learning, school safety, and interpersonal relationships, as well as your attitudes about the institutional environment and your personal involvement in school. Your responses will be very helpful in improving student relationships, learning conditions, and the overall school environment. All your responses are completely anonymous. We have no way to connect you to your answers, and results will only be reported as group responses. There are no right or wrong answers. We just want to know about your personal experiences. As you respond to each item, think about your own personal experiences as a parent or caregiver at your child’s school. Please answer all items, or your answers won't count. There are 21 questions. This survey should take approximately 10 minutes. Thank you for your time and participation!

Here is the link to the survey: https://www.pbisassessment.org/Anon/zkU103tw1m0 We are also surveying children in grades 3-6. Once the results are in, our schools Leadership Team of teachers and admin. will make a plan for disaggregating the data and making improvements in our school. Stay tuned in March – April for more information on the results.

Lunch Menu: for February is attached.

Town Meeting Election: Information is attached.

Flannel Friday for Food: Information is attached.

Coming Up at Derby:

Thursday 1/28/21: New specials classes

Friday 1/29/21: Dec./Jan. Birthday Party

Tuesday 2/2/21: School Board Meeting

Friday 2/5/21: Flannel Friday for Food


January 22, 2021

Annual Meeting & Voting Flyer.jpg

Happy Winter, Derby Families! We have been able to spend time outside almost every day so far this school year – the weather has been in our favor for recess. We have collected coats, jackets, sweatshirts, hats and gloves that have been lost and found. Our lost and found is located outside the office. If your child is missing anything, please remind them to come down and look.

Town Meeting: We have been planning for Town Meeting and what that will look like this year. Our Board of Directors has collaborated with the Select Board of the Town of Derby and because of COVID, there will not be an in-person Town Meeting this year. All voting will be done by Australian ballot on Tuesday, March 2 at the Town of Debry offices. A virtual informational meeting will be held on Monday, March 1 at 6:00 pm. As the date approaches, I will send the link to you so you may join us online from home and learn about our school budget, as well as the town’s budget, and ask any questions you wish to ask. An informational flyer is attached.

School Budget: I am pleased to let you know that our school budget is level funded and did not increase for next year. Our per pupil spending went down. (Thank goodness for the federal COVID relief funds!) I will let you know when Town Meeting booklets are available. I will email my report and the school board chair’s report about our budget in the next few weeks.

Indoor Recess: We only have indoor recess when the temperature is zero degrees or below with windchill. When it is above zero, we are bundled up and outside!


January 13, 2021

Zones of Regulation.jpg beets_HOM_pdf[1].pdf

Hello, Derby Families!

We may have white stuff outside, but we’re all in the green zone here. Or, as Mrs. Raymond’s 3rd grade class says, “infinity green!” When your body is in the green zone, it means you are happy, calm, focused, and ready to learn. At Derby, each teacher teaches a program called Zones of Regulation, which is a framework that fosters self-regulation and emotional control. Children are learning how to identify emotions in each zone, recognize their own emotions, and a variety of strategies to use to get into the green zone. A picture of the zones that hangs in my office is attached. Be sure to ask your child(ren) about the Zones of Regulation.

Important Reminders:

K – 6 Early Release Day: Thursday, January 14, 2021: Bus dismissal begins at 12:00 pm, dismissal to parent pick up at 12:10 pm. No school for PreK.

No School: Friday, January 15 and Monday, January 18, 2021

COVID Reminders: We want to keep our school open and want every child in school!

  1. We still have some thermometers if you need one. Please call the office.

  2. If you gathered with others, get tested: If you gathered with anyone you don’t live with or had a potential exposure to someone with COVID-19, we recommend getting tested. This is how you can help keep the virus from spreading.

  3. If your child travels out of state for any reason other than a custody issue or medical appointment, a quarantine is required: 14 days or 7 days and a negative test, which usually ends up being 9 – 10 days by the time results come back.

  4. Vermonters without COVID symptoms can now get tested at more than 15 regular locations throughout the state, and more of them are now open daily. Many sites now allow you to take a sample yourself, using a short swab in your nose. It’s quick, easy, and free. Register for a test by visiting healthvermont.gov/covid19testing. (You will need to create an account to register.)

  5. If you have symptoms of COVID-19, please contact your health care provider so they can refer you for testing. If you don’t have a provider, you can call 2-1-1.

  6. https://des.ncsuvt.org/sickchild


January 5, 2021

Jan Menu.pdf

Happy New Year! It feels good to see 2020 in our rearview mirrors and to usher in 2021. We’re hoping it will be a better year in terms of health and learning!

As our thoughts turn to the coming months, we are being thoughtful and wondering how our traditional spring time activities in school may look and how things may need to change with the impact of COVID. We will keep you posted!

Daily Health Check forms: You should see a new pad of coming home for the new year, if you haven’t already. Thank you for keeping up with these and being consistent with them. We want school to be in session in person as long as possible!

Sick Child? Check out this information on our website. https://des.ncsuvt.org/sickchild

January menu is attached.

No School: We have some days next week that children don’t have school so that teachers can do important learning and collaboration work.

Upcoming Calendar:

Thursday, January 14, 2021

K-6 Early Release Day: Children are dismissed to buses at 12:00 pm, and to the parent pick up line at 12:10 pm.

PreK: No school

Friday, January 15, 2021:

No School PreK – 6

Monday, January 18, 2021: MLK Jr. Day

No School PreK – 6


December 16, 2020

Festive Fun.png Brochure Winter 2021.pdf

Hello Derby Parents,

It looks like we’re in for some colder temperatures this week starting today, so please make sure your children are bundled up! We will still have brief mask breaks outside, but if windchill goes below zero, recess, which is longer, would be indoors.

Festive Fun: Next week we have two festive days for children and staff to participate in and show their holiday spirit. A flyer is attached.

Encore Winter Session: Attached is the brochure for our Winter Session of after school programming. Registration is due Tuesday, December 22, 2020.

Winter Break begins Wednesday, Dec. 23, 2020. There is no school Wednesday, Dec. 23 through Friday, January 1, 2021. We return to school on Monday, January 4, 2021.


December 9, 2020

Happy Winter! It sure has been cold and snowy, and we have brought out our sled shack so children of all ages can sled at recess. Please make sure children are bundled up and ready for snowy, cold play in the mornings when they come to school. They will continue to take mask breaks outside throughout the day. Our policy regarding playing outside in wintry weather is reprinted from our Family Handbook below.

Friday, December 11, 2020, is an Early Release Day for K-6. Children will be dismissed to busses at 12pm and Parent Pick Up will begin soon after between 12:10 and 12:15pm. PreK has no school on this day. Please make sure our office and Mrs. Mager know of any special arrangements for your child’s dismissal now. The office will be pretty busy on Friday.

Progress Reports: Teachers are sending first trimester progress reports home on Friday. If you have a question about the report of your child, please call the teacher. While you will get a reports on your child’s Habits of Work and Learning (HOWLS) again this year, the reports for academics will look different than you have received in the past. In literacy and math, the teachers identified the skills worked on in the first trimester, and noted your child’s progress on those skills.

