RA Email Communications

The following information was sent via email to the RA community regarding the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and general RA communications.  This page will be updated as new emails are send out to keep our families up to date and informed. 

If you have not been receiving the below communication emails, please check your email's spam folder or verify that your email address is correct in your Skyward profile.


September 19, 2021 at 6:18 PM EDT - COVID Updates

Good Afternoon,
As expected, COVID did not take a day off this weekend. We are continuing to receive updates from parents regarding their students’ test results. Unfortunately, we have had several more reports of Positive Cases. The cases have been related to the L
ower School Building and, in full transparency, have been in grades third, fourth, fifth, and include one staff member.

The number of close contacts from these cases results in a growing number of students required to quarantine. All Close contacts that have been identified have already been contacted directed by the school.

The true purpose of this message is to give an update that pertains to students and staff of Fifth grade. In addition, the email is going to all families for full transparency and understanding of the intent.

Fifth grade only will move to remote instruction at this time. This plan will allow our 3rd graders who may be sick to get well and will stop continued spread among the students who may still be in school, unidentified.

Fifth Grade Families:

On Monday, September 20, 2021, your child should log in to each Google Classroom for their school day and complete the assignments.

If your child is new to our school and did not get a school issues Chromebook please email ITsupport@rak12.org and Heather.Rinker@rak12.org. They will follow up with a time that you can pick up your child’s computer as soon as it is ready.

  • Monday, September 20, 2021, will be an asychnoous (Independent / Not live) day for the Fifth grade
  • Tuesday, September 21, 2021 - Friday, September 24, 2021, will be remote instruction days for the Fifth Grade
  • Monday, September 27, 2021 - Anticipated return date pending consultation and investigation with Chester County Health Department.

*Please note that instructions for accessing lessons, Google Links, etc. will be in your child’s Google Classroom Monday morning. Therefore, I ask that you not contact teaching staff before that time as they will not be able to answer individual questions until that time.

The confirmed positive case(s) will be reported accordingly to the Chester County Department of Health and sanitation guidelines and will be followed by our staff. If you would like more information about our COVID-19 Health and Safety Plan or Sanitation protocol, those documents can be found on our website. www.rak12.org.

If your child is home sick with symptoms consistent with COVID-19, please report that information even if you do not yet have a formal diagnosis. If your child receives a positive COVID-19 test, even while home from school, please notify the school. This information will help us to plan and proactively keep all students and staff safe.

Please note: If you are keeping your child home from school with covid symptoms or you are awaiting the results of a covid test, please notify the school. This information allows us to plan, manage and potentially safeguard others against additional risk. If you receive results over the weekend or in the evening, please email administration and nurse@rak12.org. The sooner we know and the more we know, the better we can keep everyone safe. Thank you!

Be well, 
Dr. Guarino Buli


September 17, 2021 at 4:03 PM EDT - Weekly News

Good Afternoon,
I know you have heard from me, and others at the school, quite a bit lately. We hope that communication continues to be helpful and serves to inform. I sincerely strive to be as transparent with my school families and staff as I am able to be.

In light of the many ‘Covid’ communications that have been going out, I want to take a moment to let every child and staff member who is ill, know that I am thinking of them. It becomes very easy to get wrapped up in the management side of Covid as we all want to make sure we are mitigating and controlling as best we can. I do not want to lose sight that these ‘positive persons’ to whom we refer are our friends, family and students. I know everyone in the RA community will join me in sending healing vibes and healthy wishes!

I was asked about the severity of symptoms we are seeing. I can share that what has been reported to me is in alignment with what public reports confirm. Luckily, we are seeing mild symptoms and reports of ‘cold or flu’ symptoms in most of the RA cases. We can also confirm that we have reports of positive cases in vaccinated individuals. I am not in a position to assess medical symptoms and I share this only as anecdotal information. This is, of course, not an indication that these cases are not serious and anyone who has questions about Covid should see a medical professional’s opinion.

Lastly, in light of our current data trends and in consultation with our Pandemic Team we are making a change to our ‘RETURN TO SCHOOL PROTOCOL regarding Close Contacts.’ Beginning with any further positive reports of COVID-19 we will require a PCR Test for ALL Close Contacts. Rapid Antigen & At-home tests will no longer be accepted. This will apply to all staff or students regardless of vaccination status. If a member of our community is notified or sent home as a Close Contact they will be given specific instructions and resources to acquire the necessary test.

*We will continue to offer Rapid Tests to staff for surveillance and to any person who presents with symptoms while already on campus. In the case of a symptomatic person, they are ALWAYS required to leave campus regardless of the result of a Rapid Test.

This change is an example of a higher layer of mitigation we are able to implement at this time. The Leadership will continue to monitor our school’s health and make necessary adjustments as needed.

All the best, 
Dr. Guarino Buli

Issue with Skyward Payments

We have been made aware that some are experiencing an issue making payments through the Skyward Portal. We are working on resolving this. If you need to make a payment to the school during this interruption you may send a check with details to the attention of the Business Office. We apologize for any inconvenience.

SLC Sign-ups

Please select the appropriate links below to sign up for SLC Conferences. Attendance is required for all students and a parent/guardian. Each link will take you to a more detailed explanation of the Conferences and their purpose for our students.

General Dates and Reminders

Be sure to check the online calendar for the latest updates!

  • September 23 - Trustee Voting Meeting
  • September 24 - Senior Project Presentations
  • September 24 - Elementary PBIS Reward Day
  • September 24 - Early Dismissal
  • September 28 - $1 Dress Down Day
  • September 30 & October 1 - SLCs
  • October 4 - Spirit Wear Dress Down
  • October 4 - Picture Retakes

From the School Nurse:

Reminders:

  • While we continue to work on keeping our RA community safe we would like to remind you that Birthday treats or Classroom treats being sent to school MUST be individual prepackaged items.
  • Please make sure that you are sending your child to school with an appropriately fitted mask. We do not allow "gaiter" masks. We also ask that you pack an additional mask should your child's mask become soiled or broken during the day.
  • Please make sure you are sending in your child's Health Information form signed on both sides, giving us permission to give your child over-the-counter medication as needed.
  • As a reminder, students may not. bring medications into school. Please go to rak12.org for directions for bringing medications to school and medication order forms.

Immunizations:

Email notifications were sent the week of July 19th for those students in grades Kindergarten, 7th grade, and 12th grade that remain non-compliant with immunization requirements. If you have not yet submitted your child's immunization record, please do so by August 25, 2021, or per state mandates, we will be required to exclude your child from school.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns.

Grace Cavanagh, RN, BSN, CSN, M. Ed.

Winter Sports Registration is OPEN! (Updated Information)

To register, please go to:

  • RA's Athletic Website (www.rak12athletics.org)
    • Select “Family ID” on the navigation bar or select the “Register Online Now” button on the right side of the homepage.
    • Click on the "Register Now" button
    • Select "Winter 2021-22 Athletics Registration"
    • Select the sport, complete the required information and submit
    • You will receive a confirmation email once you submit your registration

There will be optional, off-season practices/workouts this fall (schedule coming soon). You must be registered on Family ID to be able to participate in these off-season workouts. After registering, if your child decides they do not want to participate in the sport, you can always go back to Family ID and cancel your registration. Coaches will use the registrations for communication purposes so we ask that you register if you are interested in participating.

PIAA Physical Form Reminder - all 2020-21 school year physicals expired on May 31, 2021, and are no longer valid. All student-athletes will require a new PIAA Physical form dated after June 1, 2021, to be able to participate in athletics during the 2021-22 school year.

*If your child is currently playing a fall sport and a PIAA physical form dated after June 1, 2021, has already been turned in, you DO NOT need to get another physical for winter and/or spring sports.

Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions. Thank you!

