Dear James H. Blackwell Community:
I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself and share my excitement about being at James H. Blackwell Elementary School. I am a native North Carolinian, a product of an outstanding K-12 public education and have been an educator for twenty-one years.
This year, I look forward to having the opportunity to get to know each and every one of you virtually. I know this is not a traditional opening to school, however my commitment to students, faculty, and teachers is unwavering. We will provide a quality education for your child. Our first day of school is Tuesday, September 8, 2020, at 9:15 AM. We realize these are unprecedented times for all educators across all nations.
As we move into virtual learning I ask that you provide yourself, your child, and us some grace and compassion as we navigate this new platform for learning. In addition, as your child’s partner in education, we look forward to working together, speaking the same language, and carrying the same focus and message throughout our year together, I am excited to present the four E’s:
Equity – Are all children in our schools receiving the attention they need to grow to their full potential? How can we at James H. Blackwell ensure that students are not falling behind because of unequal access to support and resources? Have we provided the professional development and training to ensure that all of our teachers are successful?
Energy – With all that is asked of us as parents, teachers, and administrators it is easy to let our energy flag not shine! Yet it is essential that we find the strength to rekindle our passion for our work, our children and use our energy to motivate and stimulate those around us. A school that hums reflects ownership of learning and success.
Expectations – What expectations have we set for ourselves, our students, and our school? Without setting high standards, there is little chance of ever reaching them. Have we fostered an environment that celebrates a proactive behavior? Are our expectations clear and are they based on data, input and participation? Can we all articulate our expectations and do our expectations focus on the needs of students and their success in the 21st Century?
Ensemble – No one can create a great school on one’s own. It takes a dedicated group of people whose talents and interests are being tapped in the right way. Remember that just as each individual child needs to be nurtured in order to grow and develop, so do we as a faculty, parents and students.
I will be in the office at James H. Blackwell on Monday and Wednesday, so please feel free to call 804.780.1570 or email BlackwellElementarySupp@rvaschools.net. Our door is open for parents, students, and community members by appointments only on Monday (9:00 AM – 2:00 PM) and Wednesday (12:00 PM – 5:30 PM). When you visit us please make sure you wear a mask, utilize our hand sanitizer, and maintain 6 feet distance in the office area.
Student hours in K- 2nd grade is 9:15 AM – 3:00 PM and 3rd -5th is 9:15 AM – 3:30 PM. Every Wednesday all students will be dismissed at noon.
Our theme this year is better together, however, we are stronger and better with all of your support. Please enjoy the rest of your summer and know we are working hard to make 2020-2021 a GREAT year!
Teresa K. Anderson, Ed.D.
COVID-19 Vaccine Update for RPS Employees - On Thursday, January 14, 2021, all RPS Staff should have received an email containing a registration link for the COVID-19 vaccine. Also please tune into a special COVID-19 edition of RPS Live! for staff on Friday, January 15 at 4:30pm on the RPS Facebook page.
Family Support Helpline - Questions about reopening? Call the RPS Family Support Helpline at (804) 780-6195 and learn more about other resources available to families.
"RPS Direct" Emails from Superintendent Kamras
Dear #RPSStrong Family, Lots to cover tonight, so let's dive in! First, I have a couple of updates about the vaccine registration process for RPS staff: As I noted on Friday, the Richmond City Health District (RCHD) had to cancel hundreds of appointments and disable the registration link that was previously shared. We've learned that a number of RPS staff had their appointments inadvertently canceled. I'm so sorry about the frustration and anxiety that caused. Please note that there will be a new registration system and new vaccination events scheduled for February. I'll share more information about this as soon as I have it. Finally, our nurses will be reaching out to any RPS employees who are currently working in-person (for example, bus drivers and nutrition workers) to ensure they are vaccinated – if they want to be – during the events scheduled for this week and next. If you have any other questions, please reach out to us at email@example.com. Click above to read more!
Twitter Facebook Instagram LinkedIn YouTube Friday (PM), January 15, 2021 Dear #RPSStrong Family, Happy Friday! I have a few very important updates tonight about vaccine registration: You may have just seen a news alert that thousands of registrations for the vaccination events next week at the Richmond Raceway were cancelled. To clarify, as I understand it, the intent was only to cancel invalid registrations. The upcoming events are strictly for school, police, and fire personnel. A number of individuals outside these fields signed up. Those are the registrations that were cancelled. The freed up slots will be distributed by each of the localities in central Virginia. I don't have more information on how that process will work just yet. As soon as I do, I'll share it with you. If you were not able to register yet, I'm told there will be more opportunities with a new registration system by early February. Again, as soon as I have more details, I'll share them. Like all of us at RPS, our public health officials are attempting to do something that's never been done before. So many people have extended us so much grace over the past year; I humbly ask that we do the same for our colleagues at VDH and RCHD. They are literally working day and night to distribute the vaccine as quickly as possible.