Indoor Recess Determination

If it is raining or if the temperature is zero degrees or below (with windchill), children will have indoor recess. This will be announced on the PA prior to recess. If inclement weather occurs while children are already outside at recess, the adults on duty will bring the children inside.

Website: Derby Elementary School keeps an updated and refreshed webpage. We keep it updated so parents can check frequently and rely on the information posted. We recently added a “Going Remote!” tab, just in case……. All calendars, forms, lunch menus, emails, photo gallery, staff directory, parent links, etc. are posted on the site. Please check it out when you get a chance! We also update our Facebook status quite frequently. http://des.ncsuvt.org

Winter Break: Our winter vacation is scheduled to begin Wednesday, December 23, 2020, and we return to school on Monday, January 4, 2020.

School Safety

Safety is a priority at Derby Elementary School. As required by law, safety drills occur once per month. We practice these drills so we can respond efficiently in times of emergency. Next week our monthly drill will be a Lock Down drill. More information for parents can be found on our website. https://des.ncsuvt.org/school-safety

Bus drivers will not drop off students in grades PreK – 4 at homes unless they see an adult or other responsible person to confirm that children are going to a safe place. Students who are not dropped off will be taken to the bus garage at the end of the bus route where parents can pick them up after being notified. For more information about student safety, visit our website at des.ncsuvt.org/school-safety

December 2, 2020

Parent _Right to Know_ Letter .pdf Annual Title I meeting.png jay peak.JPG

Hello, Derby Tiger Families,

It’s hard to believe it is December already, and it was 62 degrees and sunny yesterday! Today, we are back down to 30s and windy.

Boot Season begins next week, Monday, December 7, 2020! The forecast calls for some snow. We get high winds and blowing, drifting snow on our playground, so warm clothes and boots are a necessity – for all grade levels. Children in grades PreK – 3 must also have snow pants. Older children that want to play in the snow should have snow pants as well.

Title I Family Engagement Meeting: We are Title I school and receive federal funds. We are hosting a parent meeting for parents about our Title I program. Attached is an invitation to meet remotely and learn more about Title I and how we use our funds. You will also have a chance to ask questions. Those that attend will have their name entered in a drawing for a Derby Tiger sweatshirt! Here is the link to the remote meeting: https://meet.google.com/zsw-coem-ghh

Jay Peak Discount: Unfortunately, we will not be able to have Winter Activity Days for grades 4-6 this year. However, Jay Peak is waiving their school fee, and all children/families, in any grade, can still take advantage of the discounts offered to Derby families, as we are a Foundation School. See the attached flyer for information. It is my understanding that you can get a refund if you already purchased full price passes.

Upcoming Events:

Monday, December 7

Boot Season begins

6:00 pm Title I Family Engagement Meeting

Friday, December 11

K-6 Early Release Day; School in session 8:30 – 12:00 pm. Busses dismiss at 12pm, Parent Pick up 12:10 pm.

No School PreK


November 23, 2020

Hello Derby Families,

Please remember that we have a short week this week!

Tuesday, November 24, 2020: Early Release Day for K-6. Bus dismissal at 12pm, Parent Pick Up at 12:15 pm. No school for PreK.

Wednesday – Friday, November 24 – 27: NO SCHOOL. Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 30, 2020: October/November Birthday Celebration

Attachments: December Menu, Farm to School Newsletter, Press Release from Vermont Physicians


November 20, 2020

Hello Tiger Families,

It has been eventful and fun Spirit Week here! We are announcing the winning class of the Golden Pumpkin at the end of the day today. We will post on Facebook, so look for that!

I am pleased to let you know that my quarantine is over! My test came back negative and I am back at work. It was great to see all the children and staff today.

We have 1.5 days of school next week for K- 6, and one day of school for PreK. There is a full day of school on Monday, November 23, and a half day on Tuesday, November 24. PreK will have no school on Nov. 24. On November 24, 2020, K-6 dismissal to busses will be at 12:00 pm, and parent pick up will be at 12:15 pm.

Monday, November 30, 2020 is our Birthday Celebration for children who had October and November birthdays!

Please be safe over Thanksgiving. We want our school to remain open for in-person learning because we know that children achieve more than in remote learning. We are not seeing transmission of COVID within our school, but community spread could also impact in-person learning.

Be healthy and have a safe weekend,


Hello Tiger Families,

Wow, we sure had some good weather earlier this week, I hope you were able to enjoy it!

Here is what is coming up in the coming weeks:

Spirit Week is re-scheduled for next week, so we hope to get even more participation! Information is Home Page , including a picture of the Golden Pumpkin trophy.

November 24 is now scheduled as an Early Release Day for K-6, with dismissal scheduled after lunch. 12 pm for buses and 12:15 pm for parent pick up. There will be no PreK sessions on this day. It is the end of the first trimester, and teachers will be preparing progress reports to be sent home in December.

November 25 – November 27: No School due to the Thanksgiving holiday.

We want to stay in school, so please continue to monitor your children for any symptoms, keep those Daily Health Check forms coming, and please be mindful of your child’s social circle outside of school, as well as the new quarantining mandate for any out of state travel.

I am pleased to say that I am back in Vermont now and working from home while quarantining according to Vermont Dept. of Health guidelines. I hope to return to school next week. I was in Michigan for about a month taking care of my father who had a medical emergency in the second week of October. He is now home with my sister and making great progress, considering the initial negative prognosis. Rhonda Lucas, Assistant Principal, kept me abreast of all the goings on at school, and I was even able to do a little bit of remote work from Michigan as well.

November 6, 2020

Hello Derby Families,

We are so happy to have many of our children and staff back in school this week. Thank you for your continued patience during this pandemic. We didn’t seem to see any spread here at school, but there sure is some community spread occurring. We want to keep learning in person. Please wear masks and physically distance. Please be mindful about group events with others and travel.

https://accd.vermont.gov/covid-19/restart/cross-state-travel

We will be sending home NEW Daily Health Check forms soon. The state has required us to add a question about travel. These new forms should be used instead of the forms you already have.

We are pleased to announce that all 5th graders and Mrs. McKenny’s class are able to return Monday, November 9!


Our schedule for next week:

Monday, Nov. 9

The new specials rotation begins.

The new session of Encore begins.

Tuesday, Nov. 10

Early Release Day for K-6, dismissal at 12pm.

No School for PreK.

Wednesday, Nov. 11

Veterans Day

No School PreK-6

Spirit Week - Nov. 16th - 20th, flyer on Home Page


November 2,2020

Derby Tiger Community,

It looks like winter weather is creeping in! Just a reminder to come prepared for the cold and the snow.

It's important that all children and staff members should come with jackets, hats, mittens, and boots to be comfortable when playing outside and getting fresh air. When we have snow and when boot season is announced to the children and to parents, children are required to wear boots on the playground. This is especially important as children are making extra trips outside for mask breaks.

You will find the November Lunch Menu on the Lunch Program Page and important information about the Encore Program on the After School Program Page .


