Each year many families use school vacation weeks opportunities for travel, but at this time such travel brings with it additional risks for contracting and transmitting COVID-19, according to the United States Center for Disease Control and Prevention (US CDC). It is critically important that our school communities continue to do everything we can in order to keep our schools safe, open, and able to provide in-person instruction.
The US CDC has issued strong guidance to the American people to continue to limit our interactions and travel at this time.
We encourage our staff and families to know the risks and the requirements for travel, and to communicate with our school leaders if you are traveling so that our schools can continue to operate safely.
In accordance with Maine travel guidelines, any staff or students who travel within the US to any state other than New Hampshire or Vermont (no restrictions as of 2/08/21 for these two states only), they will be required to either:
At this time, all air passengers coming to the United States, including U.S. citizens, are required to have a negative COVID-19 test result or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 before boarding a flight back to in the United States. See Frequently Asked Questions about this requirement for more information.
Upon return to the United States, staff and students must quarantine. International travelers can return to school after they:
1. Get tested 3-5 days after travel, and receive a negative test result AND stay home and self-quarantine for 7 days after travel.
2. Do not get tested and stay home for 10 days after travel.
3. Avoid being around people who are at increased risk for severe illness for 14 days, whether you get tested or not.
Any staff or students who have travelled internationally will not be permitted inside the school building for a minimum of 7 days, even if a negative test has occurred.
Returning to work or school after travel is not dependent on the length of time spent within the restricted states or other countries, meaning that a day visit still requires any person to quarantine and/or test as described above.
All members of the household who travel must test or quarantine if over 12 months old. Testing site information for Maine can be found,here.
Any person who is quarantining should stay home, and not have in-person contact with others unless there is an emergency.
Please continue to follow best practice safety protocols: wear a mask, keep physical distance, wash your hands and monitor for symptoms, and help protect our schools and neighbors.
The Eastern Washington County Elementary Athletic League has unanimously voted to forgo a basketball/cheering season this year. Factors that affected this decision included COVID trends in the area and a lack of available gym spaces at several schools.
Alexander Elementary School
Winter 2021 Art Contest
Who: All students in PreK - 8th Grades
What: We are inviting all students to participate in an art contest to start the new year! The theme of the contest is “Panther Pride.” Students are asked to create a piece on an 8” x 11” sheet of paper and may use paint, markers, colored pencils, pencils, pens, and/or crayons. Students are to add their name and grade level on the back of the paper. For remote students, submissions can also be made digitally to their teachers via email.
Two pieces from each classroom will be selected for a display in the school and featured on the school website.
All other student submissions will be added to a video slideshow at the main entrance to the school.
When: Submissions are due by Friday January 15th.
December 4th - Maine CDC provided an updated policy on the required length of quarantine for an individual determined to be a close contact of a positive COVID-19 case. Previously established as a 14-day period, this has been shortened to a 10-day period. The policy remains that a negative test result cannot shorten a quarantine period for close contacts.
Please note that those individuals who had been identified as close contacts prior to December 4, 2020, at 3:30 pm will be required to complete a 14-day quarantine period. Those who are identified after 3:30 on December 4, 2020, will follow the new policy of 10 days.
The full Public Health Advisory from Maine CDC can be viewed, here.
MEDIA RELEASE: Mills Administration Updates COVID-19 School Health Advisory System 12-4-20Oxford joins Androscoggin, Somerset, and York counties in yellow designation; Penobscot County closely monitored in green
AUGUSTA — The Mills Administration today released an update to its color-coded Health Advisory System that classifies counties’ relative risk of COVID-19 transmission by color and is provided to assist schools as they continue with their plans to deliver instruction and support students safely this fall. The Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention (Maine CDC) assessed the data and trends for all counties.
Based on this assessment, Oxford County is now categorized as yellow, joining Androscoggin, Somerset and York counties, which were designated previously. Franklin and Washington Counties are now designated as green, along with all other counties.
Under the “yellow” designation, which indicates an increased (moderate) level of community risk, schools may consider additional precautions, such as limiting numbers of people in school buildings at the same time, suspending extracurricular or co-curricular activities including competitions between schools, limiting interaction through cohorting, or other measures based on the unique needs of each school community.
