Ridgeline's eNews 6-11-21
eNews: Ridgeline Montessori’s Weekly News
Summer 2020: Free Meals for Children and Youth
June 15–September 4*
Frequently Asked Questions:
Partners for a Hunger Free Oregon: http://www.oregonhunger.org
Ridgeline's eNews 6-3-21
Ridgeline's eNews 5-27-21
NOTE: A previous version of this media release had a typo in the number to text 211. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.
To contact 211 via text: Text your zip code to 898211 (TXT211)
(Salem, Ore.) – The State of Oregon received approval from the federal government to issue Pandemic EBT (P-EBT) for the 2020-21 school year. This will provide more than $550 million in food assistance for approximately 572,000 children in Oregon.
P-EBT provides food benefits to families whose children do not have access to the free or reduced-price meals usually provided at school. Oregon was approved to provide retroactive food benefits to eligible students for the 2020-21 school year. The P-EBT benefits are expected to be issued beginning in July.
“P-EBT benefits will significantly support the food security, health and well-being of children and families across Oregon,” said Dan Haun, director of the Oregon Department of Human Services (ODHS), Self-Sufficiency Programs. “Still, many Oregonians are struggling meeting their basic needs. We encourage them to contact our partners at 211 and the Oregon Food Bank.”
“All children deserve access to adequate nutrition to fuel their learning. The Oregon Department of Education is happy to be partnering with ODHS and local school districts to meet the nutrition needs of Oregon's children and families who were most impacted by the pandemic,” said Cindy Hunt, Chief of Staff at Oregon Department of Education (ODE).
ODHS and ODE share responsibility in ensuring that children across Oregon receive P-EBT food benefits. ODE collaborates with school districts across Oregon to determine eligibility and ODHS issues the benefits on Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) cards.
Households do not need to apply for P-EBT. Benefits will be automatically issued for students who normally have access to free and reduced-price meals and are enrolled at a school in Oregon.
If your children are not currently enrolled in free or reduced meals you can apply through your school or online at the Oregon Department of Education website. Qualifying for free or reduced meals for the 2020-21 school year before June 30, 2021 will ensure you receive P-EBT when the benefits are issued. P-EBT benefit eligibility and amounts will vary. Visit pebt.oregon.gov for more information.
Each student will receive their own P-EBT card. Students and households new to P-EBT and households with more than one student will receive an Oregon P-EBT card in the mail with instructions. Cards will be mailed to the address on file with the school for those students who do not receive SNAP.
Students who are already receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits will receive the P-EBT benefits on the EBT card associated with their household’s SNAP case.
P-EBT does not replace any child nutrition program already offered, and families are encouraged to continue participating in grab-n-go-meals or emergency food programs at their local schools and community locations.
P-EBT is separate from SNAP benefits including emergency allotments that are also being issued due to the impact of COVID-19. P-EBT benefits are not considered in a public charge test.
Resources to help meet basic needs
- Find a food pantry: foodfinder.oregonfoodbank.org
- Learn about government programs and community resources for older adults and people with disabilities: Aging and Disability Resource Connection of Oregon at 1-855-673-2372 or www.adrcoforegon.org.
- Dial 2-1-1, or text your zip code to 898211 (TXT211), www.211info.org
- Oregon Department of Human Services Resources
Administered by ODHS, SNAP is a federal program that provides food assistance to approximately 1 million eligible, low-income families and individuals in Oregon, including many older adults and people with disabilities. Oregonians in need can apply for benefits, including SNAP, child care, cash assistance and Medicaid. Learn more at https://govstatus.egov.com/or-dhs-benefits. For local resources in your area, such as food or shelter, please call 2-1-1 or reach out to the state’s Aging and Disability Resource Connection (ADRC) at 1-855-ORE-ADRC or 1-855-673-2372.
About the Oregon Department of Education
The Oregon Department of Education fosters equity and excellence for every learner through collaboration with educators, partners, and communities. ODE oversees the education of over 560,000 students in Oregon’s public K-12 education system. While ODE isn’t in the classroom directly providing services, the agency (along with the State Board) - focuses on helping districts achieve both local and statewide goals and priorities through strategies such as:
- Developing policies and standards
- Providing accurate and timely data to inform instruction
- Training teachers on how to use data effectively
- Effectively administering numerous state and federal grants
- Sharing and helping districts implement best practice
Ridgeline's eNews 5-20-21
eNews: Ridgeline Montessori’s Weekly News
RIDGELINE CALENDAR OF EVENTS:
Full calendar: https://www.ridgeline.org/family-resources/calendar
Mon. 5/24 Site Council Meeting 6-7pm
Wed. 5/26 State Testing Make Up Day 12:30-3:00pm
Thurs. 5/27 Board Meeting 6:30-8:30pm
NEW NEWS –
Attendance Calls - In a typical school year, attendance calls go out daily to the parents/guardians of students who were marked absent without a reason code (ie. we have not been informed that the student is sick, at an appointment, etc.) This year, prior to spring break, 4J sent out once a week attendance calls. Daily attendance calls resumed in April, but due to a script error, Ridgeline families did not receive them. For the remainder of the school year, Cynthia send out an email on Mondays to alert parents of student absences the previous week. If you know that your child will miss school, and will not be participating in any portion of CDL or Hybrid for the day, please let us know by emailing email@example.com. This will allow us to code the absence correctly and you will not receive the weekly email.