October 25, 2020

October 25, 2020

Dear NCSU School-Community,

We are notifying staff and families across our school-community that a person at Derby Elementary School has been identified with a positive case of COVID-19. We have been and will continue to follow all safety and response procedures. Please see the NCSU COVID-19 Symptomatic & Positive Cases Guide for more information.

We recommend that you take action to help limit the spread of COVID-19, even if you or your child are not experiencing symptoms. If you or your child had direct contact with affected individuals at Derby Elementary School, a contact tracer may be trying to reach you with important information. Please answer the phone if the Vermont Department of Health (VDH) contacts you. The phone number may not show up on caller ID, so it is important to answer all calls over the next 24 hours.

The most important things you can do:

  • Make sure your child is wearing a mask.

  • Make sure your child is washing his/her hands.

  • Keep your child home if he or she is sick.

  • Call your primary care provider if you or your child have symptoms of COVID-19.

How can parents and guardians help prevent COVID-19 from spreading?

  • If your child is sick, keep them home.

  • Make sure members of your household wash their hands often using soap and water for 20 seconds.

  • Make sure every member of your household covers their coughs and sneezes with a tissue or their elbow and then washes their hands afterward.

  • Wear a mask in public, especially when you cannot stay six feet apart from other people.

We are working with the Vermont Department of Health to keep our community safe.

  • We continue to follow the AOE/VDH guidance included in A Strong and Healthy Start.

  • We are cleaning and disinfecting the school per the VDH guidance.

  • Employees and sick children will not return to work until they are healthy.

Learn more about getting tested in Vermont.

Thank you for understanding that, due to medical privacy laws, we are not able to release the names of any individuals with COVID-19. Please do not speculate, ask, post on social media the speculation around individuals -- it is important to respect the privacy of our community members. We will continue to communicate changes and updates with you. With your participation, we believe we can create a safe experience for your children this school year. For more information visit NCSUVT.org.

What will happen at Derby Elementary School? Will there be remote learning?

We are working with the VDH, as well as staff members of Derby Elementary School, to determine close contacts and next steps. DES will be closed on Monday and will pivot to remote learning on Tuesday, continuing for the remainder of the week. Each school has emergency remote learning plans which are ready to be activated if needed.

We will provide further communication with you throughout this event. It is important we support each other and stay vigilant in suppressing the spread of the virus. Thank you for your support in staying safe and healthy. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me directly.

Be well!

Sincerely,

John

John A. Castle

NCSU Superintendent of Schools

October 22, 2020

Derby Tiger Community,

It’s hard to believe we’re heading into the final week of October! We’ve been working hard and have a little fun to look forward to in the week ahead.

Halloween

Our Halloween festivities will look a little different this year. We won’t be able to host our traditional Halloween parade but classroom teachers do have fun activities planned for the afternoon with snacks provided by our amazing kitchen staff. Students in all grades will dress up for their classroom parties in the afternoon. Preschool students may come dressed-up. Students in kindergarten through sixth should bring their costumes with them.

A few reminders for costumes:

  • As always, nothing too scary, no blood, and no weapons.

  • Masks must still be worn. Consider how to incorporate a mask into your costume. Due to safety concerns, we cannot allow full face masks.

  • Easy-on costumes. Please make sure your child is able to dress themselves independently. Teachers will not be able to assist in the same ways they have in the past. Also, dressing areas are not available, so something easy to put on over their day clothes is preferred.

  • Face paint (full face makeup) and masks are not a great combination for the school setting.

    Despite these restrictions, I have no doubt it will be a fun day for all.

    T-Shirts

    Derby Tiger T-shirts have arrived and will be sent home in time for Spirit Week.


    For your calendar:

    October 26-30: Spirit Week (see flyer on Home Page )

    October 29: October Birthday Celebration (see flyer on
    Home Page )

    November 3: School Board Meeting


October 16, 2020

I have several announcements this week:

First, please help us keep our children and staff safe. As of Tuesday, there has been a change in travel map that affects an area close to us. Grafton County, NH, which includes Littleton, is now in a zone that requires quarantining upon return to Vermont. If you travel to areas in the yellow or red zone, please quarantine. We can provide school work for children who are in quarantine, so please contact your child’s teacher. Here is a link to the map.

https://accd.vermont.gov/covid-19/restart/cross-state-travel

Second, Oct. 22 is PreK Picture Day. It is also re-take day for K-6. Pictures should be coming home early next week. If you are unhappy with the pictures, please send back the picture packet on re-take day.

Great news! We are pleased to announce that the USDA approved free meals for all children through the end of the school year.

See our attached flyer for Spirit Week, October 26-30: The Tiger Paw Pride Planning Team has created a super fun celebration for October! We’ve planned a week of themed days, with a competition thrown in! Look for more information to come home in the next week about Halloween.

Finally, I wanted to let you know I am currently out of town handling a family medical emergency. In my absence, Assistant Principal Rhonda Lucas will be leading the school. I am confident she will keep things running smoothly while I am away.

October 5, 2020

What a beautiful fall season we are having! I hope you are enjoying it. We have a busy week coming ahead……

Parent Teacher Conferences: Our conferences are this week! Sign up for a virtual conference through pickAtime. (see Home Page ) Don’t forget to sign up for a conference with the specials teacher your child has right now.

Early Release Day for K-6: Thursday, Oct.8, 2020. Bus dismissal begins at noon. Parent Pick Up begins at 12:15 pm. Children will be served breakfast and lunch.

No School PreK: Thursday, Oct. 8; Friday, Oct. 9; Monday, Oct. 12

No School K-6: Friday, Oct. 9 and Monday, Oct. 12: Oct. 9 is conferences, and Oct. 12 is Teacher Professional Learning.

Intervention Services: We have been working hard to assess children in reading and math as they returned to school. A letter is on the Home Page that explains our Multi-Tiered System of Supports and the intervention we can provide.

Donate! Two of our fifth graders are conducting a special fundraiser. See Home Page .


September 29, 2020

Thank you to those that attended our Virtual Open House! If you missed it, you may find teachers’ slideshows and content under the corresponding grade levels on our Class Happenings page on our website. https://des.ncsuvt.org We have been working on getting those posted.

Step III Changes: As you may have heard, we have been moved by the Agency of Education and Department of Health to Step III. It doesn’t mean a lot of changes for us, but there are some changes: The art room, music room, and library are be open for instruction, so children will have more transitions in the halls. Half of the gym is open for low respiratory activities with masks during inclement weather. The hallways on the first floor have switched to include 2 way traffic. We continue to mitigate risk for children and staff by remaining in classroom groups for most instruction, lunch, mask breaks, and recess. Breakfast and lunch continue to be served in the classroom.

August-September Birthday Party: As you may remember, due to COVID, we have a new way to celebrate birthdays. Because we cannot have parents visit or send in treats, on Wednesday, Sept, 30, we will be celebrating the children that have birthdays in August and September. Chef Marcoux is making treats, gifts are ordered, and we will be sure to take and post pics.

Tigers of the Month: We are sad parents cannot be here, and we’re not having an assembly, but we will find a way to celebrate! Our Tigers of the Month from September will be recognized on Oct. 1. Stay Tuned!

