"RPS Direct" Emails from Superintendent Kamras

  • RPS Direct Update - April 22, 2021

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, Just a few quick updates tonight: Course Selection – The deadline for 6th-11th graders to select courses for next year via SchoolLinks has been extended until May 7. Students can access SchooLinks by going to Clever and choosing the SchooLinks icon. Please reach out to your school counselor if you have questions. DonorsChoose – On Tuesday, May 4, starting at 7 am, every donation to an RPS project on DonorsChoose will be matched 50% thanks to SONIC Drive-In (while funds last). This means that a $20 donation will become a $30 donation, a $100 donation will become a $150 donation, and so on. Teachers: whether you need books for your students, a new coding kit, or something else entirely, now is a great time to create a project on DonorsChoose! Donors: Check out the RPS DonorsChoose page on Tuesday, May 4, to help fund these great projects!

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  • RPS Direct Update - April 21, 2021

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, Today is National Administrative Professionals Day and I'd like to send a very special shout-out to my amazing colleague Mildred DeLoatch, who does a whole lot of magic behind the scenes to help me do my job and keep RPS running. Thank you, Mildred! Please send your shout-outs to recognize the wonderful administrative professionals in our schools and offices and I’ll be sure to include them in RPS Direct. Today's updates: COVID-19 Vaccine – Earlier this week, Virginia entered Phase 2 of the COVID-19 vaccine rollout. In Phase 2, everyone 16 and older is eligible to receive the vaccine, which includes many of our high school students. Right now, 16 and 17-year-olds only qualify for the Pfizer vaccine and a parent must be present. To schedule an appointment, please register at www.vaccinate.virginia.gov. For additional resources and FAQs about the vaccine, visit the VDH website.

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  • RPS Direct Update - April 20, 2021

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, Like many of you, I sat with my family this afternoon anxiously awaiting the verdict in the trial of Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd. When the news finally broke – guilty on all three counts – we felt both relieved and uneasy. Relieved because justice had prevailed; but uneasy because the victory, though historic, will serve as a sign to some that the "system" is fundamentally sound. It is not. It is still infected with biases, institutional and human, that make the murder of unarmed Black men and women at the hands of law enforcement all too common, and justice for their assailants all too rare. This is not to denigrate the many dedicated, caring, and empathetic police officers of all backgrounds who dedicate their lives to protecting communities. On the contrary, it is to honor them – by shining a bright light on the structural injustices of the system in which they work and on the depravity of some of their colleagues who use their power to dehumanize and, yes, kill. I pray that today's verdict serves to inspire us about what's possible when millions take to the streets calling for change, as happened last summer; and to motivate us to work even harder to enact critical policy reforms.

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  • RPS Direct Update - April 19 (PM), 2021

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, I'm ashamed to admit that I've lost track of all the shootings and death over the last couple of weeks – from Adam Toledo in Chicago to Indianapolis to right here in Richmond. Layer on top of that the anguish and pain generated by the trial of Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd – and the death that persists with COVID – and it's all become just too much to bear for so many in our community. People are hurting. Please check in with one another. Offer a helping hand or a shoulder to cry on. Extend extra grace. We need each other – perhaps now more than ever before. Thank you. Turning to today's updates: School Board Meeting – Remember to tune in at 6 pm on the RPS Facebook page for tonight's meeting. You can find the agenda here. Community Conversations – RPS family liaisons are out in the community sharing information about summer programming and fall reopening.

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  • RPS Direct Update - April 19, 2021

    Dear #RPS Strong Family, I'm reaching out with this special RPS Direct to share the following COVID-19 positive test result/s: Albert Hill Middle School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) Bellevue Elementary School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) Binford Middle School - 3 students (not physically present this school year) Franklin Military Academy - 3 students (not physically present this school year) Henry L. Marsh, III Elementary School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) J.H. Blackwell Elementary School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) John B. Cary Elementary School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) Overby-Sheppard Elementary School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) Thomas Jefferson High School - 1 student (not physically present this school year)

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  • RPS Direct Update - April 16, 2021

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, Happy Friday! Today's updates: Yale National Fellows – Congratulations to the following RPS teachers who were selected as Yale National Fellows through the Yale National Initiative to strengthen teaching in public schools! In collaboration with Yale faculty members, each fellow will develop a curriculum unit to teach during the coming school year and share with teachers throughout RPS. Taryn Coullier, Elizabeth D. Redd Elementary School Emma Kessler, Bellevue Elementary School Tara McCrone, Chimborazo Elementary School Joanna Minott, Huguenot High School Karen Mullins, Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School Valerie Schwarz, Mary Munford Elementary School Stephen Straus, River City Middle School Kaitlin Waldron, River City Middle School

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  • RPS Direct Update (PM) - April 15, 2021

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, In honor of National Library Month, tonight I'm spotlighting the hottest ride in town – the RPS Lit Limo! Check out the schedule below and mark your calendars for a visit. Put the Chromebooks down, stretch your legs, and pick up an actual, physical book to take home. And if you'd like to donate books to the Lit Limo, please reach out to our amazing head of library services, Judy Deichman, at jdeichman@rvaschools.net. And just remember: Dinosaurs didn't read; now they're extinct. With great appreciation, Jason