Kevin Zvorsky, CAA, Director of Athletics 
kevin.zvorsky@rak12.org  610-983-4080 ext. 235

Repeat Information

The following information was included in this communication from previous RA emails as a general reminder:

  • From August 27 Email below
    • Parent Action Needed - Policy Review Form Completion
  • From August 20 Email below
    • Volunteer Information
    • Student COVID Testing Information
  • From August 13 Email below:
    • Medication Use at School

September 16, 2021 at 8:41 PM EDT - COVID Update & Some Questions Answered

Good Evening,  
I am writing first to note that our identified close contacts continue to produce positive results. We had a report again today of a person-positive case; who was last on campus, Monday, September 10th. The contact tracing for that child is complete and those families have already received communication.

There is ONE exception. This person was also present on bus N5 and at this time we are not able to acquire adequate information to isolate and contact traces for the bus. The positive case is an elementary school student. If your child rides N5 and sits in the ‘red shirt’ area they may be in contact. We are asking that you monitor your child for symptoms, as always, but with added scrutiny.

In my school-wide email yesterday, I promised follow-up with FAQs to some of the questions I have been receiving. Today, as you might imagine, I received many more questions. The inquiries are appreciated as they help guide what families may feel is important to know vs. the higher-level information that the school feels is critical to share. Below you will see a starting point to answer some questions. Rather than waiting until this list is complete, I decided to get some information out sooner than later. I will continue to update and we will keep this current on our website for reference.

First of all, yes, we have more positive cases this week. Several of them are links to the close contacts we are sending home and in the eyes of our Health Department that is ‘good news’ This means we are doing a solid job of Contact Tracing and that we know where the cases are coming from. If they were all ‘random’ and unlinked, it would be a public concern. We have also had a few cases that have originated from outside of school and led to NO close contacts in our buildings. This is also ‘good news’ because those cases knew where they contracted Covid-19 and were able to stop the spread into our school.

Some Hot Topic Questions:

  • Question: What is going on with ALL these cases at school?
    • Answer: We knew, that bringing students back in person would lead to spread. Much of our desire to remain mostly remote last year was our expectation that it might be impossible to avoid spread with our cross-county, cross-district, multiple grade levels, shared space, and shared bus routes. I wish we had been more wrong about that, but the reality is that we are seeing exactly what we discussed is now playing out. We also do not have to look far to see that this is playing out in other area schools as students are returning to in-person learning.
  • Question: How are children kept safe on the bus and what mitigation is in place?
    • Answer: This is largely dependent on the bus your child rides. If there are few children, they are instructed to sit only with family members or alone. They are also mandated to keep masks on at all times.
    • If your child’s bus is full, as many are, they are NOT distanced. Anyone who sits in the same row, in front of or in back of a person who tests positive for COVID 19, is in close contact.
    • MOST buses do not keep reliable seating charts. It is VERY difficult to contact a trace for a bus.
  • Question: Is a sibling of a close contact also a close contact and do they need to stay home.
    • Answer: By definition, no. Only the Close Contact (child 1) must remain home and follow the quarantine/testing guidelines. Of course, if at any point the Close Contact (child 1) develops symptoms or receives a positive test, all family members become Close Contacts and the timeline begins for them. Please report these developments to the school so that we can provide guidance as needed.
  • Question: Are positive students expected to keep up with all of their work while absent?
    • Answer: No! Please ensure that your ill student is resting until well enough to check in with teachers or complete some work. The staff will collaborate with you and your child to establish which assignments can be exempted and which may be completed with adjusted timelines.
  • Question: Are Close Contact students expected to keep up with all of their work while absent?
    • Answer: This may depend on the timeline. Some older, vaccinated, close contacts are able to return rather quickly. They will find they can keep up with missed time like any typical absence. If the quarantine is much longer, the staff will work on supporting and determining if exemptions from some assignments are appropriate.
  • Question: Tell us about the Dashboard on the website.
    • Answer: This tool is under consideration for some change. We are considering breaking the numbers down by building or Academy Level. We want to provide as much information as possible, without over-identifying anyone. We also know it is confusing because it must account for cases and close contacts NOT related to school, which sometimes appears to not ‘add up’
    • The numbers are reported each week and they are not cumulative.
  • Question: What do the different distinctions of schools, grades, mean?
    • Answer: Upper School, Lower School, and Kindergarten refer to the PHYSICAL buildings that each group of staff or students works or learns in.
      • Upper School Building is 7th-12th grade plus staff
      • Lower School Building is 1st - 6th grade plus staff and
      • The Kindergarten Building has only Kinder students and staff who work in that space.
    • The School Levels refer to the grade levels:
      • Elementary School is Kindergarten - 4th Grade,
      • Middle School is 5th - 8th Grade, and
      • High School is 9th - 12th Grade.
  • Question: Why are the students not spaced at Lunch?
    • Answer: It is not possible based on the space, number of students, and time in the day to sit students at a six-foot distance or greater. We encourage as much spacing as possible and assigned seats/tables are enforced for contact tracing. If your child reports that others are not adhering to the seating charts please let the teachers know.
  • Question: What has been done to improve ventilation since the start of the pandemic?
    • Answer: The ventilation system was upgraded and ‘above industry standard’ is currently in place. We are also seeking to add increased air filters from a systemic level which will help the future spread of all illnesses post-Covid standards. You can read our Covid-19 Cleaning and Sanitation Policy on the website for more information.

Thank you for your patience as I will continue to respond to more questions over the coming days and will continue to provide more information as it is deemed helpful or necessary.

Have a good night and be well, 
Dr. Guarino Buli


September 15, 2021 at 5:28 PM EDT - School Status Update - 3rd Grade

Good Afternoon,
First and foremost, I wish to thank our families for their continued support and suggestions as we have started off this school year. We knew that returning to in-person instruction would have challenges and that having all of our students back on campus would likely lead to COVID-19 cases.

This week, I have had to report several cases. I know this is unsettling to many, and the communication often leads to more questions. I strive to provide as much information as I am permitted to while safeguarding everyone’s privacy. If you have sent a direct email with COVID questions, and I have not yet responded, In the next two days, I plan to produce a FAQ that will address as many of the questions as possible. This will ensure that all families get the same information with the same explanations.

The true purpose of this message is to give an update that pertains to students and staff of THIRD grade. In addition, the email is going to all families for full transparency and understanding of the intent.

Earlier this week, in light of the first Positive Case, we had to send multiple third-graders home as Close Contacts. Two of those identified Close Contacts have now produced positive results themselves. While we have attempted to identify and isolate those affected students, we do not want to continue to risk any further exposure in this known group. Therefore, THIRD grade only will move to remote instruction at this time. This plan will allow our 3rd graders who may be sick to get well and will stop continued spread among the students who may still be in school, unidentified.

Third Grade Families:

  • On Friday, September 17, 2021, your child will receive an email at the start of the day. This email will detail instructions and information from their teachers.
  • Friday, September 17, 2021, will be an ASYCHNOOUS day for the THIRD grade
  • Monday, September 20, 2021 - Friday, September 24, 2021, will be remote instruction days for the THIRD Grade
  • Monday, September 27, 2021 - Anticipated return date pending consultation and investigation with Chester County Health Department

*Please note that instructions for accessing lessons, Google Links, etc. will come via email from your child’s teachers on Friday morning. Therefore, I ask that you not contact teaching staff before that time as they will not be able to answer individual questions until that time.

The confirmed positive case(s) will be reported accordingly to the Chester County Department of Health and sanitation guidelines and will be followed by our staff. If you would like more information about our COVID-19 Health and Safety Plan or Sanitation protocol, those documents can be found on our website. www.rak12.org

If your child is home sick with symptoms consistent with COVID-19, please report that information even if you do not yet have a formal diagnosis. If your child receives a positive COVID-19 test, even while home from school, please notify the school. This information will help us to plan and proactively keep all students and staff safe.