Drop Off Times - Please do not drop your child off prior to 11:30am for hybrid. The drop off window is 11:30-11:45am. Staff are on lunch, and are not available to supervise children prior to 11:30am.
Mowing Volunteer Needed - We are in need of volunteers to mow due to a glitch in our lawn service. We welcome anyone to come mow this weekend if you have time. Contact Cynthia if you need access to the shed.
Food Assistance from the State of Oregon - The State of Oregon received approval from the federal government to issue Pandemic EBT (P-EBT) for the 2020-21 school year. This will provide more than $550 million in food assistance for approximately 572,000 children in Oregon.P-EBT provides food benefits to families whose children do not have access to the free or reduced price meals usually provided at school. Oregon was approved to provide retroactive food benefits to eligible students for the 2020-21 school year. The P-EBT benefits are expected to be issued beginning in July. If you think you may qualify, please apply online at the Oregon Department of Education website. Qualifying for free or reduced meals for the 2020-21 school year before June 30, 2021 will ensure you receive P-EBT when the benefits are issued. Visit pebt.oregon.gov for more information.
Site Council Meeting - Site Council will meet Monday, May 24, 6-7 pm. Along with other monthly business we will be approving the 2021-22 school calendar. All Site Council meetings are open to the public. Join us on zoom. Hopefully parents have given their calendar feedback to the Site Council parent representatives by filling out the survey asking about no school days, conference days, etc.
Volunteers Needed - Facebook Community Moderators - The RCO is setting up a sub-group that will be responsible for the Ridgeline Parent Community Facebook page. We are looking for 2-4 volunteers who will establish the framework and moderate/manage a new Parent Community Facebook page. The current Ridgeline Community Page will be retired at the end of this school year and the new page established will be a parent only community. The school admin will not be involved in the new Ridgeline Parent Community Page, but will continue to maintain the public facing Facebook page. If you are interested in this role please email firstname.lastname@example.org. The sub-group will be selected by RCO and Site Council Parent Reps.
STILL NEEDED - Slideshow Volunteer Needed - We are looking for a volunteer who can compile the photos of our retiring staff into a slideshow that we can share with staff and families. To volunteer contact Cynthia.
Staffing Updates -
Please help us welcome Ridgeline’s new kindergarten teacher, Sarah Maxwell (pending board approval)! One of Sarah’s goals is to foster a love of learning. That truly shined through during her sample lesson with the students. She has a deep understanding of Montessori and great respect for the human being. She previously led a diverse group of 3-6 year olds. Sarah shared, “It was a particularly joyful part of our classroom community to celebrate the cultural backgrounds of all students, and this was reflected in the work on our shelves, in our group conversations and the books in our environment.” One of her references shared, “Sarah provides a foundation for growth and joy.” She looks forward to building community and partnering with parents. Click here to read Sarah’s bio.
Ridgeline is excited to welcome the newest member of the Upper Elementary team, Adrienne Parker (pending board approval). Throughout the hiring process there was one thing that became undeniably clear, Adriene is passionate about Upper Elementary students and Montessori! Her passion was easily demonstrated in her intentionally designed lesson delivery with a clear focus on Upper El content and making connections with students. Students laughed and learned during their time with her. Adrienne has spent the last five years teaching in an Upper Elementary classroom and we are excited to welcome her to the community! Click here to read Adrienne’s bio.
PE Update - Jeannelle, our PE teacher will be leaving Ridgeline at the end of the school year. Jeannelle moves to the Bethel school district to a full time PE position. We are sad to see her go and we know that there will be many happy students at her new school! While her time was short with us at Ridgeline, Jeannelle’s enthusiasm for her work transcended the zoom screen and brought a renewed enthusiasm for PE during a year like no other. We wish her well. You can read Jeanelle’s letter here.
Schoolwide Equity Committee - Hello, my name is April-Kay, and I am a board member, parent, and member of the Ridgeline Board’s ad hoc Equity Steering Committee. For the past two years we, the Equity Steering Committee, have worked with board members, administration, staff, and parents to lay the groundwork for a Ridgeline Equity Committee. The groundwork can be found in a presentation, Ridgeline Equity Committee Framework and Bylaws, in the Ridgeline Equity Committee One Sheet, and in the steering committee’s Vision Statement.