Parent Conferences: To protect everyone and reduce risk, our conferences will be virtual through Google Meets. Teachers have set up their schedules in pickAtime, so attached is information on how to schedule your conference electronically. pickAtime goes live for scheduling at 3:00 pm today.

October Lunch Menu: is on the Lunch Program Page

Bus Pick Up: Please remind your child to have their Daily Health Form out and ready to give to the bus monitor in the morning. This will help the bus get on its way to the next stop in a more timely way.

Bus Drop Off: Bus drivers cannot drop off students in grades PreK – 4 at homes unless they see an adult or other responsible person to confirm that children are going to a safe place. In this situation, a parent (or emergency contact if parent can’t be reached) will be called and asked to pick up the child at the bus garage after the bus route.

Head lice: Head lice are a common nuisance for families whose children are in daycares and schools. This is one of two required biannual reminders about the prevention and treatment of lice. The NCSU Policy, as well as some other helpful resources for preventing the treatment and spread of head lice can be found on Parents: Health Page.

This week and next at Derby:

T Sept. 29 Schedule your conference(s) with the teacher(s)

W Sept. 30 August-September Birthday Party

Th Oct. 1 Recognition of our Tigers of the Month

W-F Oct. 7-9 Virtual Parent Teacher Conferences by appointment through pickAtime

Th Oct. 8 K-6 Early Release Day 12pm; No School for PreK

F Oct. 9 No School for Students

M Oct. 12 No School for Students

September 21,2020

Hello Tiger Families,

Our first 9 days are completed and we are beginning our 3rd week of school. We couldn’t be more pleased with how it is going. Your children have exceeded our expectations. They are a delight and have shown great resilience in following our new processes and dealing with all that this time of COVID has brought. Children have never earned so many Mega Paws 9 days in! We are off to great start of the year. We have some excitement this week with Picture Day and Virtual Open House. Keep reading for information.

Parent Drop Off and Pick Up: Thank you all for your patience with drop off and pick up. We have alerted the Vermont State Police of the unsafe driving practices of others trying to get around the line in the mornings between 8:20 – 8:30 am. We certainly do not want an accident to happen. For pick up, please remember to remain in your vehicle. Children will be entering cars from the passenger side only, and we want all parents to pull forward into a space in the parking lot to buckle children up.

Tiger Paw Pride Spirit Wear Sale: All children attending in-person and virtual school will receive a free school t-shirt through our Equity Fund. An order for additional spirit wear for those parents and children that would like to purchase hoodies, sweat shirts, or long sleeved shirts can be found on our Home Page . Our sale ends Monday, September 28.

Picture Day is tomorrow, Tuesday, September 22, 2020 for K-6. Please send in your child’s package and money to school with them that day. An order form is on the Home Page in case you can’t find the one that was sent home the first day of school. Picture Day for PreK is October 22.

Virtual Open House: Thursday, September 24, 2020, from 6:00 – 7:00 pm. This is a “Meet the Teacher” event for parents of children attending Derby Elementary School in person. To keep everyone safe in this time of COVID-19, this is a virtual event. Teachers and special educators will be emailing parents from their class an invitation with a link to a Google Meet. Please join the Google Meet any time between 6 - 7 pm. Some parents may have several Google Meets to join if they have multiple children. We are also providing links for the specialists and interventionists below. This is not the time for a private conference about individual children, but rather a time for parents to meet the teacher, ask questions about the procedures in the class and school, and the learning that will occur throughout the year.

GM link for Virtual Open House with Intervention Teachers: https://meet.google.com/apt-jdpq-fkn

GM link for Virtual Open House with Ms. Chambers, Music: https://meet.google.com/joh-rwat-jzu

GM link for Virtual Open House with Mr. Handley, Tech. Integration: https://meet.google.com/zge-usmf-ori

GM link for Virtual Open House with Mr. Davis, gr. 4-6 Band: https://meet.google.com/ipd-iuzk-hcg

GM link for Virtual Open House with Mr. Auclair and Ms. Joslin, PE: https://meet.google.com/ccc-nxjz-ibf

GM link for Virtual Open House with Mrs. Boskind, Library: https://meet.google.com/oay-adcz-fba

GM link for Virtual Open House with Mrs. Marsh, Art: https://meet.google.com/viz-vidg-pxt

GM link for Virtual Open House with Ms. Smith and Ms. Cyr, Counseling and Restorative Practices: https://meet.google.com/qiy-wsfb-ohy

Title VI Grant Information: Those of Native American heritage have the opportunity to participate in the Title VI Indian Education Program for the North Country Supervisory Union. This program assists in academic learning and cultural enrichment. The program provides Vermont Indian history to all levels of grades. Information and a form are on the Home Page .

September 15, 2020

This has been a wonderful start to the school year, even with COVID measures in place. It has been surprisingly smooth, and it seems all the planning and preparation paid off, for sure! Children are doing great following the rules, being safe, and are so well behaved. Derby Tigers ROCK! Parent Drop off and Pick Up have been running smoothly now that we all have the hang of it! Our Kinders joined us yesterday and PreK starts Thursday.

What if my child is sick? Attached is some information from the Vermont Department of Health about what to do if your child is sick.

School Safety: This week, Ms. Lucas, our Assistant Principal, and I have been conducting our annual classroom visits to talk about school safety. We discuss all the ways we keep children safe in our school, our safety drills, how to recognize safe adults in our school, and stress the importance of listening to their teacher in an emergency or drill. With the older grades 4-6, we also talk about the ALICE protocol (Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, and Evacuate). For more information on school safety, please check out our School Safety tab on our website. https://des.ncsuvt.org/school-safety

FREE Lunch and Breakfast until Dec. 31 or the money runs out! This is not just for children attending Derby in person. If your child is in the North Country Virtual School or in a Home Study program, you can still receive free breakfast and lunch - so can any child 18 or younger in our community. Order your meals for each week by emailing jason.marcoux@ncsuvt.org by 3pm the Friday before. Meals will be provided on a daily basis and will be available for pick up in the cooler in our foyer by 11:00 am each day.

Picture Day is Tuesday, September 22, 2020 for K-6. Please send in your child’s package and money to school with them that day. Attached is an order form in case you can’t find the one that was sent home the first day of school. Picture Day for PreK is October 22.

Virtual Open House: This is a “Meet the Teacher” event on Thursday, September 24, 2020 from 6:00 – 7:00 pm. To keep everyone safe in this time of COVID-19, this is a virtual event. Teachers and special educators will be emailing parents from their class an invitation with a link to a Google Meet. Please join the Google Meet any time between 6 - 7 pm. Some parents may have several Google Meets to join if they have multiple children, and as we will also be providing links for the specialists and interventionists. This is not the time for a private conference about individual children, but rather a time for parents to meet the teacher, ask questions about the procedures in the class and school, and the learning that will occur throughout the year.

Encore After School Program for gr. 1 – 6: Our fall session of the Encore program starts Monday, Sept. 28, and will be mostly outdoors. The brochure is attached. Children in the North Country Virtual School and Home Study children may participate in our after school program.