Please note: If you are keeping your child home from school with covid symptoms or you are awaiting the results of a covid test, please notify the school. This information allows us to plan, manage and potentially safeguard others against additional risk. If you receive results over the weekend or in the evening, please email administration and nurse@rak12.org. The sooner we know and the more we know, the better we can keep everyone safe. Thank you!

Be well, 
Dr. Guarino Buli


September 14, 2021 at 3:55 PM EDT - COVID Positive Cast (9/14/21)

Good Afternoon,

We have received confirmation of a positive COVID-19 case in our school community. The last time on campus with exposure to RA Staff or Students was today, September 14, 2021.

*Per a request from our Pandemic Team we will now be including building-level information when possible, this may include noting: Upper School, Lower School, Kindergarten Building, etc. We still wish to safeguard the privacy of any affected individual so will not include any identifiable information. In the case of today’s notice, the person is associated with the Elementary School Population.

Close contacts have already been contacted. Anyone identified as a Close Contact (per the current CDC definition) will be made aware directly through a phone call to their parent/guardian. Given the sometimes after-hours nature of this information if someone is not reachable by phone a message will be left on voicemail and follow-up instructions will be sent via email to the parent/guardian. You will always receive direct contact in this instance.

(See September 13th email below for more general information about RA's exposure protocol)


September 13, 2021 at 11:49 AM EDT - COVID Positive Case

We have received confirmation of a positive COVID-19 case in our school community. The last time on campus with exposure to RA Staff or Students was Friday, September 10, 2021. This is a NEW case from the one reported on Friday and we do not believe there is a connection.

*Per a request from our Pandemic Team we will now be including building-level information when possible, this may include noting: Upper School, Lower School, Kindergarten Building, etc. We still wish to safeguard the privacy of any affected individual so will not include any identifiable information. In the case of today’s notice, the person is associated with the Lower School.

(See September 13th email below for more general information about RA's exposure protocol)


September 10, 2021 at 4:02 PM EDT - RA Weekly News

GOOOOO Knights! This evening our RA Knights Football Team will play their first game - EVER! Good luck to the team, coaches, and parents who have been working toward this season for a long time!

The game will stream live:
Renaissance Academy Knights Football

The Dickinson (Wilmington, DE) varsity football team has a home non-conference game vs. Renaissance Academy (Phoenixville, PA) on Friday, September 10 @ 6 pm.

#GoKnights

SLC Sign-ups

Please select the appropriate links below to sign up for SLC Conferences. Attendance is required for all students and a parent/guardian. Each link will take you to a more detailed explanation of the Conferences and their purpose for our students.

General Dates and Reminders

Be sure to check the online calendar for the latest updates!

  • September 13 - Keystone Testing Begins
  • September 13 & 14, 2021 - Senior Class Pictures
  • September 13 - Development Committee Meeting
  • September 16 - School Closed
  • September 23 - Trustee Voting Meeting
  • September 24 - Senior Project Presentations
  • September 24 - Elementary PBIS Reward Day
  • September 24 - Early Dismissal
  • September 28 - $1 Dress Down Day
  • September 30 & October 1 - SLCs

Repeat Information

The following information was included in this communication from previous RA emails as a general reminder:

  • From August 27 Email below
    • Parent Action Needed - Policy Review Form Completion
  • From August 20 Email below
    • Volunteer Information
    • Student COVID Testing Information
  • From August 13 Email below:
    • Medication Use at School

September 10, 2021 at 11:02 AM EDT - Positive COVID Case on Campus

Good Morning,
We have received confirmation of a positive COVID-19 case in our school community. The last time on campus with exposure to RA Staff or Students was Today, Friday, September 10, 2021.

*Per a request from our Pandemic Team we will now be including building-level information when possible, this may include noting: Upper School, Lower School, Kindergarten Building, etc. We still wish to safeguard the privacy of any affected individual so will not include any identifiable information. In the case of today’s notice, the person is associated with the Lower School.

Close contacts have already been contacted. Anyone identified as a Close Contact (per the current CDC definition) will be made aware directly through a phone call to their parent/guardian. Given the sometimes after-hours nature of this information if someone is not reachable by phone a message will be left on voicemail and follow-up instructions will be sent via email to the parent/guardian. You will always receive direct contact in this instance.

Please be advised, If a student or staff member is considered a close contact, you will be made aware and they will be directed to stay home from school for a specified period of time. The timeframe may be dependent upon their vaccination status; therefore some persons may return to school sooner than others.

If your child was on campus or may have been exposed to COVID-19, It is recommended that you observe them over the next few days for any of the common symptoms of COVID-19. People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus.

The confirmed positive case(s) will be reported accordingly to the Chester County Department of Health and sanitation guidelines and will be followed by our staff. If you would like more information about our COVID-19 Health and Safety Plan or Sanitation protocol those documents can be found on our website COVID-19 Resources and Information Pages,

The staff and faculty at RA are taking every precaution in the interest of staff and students' safety, as informed by the Chester County Health Department and the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services. If you have further questions about the safety and precautions that we are taking please contact the school nurse or a member of the administration.

Thank you for your support in our continued efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Thank you and your child for wearing a mask, washing your hands frequently, social distancing, and staying home when you do not feel well. If your child is home sick with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 you are reminded to report that information even if you do not yet have a formal diagnosis. This information will help us to plan and proactively keep all students and staff safe.

Please note: If you are keeping your child home from school, with covid symptoms or you are awaiting the results of a covid test, please notify the school. This information allows us to plan, manage and potentially safeguard others against additional risk. If you receive results over the weekend or in the evening please email administration and nurse@rak12.org. The sooner we know and the more we know, the better we can keep everyone safe. Thank you!

Be well,

Dr. Gina Guarino Buli


September 3, 2021 at 3:00 PM EDT - RA Weekly News

Good Afternoon,
I hope this finds you well, and able to relax as we move into the weekend. As noted in last evening’s message any families in need of support or resources due to the past several days of storm should reach out to our counseling team and administrators. We will do our best to support you and connect you with local organizations.

Upon return to school next week please be vigilant in reminding your student about necessary health and safety aspects. Bus riders must be in compliance with the mask wearing mandate and our indoor mask wearing will continue. We are finding that some children are coming to school having forgotten a mask. Please double check that your child has a mask when they leave the house, and also has an extra in their backpack as it may be needed.

We continue to monitor students, and if any symptoms are noted, they will be sent home. While we know all illness does not necessarily mean a child has COVID, we will follow the guidelines and request a test when a case is suspected. As previously, if any instances of COVID are verified, we will communicate with the community, and any ‘close contacts’ will be notified directly. If your child does not feel well or has any symptoms that could be related to COVID-19, please take precautions and keep them home from school. This action is best for keeping our whole community safe.

Thank you and have a wonderful weekend,
Dr. Guarino Buli

General Dates and Reminders

Be sure to check the online calendar for the latest updates!

  • September 6 & 7, 2021 - School CLOSED
  • September 8, 2021 - FSO Meeting
  • September 9, 2021 - Equality and Equity Board Committee Meeting
  • September 9, 2021 - Strategic Planning Board Committee Meeting
  • September 10, 2021 - Legislative Awareness Board Committee Meeting
  • September 13 - Keystone Testing Begins
  • September 13 & 14, 2021 - Senior Class Pictures

Parent/Guardian Action Required:

Add Student Emergency Contact Information to Skyward Family Access

Now is the time to add names and contact information in Skyward for at least two friends or family members to whom you permit to pick your child up from school or to whom you want RA staff to call if you cannot be reached in the event of an emergency. Click on the EMERGENCY CONTACT tile on your Skyward Family Access dashboard and complete the information requested. Please use proper names as they appear on the individual's ID or driver's license; (example; use Robert, not Bob; use Patricia or Patrick, not Pat.) Access to this tile will close on August 31st, so please add your information promptly and direct any questions/concerns to janet.tuckett@rak12.org. Thank you!