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  • RPS Direct Update - April 15, 2021

    Dear #RPS Strong Family, I'm reaching out with this special RPS Direct to share the following COVID-19 positive test result/s: Huguenot High School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) John Marshall High School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) Lucille M. Brown Middle School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) Please reach out to your primary care provider if you have any concerns, or contact the Richmond City Health District (RCHD) by calling their COVID-19 hotline: (804) 205-3501. Please also continue to wear your mask, stay physically distant, and wash your hands. Our number one priority remains the health and safety of our students, staff, and families. Towards that end, we will continue to work in close collaboration with RCHD to ensure the well-being of the entire RPS community. If you have any questions, as always, please don't hesitate to contact me. Best, Jason

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  • RPS Direct Update (PM) - April 14, 2021

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, Happy Wednesday! Tonight's updates: RPS Live! – We're back tonight at 7 pm on the RPS Facebook page. Over the next couple of weeks, our episodes will focus on sharing information and answering questions about our fall reopening plans – #ReopenWithLove 2.0. Tonight, I’ll be joined by Tracy Epp, Autumn Nabors, and Tyra Harrison from our Academic Office to discuss what teaching and learning will look like this summer and fall. I hope you can join! Preschool and Kindergarten Registration – Just a reminder, we're currently registering students for PreK/K for next fall. PreK is open to children who will be 3 or 4 by September 30 and kindergarten is open to children who will be 5 by September 30. For a complete list of eligibility and documentation requirements, and to enroll your child, please visit our website at rvaschools.net/enroll.

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  • RPS Direct Update - April 14, 2021

    Dear #RPS Strong Family, I'm reaching out with this special RPS Direct to share the following COVID-19 positive test result/s, inclusive of those from Spring Break: Binford Middle School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) Fairfield Court Elementary School - 1 staff member (last there on 3/12) Franklin Military Academy - 1 student (not physically present this school year) G. H. Reid Elementary School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) George W. Carver Elementary School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) George Wythe High School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) Ginter Park Elementary School - 2 students (not physically present this school year) Henderson Middle School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) Huguenot High School - 5 students (not physically present this school year) J. L. Francis Elementary School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) John B. Cary Elementary School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) Maymont Preschool - 1 staff member (last there on 3/15) Miles Jones Elementary School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) Open High School - 2 students (not physically present this school year) Southampton Elementary School - 2 students & 1 staff member (not physically present this school year)

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  • RPS Direct Update - April 13, 2021

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, I want to wish the RPS Sikh community a very happy Vaisakhi – the Sikh New Year – filled with love, unity, and equality! Turning to more somber news, please join me in extending our heartfelt condolences to the family of yet another RPS student – a young man from George Wythe High School – who was shot and killed over Spring Break. No words can fill the hole created by this devastating tragedy, but I hope that our collective prayers will provide some solace to this student's family and friends. Tonight I also want to acknowledge the anguish and pain caused once again by the killing of a Black man at the hands of police. Daunte Wright's killing – which occurred just miles away from the murder of George Floyd – was utterly senseless. Closer to home, our community has also been rattled by the video of Army Lt. Caron Nazario being pulled over and assaulted by Windsor police last December.

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  • RPS Direct Update - April 12, 2021

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, Welcome back! I hope you all had some time to rest and recharge in the beautiful sunshine last week. I managed to get away for a couple of days and I'm incredibly grateful for the time with my family. Let me start tonight by wishing a Ramadan Mubarak to all RPS students, families, and staff who observe Ramadan! We hope this month is filled with love, peace, and reflection. Today's updates: Two Logistical Notes – First, I want to highlight a new translation feature. If you look in the upper right corner of this email, you'll sink links to our five most commonly spoken languages (highlighted in the red oval in the screenshot below). Just click and you'll be taken to a Google translated version of the day's RPS Direct. Second, I've streamlined the links section at the bottom of the email. If there's anything missing that you feel is critical, please let me know!

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  • RPS Direct Update - April 2, 2021

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, Happy Spring Break! I hope you're able to take some time for yourself this week – to rest, reflect, and recharge. I'm going to practice what I'm preaching so there won't be any RPS Direct next week. Look for the next one when we return on Monday, April 12. Thanks for your understanding! RPS Senior in the News – Check out this amazing story about Harold Aquino, senior at George Wythe High School. Harold will graduate at the top of his class with a 5.0 GPA (!) and multiple Associate Degrees. He's been accepted to his dream school, VCU, among many others. If Harold decides to attend VCU, he'll enter as a...senior! Harold, we are so proud of you! Continental Societies Donation – Many thanks to Continental Societies, Inc., Richmond, Virginia Chapter, for their donation of 5,000 children’s masks for our fall reopening.