FREE Derby Tiger T-shirt & PowerSchool Annual Student Update: We will be ordering the FREE Derby Tiger t-shirts next week for children attending Derby in person and attending the North Country Virtual School, so please complete the Annual Student Update! Given COVID, It’s more important and easier than ever, even from a smart phone. Besides helping us keep your child as safe as possible during this pandemic, it asks your child’s size so we can order them a FREE Derby Tiger t-shirt! We want to give every child enrolled for in-person instruction or virtual instruction a school t-shirt. In addition, the Annual Student Update allows to apply for Free and Reduced Lunch.

We need the most current phone numbers and addresses, emergency contact information, transportation information, and medical information for your student(s). The annual update must be completed for each student regardless of the learning option they have enrolled in for this year.

If you already have a parent account, please visit the PowerSchool Parent/Student Portal: https://ncsuvt.powerschool.com. You can access the “Annual Student Update” via the PowerSchool Parent Portal for any of your children who have been enrolled in a school in the North Country Supervisory Union.

Here is an instruction sheet that will help you with the annual update process. https://bit.ly/NCSUAnnualUpdateInfo

If you do not have a PowerSchool parent account, please contact the Laura Fernandes, Administrative Assistant at Derby, for help. 873-3162 ext. 101. In addition, if you require internet access or access via a connected device you can call your school to schedule an appointment to use these services. At that time, you may also utilize the school’s device to complete applications for Cares Act funds that can help your household access rent and mortgage funding currently available to Vermonters. If your family has experienced difficulty maintaining monthly payments during COVID-19 please see this site for more information and learn what documentation is required to complete the applications.

September 8, 2020

Happy New Year!

It was so exciting to visit the classrooms this morning and see all of our Derby Tigers! About an hour into the school day, it was even better to see all the children outside taking mask breaks and having fun at recess. I will post the pictures on our Facebook page later this evening.

Today, your child will be bringing home a folder of forms about Picture Day, Daily Health Checks, insurance, and Farm to School. Please keep those DHC forms handy, as your child needs to bring one every day.

Parent Drop Off starts at 8:20 am at the cross walk in the parking lot. Cars are able to stage and line up prior to that time. However, we ask that you wait for the attendant to have your child exit the vehicle, so we are ready to take temperatures. Parents should remain in cars at all times. We will be asking children to exit 2 or three cars at a time to help the line run a little faster. Children should exit from the passenger side of the vehicle, NOT the driver’s side.

Friday, Sept. 11 is an Early Release Day, which you probably noticed on the school calendar. We will begin to load buses at 12 pm, and parent pick up will begin at 12:15 pm.

It is also Patriot Day, to honor those who lost their lives in the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. We encourage everyone to wear red, white and blue.

Thermometers: We have a supply of thermometers at school if you need one, just call our office and we can send one with your child. While supplies last.

Answers to the frequently asked questions about new procedures in school, including information about parent pick up can be found on the Home Page .


September 2, 2020

It is crunch time! We are working hard to get things ready for in-person instruction. All of our PPE and hand sanitizer for staff and children has arrived, and we will be marking the floors soon for physical distancing. It still seems as if our list is a mile long, but we are making progress…..

Breakfast and Lunch is FREE for everyone right now!! We just found out that the federal government granted us a waiver until the allocated funds run out, or December 31, whichever happens first. This means we can provide FREE meals for all children 18 and younger in our community, including those at school! If you have younger or older children that don’t attend Derby and need to pick up free meals for them, please let us know so we can be prepared (802) 873-3162. More details about meal pick up will be forthcoming. The September menu is on the Lunch Program Page

Meet the Teacher videos are on our website. https://des.ncsuvt.org/ Click on the “Class Happenings” tab. Choose your grade level from the drop down menu and click on your child’s teacher’s video. We hope you can have your child watch it and they will feel excited to come to school and meet the teacher in person!

Virtual Learners: Devices, supplies, and a back to school packet can be picked up this Thursday, September 3, 2020 from 5:30 – 6:30 pm. At this point, information about class and teacher should be coming from the North Country Virtual School.

Masks: Please mark your masks so they can be easily identified. This will avoid confusion and lost or swapped masks.

Dress for the weather: Please make sure your child is dressed in layers and with rain gear. Mask breaks throughout the day will be outside, as will some instruction. Classrooms and buses will be well ventilated with fresh air.

Birthdays: We plan on making birthdays really special at our school this year! We will be planning monthly birthday parties with special treats made by our kitchen staff. We will decorate and take pics to post. In the classroom, teachers will make time to honor your child on his or her special day. Unfortunately, we can’t have parents come in or send in birthday treats. Don’t worry, we plan on making up for it by making birthdays special for all of our children!

ICYMI in previous emails, attached is information about Parents in the Building, Daily Health Checks, Annual Student Update, Parent Drop off and Parent Pick up:


August 28, 2020

Hello,

Our school is bustling again! Teachers and paras came back this week and were busy preparing for the children. Wednesday, they learned all the COVID – 19 safety procedures, as well as the new support we have for restorative practices. (You can read about restorative practices in our Family Handbook on our website.) Yesterday, teachers discussed the social emotional supports children might need coming back to school and how we can meet their needs, as well our Tiger Paw Pride PBIS system and the changes we have to make to it because of COVID. Today, teachers and paras are learning about the technology and remote learning platforms they will need to teach students right away in case we have to go remote again. We want to be prepared this time and increase the rigor of the remote learning if we do get sent home. Of course, these are great learning platforms for learning in the classroom as well. Teachers are also preparing “Meet the Teacher” videos, and when they are posted on our website, we will let you know!

Annual Student Update: We’d love these completed by today! Thank you to the 200 parents that already completed it. Don’t forget, it includes an order for a FREE school t-shirt! It’s not too late, if you haven’t done it yet, see the info. at the end of this email.

Daily Health Checks: Every child must present a Daily Health Check form completed by parents to get on the bus and into the school. Those that enter the bus without them will be seated in the front seats and upon arrival at school, will be escorted to the nurse for a health check. Children dropped off without a DHC form, will be diverted to the nurse for a health check. NCSU mailed you 6 Daily Health Check forms to get you started for the year. In the folder that children will be bringing home on the first day of school, there will be a pad of about 100 forms for you to use throughout the year. We have more to send out once families run out of forms. I anticipate that children coming with DHC forms will have a smoother start to their morning and arrival to school. Please send your child with a completed Daily Health Check form.

Drop off and Pick Up Processes for 2020-21: Descriptions have already been sent out, but ICYMI, they can be found in this handbook: Family Handbook with C-19 Addendum

DAILY Pick Up for K-6: To those of you that indicated you would be a daily pick up, today Laura snail mailed the number of pick up passes you asked for.

Occasional Pick Up for K-6: If you indicated you would only be picking up from school occasionally, we did not mail a pass. However, you can still pick up your child. We would just ask you roll down your window and speak to Laura. Have your ID ready in case she doesn’t know you.

Bus Routes and approximate times for morning and afternoon are attached. These will also be posted on our website.

The Breakfast and Lunch Menu will be emailed and posted next week.

