Previous COVID-19 Messages

March 30, 2020

 

Dear Goshen families,

 

It may be the most-repeated salutation these days: I hope you and your family are well! In my home, we are staying busy with online learning, walks in the neighborhood, more meals at the kitchen table than I can recall in years, and the occasional movie night. Every now and then, it gets a little rammy. We're trying, like all of you I'm sure, to keep it light and stay optimistic about the future!

 

Meanwhile, Goshen’s faculty and staff are working hard behind the scenes to get our school’s virtual operation up and running. The lead teachers “met” this week to talk about ways we can enhance the distance learning efforts we began when school closed March 13. This week, our full faculty and staff will “meet” to further coordinate those efforts.  Stay tuned as we continue to implement methods for connecting classrooms, families and our whole community.

 

There is no playbook on how to deliver a Preschool curriculum – not to mention create a sense of community – online. But, thanks to the wonders of the internet, we are making strides and will continue to make more. I have a lot of admiration for all of my colleagues. The work they are doing to keep Goshen going is yet another reminder of why I love working alongside them.

 

Thank you, parents, for your patience through all of this. You are guiding your children at home, probably while fulfilling your own work obligations at the same time. I want to take a moment to honor your efforts at keeping your families going at this time!

 

Due to the evolving nature of this crisis and the uncertainty of the weeks and months ahead, Goshen will continue to move forward with its existing calendar until the next round of requirements are announced by the state. At this point, we are operating under the assumption that we will be back at school April 14 and that Summer Camp, or at least some form and portion of it, will go on as planned. Similarly, we are assuming that the 2020-21 school year will begin on Monday, September 14. I am hopeful that in the not too distant future, we will have clarity on how our schedule may be impacted long-term, and we can begin to make decisions based on that clearer picture.

 

In the meantime, please do not hesitate to call on me with questions or concerns. As I said last week, my virtual door is always open! Please email me at mimi.ackers@goshenfriends.org.

 

Finally, please be sure to read through the remainder of this newsletter for additional notes from school, the business office and other helpful information.

 

I want to say that I truly miss seeing all of the children. In normal times, they are the bright spot in all of my days. Please give them a hug from me, and I am looking forward to making an appearance in your home very soon! (Virtually, that is!)

 

In peace and with love,

Tr. Mimi

 

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March 23, 2020
 
Dear Goshen families,
 
I am writing to announce that we must delay the re-opening of Goshen Friends School until Tuesday, April 14. This follows Governor Tom Wolf's decision today to order residents of Chester County to stay at home at least through April 6. Assuming we are allowed to resume normal activities at that time, we know we will need two days to get Goshen operational again, pushing us to April 9. That week, and the following Monday, are already scheduled for spring break. Therefore, it makes most sense for us to return to school on April 14. As is the case with this current crisis, we will re-evaluate at that time to determine if another extension is necessary. 
 
We know our families, teachers and staff are concerned about the long-term impacts of this required closure. We are working through many of these questions ourselves and will update you as solutions become clearer. 
 
These are unprecedented times. I want to thank everyone for all you are doing to care for yourselves and your families while keeping Goshen alive in your hearts and minds. I truly look forward to the day when we can all be together again. 
 
Please read on for updates and additional information from school. Take good care and be well. And please know that should you have any questions or concerns, my virtual door is open! Please email me at mimi.ackers@goshenfriends.org.
 
In Peace,
Tr. Mimi
 
**To read more about Gov. Wolf's order and related details, click here 
 
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March 16, 2020

 

Dear Goshen families,

 

I hope this email finds you all in good health and bearing up well under the pressure of trying times. As I say often to my children, this is temporary. I am looking forward to seeing you all on the other side of this pandemic.

 

As you know, we are closed through Friday, March 27. We will re-evaluate whether to extend the closure at that time. The School takes very seriously its responsibility in stopping the spread of Covid-19. We will continue to monitor the situation and will follow recommendations and mandates from public health and government officials.

 

In the meantime, we have suspended the publication of The Goshen Weekly and will replace it with regular email updates like these. Please take a moment to read through, as it contains information that I hope will be useful to you as parents and members of the Goshen community.

 

Take good care, and see you soon.

 

In Friendship,

Tr. Mimi

 

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Friday, March 13, 2020

 

Dear Goshen families,

 

Goshen Friends School will close effective today, March 13 through at least March 27. Goshen is following the mandate from Gov. Wolf, who ordered all Pennsylvania K-12 schools to close for 10 business days beginning March 16.

 

The state will continue to monitor Covid-19 in Pennsylvania, and at the end of 10 days will reevaluate and decide whether continued closure is needed. Goshen will also monitor the situation over the next two weeks and reassess whether to extend our closure at the end of the 2-week period.

 

Lead teachers will reach out to their classroom families once each week to share ideas for things to do at home. We hope this will help ease the strain brought on by this difficult situation.

 

If you are planning to pay outstanding fees for Extended Care, Summer Camp or enrollment for the 2020-21 school year, you may mail those payments to the school, as we will be checking our mail periodically. You may also drop payments into our secure lock box by the main office door. Documents or other requests for information may be emailed to me at mimi.ackers@goshenfriends.org. We will continue to accept Summer Camp registrations online. Click here to register. 

 

Community Night, the opening night for our school's book fair at 

Barnes & Noble in Exton, will not be held as scheduled on March 26. The Goshen Parent Community is exploring options for holding the book fair online. Please stay tuned for further updates. 

 

If you have any questions regarding this closure, please do not hesitate to email me. Please take good care, and we hope to see you all again soon.

 

In Friendship,

 

Tr. Mimi

 

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Friday, March 6, 2020

 

Dear Goshen families,

 

The recent rise in U.S. cases of coronavirus is cause for concern. As is the case during any cold
and flu season, school communities have a particular responsibility for taking steps to prevent
the spread of illness. I am reaching out to share what we are doing now at Goshen Friends
School to protect our students and staff.

 

  • Our cleaning staff is conducting deeper cleaning during nightly janitorial rounds, paying
    special attention to wiping down frequently touched surfaces and objects.

 

  • Faculty and staff met this week to reinforce everyday preventive actions (covering
    coughs and sneezes, proper hand-washing techniques, keeping hands away from face)
    for preventing the spread of illness in the classroom.

 

  • Our All School Gathering on Wednesday, March 11 at 10:30 am will be themed, “Taking
    Care of Me.” We will discuss healthy habits, including tips for preventing the spread of
    germs.

 

  • We are in close communication with the Chester County Health Department, which is
    informed by the Centers for Disease Control, so that we can properly monitor the
    situation and be advised on potential measures for preventing spread of the virus.

 

We are asking you to help us in our efforts. Please do not send children to school if they are sick.
Children with flu, fresh colds, stomach bugs, fever - even low-grade ones – or any other virus
should be kept at home and not brought back to school until they are fully recovered and fever-
free without the use of medication for at least 24 hours. Please notify the school when your
child is sick and let us know if your child has been diagnosed with a particular illness such as flu.
Also, it is wise to avoid contact with anyone exhibiting cold-like symptoms.

 

Teach your children:
· proper hand-washing techniques at home (with soap and water for at least 20 seconds)
· to cough and sneeze into a tissue and/or firmly into their elbows
· to keep their hands away from their eyes, nose and mouth
· not to share food or beverages with anyone

 

If you would like to stay informed on the situation, please visit the websites for the Chester
County Health Department https://www.chesco.org/224/Health and the Centers for Disease
Control https://www.cdc.gov/

 

Thank you for your support as we work to keep our community healthy. Please let me know if
you have any questions or concerns.

In Friendship,
Tr. Mimi