From the School Counselors

How Can You Help With National Suicide Prevention Week?

National Suicide Prevention Week begins on September 5th and ends on September 11th. It is a time to help increase awareness about suicide prevention and to learn about the warning signs of suicide, while also helping to reduce the stigma associated with mental health.

Many people have been impacted by suicide. It is important to note that people who find themselves in a crisis can get the support and help they deserve and they can recover. The first step you can take today is to learn the warning signs of suicide. Feel free to visit Jefferson center how to recognize the warning-signs-of-suicide and NIMHwarning-signs-of-suicide to learn more about the signs of suicide.

If you have concerns about someone, then it is okay to ask them if they are thinking about suicide. Asking this question, is not putting the thoughts in their head. Another thing you can do is to know the resources available. Please see below for available crisis resources:

Mental Health: Crisis Information

If you are in need of mental health support and/or in need of an assessment for safety (for example: having thoughts of suicide, self-harm, etc) please contact 911 if your needs are urgent and life-threatening, otherwise, please contact your local county crisis resource listed below for an assessment:

  • Chester County: Valley Creek Crisis Center - 610-918-2100
  • Montgomery County: Access Services - 1-855-634-4673
  • Bucks County Crisis - 215-345-2273
  • Berks County: Service Access Management 1-877-236-4600
  • Delaware County Crisis Service - 1-855-889-7827
  • Philadelphia County: Suicide and Crisis Center (215)-686-4420
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline - 1-800-273-8255
  • The Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255- TALK) offers 24/7 free and confidential assistance from trained professionals.
  • Crisis Text Line - Text HOME to 741741 or visit the Crisis Text Line website for more information
  • Trevor Lifeline-1-866-488-7386 (LGBTQ+ youth)
  • Trans Lifeline- 1-877-565-8860 (Transgender Community)
  • Veterans Crisis Line-1-800-273-8255 press 1

Please see the attached PDF to learn more about activities you can do at home to support suicide prevention. suicide prevention activites.pdf

Lisa Fleck, MSW, High School Counselor (9th-12th)
lisa.fleck@rak12.org

Repeat Information

The following information was included in this communication from previous RA emails as a general reminder:

  • From August 20 Email below
    • Volunteer Information
    • Student COVID Testing Information
  • From August 13 Email below:
    • Parent Action Needed - Check Student Profiles in Skyward
    • Club RA Updates
    • Medication Use at School

September 1, 2021 at 9:22 PM EDT - Positive COVID-19 Case

Good Evening, 
We have received notice of a positive COVID-19 case in our school community. The last time on campus with exposure to RA Staff or Students was Today, Wednesday, September 1, 2021.

Close contacts are being contacted at this time, or have already been contacted. Anyone identified as a Close Contact (per the current CDC definition) will be made aware directly through a phone call to their parent/guardian. Given the after-hours nature of this information if someone is not reachable by phone a message will be left on voicemail and follow-up instructions will be sent via email to the parent/guardian. You will always receive direct contact in this instance. We will continue the process of contact tracing to determine if anyone else may be a close contact.

Please be advised, If your student is considered a close contact, you will be made aware and they will be directed to stay home from school for a specified period of time. The timeframe may be dependent upon their vaccination status; therefore some students may return to school sooner than others.

If your child was on campus or may have been exposed to COVID-19, It is recommended that you observe them over the next few days for any of the common symptoms of COVID-19. People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. Please visit the CCHD website at https://www.chesco.org/4397/Coronavirus--Resources-for-Schools for more information and contact your medical provider if you have concerns.

The confirmed positive case(s) will be reported accordingly to the Chester County Department of Health and sanitation guidelines and will be followed by our staff. If you would like more information about our COVID-19 Health and Safety Plan or Sanitation protocol those documents can be found on our School Reopening Page.

The staff and faculty at RA are taking every precaution in the interest of staff and students' safety, as informed by the Chester County Health Department and the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services. If you have further questions about the safety and precautions that we are taking please contact the school nurse or a member of the administration.

Thank you for your support in our continued efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Thank you and your child for wearing a mask, washing your hands frequently, social distancing, and staying home when you do not feel well. If your child is home sick with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 you are reminded to report that information even if you do not yet have a formal diagnosis. This information will help us to plan and proactively keep all students and staff safe.

Be well, 
Dr. Gina Guarino Buli


September 1, 2021 at 9:56 AM EDT - Attention Car Line Families

Good Morning,
The carline area has seen significant improvement over the last few days, and we appreciate everyone’s efforts. Our staff is working hard to be most efficient and as expected the flow has gotten more smooth and the children are learning the routines. We are seeing more cars than in past years and will continue to accommodate for this with additional support staff present.

However, we are still receiving some concerns from local law enforcement and residents regarding the back-ups that sometimes form on the neighborhood streets. Our families mustn’t ‘park’ on the adjoining or nearby streets. This blockage is a safety concern and a traffic violation. The Borough Police has informed us that they are likely to issue a ticket if cars are stopped on the street.

As a reminder, the carline opens at 7:15 am for morning drop-off and at 3:00 pm for afternoon pick-up. We do not advise pulling up the gate or driveway until those times. Please pull into the Bethel Church parking lot if you arrive before those times OR during the drop-off/pick-up window, and there is no space to pull into our driveway on Fairview Street. We do have the authorization to use this space for this purpose.

Again we appreciate everyone’s cooperation and patience as we all work with the community to keep our children safe.

Thank you and have a safe day,
Dr. Guarino Buli


August 31, 2021 at 10:21 AM EDT - Missing Attachment & Loose Ends

Good Morning

Here are a few loose ends after a busy start to the week!

First of all, an attachment sent yesterday, as part of the COVID exposure email, was not able to be opened by many of our families. I am attaching it in a different format here for your convenience.

Secondly, we have gotten a few questions about the upcoming ‘non-uniform’ days noted on our calendar. Here are some explanations to help you out!

Dollar Dress Down Day

This happens about once a month, with some expectations. They will always be on our school calendar and usually occur on the 4th Tuesday of each month.

These are OPTIONAL and open to all students to wear their ‘street clothes’ per the school dress-down code in our handbook. Occasionally there may be a theme. Generally, students may wear any clothing they wish and come to school in a relaxed outfit.

  • Cost $1 per student, with funds going to class events/field trip funds.
  • Simply send $1 to school with your child and it will be collected in Home Base

Spirit Wear Days

This happens every month on the first SCHOOL Day of the month. These are noted on our calendars. Students wear their typical khaki bottoms and any RA Spirit Wear, including, athletic logo items, House Team Shirts, Club T-shirts, etc. If your child is new and hasn’t acquired any RA Swag yet…. Just wear something fun in the school colors and show your RA Spirit!  NO COST!

Friday Staff Jeans

This is for school staff only on specified Fridays throughout the year. The staff pays $60 to contribute to our Counseling fund to support students in need, in exchange for a chance to come to work in jeans and their RA casualwear.

Senior Dress Days

These happen on the Graduation Year Day (i.e. 22nd of the month for the class of 2022). These are theme-based and are for SENIORs only. There is no cost to participate.

Arrival / Dismissal:

Thank you to the families and staff that are working to make these processes smoother each day. We know that some changes have come as the districts have begun transporting to their own schools and the roads become more crowded. This too will become normalized and more routine!

The carline staff thanks you for remaining IN your car at all times while kids are coming and going. Get those last-minute hugs and goodbyes in before you leave the house! The staff is outside to help your child and will do their best to keep things moving safely... and tear-free!


August 30, 2021 at 11:10 AM EDT - Positive Covid-19 Case on Campus

Good Morning,

We have received notice of a positive COVID-19 case on Campus. The last time on campus with exposure to RA Staff or Students was Tuesday, August 24, 2021.

