Head of School Weekly Email: Semester Transitions, Exam Schedule, Vaccination Clinic & New Covid Guidelines
January 07, 2022
Dear TA Families,
Welcome back and Happy New Year. Here are important updates to share with our school community as we shift gears into 2022.
– Semester Transitions
Early January is a pivotal time in the academic calendar at TA. Students return from holiday break and immerse themselves back into classes for the final stretch of the semester. Students are working on culminating projects, essays, activities, exams, and reflections this week and next. This is an especially intense period for high school students, whose current roster of classes end as part of the semester block system and new courses begin on January 18. (Students in grades 7-8 continue in their current classes all year, with just a rotation in their arts/tech electives each quarter.)
– Exam Schedule: Half Days on January 12-13
All grades, 7-12, have special half-day schedules next Wednesday and Thursday to provide longer periods for each class and afternoon time for studying and grading. School hours on those days will be 8:10am-12:10pm, with Blocks A and C meeting on Wednesday and Blocks B and D meeting on Thursday. The full schedule for the week is available on the school calendar and this document.
– Semester Break Day & MLK Holiday: No School on January 14, 17
As is traditional in TA’s calendar, next Friday is a semester break with no classes in session. Monday we will be closed in observance of the national Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday. (A reminder that the calendar page on our website is a helpful resource.)
– New Covid Guidelines
If you have not had a chance yet to carefully review the latest update from the TA Health Office, sent to parents via email yesterday at 12:15pm and also posted on our website, please take time to do so this weekend. We know it’s a lot to keep up with, and we thank you for your efforts to stay engaged and informed.
– Vaccination/Booster Clinic @ Thetford Elementary School – Saturday, January 8
Yesterday’s health office update included details about a clinic tomorrow at TES from 11am-1pm, sponsored by the VT Department of Health. First and second vaccination shots are available, as well as booster shots for ages 12 and up. Bring vaccination cards to the clinic.
– Covid Cases & Communication
As I reported to families yesterday, this week’s surveillance testing involved a record high of 234 participants among TA students and staff. For the first time since initiating the weekly testing in early October, two positive cases were identified as part of the process. While evidence of any cases on campus is a concern, the positivity rate of less than 1% (.85% to be exact) was a helpful and important indicator that TA continues to be a relatively safe environment. This is due to diligence on the part of our whole school community – families doing their part and TA’s Covid team’s continued efforts. Thank you!
We will continue to send email alerts when we learn of positive cases of individuals who have been on campus while infectious, as we did earlier this week.
Wishing everyone a hopeful start to the new year,
Carrie Brennan, Head of School
Featured photo: Culminating activities were already underway this week, such as hands-on group challenges in geometry class taking place in the gym on Wednesday – putting geometric principles and practices to test in the real world!