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  • RPS Direct Update - April 1 (PM), 2021

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, Lots to cover tonight! RPS Live! Recap – I want to express my profound gratitude to the amazing panelists who joined RPS Live! yesterday in celebration of National Women’s History Month. And even though the month has come to a close, we honor and celebrate all of the extraordinary women in our lives every single day. Thank you for all that you do and all that you are! Cheryl Burke, School Board Chair Anne Holton, Former Virginia Secretary of Education Latonya Waller, Principal, Boushall Middle School Meaghan Rymer, History/Social Studies Teacher, River City Middle School Tiffany Sneed, History/Social Studies Teacher, Miles Jones Elementary School Chasity Rodriguez, RPS Hub Coordinator No Kid Hungry Grant – We're thrilled to receive a $150,000 grant from No Kid Hungry Virginia to extend our grocery delivery program to 150 of our most vulnerable families.

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  • RPS Direct Update - April 1, 2021

    Dear #RPS Strong Family, I'm reaching out with this special RPS Direct to share the following COVID-19 positive test result/s: Amelia Street School - 1 staff member (not physically present this school year) Linwood Holton Elementary School - 1 staff member (not physically present this school year) Please reach out to your primary care provider if you have any concerns, or contact the Richmond City Health District (RCHD) by calling their COVID-19 hotline: (804) 205-3501. Please also continue to wear your mask, stay physically distant, and wash your hands. Our number one priority remains the health and safety of our students, staff, and families. Towards that end, we will continue to work in close collaboration with RCHD to ensure the well-being of the entire RPS community.

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  • RPS Direct Update - March 31, 2021

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, On behalf of RPS, I'd like to extend my deepest condolences to the family of Jamia Porter, a Huguenot High School student we lost recently. Please see below for a message from the Huguenot community, approved for public dissemination by Jamia's family: "We are very heartbroken over the loss of our dear student, Jamia. Jamia was very loved by her family, friends, teachers, and co-workers. Jamia was an extremely talented young lady who was intelligent, artistic, confident, photogenic, loving, and caring. Jamia loved to express herself through clothing and music. She was also very hard working and looked forward to attending college after high school and following her dream of becoming a neonatal nurse. Jamia loved to travel to new places with her family and experience life to the fullest. She is described as being a free spirit. Jamia was very friendly and loved by her peers. Huguenot High School and the entire RPS Family will greatly miss her." Turning to several key updates for this evening

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  • RPS Direct Update - March 30, 2021 Correction*

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, Please forgive me for the calendar error in the RPS Direct I just sent. This Friday, April 2, will have the same schedule as our Wednesday schedule for students. My sincere apologies for any confusion.

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  • RPS Direct Update - March 30, 2021

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, What a beautiful spring day! I hope you all had a chance to spend a few minutes in the sunny, crisp air this afternoon. RPS Live! – In honor of Women’s History Month, we’ll have several special guests on RPS Live! tomorrow, including School Board Chair Cheryl Burke, City Council Member Stephanie Lynch, former Virginia Secretary of Education Anne Holton, and RPS History/Social Studies Teachers Tiffany Sneed and Meaghan Rymer. You can tune in at 7 pm on the RPS Facebook page. Hope you can join! Calendar Reminders – This Friday, April 2, is a Teacher Work Day, meaning no classes for students. The following Monday, April 5, is the start of our Spring Break, which goes through Friday, April 9. All schools will be closed during this time. Classes will resume on Monday, April 12. Families can pick up extra meals for the break at our normal meal distribution sites this week. Attendance Celebrations – Big shout out to our schools for coming up with creative ways to celebrate our students' attendance as we get into the final quarter of the year. For example, check out this video of Huguenot High School’s Prize Patrol celebrating students at their homes!

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  • RPS Direct Update - March 29 (PM), 2021

    Dear #RPSStrong Family, Happy Passover to all who celebrate! Two updates tonight: Blue Sky Fund – Now that it's getting warmer, our partners at Blue Sky Fund are excited to offer free outdoor science activities in April and May. All RPS elementary students are invited to participate! See the flyers below for additional information. Women's History Month – In recognition of Women's History Month, Rebecca Wolf, a graduate of Richmond Community High School, recently spoke to students about her career as one of the few women to command a US Navy warship. Lieutenant Commander Wolf graduated and was commissioned from the US Naval Academy in 2006 with a Bachelor’s of Science in Oceanography. She then attended the Naval Post Graduate School where she obtained a Master’s in Physical Oceanography. To read more about LCDR Wolf's many accomplishments, click here. Thank you for your service, LCDR Wolf!

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  • RPS Direct Update - March 29, 2021

    Dear #RPS Strong Family, I'm reaching out with this special RPS Direct to share the following COVID-19 positive test result/s: Armstrong High School - 1 staff member (not physically present this school year) Fairfield Court Elementary School - 2 students (not physically present this school year) Huguenot High School - 2 students (not physically present this school year) John Marshall High School - 2 students (not physically present this school year) Lucille M. Brown Middle School - 1 student (not physically present this school year) Please reach out to your primary care provider if you have any concerns, or contact the Richmond City Health District (RCHD) by calling their COVID-19 hotline: (804) 205-3501. Please also continue to wear your mask, stay physically distant, and wash your hands.

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