Close contacts are being contacted at this time, or have already been contacted. Anyone identified as a Close Contact (per the current CDC definition) will be made aware directly through a phone call to their parent/guardian. We will continue the process of contact tracing to determine if anyone else may be a close contact.

Please be advised, If your student is considered a close contact, you will be made aware and they will be directed to stay home from school for a specified period of time. The timeframe may be dependent upon their vaccination status; therefore some students may return to school sooner than others. Instructions for Exposed Students Updated 9 2 20 (pdf).

If your child was on campus or may have been exposed to COVID-19, It is recommended that you observe them over the next few days for any of the common symptoms of COVID-19. People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. Please visit the Chester County Health Department website for more information and contact your medical provider if you have concerns.

The confirmed positive case(s) will be reported accordingly to the Chester County Department of Health and sanitation guidelines and will be followed by our staff. If you would like more information about our COVID-19 Health and Safety Plan or Sanitation protocol those documents can be found on our COVID-19 RA Information & Resources Pages

The staff and faculty at RA are taking every precaution in the interest of staff and students' safety, as informed by the Chester County Health Department and the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services. If you have further questions about the safety and precautions that we are taking please contact the school nurse or a member of the administration.

Thank you for your support in our continued efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Thank you and your child for wearing a mask, washing your hands frequently, social distancing, and staying home when you do not feel well. If your child is home sick with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 you are reminded to report that information even if you do not yet have a formal diagnosis. This information will help us to plan and proactively keep all students and staff safe.

Be well,

Dr. Gina Guarino Buli


August 27, 2021 at 3:00 PM EDT - RA Weekly News

As a school, we continue to work toward our health and safety aspirations. I wish to thank our students for being compliant with their mask-wearing and taking the initiative to safeguard themselves by practicing good hygiene, hand washing, and social distancing when attainable. Some students have come prepared with ‘mask lanyards,’ which are very helpful for lunch and recess. The school does have a supply of these and will distribute them as well! We have had a few reports of students removing masks on the school bus. Wearing a mask on public transportation is a federal mandate and must be complied with. Violating students are addressed, and I ask you to empathize with your students as well.

We continue to monitor students, and if any symptoms are noted, they will be sent home. While we know all illness does not necessarily mean a child has COVID, we will follow the guidelines and request a test when a case is suspected. As previously, if any instances of COVID are verified, we will communicate with the community, and any ‘close contacts’ will be notified directly. If your child does not feel well or has any symptoms that could be related to COVID-19, please take precautions and keep them home from school. This action is best for keeping our whole community safe.

As we continue to shake off the dust and get back to school routines, your patience is appreciated. Unfortunately, we have had several reports of angry, unkind drop-off situations in our carline. This behavior is simply uncalled for and does not help the activity of the carline. The staff outside each morning and afternoon are your children’s teachers and are doing their very best to keep everyone safe. I will also note that I have received many parent emails praising our staff for their focus on safety; thank you!

Thank you and have a wonderful weekend,  
Dr. Guarino Buli

Yearly Policy Review Forms

Be sure to complete the yearly review of policy required by all families and students of RA. Signing the form below indicates that you are aware of school policy, have reviewed rules and procedures set forth by our Board of Trustees, and understand the expectations regarding being a student at Renaissance. In addition, please complete a separate form for EACH student enrolled at RA. The structure is due back by September 3, 2021.

General Dates and Reminders

Be sure to check the online calendar for the latest updates!

  • August 30, 2021 - PSSAs Begin
  • August 31, 2021 - $1 Dress Down Day (‘street clothes’ of choice $1 contribution supports student activity/ field trips)
  • September 1, 2021 - Spirit Wear Day (no cost for all - ANY RA gear or school colors worn with uniform bottom)
  • September 2, 2021 - Academy Welcome Back Night (K-12) *See below for a re-cap of the email sent previously
  • September 6 & 7, 2021 - School CLOSED
  • September 13 - Keystone Testing Begins
  • September 13 & 14, 2021 - Senior Class Pictures

Repeat Information

The following information was included in this communication from previous RA emails as a general reminder:

  • From August 26 Email Below
    • RA Back to School Academy Information (9/2/21)
  • From August 20 Email below
    • Volunteer Information
    • Student COVID Testing Information
  • From August 13 Email below:
    • Parent Action Needed - Check Student Profiles in Skyward
    • Uniform Needs
    • Club RA Updates
    • Medication Use at School
    • Fall & Winter Sports Registration

August 26, 2021 at 9:35 AM EDT - Updates on Upcoming Events

The following events will be all VIRTUAL formats. This change provides the best environment for our students during the school day and decreases the potential increased exposure and heavy traffic in our building after school hours. We appreciate the support and cooperation of our community as we strive to maintain operations and keep our school safely open for instruction!

Back to School Academy Night

  • Who: Parents/Guardians of all Grade Levels
  • When: September 2, 2021
  • Time: 6:30pm-8:00pm
  • Delivery: Virtual - Links to all sessions are forthcoming
  • AND pre-recorded video welcomes from each teacher (will be distributed to watch before the event)

Schedule:

  • Three concurrent sessions will run from 6:30-6:55, 7:00-7:25, and 7:30-7:55.
  • Parents may choose to join any of these sessions:
    • The topic I - Skyward for Parent Use
    • Topic II - General Technology / Chromebook use
    • Topic III - Welcome Back Q&A
  • From 6:30-8:00, all teaching staff will have 'open' google meets for parents/guardians to drop in, learn about their general practices, and ask general class questions.

SLC (Student Learning) Conferences

  • Who: Parents/Guardians AND Students of all grade levels
  • When: September 30, 2021 8am-8pm & October 1, 2021 8am-12noon
  • Delivery: Virtual - Links to all sessions are forthcoming / schedule forthcoming

August 20, 2021 at 4:47 PM EDT - TGIF

Well, the first week may have only been three days long, but our teachers and staff put in a week’s worth of energy! We know there are BUMPS to anything new, and being back at school is still new for lots of our kids. Thank you to the families who have patiently supported their children through this transition. Please take some time this weekend to celebrate their safe return to school, and if your busy lives allow, I strongly encourage sleeping in!

As a school, we continue to work toward our health and safety aspirations. I wish to thank our students for being compliant with their mask-wearing and taking the initiative to safeguard themselves by practicing good hygiene, hand washing, and social distancing when attainable. Some students have come prepared with ‘mask lanyards,’ which are very helpfu for lunch and recess. The school does have a supply of these and will distribute them as well!

During the week, we sent a few students home due to not feeling well. While we know all illness does not necessarily mean a child has COVID, we will follow the guidelines and request a test when a case is suspected. As promised, if any instances of COVID are verified, we will communicate with the community, and any ‘close contacts’ will be notified directly. In the meantime, if your child does not feel well or has any symptoms that could be related to COVID-19, please take precautions and keep them home from school. This action is best for keeping our whole community safe.

Thank you and have a wonderful weekend,

Dr. Guarino Buli

General Dates and Reminders

Be sure to check the online calendar for the latest updates!

  • August 25, 2021 - First FULL day for Kindergarten
  • August 26, 2021 - Picture Day grades K-11th (Students may dress up)
  • August 30, 2021 - PSSAs Begin
  • August 31, 2021 - $1 Dress Down Day
  • September 1, 2021 - Spirit Wear Day
  • September 2, 2021 - Academy Welcome Back Night (K-12) Details to follow
  • September 6 & 7, 2021 - School CLOSED
  • September 13 & 14, 2021 - Senior Class Pictures

From the Volunteer Coordinator:

If your volunteer clearances are outdated, this summer would be a great time to get them renewed. Please check our website for more information and feel free to contact me if you have any questions or need assistance. Thank you, and have a great summer!

