Curricular & Spiritual Connections 10-15-21

COVID-19 Update
We have received some questions about why parents were not notified of COVID cases in our school. In our 2021-22 COVID Mitigation Plan, we outlined that as we become aware of positive COVID cases within the school community, an email would be sent to the classroom(s)/group(s) affected. During the past couple of weeks all of our cases were confined to the kindergarten and the third grade classrooms and letters were sent out to those parents. Many schools, including W-SR Public School do not send any notification. Here is also a link to the Iowa Department of Public Health’s Common Child Illnesses and Exclusion Criteria for Education and Child Care Settings.

As of today, we have had no new cases of COVID since Oct. 9, when one of our school-wide associates tested positive. We do have some kids with sniffles and coughs, but no temperatures and no notifications of any of our students testing positive. We are so happy to share that all but two of our third graders are back in school! As always, continue to watch for signs and monitor symptoms and pray for good health for all of our children, staff and families.

Supports for Social Emotional Learning
As I outlined in last week’s newsletter, last year we contracted with The Center for Foundational & Relational Wellness to help implement the Social-Emotional Learning Competencies. Due to the success of this program and a staff analysis of our current programming, we determined that a continued partnership with the Center would be beneficial to our students and staff to focus on the 5 Social-Emotional Competencies: Self Awareness, Self-Management, Social Awareness, Relationship Skills and Responsible Decision-Making. Our intent is to design a system to focus on nurturing the whole child, balancing cognitive and socioemotional skills development as well as academic learning and development. After a few questions about this guidance programming, we have determined that there is a need to provide parents with more information about the intent of the program. Linked here is a letter of introduction from the Center introducing Kate and Steffany. They will be in your child’s classroom twice a month, and the classroom teacher will follow up with a synopsis of the lesson and ways that you can support the social-emotional growth of your child.

School Fund
The purpose of the St. Paul’s Lutheran School Fund is to raise funds to ensure the school’s mission is fulfilled. Your gift to the School Fund provides tuition assistance, technology, textbooks and all those things needed for our children’s education. Thank you in advance for joining the hundreds of friends of St. Paul’s Lutheran School who offer their prayers and financial support so we can carry out our mission. Our major fundraisers include the Fall Walk, the End of the Year letter and the Spring Social. Please download our School Fund brochure with direct links for how you can support St. Paul’s Lutheran School.

Fruit of the Spirit
This week in worship Scott Suhr, KWAY Operations and Sales Manager presented the analogy of radio waves being like spiritual waves. Just like radio waves, the Holy Spirit’s waves are always there for us. Just as we tune into our favorite radio station we can also tune into our spiritual station, learning about ways we can deepen our faith and purpose here on earth. Buzzing all around our children are radio waves and spiritual waves carrying signals from hundreds and thousands of different sources, some good and some not so good. Be thinking about how you can help your children to connect and engage in those positive spiritual waves. In life, how can you support our children in utilizing the “fruits of the spirit” to tune into the power and presence of Christ?

Pastor Arthur
On Wednesday of this week, the student body met with Pr. Arthur via zoom. As his final farewell to the students, Pastor read the children a story and shared with them his wishes for them as they continue to grow in understanding and living through God’s Word. At the beginning of last week’s worship service, Church Council President, John Meyer shared with the congregation the process of finding an interim Pastor and the call process. Pr. Arthur has been so supportive of connecting the church and school and ensuring that our students have a viable faith-based learning environment that is financially sound. At Pastor’s request there will not be an in-person farewell. In lieu of a farewell, let’s SHOWER him with cards of gratitude and well wishes. Cards can be sent to Pr. Arthur Bergren at 1206 1st St. SE, Waverly, IA  50677.