February 13, 2015

Post date: Mar 30, 2015 5:07:29 PM

Dear Parents,

I hope this email finds you warm with all this frigid weather we are experiencing. It has certainly been an interesting weather pattern. Thank you to everyone who donated to the PTO food drive. It is always a teachable moment when we can show our children the importance of compassion and understanding for their fellow citizens. Thank you as well to the room parents, the PTO volunteers and Constantly Pizza for the great parties/treats that will be available later on in the day. I know my two boys were very excited for their parties at their respective schools and the energy here is no different.

Next Friday marks the start of Winter Activities. The skiers have definitely lucked out with all the snow we have had in the past few weeks. From what I can gather, the conditions will be great. All this snow also makes our outdoor activities here at DES that much greater as well. It is sure to be a fun and exciting five weeks. Please remember if your child is doing cross country or downhill skiing, you will need to provide transportation to and from the respective activities.

I just wanted to remind you that we have an early release day on February 16th. Students will be released from school at 12:15. During the early release the teachers will be working on their Know, Understand, and Do documents. We affectionately call these our KUD documents. I won’t belabor the point,but these will be an important aspect of our English/Language Arts curriculum as the work we are putting in allows teachers to work together to organize which grades teach which concepts when as well as the sequence of these concepts from Kindergarten through 6th grade.

An Update from the School Nurse:

Along with the usual cold symptoms, I am seeing one or two students out each day with Influenza-Like Illness (Oral temp over 100 degrees Farenheit, cough and/or sore throat). There have been a few students with confirmed influenza; however, not all practioners are actually testing for flu. If your child has symptoms of Influenza-like Illness, be sure to call his/her PCP to report. Anti-virals might be prescribed especially if your child is in a high risk category. These medications are most effective if started in the first 2 days of getting sick. The latest health alert from the state indicates that nationally there is sufficient anti viral supply, but there may be some spot shortages.

I did check with the state for parameters for return to school. It is still recommended that students/staff need to be fever-free for 24 hours without the use of analgesics (fever reducing medications like acetaminophen or ibuprofen) before returning to school. In addition, it is important that your child is able to participate in the school day (eating, not tired not excessively coughing) before returning to school. If your practioner recommends a longer period out of school, please follow his/her advise!

I have also had a few students out (usually from the same family) with "stomach bug". This seems to have been nausea/vomitting without fever. This has been spotty to date but I wanted you to be aware. I would use the same parameters of 24 hours without symptoms and able to eat, etc. before return to school.

There has been a lot of information about measles through the media recently. I did receive this link from the state that I thought parents might find helpful.


As always, please keep your child home if he/she is ill. It is a long day for a student who doesn't feel well, and it will reduce the spread of disease. As always, the best prevention is handwashing. Remind your child to wash his/her hands (or use hand sanitizer) prior to eating, after using the bathroom and after nose blowing. We teach students to cough/sleeve into his/her sleeve to reduce the spread of germs. Please reinforce these activities at home.

Feel free to call me with questions or updates (ext 205). It is very helpful to know what is "going around". And February break is coming!

Just a reminder, as Mrs. Hast noted, February break will begin on February 23rd and students will return to school on March 2nd. The next email home will be sent on March 6th. As always, please feel free to contact your child’s teacher or contact us in the main office if you have any questions or concerns.


Owen Harrington