Kristy Grace, Volunteer Coordinator
Phone:610-983-4080 x501
Fax: 610-983-4096
kristy.grace@rak12.org

From the School Nurse:

COVID-19 Testing at Renaissance Academy:

  • Covid-19 Testing at Renaissance Academy is completely voluntary.
  • Covid-19 Testing will never be performed on a student without a completed consent form and QR code.
  • We will only be testing students who have symptoms of Covid-19 and a signed Consent form with QR code onsite.
  • If a student is symptomatic and we believe Covid-19 Testing would be, appropriate for your child we would confirm your written consent verbally prior to performing the test.

Health Information Form:

Please be sure to send in your child's Health Information Form. Unfortunately, we are unable to administer Tylenol or Ibuprofen without that form being completed giving signed consent.

Repeat Information

The following information was included in this communication from previous RA emails as a general reminder:

  • Schedule Change Information final Add/Drop period Wednesday, August 25th, and August 26th -  More info in August 7, 2021 Email below
  • From August 13 Email below:
    • Parent Action Needed - Check Student Profiles in Skyward
    • Uniform Needs
    • Club RA Updates
    • Medication Use at School
    • Back to School Tips from RA Counseling Dept.
    • Fall & Winter Sports Registration

August 18, 2021 at 9:06 PM EDT - 1st Day Praises & Reminders

Good Evening

Thank you for your cooperation in making sure our first day with our students is safe and successful. The excitement was clear and it was simply wonderful to greet and welcome them back!

We realize that this is the first time in many, many months that our students have been on campus AND that our parents have used our carline. We also expect to see a significant increase in families using the carline as an option vs. bus riding during the pandemic.

Yes, this took a long time today! However, we are not surprised by this… it will get smoother!

How you can help:

  • Place a sheet of paper with your CHILD’s Last Name on your dashboard for pick up!
  • Be patient - we will hold all car movement until the area is clear and we can be sure no children are walking between the cars.
  • Stay in your car! Getting out of your vehicle creates a distraction and safety concern for our staff, who need to focus on the children.

Transportation Reminders - Do’s and (PLEASE) Don’t!

*Tomorrow, August 19, 2021, is the first-day Kindergarten students will arrive by bus and car. Please EXTRA patience (with them and their parents) as they learn the carline system, bus expectations, etc.! Things will move a little slow, and we appreciate everyone's cooperation!

The Walker Door

This is for WALKERS only. Please do not drive your child to school and allow them to exit your car on Grant Street, to enter the walker door. This is terribly unsafe for your child and creates traffic issues for the neighborhood. If you bring your child to school in a car, they must go to the carline entrance.

Car Line

Please enter at the corner of Grant St. and Fairview St. Our staff is there to help guide you. When you enter the carline, AM or PM, please drive to the TOP of the hill at the stop sign. Please do not exit your car while waiting for your child. Please avoid exiting the vehicle if possible. (We know that some young children can not release or secure themselves when using safety seats and need assistance).

PLEASE do not drive or move your car until our staff releases you. This ensures that all children are safely in or out of their vehicles before any movement occurs.

Please be respectful and mindful of the staff who are directing children and the traffic flow. They will do their best to move you along quickly, but safety will be their priority.

If your child does not come out of school at the correct time for the afternoon carline, we may need to page them. You will be asked to drive around the building and come back into the carline to move traffic.

Please keep speed to 5 MPH in the car loop area.

Franklin Commons Parking Lot

This is NOT an additional drop-off or pick-up point for students. If a child is dropped off in this lot, our staff will not monitor or supervise them, and you will assume the risk to their safety. They will be asked to move to the correct location.

Student Drivers

Student drivers should use caution in the Franklin Commons parking lot as there is a lot of foot traffic in that area. All student drivers must register their car with the Upper School Office and receive a parking tag. Student drivers are required to park in the NORTH / BACK area of the parking lot with RA Staff. They may not park in front of the grass area closest to the FC Building.

Bus Transportation

Please allow the district buses a few days to iron things out at the start of the year. It is pretty standard that new drivers and new routes take a week or so to get into the routine. If you have questions, need to change information, or require assistance with bussing, please contact your sending district Transportation Office.

Picking Up Early

Early pick-up must happen before 3:15 pm. After this time, you will be directed to pick your child up in the regular carline.

*Note: There is no staff supervision at any drop-off location before 7:40 am. Therefore, your child is your responsibility until this time each morning. If you require childcare before 7:40 am, please consider enrolling your child in the AM Supervision Club program for supervision.


August 17, 2021 at 3:55 PM EDT - Welcome BACK!

It is hard to believe that the time has come to welcome our students back to campus tomorrow. It was nice to see some of our students and families stop by to visit yesterday, as the eager faces and excitement were palpable! If your child was not able to visit, no need to worry! There will be plenty of staff present during arrival tomorrow, eager to greet and help everyone get to their destination.

Some reminders as you send your students to school:

  • Uniforms are required - If you are newly enrolled and need help with uniforms, please contact a school counselor.
  • Masks are required - Please make sure your child arrives with their face mask and an extra in their backpack.
  • School supplies - If your child needs a few days to bring supplies in, it is okay to space them out over time.
  • Be patient! All of our students and staff are about to start a big adjustment.
  • Student Health forms and immunization Records - If your child is due for school immunizations, please send them to nurse@rak12.org as soon as possible. State law requires we have these by the 5th day of school (August 25th).
  • Policy Review - all families complete a yearly policy review. You can do this electronically at: https://forms.gle/ZPWmacNEFXgLMcc2A

Don’t forget:

  • Chromebooks AND Chargers! (is it plugged in right now?)
  • A water bottle - Fountains are not operational at this time
  • An extra face mask.

The details:

  • Drop-off begins at 7:40 am
  • Class begins at 8:00 am
  • Dismissal begins at 3:30 am
  • School is OPEN in-person Monday through Friday
  • Breakfast and lunch are available, free of charge, for all enrolled students. A hot lunch will be provided daily.

Expect:

The first few weeks may seem SLOW… as our staff will not be rushing into a heavy curriculum but rather, taking the time to welcome your kids and build their confidence. You will not see the year’s past ‘test prep’ race before the PSSA testing or Keystones. We are confident that our kids will do their best, in spite of it all and we want them to be mentally ready FIRST!

Busses will run late, car line will run long…. Your kiddo will lose a mask or two. We hope you will join us as we take it all in stride and enjoy having your children back on campus with us. We will all work through the bumps together!

Now, get them off to a good night’s sleep and we will see you bright and early tomorrow!

All the best and be well,
Dr. Guarino Buli


August 13, 2021 at 3:01 PM EDT - School Year Kick-off!

Welcome Back to a new school year! Here on campus we had an exciting week of positive energy as we welcomed our newest Knights - Staff and Students to our building! A new school year always brings an opportunity for new growth and excitement and this year is punctuated by our eager return to onsite learning!

Many of our community joined for a lengthy but productive board meeting this past week. I wish to express my sincere gratitude to the members of our community who expressed their concerns, ideas, and worries about the upcoming year. While we know that there is a lot to be managed and communicated, your questions are key when it comes to response and information. The video of the meeting is below for viewing. You can also expect a FAQ document (via email) which seeks to answer specific questions, and many non-Covid related topics.

All the best for a safe and restful final weekend - See you soon!

Dr. Guarino Buli

General Dates and Reminders

Be sure to check the online calendar for the latest updates!

  • August 16, 2021 - Re-visit! Visit the campus before your child’s return
  • August 18, 2021 - First Day of School grades 1st - 12th
  • August 19, 2021 - Board Monthly Voting Meeting
  • August 26, 2021 - Picture Day grades K-11th (Students may dress up)
  • August 31, 2021 - $1 Dress Down Day
  • September 1, 2021 - Spirit Wear Day
  • September 2, 2021 - Academy Welcome Back Night (K-12) Details to follow
  • September 6 & 7, 2021 - School CLOSED
  • September 13 & 14, 2021 - Senior Class Pictures

Parent/Guardian Action Required:

Add Student Emergency Contact Information to Skyward Family Access:

Now is the time to add names and contact information in Skyward for at least two friends or family members to whom you give permission to pick your child up from school, or to whom you want RA staff to call if you cannot be reached in the event of an emergency.

