Head of School Weekly Email: Quarter 4 Program for TA
April 09, 2021
Dear TA Families & Students,
I am writing today with an update about our plan for the remainder of the school year. We will maintain the program that we have had in place starting March 1, with the combination of in-person classes, online learning, pod time, and remote classes on Wednesdays.
We are now six weeks in with the current schedule and a lot is going well. Teachers and students are back in classes together and this has been a game changer for second semester. I’ve attached a couple of photos to give you a glimpse of our experience in March (and there are more in the slides linked below).
By staying the course and not making another major change to the school program, we can focus intensely on maximizing the spring experience. This includes expanding our extracurricular offerings and planning for events such as the spring musical and graduation. In my report to the TA board of trustees at their April meeting last night, I presented these slides as I shared the quarter 4 plan to illustrate the reasoning behind this decision.
I think consistency is really important for students and teachers right now. The past 13 months have involved so much upheaval. While it might be tempting to leap back into a ‘normal’ school day with all classes meeting every day as soon as possible, creating a new schedule in late April for the final six instructional weeks of the school year will not yield the return on investment that we’d hope for. Additionally, the pandemic has entered a new phase but is not over by any means; youth case counts recently increased by 100% and schools all around us have had cases in recent weeks, causing campuses to close and/or many students and staff to quarantine.
With the new schools guidance out this week from the State of Vermont, we can accommodate more students on campus and strongly encourage those who are still working from home to return to school for part or all of their 4th quarter experience. Students and families can contact Dean of Students Siobhan Lopez to coordinate this move.
Please reach out with any questions about the spring plan. Meanwhile, we are hard at work designing a summer program at TA and will share more details soon for students and families.
Wishing everyone a joyful spring weekend,
Carrie Brennan, Head of School