A Letter from Principal Drummond

Dear Hill Community,
We want to welcome you back to the Hill campus for the first time since March! Our staff is excited to see some of your students on Monday for our first week of the four week phase-in process. We will be learning everyday how to fine-tune our system with safety always being paramount in every aspect of our day. This letter can hopefully act as a “Back to Campus” guide you can use for the coming weeks. Please make sure you know when your student is able to return if you are unsure by checking out the week by week phase-in guide. Alerting your teacher to your intentions to return in the coming weeks is a best practice as well!

Our Principal Check-In video this week goes over the basics for arrival, lunch, recess, and dismissal. Please watch if your students plan to phase-in Monday or beyond! Also, please ensure you have looked over our Hill Reopening Plan as this will answer many questions and support a positive experience on Monday. On page 14, the linked document called the Campus Reopening Plan is a PowerPoint that will walk you through the arrival process with visuals. The slides also follow in the main document. Together, we hope this will give everyone a clear picture of what to expect the physical campus to look like. We will not have a Principal Check-In this week as we focus on our staff meetings around the week and beyond.

On the arrival section of these documents, you will notice the different areas that we will be screening students based on their mode of transportation to campus. Screenings will begin at 7:30 am and not before as teachers won’t be ready on campus until then to receive students. We encourage families to only begin arriving at 7:30 am all the way until 8:00 am as we will screen until then with no tardies to ensure the safest arrival. Thank you for going to the correct screening area based on your method of arrival as it will help us with logistics. Also, while Robbie Lane is now open to through traffic (Dillo Cheer!), please know that sidewalk construction is still ongoing and parking in that area may still not be best for the next week or so.

For all families, please ensure you have downloaded the AISD app on your mobile device to help keep things moving in the morning. When you pre-screen for your student and show us the “green screen”, we will simply ensure their temperature is below 100 degrees with our touchless thermometers. They will then be granted entry. If you do not show us the “green” pre-screen, then we will have to ask each family a series of questions to do the screening in-person. This will obviously take more time and cause delays. Each and every school day, thank you for pre-screening on the AISD app which is very easy to navigate prior to leaving home, getting a “green” screen prior to traveling, and staying home if you get the “red” screen showing a failed pre-screening! If you have multiple children, you can use multiple devices (as is feasible) or screen shot as needed since it will be dated and timed.

For those students phasing-in to campus, please ensure they bring their charged device and charger to school. We encourage these to be labeled as well. If taking your device home each day, please ensure it always comes back. Some grade levels may ask you to keep devices at school as well. This way we avoid them being left at home which could put us in a challenging situation to meet technology needs. Lastly, thanks for ensuring students bring water bottles as always since our water fountains are taped off as instructed.

We are excited to announce that through December, all Hill students can receive free breakfast and lunch daily. Daily menus are limited and can be found here as well as the AISD app. For breakfast, students will grab and go to eat in the classroom with their desk shield up. For lunch, most classes will eat in the classroom with lunches brought to them as needed. Some smaller classes will utilize the cafeteria, spaced and sat appropriately by class for safety. Desk shields will be used here as well. We ask families to not send meals that need to be microwaved as this will not be feasible during this time. Please also know that weekend meals are available for families who may benefit from this support. You can email administration if you would like to take advantage of this.

While we will have limitations to recess as we continue to follow social distancing and contact measures, we encourage students to bring personal play items for recess that may be appropriate like jump ropes, sidewalk chalk, etc. We will continue to work on options on the school end as we have our plan in place with different zones. Thanks for understanding that for now, we cannot have students share equipment, etc. for safety reasons.

For a clear picture of dismissal each day, again we encourage you to watch the Principal Check-In video from this week. The car line will run as usual except that we will be dismissing students from the classroom straight to vehicles. Our younger students will be escorted for safety. For parents wanting to park and pick-up, you will queue at our front doors as we do in a typical year. The exception is that our 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade parents can wait outside those areas to meet students then walk to their vehicle/home. Our bus riders will be escorted to the bus area by staff as well for our younger students. We appreciate your patience as we do expect this process to take longer than our normal 10 to 15 minutes. Thank you for your understanding as this is brand new in several ways!

On a few other notes, you will notice on our Monday assembly slide that we have added some supplemental workout videos for our Dillos from the Fitness School! We are excited for these that can be utilized at home to continue supporting wellness. Please note that our Hill after school childcare program will not be up and running yet during the phase-in. We do intend to begin week 9 and will be reaching out in the coming weeks on the process and availability of this with restrictions that may still be in place. Thanks for your patience as we continue to plan for that important program. We’ve also received many questions on Asynchronous Wednesdays that will continue until Week 9. It is addressed in the Principal Check-In video this week. Please know that students will be completing the same asynchronous assignments while following their typical schedule. Some families have asked if it is okay to work virtually on that day from home, even if they are face to face other days. That is no problem with our current model of learning!

Dillo cheer to you all for your patience the next few weeks as just like virtual learning, we will be constantly evaluating and updating our practices to best meet the needs of our community. Have a restful Sunday and take care!

Principal Drummond