If you or someone you know is interested in serving on the Ridgeline Equity Committee, please fill out this statement of interest, and a member of the Ridgeline Equity Steering Committee will be in touch about the next steps.
Many thanks to all Ridgeline community members who have informed our work through conversations and emailed questions and comments. If you have any questions or concerns or would like more information, please reach out via email.
April-Kay Williams, email@example.com
Jen Hornsby, firstname.lastname@example.org
Maizzy Phayt, email@example.com
Board Meeting Next Thursday (5/27) - The board will have its May meeting next week on Thursday, May 27th from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. The agenda is not yet finalized, but will likely include approval of the budget for the 2021-22 school year; adoption of the board Black Lives Matter, Antibias, Antiracism resolution; staff contract renewals and approvals for 2021-22; and selection of bids for additional summer facilities work. The final agenda with a link to meeting materials will be posted on the school website by next Tuesday evening. The meeting will be held virtually (Zoom link for 5/27)
CONTINUING NEWS -
Ridgeline End of Year "Celebration!" - To commemorate the end of this crazy school year, the RCO would like to invite students (and families) to create painted rocks that will be placed on campus to be enjoyed for years to come. The theme for our painted rock creations is "What Brings You Joy?" You can paint anything you like that fits within this theme, we just ask you to keep it positive and school appropriate. :) We will be placing a bin outside the front entrance from May 31 - June 4. All painted rocks should be placed in the bin by June 4th. They will be sprayed with a protective coating and then placed on campus for everyone to enjoy during the last week of school. We will be sending out reminders over the next few weeks and if you have any questions please feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org
Introduction of Equity Resources Form - As we are working to maintain momentum around diversity, equity and inclusion, Site Council has reached out to staff and teachers about how families and students can continue to be helpful. Our goal is to create a list of books that are peer reviewed by families and students to be accessible for teachers to draw from and for students and families to get recommendations as well. Specifically we are looking for your personal reviews of resources (books, magazines, movies, blogs, and other media) that promote diversity, equity and inclusion. Enjoy some reading or watching and then post a review of the material here. We appreciate your thoughtfulness and volunteer work to make the school a better place.
Fundraising Update - A tremendous thank you to all of our Monthly Donors, our DDD donors, and every single donor who has contributed this school year. Thanks to you we are on track to reach our $75,000 goal in the coming month! If you have not yet made your contribution, rest assured now is a great time to do so. You could be the lucky donor whose gift officially pushes us past our goal!
All of your gifts have placed the Fundraising Committee in a unique position this Spring -- we are able to focus on our plans for NEXT year NOW! This is a priceless gift of time. This also means that NOW is the time to share any ideas you may have for Fundraising next year, and we want to hear from you! We are already talking about our plans for email communications, Giving Tuesday, the 2021-22 Direct Donation Drive, a Kindness Campaign, the return of our beloved Student Marketplace, and more!
Do you like planning parties or events? We'd love to have you join our Marketplace or Kindness Campaign planning teams! Is graphic design or writing more your thing? Then we'd love to have you involved with our fundraising communications! Do you want to help but know you cannot make a full year commitment? No problem! Come to a meeting or contact us to share your interests and constraints and we'll figure out a great way to be involved that fits with your schedule. You can always reach us at email@example.com.
End of Year Calendar Changes - In order to offer the same number of in person days for cohort A and B, we have made a couple of adjustments to the end of year calendar. Here are the changes -
Friday, June 11 - is now a school day with cohort B attending in person
Monday, June 14 - last in person day for cohort A
Tuesday, June 15 - last day of school for all students and last in person day for cohort B Wednesday, June 16 - Grading Day (end of year report cards will be mailed) & Technology Return (more details to follow)
State Testing Days and Times - For those of you who have opted in for State Testing, the days and times have been adjusted. This will allow us to set up comparable size testing groups and allow for maximum spacing of testers in the room. Please plan to drop off your student(s) for testing 5 minutes before the testing time. Late students will be turned away.
May 26 - 12:30-3 pm Make Up Session for Grades 3-8
Jobs - Ridgeline is hiring! We have positions open, including a classroom assistant. If you know anyone who you think might be interested, please help us spread the word. See our website for details https://www.ridgeline.org/employment-opportunities.
Photos Needed - We are looking for photos of Diana, Cheri, and Azusa from over the years to include in a retirement slideshow. If your child(ren) were in Diana and/or Cheri’s classes now is the time to take a trip down memory lane and send us those charming photos! Please send photos to Cynthia.