PowerSchool Annual Student Update and Free and Reduced Lunch Please complete this - it’s more important and easier than ever, even from a smart phone. Besides helping us keep your child as safe as possible during this pandemic, it asks your child’s size so we can order them a FREE Derby Tiger t-shirt! We want to give every child enrolled for in-person instruction or virtual instruction a school t-shirt. In addition, the Annual Student Update allows to apply for Free and Reduced Lunch.

We need the most current phone numbers and addresses, emergency contact information, transportation information, and medical information for your student(s). The annual update must be completed for each student regardless of the learning option they have enrolled in for this year.

If you already have a parent account, please visit the PowerSchool Parent/Student Portal: https://ncsuvt.powerschool.com. You can access the “Annual Student Update” via the PowerSchool Parent Portal for any of your children who have been enrolled in a school in the North Country Supervisory Union.

Here is an instruction sheet that will help you with the annual update process. https://bit.ly/NCSUAnnualUpdateInfo

If you do not have a PowerSchool parent account, please contact the Laura Fernandes, Administrative Assistant at Derby, for help. In addition, if you require internet access or access via a connected device you can call your school to schedule an appointment to use these services. At that time, you may also utilize the school’s device to complete applications for Cares Act funds that can help your household access rent and mortgage funding currently available to Vermonters. If your family has experienced difficulty maintaining monthly payments during COVID-19 please see this site for more information and learn what documentation is required to complete the applications.

Have a great weekend!


August 21, 2020

As you can expect, there are many changes to our processes, and we appreciate your patience and understanding in advance as we plan to make the new processes as safe as possible for our children and as efficient as possible for our parents. This email highlights a very important topic: Afternoon Parent Pick Up Information.

K-6 NEW Parent Pick Up Process: Drive Through

  • Parent pick up will be 3:05 - 3:15 pm after the last bus departs.

  • This process was designed to reduce the contact amongst the numbers of children and families we have. We ask for patience and grace as we all learn this new parent pick up process. This process was designed with safety and efficiency in mind. This process may be adjusted as we see how it works.

  • We’d like this to be an efficient process, so please place car seats on the passenger side and have children slide across seats rather than walking between cars to enter the car.

  • Parents that completed the electronic form for daily pick up will receive their “drive through passes” with the names of their child(ren) in the mail.

  • If you need a pass or extra passes once the school year starts, please call Mrs. Mager at 873-3162.

  • These passes should be present and displayed in the passenger side windshield, visible to the drive through attendant in the driveway checking off your arrival.

  • The drive through attendant will radio the names of your child(ren) so they will be ready to enter your car at he gym door.

  • If you do not have a “drive through pass,” the efficiency of the process for all families is reduced, and you will need roll down your window, talk to the drive through attendant. You may need to show some ID or park and come into the foyer to pick up your child.

  • Cars may begin “staging” and lining up for the drive through at the cone located before the PreK entrance.

  • Once the last bus has loaded, the drive through attendant will wave for the first car to proceed through the bus lane to the gym door.

  • Parents will pull into the bus lane and pick up at the gym door. We hope to load 4-5 cars at once.

  • Parent pick up will begin at approximately 3:05 pm.

  • Children will be called to the gym as in the past.

  • Children will physically distance in the gym based on the markings on the floor and at tables.

  • A staff member will stage the children in line as they are radioed the names in order of cars in the drive through lane.

  • Parents picking up for the PreK, may bypass the line and turn into the PreK parking lot.

Here is a link to our COVID -19 Addendum to the Family Handbook in case you haven’t yet read about all of our new processes.

Please don’t forget to complete the Annual Student Update! Please complete this - it’s more important and easier than ever, even from a smart phone. Besides helping us keep your child as safe as possible during this pandemic, it asks your child’s size so we can order them a FREE Derby Tiger t-shirt! We want to give every child enrolled for in-person instruction or virtual instruction a school t-shirt.

If you already have a parent account, please visit the PowerSchool Parent/Student Portal: https://ncsuvt.powerschool.com. You can access the “Annual Student Update” via the PowerSchool Parent Portal for any of your children who have been enrolled in a school in the North Country Supervisory Union. Here is an instruction sheet that will help you with the annual update process. https://bit.ly/NCSUAnnualUpdateInfo

If you do not have a PowerSchool parent account, please contact the Laura Fernandes, Administrative Assistant at Derby, for help. In addition, if you require internet access or access via a connected device you can call your school to schedule an appointment to use these services. At that time, you may also utilize the school’s device to complete applications for Cares Act funds that can help your household access rent and mortgage funding currently available to Vermonters. If your family has experienced difficulty maintaining monthly payments during COVID-19 please see this site for more information and learn what documentation is required to complete the applications.

With Tiger Paw Pride,


August 18, 2020

Hello,

I hope this email finds you and your family well and looking forward to the start of school. More frequent emails will be coming as we get ready to open. There are many changes to our processes, and we appreciate your patience and understanding in advance as we plan to make the new processes as safe as possible for our children and as efficient as possible for our parents. This email includes two very important things: Annual Student Update and Morning Parent Drop Off Information. The parent drop off information has changed since our COVID -19 Addendum to the Family Handbook was published a few weeks ago, as we needed to accommodate the schedule of the Jr. High and High School and the families who have children at multiple schools.

Annual Student Update: Please complete by August 28. Besides giving us emergency contact information for your child’s safety, there is also information for financial assistance AND we ask your child’s size for a FREE Derby Tiger Shirt. If you already have a parent account, please visit the PowerSchool Parent/Student Portal: https://ncsuvt.powerschool.com. You can access the “Annual Student Update” via the PowerSchool Parent Portal for any of your children who have been enrolled in a school in the North Country Supervisory Union. Here is an instruction sheet that will help you with the annual update process. https://bit.ly/NCSUAnnualUpdateInfo If you do not have a PowerSchool parent account, please contact the Laura Fernandes, Administrative Assistant at Derby, for help. In addition, if you require internet access or access via a connected device you can call your school to schedule an appointment to use these services. At that time, you may also utilize the school’s device to complete applications for Cares Act funds that can help your household access rent and mortgage funding currently available to Vermonters. If your family has experienced difficulty maintaining monthly payments during COVID-19 please see this site for more information and learn what documentation is required to complete the applications.

K-6 Parent Drop Off: NEW Drive Through Process

  • This process was designed to reduce the contact amongst the numbers of children and families we have, we ask for patience and grace as we all learn this new parent drop off process.

  • This process is designed with safety and efficiency in mind.

  • This process may be adjusted as we see how it works.

  • We’d like this to be an efficient process, so please pack lunches and backpacks, and give hugs and kisses prior to drop off. Please drop off with a simple wave and pull your car through and around to the exit.

  • We’d also ask that parents place car seats on the passenger side and have children slide across seats and exit on the passenger side so children do not have to walk between cars to enter the building.

  • To ensure safety, the guidance from the AOE and DOH says we are not allowed to have open gym.

  • Parent drop off is now scheduled for 8:20 - 8:30 am.

  • Cars will be able to begin to “stage” and line up for the drive through drop off at the crosswalk in the parking lot.

  • Parents must remain in their cars at all times.