Click on the EMERGENCY CONTACT tile on your Skyward Family Access dashboard and complete the information requested. Please use proper names as they would appear on the individual's ID or driver's license; (example; use Robert, not Bob; use Patricia or Patrick, not Pat.) Access to this tile will end August 31st, so please add your information promptly and direct any questions/concerns to janet.tuckett@rak12.org. Thank you!

From the School Counseling Team: Hooray, It’s Back to School We Go!

As a school, we are looking forward to getting back to some normalcy. We are looking forward to hearing laughter in our hallways and seeing students in person once again. With this being said, we also know that not everyone will be looking forward to changing their routine. Many of our students may have gotten used to sleeping in, staying in their pajamas or getting dressed at the last minute, eating right before class started, or even having their breakfast during class. They also may have gotten in the habit of consistently taking breaks, eating snacks when they chose and using their technology whenever they wanted to. This message isn’t to make you more nervous or increase anxiety in your home, rather to remind you that, yes, things are going to change. It will get better, but it may take time for everyone to adjust to new routines.

Thank you to everyone available for the parent night presentation on Transitioning Back to School and Anxiety and for The PA Parent and Family Alliance for presenting. We truly do appreciate it. Please visit their website at www.paparentandfamilyalliance.org. Their resources and free webinars may be beneficial to you and your family. Below are some suggestions that came out of the presentation on transitioning back to school and anxiety concerns.

Start now getting your child(ren) used to going to bed at their “school bedtime” and waking up at their “school wake up time.”


If your child hasn’t had time away from you since the beginning of the pandemic, then start now if you can. Have somebody watch them for a couple of hours while you work on errands, get something to eat, meet up with friends, etc.

Talk to your child about their worries. Listen and be present and let them know that it’s okay to be nervous. Be aware of any behavioral changes, as this may be a way to express their anxiety/stress.

Although students may need reassurance that they will be okay and not get sick, you may want to stay away from telling them that they have nothing to worry about, won’t get sick, or will be okay. Instead, you can focus on measures that you and the school are taking to help keep them safe (i.e. items from our health and safety plan).

  • Drive them by the school, walk around the outside of the building, and/or play on the playground.
  • Visit the school on Monday, August 16th, from 2:30-4:30.
  • Start to practice and model healthy coping strategies with your child.
  • Be mindful of your anxiety. Young people often take cues from their loved ones.
  • Have fun shopping with school supplies, uniform accessories, bookbags, locker decorations, etc.
  • Have some positive conversations with your child about what they are looking forward to with the return of school.
  • Keep updated on communications sent from school and keep your child updated on changes.
  • Stay as present as possible; focus on that day and any concerns that your child may have. Then, follow up at the end of that day to see what went well and there are any areas they are still concerned with for the following day.

If you have additional questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out to your child’s school counselor.

Kind Regards,

Lisa Fleck (9th-12th grade school counselor) lisa.fleck@rak12.org
Chante Allen (5th-8th grade school counselor) chante.allen@rak12.org
Melissa Laurento (kindergarten-4th grade counselor) melissa.laurento@rak12.org
Jennifer Illig (School Social Worker) jennifer.illig@rak12.org

Re-visit Campus Day

On August 16th, from 2:30 pm-4:30 pm, all current RA Students, along with parents/guardians, are welcome to come to visit campus. This is a chance to walk the halls, see some familiar faces, and take a peek at your new classrooms. There is no formal program. Please enter through the main parking lot (Fillmore St) and the Upper School Main Entrance. Please do not park in the carline/loop area.

Some staff may be wrapping up in-service training, but those who are available will be present in their classrooms and offices.  No appointment is necessary.

Summer Information

You can find updates regarding Summer School, Supplies lists, and Summer work on the Renaissance website. Also, check back for updates throughout the summer. Summer Information Pages on our school website (www.rak12.org).

Uniform Needs

Students will be required to return to regular daily uniforms for onsite learning. Be sure to check your stock and update if your student has transitioned to a new color! Resources and specifics can be found on our school website's School Uniform Page. 

Club RA Before/After School is Back!

Club RA is a before and after school program for students in grades K-6, in need of supervision outside of the normal school day. Students are supervised by the staff of the Renaissance Academy. Students will be provided time and space to complete homework or use a computer, read, and play with table top materials they bring in from home until the school day begins or a parent or guardian arrives to pick them up. In appropriate weather, students may also have the opportunity to use the playground.

Club RA will begin on the first full day of school (August 18th) and runs every full day of school. Note: After Care is not available on early dismissal days (weather related, scheduled, or otherwise).

For Club RA hours, fees, more details, and/or to sign up, Visit RA's Before & After School Care Page

Questions, please email the Club RA Coordinator at david.cosme@rak12.org

From the School Nurse:

Medication: Please DO NOT send medication to school with your child. All medications must be in an original prescription bottle/container from a pharmacy. Medication orders are required from a licensed prescriber for prescription and over-the-counter medicine, as well as herbal remedies and must be signed by the parent as well.

Medication Order Form can be found by going to rak12.org and clicking on Medical & Health under the Parent tab (please go to the allergies or asthma section for order form for inhalers or Epinephrine)

All medication must be brought to school in its original labeled container by a parent/guardian.

All medication must be left in school, it may not be sent home every night. The order from the physician must include:

  • Student's name
  • Name, signature and phone number of the licensed prescriber
  • Name of medication
  • Route and dosage of medication
  • Frequency and time of medication administration.
  • Date of the order and discontinuation date.
  • Specific directions for administration.

Parents/Guardians delivering medication will need to come to the Upper School Main Entrance to deliver them. The nurse is also available on Monday and Tuesday from 7:30AM to 8:00 AM and from 2:30 to 3:30PM for medication delivery.

Immunizations: Email notifications were sent the week of July 19th for those students in grades Kindergarten, 7th grade and 12th grade that remain noncompliant with immunization requirements. If you have not yet submitted your child's immunization record please do so by August 25, 2021 or per state mandates we will be required to exclude your child from school.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns.

Grace Cavanagh, RN, BSN, CSN, M. Ed.

Fall & Winter Sports Registration is OPEN! (UPDATED)

To register, please go to:

  • www.rak12athletics.org (you can access this as well from our school website, www.rak12.org à For Studentsà Athletics website)
  • Select “Family ID” on the navigation bar or select the “Register Online Now” button on the right side of the homepage.
  • Click on the "Register Now" button
  • Select "Fall 2021 Athletics Registration" or "Winter 2021-22 Athletics Registration"
  • Select the sport, complete the required information and submit
  • You will receive a confirmation email once you submit your registration

There will be optional, off-season practices/workouts this summer for some Fall and Winter sports. You must be registered on Family ID to be able to participate in these off-season workouts. After registering, if your child decides they do not want to participate in the sport, you can always go back to Family ID and cancel your registration. Coaches will use the registrations for communication purposes, so we ask that you register if you are interested in participating.

PIAA Physical Form Reminder:  All 2020-2021 school year physicals expired on May 31, 2021, and are no longer valid. Therefore, all student-athletes will require a new PIAA Physical form dated after June 1, 2021, to participate in athletics during the 2021-22 school year. The PIAA physical form can be found at www.rak12athletics.org, "Files/Links.”

Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions. Thank you!

