NTA Message for the Week of January 18, 2021

Good morning NTA family,
 
As you may know already, there is no school on Monday, January 18 in observance of the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. At this time in our country, I'm inspired by his visionary, faithful assertion that "the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice." No matter the circumstance or situation we find ourselves in, the cause of equality and justice are supported and guided by the cosmic forces all around us!
 
Here is a terrific set of resources and opportunities provided by the Art Institute of Chicago , and an excellent story about Dr. King's experiences in Chicago with an eye towards young people in particular. 
 
Here are our bulletins for the week, including reopening updates. We'll see you on Facebook Live around 12:15. 
 
Last but not least, a major thank you to the Friends of NTA for providing every staff member with a terrific holiday gift (details below). Thank you to FONTA and to all families who helped make this terrific act of kindness possible.
 
I wish you a restful and joyful weekend.
 
 
JP's Corner on Friday, January 22, 9:00am
We will provide reopening updates. We expect to have a full plan which includes pod and teacher assignments by this time, barring district delays. 
 
Meeting access information: meet.google.com/rsi-zedm-hhx
 
‪(US) +1 267-870-7476‬ PIN: ‪642 556 308‬#
 
 
FoNTA Staff Appreciation Fund Update
FoNTA received a flood of messages of delight and gratitude from staff and teachers following the distribution of contributions from NTA families and supporters. Participation exceeded expectations and allowed FoNTA to give a $45 gift card to each member of NTA’s educational, lunchroom, office, maintenance, and security teams. THANK YOU to all who took part!
 
Reopening updates
NTA staff are committed to providing the safest possible experience for students returning to school. With safety n mind, here are a few key points to consider about school reopening, especially for families who have not yet decided: 
  • For K-8 students returning to in-person learning, students will experience two days of in-person learning on either Monday-Tuesday or Thursday-Friday. Wednesday is a fully remote day for all students. 
  • Class size will be limited to no more than 15.
  • Not all teachers will not be returning to in-person instruction; many will continue to teach remotely. NTA's staffing model is not yet clear, as we await final word from CPS on which staff will be returning in-person and which will not. In any case, current student homeroom assignments and teacher assignments will change due to telework accommodations . In short, it is possible that your child will have different teachers to start the third quarter on February 1. 
  • All students will socially distance, wear masks, and wash hands frequently.
  • Student temperatures will be taken daily and those exhibiting COVID symptoms, including temperature of 100 degrees or more, will be sent home. 
  • Arrival and dismissal times for pods will be staggered to reduce the number of students outside or in hallways
  • Students will be safely supervised each morning starting at 8:25am. Students should not arrive to campus before this time. 
  • Students will remain in one classroom for the day, except during recess, which will he held outdoors when weather permits. Students will participate in recess with their student pods only. 
  • K-8 student classroom assignments and schedules will be shared with families no later than the week of January 18.
  • In-person before and after care will be unavailable.
Information from Mr. Castelaz's recent presentation to families is attached here. Please do not hesitate to reach out to Mr. Castelaz with any questions or concerns you may have at idcastelaz@cps.edu
 
Parent Forum Wednesday January 27: school reopening meeting for families
We welcome our new ALSC leadership team on Wednesday, January 27, 2021, at our meeting from 3:30-5:00. We are extending the length of this meeting so that interested families can hear more about our reopening plan. The Friends of NTA will meet from 5:15-6:00pm
 
‪(US) +1 575-914-2293‬ PIN: ‪636 149 563‬#
 
 
School Uniform survey 
As many K-8 students prepare to return to school February 1, we are considering a change to our school uniform policy. We want to hear from you please complete this survey!
 
Family Workshop series--your input requested
NTA is organizing three parent workshops for early 2021: dates being adjusted to accommodate school reopening. All sessions will be recorded and shared widely for all to enjoy. We are interested to know what subjects you would like to receive training on. Topics can range from school-based subjects such as the NTA grading policy to life skills for students or adults. Your feedback is important to us, so please complete this brief survey. 
 
Friends of NTA: Mask Fundraiser
Support Friends of NTA, slow the spread of COVID-19, and show your awareness, commitment, and integrity in style with an NTA face mask! Choose from two colors, three sizes, and four styles—all inspired by designs from NTA students: 
 
I Heart NTA - from second graders Antonio and Eugenia
NTA Eagle - from first grader Sebastian
We Can Get Through This Together - from fourth grader Elijah and sixth grader Prisara
Chicago Skyline - from sixth grader Karl
 
Each mask is $15 including tax and shipping, and proceeds will support remote learning programs. Order yours today! https://www.fundraisingmasksil.com/product-page/friends-of-nta-fundraiser
 
 
 
--
Isaac Castelaz (he/him)
Principal
National Teachers Academy
55 West Cermak
Chicago Il, 60616
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