  • A staff member will wave for the first child to exit their car and to proceed into the building.

  • Parents will pull into the parking lot and drop at the crosswalk.

  • Children will be asked at the entrance of the school for their Daily Health Check form signed by a parent. (Forms are being mailed from NCSU.)

  • If no Daily Health Check form from home is present, the child will be diverted to a line for a Health Check to be conducted. If the Health Check is not passed, the parent will be called to pick up the child.


August 14, 2020

It is time for the Annual Student Update! Please complete this - it’s more important and easier than ever, even from a smartphone. Besides helping us keep your child as safe as possible during this pandemic, it asks your child’s size so we can order them a FREE Derby Tiger t-shirt! We want to give every child enrolled for in-person instruction or virtual instruction a school t-shirt.

PowerSchool Annual Student Update

Please complete the Annual Student Update for each student before August 28th. The Annual Student Update is an important process that occurs every year.

It is your responsibility to ensure that the school has the most current phone numbers and addresses, emergency contact information, transportation information, and medical information for your student(s). The annual update must be completed for each student regardless of the learning option they have enrolled in for this year.

If you already have a parent account, please visit the PowerSchool Parent/Student Portal: https://ncsuvt.powerschool.com. You can access the “Annual Student Update” via the PowerSchool Parent Portal for any of your children who have been enrolled in a school in the North Country Supervisory Union.

Here is an instruction sheet that will help you with the annual update process. https://bit.ly/NCSUAnnualUpdateInfo

If you do not have a PowerSchool parent account, please contact the Laura Fernandes, Administrative Assistant at Derby, for help. In addition, if you require internet access or access via a connected device you can call your school to schedule an appointment to use these services. At that time, you may also utilize the school’s device to complete applications for Cares Act funds that can help your household access rent and mortgage funding currently available to Vermonters. If your family has experienced difficulty maintaining monthly payments during COVID-19 please see this site for more information and learn what documentation is required to complete the applications.

If you have additional questions, please contact Laura Fernandes, Administrative Assistant at Derby, for help.


August 11, 2020

Hello Parents/Guardians,

Thank you for patience as we plan for the start of school. This email is for those whose children will be returning to in-person instruction. We need your help in planning our parent pick up process by answering this short survey at the link below.

If you chose virtual school or home study for your child on the NCSU form last week, please DO NOT complete this survey.

We would like to be prepared to have our dismissal be as efficient and quick as possible. We need to know if you plan to pick up your child(ren) from school on a regular basis or if they will ride the bus on a regular basis.

We are not seeking morning drop off information at this time as we already have a plan to physically distance during morning drop off.

You are not locked into the choice you indicate on this form. As parents, you can decide at any time to have your child ride the bus home or pick them up. We know the process will not be perfect, but having estimated numbers will help us plan, and may make your wait in the pick up drive through line shorter.

Knowing this information in advance helps us plan for physical distancing on the buses, plan our bus routes, as well as whether or not a staggered parent pick up process is needed.

Right now, we are planning to dismiss busses first, at staggered times of 2:50, 2:55, and 3:00 pm because children cannot line up next to each other in the hall as they have in the past. If we know the number of children that intend to ride the buses, it can help us plan routes and determine physical distancing on the buses.

We are planning a parent drive through process for pick up starting at 3:05 pm. We'd rather not have traffic backed up on Elm Street, and we'd like the drive through to be as efficient as possible with as little wait time as possible for parents. If the numbers of parents intending to pick up at the end of the day are high, it is possible that we will need to stagger the parent pick up times.

The responses on this form will help us make a determination, and then we will communicate the plan to you. Click on the link below to complete the survey.

https://forms.gle/wawYBhSJwaTvBcGK9

Thank you for your help. Stay tuned to your email for the information about the Annual Student Update, including a FREE Tiger Paw Pride T-Shirt for your child!


August 3, 2020

Hello,

As you know, Superintendent John Castle sent out information last week (and today!) about the new school year. Hopefully you know that NCSU and Derby Elementary School are offering two options for your child’s enrollment in the fall: in-person instruction at DES, or virtual learning at home with an NCSU teacher. While Mr. Castle sent some information, attached is more specific information regarding in-person learning at Derby. You can also find the same information at this link: Addendum to the Family Handbook for Covid-19, 2020-21

We want you to be able to make an informed decision about the learning option you choose for your child’s enrollment this fall. We understand that the decision to select in-person learning or virtual learning is highly personal and dependent on the unique circumstances your family faces. We are committed to supporting you as best we can.

We are asking families to read all the information and make a choice between the two enrollment options by Friday, August 7, 2020 so that we can begin to make further plans about the return to school. Here is the link for your choice: Learning Option Enrollment Form

Please do not hesitate to reach out if you have questions, or if I can help in any way.


August 3, 2020

NCSU Parent Information

Superintendent‘s Message

We look forward to seeing our school-communities come together again for in-person learning with the start of the school year. We recognize for many there is some uncertainty and uneasiness with coming back to school. We are confident that we are doing what is necessary to provide a strong and healthy start for students and staff.

School will certainly look different this year! First and foremost, we are attending to the physical health and well-being of students, staff and our school-communities and will have the necessary procedures in place to minimize the risk of transmitting the virus. In addition, we will be attentive to supporting the social and emotional needs and growth of students as we transition back to in-person learning. Relationships are a priority as students and staff learn to adjust to new routines and practices.

It’s possible that schools will need to close again. We will be better prepared if that happens. All teachers will have Google Classroom and/or SeeSaw accounts ready if we need to switch to remote learning. Remote learning will not look the same as emergency remote learning did last spring, nor will it look the same as in-school learning. All students will need to complete classwork and show evidence of making progress. This means that learning options will be different than in a non-COVID year.

Next week, your school will provide information regarding your child’s options for the year including:

  • Full-time, in-person school

  • Full-time virtual learning (check with your school for deadline to apply)

  • Vermont’s home study requirements

Families will be notified of elementary level NCSU Virtual School placements in mid-August. Please be aware that space may be limited. If a learning option choice is not indicated by your school’s deadline it will be assumed that your child will attend in-person.

If your child is eligible to receive special education services and you have questions regarding the above offerings we encourage you to contact your child’s special education case manager or school principal for more detail. Should you choose not to select the full-time in-person school option and opt for the full-time virtual learning option for your child please be aware the IEP team will review the IEP service page and services may be revised. The IEP services provided within the full-time virtual option likely will include some, but not all of the services from the IEP.

Students whose families choose the home study option are entitled to receive related services only, e.g. speech and language, occupational therapy, physical therapy and counseling.

We will continue to communicate with you as we approach the start of school with additional updates and information. We ask everyone to do their part to support a strong and healthy start and in keeping schools open. Parents can review our NCSU Strong and Healthy Start Handbook for more information about our planning and procedures based on the Strong and Healthy Start AOE/VDH Guidance. We encourage you to visit our website at NCSUVT.org, the NCSU Facebook page or your school website or Facebook sites for frequent updates. Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions.

We appreciate everyone’s understanding and support as we return to school under these very challenging times. We can do this!