Kevin Zvorsky, CAA, Director of Athletics Renaissance Academy Charter School 
610-983-4080 ext. 235

Repeat Information

The following information was included in this communication from previous RA emails as a general reminder:

  • From August 7, 2021 Email - Schedule Change Information

August 13, 2021 at 3:00 PM EDT - School Year Welcome Back FAQ

Purpose: To provide updates and clarity, answers to commonly asked or recently asked questions are below. For details and specifics regarding your student, please refer to their Home Base Teacher or Principal.

General School Information:

  • Where do I find my child’s schedule / who is their teacher?
    • This information is on the parent Skyward Portal and teachers will be reaching out to introduce themselves in the coming days.
  • What is E-hall Pass?
    • This is a web-based classroom pass system that has been in place at RA since 2019. It allows staff to log student movement in the building and cut down on having multiple children out of various classrooms at one time. It improves security and awareness. In these times it will be an asset to Covid Contact Tracing.
  • Why must students carry Chromebooks to school each day if they are learning in person?
    • The Chromebooks will be used by students throughout the school day, while on campus. This is a tool and resource that goes well beyond the use for virtual-only learning and is now part of the essential fabric of many programs and resources that staff will employ.

Transportation:

  • How / when will I know about my student’s bus stop and pick-up time?
    • Bus Transportation - Bus transportation information will come directly from your sending district. Many of the districts will send this to you via email. Please allow the district buses a few days to iron things out at the start of the year. It is typical that new bus drivers and unfamiliar routes take a week or so to get into a routine. If you have questions, need to change information, or require assistance with bussing, please contact your sending district Transportation Office.
  • Where do I drop off or pick up a car rider?
    • Car Line - Please enter at the corner of Grant St. and Fairview St. Our staff is there to help guide you. When you enter the carline, AM or PM, please drive to the TOP of the hill stopping at the stop sign. Please do not exit your car while waiting for your child. Please avoid exiting the vehicle if possible. (We know that some young children can not release or secure themselves when using safety seats and need assistance).
    • PLEASE do not drive or move your car until our staff releases you. This practice ensures that all children are safely in or out of their vehicles before any movement occurs.
    • Please be respectful and mindful of the staff who are directing children and the traffic flow. They will do their best to move you along quickly, but safety will be their priority.
    • If your child does not come out of school at the correct time for the afternoon carline, we may need to page them. You will need to drive around the building and come back into the carline to move traffic.
    • Please keep speed to 5 MPH in the car loop area.
  • What if my student is a driver?
    • Student Drivers - Student drivers must park in the NORTH / BACK area of the parking lot with RA Staff. They may not park in front of the grass area closest to the FC Building.
    • Student drivers should use caution in the Franklin Commons parking lot as there is a lot of foot traffic in that area. In addition, all student drivers must register their car with the Upper School Office and receive a parking tag.
  • What if my child is a ‘walker’?
    • The Walker Door is on the Grant Street side of our building and is for 1st -12th-grade students. - This is for WALKERS only. Please do not drive your child to school and allow them to exit your car on Grant Street, to enter the walker door. This behavior is unsafe for your child and creates traffic issues for the neighborhood. If you bring your child to school in a car, they must go to the carline entrance.
  • What if my student needs to be picked up early?
    • Picking Up Early - Pick up will ONLY occur in the Upper School Main Building or in the Kindergarten Building for Kinder students. We ask that you remain outside when you arrive. Your Identity will be verified, and visitors new to our school will be entered into the RAPTOR System for pick-up.
    • Early pick-up in the school office must happen before 3:15 pm. After this time, you will be directed to pick your child up in the regular carline. Please send notice to the home base teacher and officestaff@rak12.org if you plan to pick up a student early.

Covid-19 Mitigation and Specifics:

  • Are masks/face coverings required?
    • Per the School Board of Trustee Vote approved masks must be worn by all students, staff, visitors or vendors inside our building and on campus. During approved periods for mask breaks, recess, eating etc. masks may be removed. Staff will guide and model for students who are unsure of these times.
  • My child is medically exempt from wearing a mask, who do I notify?
    • Email the CEO and School Nurse for proper paperwork and procedure.
  • How will students be distanced from one another?
    • In the majority of classroom settings, this will not be possible. When a class size or room allows for this it will be expected. In the cafe during breakfast students will have adequate seating in order to maintain a social distance of 3ft. During lunch periods this will be attempted to the extent possible.
    • When riding the school bus it will be at the discretion of the transportation department to set and maintain expectations.
  • Is there a virtual option for students / families with medical conditions which prevent them from attending in person? What if we change our minds?
    • If a child is medically required to remain at home please provide the documentation from their physician to the school CEO, Principal and Nurse so that plans can be developed.
    • If qualified, those students who need to remain virtual will be committed to doing so for a minimum of ½ a school year; to be reassessed by the parent and staff to determine if changes are warranted and can be accommodated.

Covid-19 Testing

  • Will parents be notified prior to an onsite Covid-19 Test being administered? And how do results get shared?
    • Yes, each child is required to have a parent consent form completed prior to the test being given and a phone call will be made if a child is symptomatic and being offered a test prior to being sent home. Symptomatic students may not remain on campus.
  • If plans are created which involve surveillance testing of students this will be with prior consent, and disclosure.
    • In all cases, results are sent via a text message to the consenting parent (number provided by parent).
  • How will the community be notified if there is a Positive Covid-19 Case on Campus?
    • An email will be sent to the school community when a known positive or exposure occurs. Those identified as Close Contacts will be contacted directly via phone and given guidance on how to proceed. The school website will provide a weekly update of case counts and effects on the school community.

 


August 7, 2021 at 10:44 am EDT - RA Weekly News

(Almost) Welcome Back!
Apologies for the ‘day late’ Weekly Email. I am out of the area and taking some of my own advice while enjoying a little time with my extended family before the official start of our school year on Monday! Please be assured that while away, I am keeping my eye on our community's health and safety trends and remain in contact with your RA Team back in Phoenixville.

There has been no change to our intended opening of school. We are on track to open for entirely on-site teaching on August 18, 2021. The currently approved plans can be found on our website and will be updated as needed or directed. Additionally, you can review approved/submitted plans which are made available to the public. Covid-19 Information Page.

As we have seen in the past week’s guidance from various authorities, regarding mitigation continues to change. We are purposefully not making changes to our approved Health and Safety plans at this time, as we do not have students on site. However, the upcoming Board of Trustee Meeting on August 11, 2021, will include updated recommendations regarding our school Covid-19 Health and Safety Plan. During this public meeting, the administration will brief the trustees on current data for our community and school; while proposing changes that will benefit our students. I expect that I will be able to share a draft of those recommendations with the school community at least 24 hours before the meeting. If I am able to do this sooner, I will.

Your input is welcome, and this will be a public meeting. You may send comments prior to the meeting to publiccomment@rak12.org

All the best for a safe and restful remainder of your summer,  
Dr. Guarino Buli

General Dates and Reminders

Be sure to check the online calendar for the latest updates!

  • August 9, 2021 - Student Schedules viewable in Skyward
  • August 10, 2021 - First Report Day for New Staff
    August 10th & 11th - Drop/ Add days for Middle School and High School Students
  • August 11, 2021 - Knight School - Orientation for new students grades 1s-12th
    August 11, 2021 - Parent Presentation - Transitioning Back to School (see below)
  • August 11, 2021 - Board Voting Meeting (Back to School Items) Agenda forthcoming
  • August 12, 2021 - First Report Day for All Staff
  • August 12, 2021 - Board Committee Meetings
  • August 16, 2021 - Re-visit! Visit the campus before your child’s return
  • August 18, 2021 - First Day of School grades 1st - 12th
  • August 19, 2021 - Board Monthly Voting Meeting
  • August 26, 2021 - Picture Day grades K-11th (Students may dress up)
  • August 31, 2021 - $1 Dress Down Day
  • September 1, 2021 - Spirit Wear Day
    September 2, 2021 - