March 18, 2020
As we learned Monday from AISD, school will be closed at least through April 3rd. We have a talented team of district educators who are working on distance learning for our students and we will be sharing more information about the options available to us as a school community in the coming weeks. In the meantime, I am working with our teachers to provide learning opportunities for our students as soon as possible. While they will not be the full lessons your children are used to, our hope is to provide activities that students can engage in during our extended break. More information about these plans will be shared through Living Tree, our school website and PTA Facebook page.
This situation will continue to evolve in terms of level of need for our students and their families. While there are multiple supports currently in place, we are working with the PTA and other organizations within our community to prepare for long term needs. I have been heartened by many of the homegrown initiatives that are popping up from within our community and we are expanding our campus food pantry to be accessible at all hours outside the library. As we continue to utilize supplies and produce from our campus gardens to feed families within our community and beyond, we appreciate any donations of packaged food that you are able to share. As always, please do not hesitate to reach out to any of us about any needs you encounter during the coming weeks.
Lastly, I want to share the following resources, the first is about a number of medical and health resources you are able to utilize from your home, free of charge. The second is from our own Coach Reyes who was married this past weekend. She was kind enough to share some resources while on her honeymoon. They are a number of fun ways to get your Roadrunners up and active while at home.
All AISD families have access to telehealth through our partnership with Virtual Care for Kids. You can see a provider from the comfort of your home using a laptop, desktop computer, iPhone, Android phone, or tablet. Additionally, this service is currently waiving copays for AISD families. To take advantage of these services you must first register at my.austnisd.org To be seen by a provider, click here. For more information on Virtual Care for Kids telehealth in Austin ISD visit https://urgentcarekids.com/aisd/.
Our school based mental health partner, Vida Clinic, is offering teletherapy services to the Austin ISD community beginning Wednesday, Mar. 18. These services will allow adults and students to access quality mental health services right from their own homes. To learn more or schedule services, contact our Vida Clinic Care Team at 512-518-2209 or by email at email@example.com.
Additionally, if you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health crisis, Integral Care has a 24/7 Crisis Helpline at 512-472-HELP (4357). You can also Text TX to 741741 to connect to Crisis Text Line. Crisis Text Line provides free, 24/7 crisis support via text. Integral Care is also working with NAMI Central Texas to make sure the community has resources available during this challenging time. They will be posting helpful tools on their website this weekend, including tips and tools for managing stress and how to talk to your children about this uncertain time.
Please visit www.austinisd.org/coronavirus for our daily COVID-19 updates.
Get Active at Home
Here are some helpful ways to help your kiddos get active and get some wiggles out while at home these next few weeks:
- Board games & “pay to play”: make exercise cards or have kids pick their favorite and each time it is their turn to make a move they must do 5/10/15/20 of that exercise to make their move (ex: connect 4, giant tic tac toe on bed sheet, checkers)
- Hula hoop or jump rope (this is still pretty new to kinder and they were really enjoying it)
- Just dance video games (if your child plays video games) can also pull up on YouTube to follow along
- Lay out mats/blankets/pillows and make a gymnastics routine to perform for parents or siblings
- Make an obstacle course in backyard
- Create a indoor or backyard scavenger hunt and add in exercise stops to find the next clue
- Rock, paper, scissors with your feet (Ask your child to teach you. Older students know the “Alaskan style”)
It can be stressful to stay inside or just stuck at home. Exercise will help children and adults relieve some of the stress during this difficult time. Hope these tips can help everyone enjoy their break from school a little more and enjoy your time together.
Have a wonderful evening,
Principal – Russell Lee Elementary School