Sincerely,

John A. Castle

NCSU Superintendent of Schools

NCSU Approach to In-Person and Virtual Learning

Overview: NCSU will provide full-time virtual learning options for those students and families in grades K-12 who would like to continue their education online as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic. See below for the range of options available:

  1. NCUHS - Provides internal virtual options for students as best they can pending availability of teachers across content areas and sections. Students may access learning virtually when those sections are available in the overall rotation of classes. Students who choose the fully virtual option will be asked to update their Personalized Learning Plan (PLP) and will be encouraged to have a variety of learning pathways including online courses, independent study, work-based learning, etc.

  2. NCUHS/NCCC - will also be starting the year in a hybrid model. More information on this will come directly from the high school and career center.

  3. NCCC - The Career Center will not provide a virtual option.

  4. NCUJHS - Provides internal virtual options for students in core academic areas. Students would access learning virtually when those sections are available in the overall rotation of classes. VTVLC may be an option for courses not offered by NCUJHS.

  5. Middle School Grades in PreK to 8 Schools - Students' virtual option is online courses, not necessarily with instruction provided by an NCSU teacher. Local schools will coordinate enrollment and provide some monitoring. We may consider other options due to limitations with VTVLC.

  6. Grades K-6 - NCSU will provide a virtual option for students across the SU in core academic areas. Enrollment may be limited and students may have to access VTVLC if enrollment is capped. Teachers will be hired specifically for virtual instruction.

  7. Pre-K - No full-time virtual option at this time. Some preschools may have a need for a hybrid model. Specific scheduling information will come directly from schools.

Students and parents must understand that by choosing the virtual option they will be enrolled as a full-time virtual learning student for the year and returning to a physical classroom will not be an option unless extenuating circumstances arise. Likewise, students who choose to attend school for in-person instruction are expected to maintain participation through the year. We certainly will reevaluate all programming in the event that there are changes in the context of public health or further requirements from the Agency of Education or Department of Health.

Please us this link to view a Comparison of Instructional Models 2020-2021.

In order to open school safely, we all need to adhere to certain requirements established by the Department of Health & Agency of Education and follow best practices to the best of our ability.

  • All students and staff will be required to wear a facial covering in school. For complete information on the use of Facial Coverings see the Health Guidance section.

  • K-8 students will generally stay with their classrooms with the exception for recess, outdoor classes (ie. physical education and other instruction). Students will generally eat in their classrooms or outside.

  • Schools will work to establish groups of students and limit the interactions between groups.

  • Students and staff must maintain safe physical distancing.

  • Students entering the bus or school building are required to submit a Daily Health Check screening slip.

  • If sick, students and adults will be sent home.

  • Sick children or adults are required to stay home.

Expectations: Full-time Virtual Learning Option

Requirements

  • The off-campus location must have adequate, reliable access to the Internet (at least 3.2 Mbps as determined using this tool). A school device will be provided with a home-use contract needing to be signed.

  • Students must complete coursework in all core subjects

  • Families must connect with support staff as needed for additional services (ie. guidance counselor, special educator, etc.).

  • School meals will be provided if requested, but the school may not have the capacity to deliver them. Guardians will need to make arrangements for pickup.

  • Students will have the same opportunities as their classmates to participate in school-sponsored clubs, sports, and activities with the understanding that some can only be done in-person. Schools must maintain AOE and VPA guidelines for all sports and other activities.

Expectations for students who access Full-time Virtual option:

  • Maintain contact with the online teacher(s) through a combination of check-ins and work completion. This will also be used for daily attendance.

  • Read announcements as needed using school email, Google Classroom and SeeSaw platforms.

  • Participate in both synchronous (for example: class meetings, presentations and video demonstrations) and asynchronous (independently, on your own schedule) learning. NCUHS/NCUJHS students will be expected to attend class at the scheduled time.

  • Attend an orientation on the how-to’s of virtual learning.

  • Complete all learning activities and assignments by the required date.

  • Respond and act upon feedback from teacher(s); this includes connecting with fellow students as necessary.

  • Ask questions! If you don’t know the answer or need help, communicate directly with your teacher(s). If you are having technical difficulties, let your teacher know.

Expectations for parents or guardians supporting their student at home:

  • Be present or arrange for supervision and academic support for your child based on age and need (must have parent/guardian present for a child in grade 6 or below). Parents should not rely solely on childcare providers/centers to facilitate online learning.

  • View detailed grade information and teacher feedback – see what your student sees!

  • Support your student with assignment due dates.

  • Read announcements as needed using School Messenger, Google Classroom and SeeSaw platforms.

  • Support discussions your students are involved in when appropriate

  • Grades 6-12: Review the online course syllabus – course description, expectations, grading policies and assignment due dates.

  • Communicate directly with the online teacher(s) over any questions or concerns. Likewise, share success stories or suggestions around your student. Family input, feedback, and communication is critical to instructing our students whether they are virtual or on-campus. Parents and guardians are invaluable partners in our schools.

  • Attend an orientation on the how-to’s of virtual learning.

Please use this link to access the NCSU Learning Options for School Year 2020-2021 enrollment form.

Travel

We ask parents to carefully consider out of state travel plans with their child and to review the information provided by the Vermont Department of Health before traveling. Out of state travel could result in required quarantine for students. Students are able, and expected, to make up missed assignments, yet will have a loss of in-person instruction during this time. Students will not have the ability to access instruction remotely.



July 28, 2020

Hello,

I hope you are staying cool in this hot weather and humidity! I know you have been wondering about what school will look like in the fall. While I don’t have all the information for you yet, I do know some things and want to dispel the rumors!

Here is what I can tell you at this time:

We are planning to start the year with 5 days per week of in-person instruction.

There are so many new processes that we are developing to keep our children and staff as safe as possible. We are developing a Covid-19 Addendum to our Family Handbook, and it will be published in the next few weeks. There may be a remote option available, we should be hearing more about this from NCSU soon.

We will have recess daily.

We will encourage positive play and learn some new games that can keep us physically distant enough to be mask-free.

We will prepare and serve yummy breakfast, lunch, and snack in the classroom daily.

Chef Marcoux and the kitchen crew will continue to wow us with the food!

We will have specials classes!

These are so important, and, well, special! Children will continue to have one special class per day.

Children and staff will wear facial coverings.

Children may be greeted with a hidden smile, and our kindness will shine through our masks. We will be planning fun, outdoor mask breaks throughout the day.

We will implement physical distancing.

We may not be close together like we were, but we will find innovative ways to collaborate, play, and learn from one another in the classroom. Our learning will still be done together.

We will learn many new procedures and routine to keep us safe at school.

We will be understanding of mistakes, encourage each other, and give everyone, including staff, students, and families time to learn. We are counting on parents to help keep children and staff safe by following new procedures for drop off and pick up. We will publish details soon.

We will need to be adaptable as our plans may change.

We do not know exactly what this year may bring. We will make decisions with student and staff safety and well-being at the forefront.

Thank you in advance for your patience as we plan down to the tiniest detail and try to think of everything. We have a great group of staff members working on our back to school plan, and will continue to seek input from parents. When our plan is ready, we will publish it for you.