These designations are made out of an abundance of caution and for the consideration of school administrative units in their decisions to deliver instruction.
It is essential that school districts across the State of Maine continue to implement plans that adhere to the six requirements for returning to in-person instruction, regardless of their county’s designation.
The Health Advisory System categorizations are defined as follows:
The Health Advisory System reflects ongoing analysis of evolving data, and serves as one piece of information that school and district leaders can use to make decisions about how to deliver education during the school year. The qualitative and quantitative considerations and data used by the CDC in determining community transmission risk levels for schools can be located here: How County Risk Levels for Maine Schools are Determined
The Health Advisory System can be found on the Maine DOE website in Part I of the Framework for Reopening Schools and Returning to In-Person Classroom Instruction: https://www.maine.gov/doe/framework/part-I.
The next update is scheduled for Dec. 11, 2020.
November 25, 2020
Dear AES Families,
I am writing to inform you that Alexander Elementary will return to in-person learning on Monday, December 7th 2020. On December 7th, the previously adopted school schedule will be in place, with school starting at 8:00 AM and dismissing at 1:30 PM.
The school department’s decision for this date, based on feedback from families, local health indicators, and consideration of information from the Maine CDC - which reports at this time, “evidence continues to suggest a relatively low risk of school-based transmission of COVID-19 and affirm the importance of keeping some level of in-person instruction for students whenever possible,” comes with an emphasis on the importance of maintaining required safety measures as students return to in-person learning.
One such safety measure, masks/face coverings in schools, has received updated guidelines from the State. These updated guidelines can be found here:
As families and staff prepare for the return, the school website provides important information for parents, guardians, caregivers, and students to re-familiarize themselves with:
Please continue to monitor your emails and the school website to ensure you are aware of the latest information and announcements. We are looking forward to seeing the students in-person again. If you have any questions or concerns, do not hesitate to contact me at the school.
From the Maine Department of Education (11/20/20)
Increase structure around mask breaks: In addition to the time during which students may be eating or drinking with a minimum of 6’ physical distancing, school staff should offer only highly structured and well supervised mask breaks during the school day. Such mask breaks should be limited to 5 minutes each, up to a maximum of 15 minutes per day. Breaks should take place in a classroom cohort when possible.
During mask breaks, individuals:
November 12, 2020
Dear AES Families,
I am writing to you on behalf of the Alexander School Committee. At the School Committee meeting on November 10, 2020 held via ZOOM, it was discussed and voted on that Alexander Elementary School will extend remote learning to November 30th, 2020. The School Committee will reconvene prior to that date to reassess the need to either continue remote learning beyond November 30th, or to adopt one of the models of in-person learning.
The School Committee remains committed to returning to in-person learning as soon as possible while also considering local health and safety indicators. With the continual rise in cases of COVID-19 in the area - the health of the students, the staff, and their families is of the highest priority.
Alexander Elementary School
Free Meal Program During Closure
We are offering free cold breakfast and lunch to anyone in Alexander under 18 years of age during our school closure. Meals will be delivered on Monday for Monday and Tuesday and on Wednesday for Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. Deliveries/pick up will be between 11:00-12:00pm.
To enroll call 207-454-2623 and select ext. 3 for the kitchen to sign up. To ensure I get your message A.S.A.P., please do not leave a message for the office or the principal. Once enrolled, you do not have to contact me unless you want to discontinue meals. You can enroll at any time during the closure.
Milk is included with all meals
Breakfast: Either Pop Tart, bagel, cereal, cereal bar, whole grain waffles, pancakes, cinnamon roll, whole grain donut, served with either juice, dried fruit, apple sauce, or fresh fruit.
Lunch: Either Pretzel, DIY pizza, ham and cheese sandwich, turkey and cheese sandwich, nacho’s, yogurt and cheese stick or a Smuckers Uncrustable served with dried fruit, apple sauce, or fresh fruit.
MENU IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE WITHOUT NOTICE