COVID-19 Updates

Community Update August 11 – Virtual Town Hall FAQs

When will families receive grade level schedules? 
Schedules will be sent by Friday, August 14.

Will GSA follow AISD and delay the start school by three weeks?  
No. School will begin on August 19. The first three days of school will focus on relationship building and will look a little different. Our regular schedule will start on Monday, August 24.

What will distance learning look like? 
Distance learning will include all core subjects and specials. Students will complete synchronous (live meetings with the teacher) and asynchronous (independent work) learning Monday – Friday. Instruction will begin at 9 am. The amount of time per day will vary by grade level. All grades will have built-in breaks and self-paced assignments. K-3 will be using Seesaw and grades 4 – 8 will use Canvas to organize assignments.  More details will be provided in the schedule and by your grade level teachers.

Are students required to wear uniforms during distance learning? 
No. Students are required to be dressed for the day (no PJs) and GSA shirts are recommended but not required.

Are health forms still required prior to August 19? 
No. We understand that some families are delaying well-checks due to COVID-19. Health forms (signed by a physician) will be required before your daughter can return to campus.

How will we receive learning materials/school supplies and how will ‘open house/orientation work this year? 
We will let you know our plan for materials and open house by Friday, August 14.

Will middle school receive grades? 
We will return to our regular grading scale/protocols that we used prior to the spring semester. See the handbook for details.

What will trigger a move between phases? 
We are committed to getting our students back on campus as soon as it is safe to do so. The medical/scientific council is working closely with the task force to regularly evaluate our next move. We are using an evidence-based approach; however, there is no single factor that will trigger a decision. We will be closely monitoring local community spread, hospitalizations, test positive rates, and guidance from local authorities.

What if GSA moves to on-campus instruction before a family is ready to do so?  
Distance learning options, such as live streaming, will be available for families who elect to stay home during the hybrid phases 2-5.

How will GSA respond to a positive case on campus? 
GSA will contact the health department and follow their recommendations. We will promptly inform families of any positive cases in our community.

How can we support teachers/GSA during this time? 
Although many of our teachers have been busy preparing over the summer our official start date was Monday, August 10. We appreciate your continued support and ask for your patience and understanding as we work to finalize schedules and iron out the details this week.

How will GSA build community during distance learning? 
Building a community will remain an important part of GSA while we are off-campus. Efforts will include, relationship building within grade levels, weekly community meetings, sister group activities, virtual hangouts, and adapting our GSA traditions.

COVID-19 Update – March 6

Dear GSA Community,  

We are continuing to closely monitor the COVID-19 situation to ensure the health and safety of our community. At this time the risk to our community remains low

Continued Learning in the Event of School Closure
Our task force for continued learning has met and communicated with all faculty to start developing a plan. We are currently gathering information, and we will solidify our plan for continued learning in the event of a school closure in the coming days.

You can expect that our teachers will provide continued learning in the event of a school closure using technology tools, online resources, journal assignments and their regular communication tools. Your daughter will have daily assignments; however, they will not occupy the students for the full number of hours that they would be in school 

If your daughter does not have access to the internet or a device at home, please let us know. 

We will follow recommendations from local authorities and as with other school closures we will follow suit if AISD were to announce a district closure.  

Travel 
GSA recommends that families do not travel abroad in the upcoming weeks, including spring break. If you do opt to travel out of the country or if you have visitors from abroad (particularly from areas with a risk level 2 or higher) over spring break we ask that you keep us informed by contacting the office. 

Following recommendations from the CDC, any studentfaculty or staff member who travels to (or has visitors from) a country designated by the CDC as a warning level 3 area, and/or anyone who has been advised to self-quarantine, will be subject to a 14-day period of self-isolation away from school upon their return.  

Precautions
The best precaution that we can take right now is to follow the same guidelines recommended for cold and flu season: 

  • Wash hands often with soap and water. 
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with an elbow or a tissue, and then immediately dispose of the tissue.  
  • Avoiding close contact with people who are sick. 
  • Stay home when sick. 
  • Avoid touching your face.  

We are continuing to add extra sanitizing to our daily cleaning routines and requiring regular and effective hand washing with our students.  

We’re all hoping that our community stays healthy and Coronavirus free, and we are prepared should we have to close temporarily. 

Thank you for your support and partnership, 

Shanna Prewitt-Hines and Frances Ramberg  

Coronavirus Precautions at GSA

Dear GSA Community,

We want to assure you that we are monitoring the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak to ensure the safety of our students, faculty, and staff. To date, there have been no cases in our local community and the current risk is very low.

The best precaution that we can take right now is to follow the same guidelines recommended for cold and flu season:

  • Wash hands often with soap and water.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with an elbow or a tissue, and then immediately dispose of the tissue. 
  • Avoiding close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when sick. 

We reviewed these precautions with our students, faculty, and staff this morning.  We have requested that teachers and our janitorial service implement extra sanitizing to their daily cleaning routines. To note, currently our janitorial service follows CDC guidelines for cleaning and sanitizing and all classroom surfaces are cleaned and sanitized daily. Additionally, they will be spraying all rooms monthly with a proprietary sanitizing product developed for medical facilities.  Lastly, we have requested that teachers review CDC recommended handwashing practices with the girls. GSA will continue to closely follow the situation and adhere to CDC guidelines and recommendations from local health authorities. We are developing a plan to ensure the girls’ continued learning in the event that we need to close the school. 

If your family plans to travel over spring break,  please refer to the CDC travel warnings and do not travel if you are unwell.

Our community’s health and safety is our top priority. We will keep you informed of any updates. 

Sincerely,

Shanna Prewitt-Hines and Frances Ramberg
GSA Co-Leaders 

GSA’s 2020 – 2021 Task Force 

OBJECTIVES

  • Develop and recommend implementation processes and procedures for transitioning to 20-21 school year.
  • Determine a baseline plan to start 20-21 and options for changes that may be needed.
  • Goal: final plan approved by the board by August 1.
  • Protect the health and safety of students and employees
  • Support all staff to adapt and respond to the instructional and operational needs of all stakeholders
  • Sustain open communication with the GSA community.

MEMBERS

Rosa M. Peña
GSA Head of School

Academics and Instruction
Frances Ramberg
Rosa Peña
Meredith Hayden
Felicia Frazee
Ilene Novy
Anne Seekatz
Jenny Leeds
Ana Rie
Jenny Sparks
Lorna Torrado

Facilities
Bronson Dorsey
Rosa Peña
Regina Lim
Nicola Davies

Policy and Guidelines
Tricia Yost
John Melton
Nicola Davies
Rosa Peña
Regina Lim

Communications
Linda Maher
Lex Sanford
Trish Morrison
Rosa Peña
Tricia Yost

Summer Project Management
Dick Hoover

Medical/Scientific Advisory Council 
Rosa M. Peña
Dr. Nicola Davies
Dr. Michael Grad, MD
Dr. Bri Tristan, MD
Dr. Ami Patel, MD
Dr. Nehal Rana, MD

Resources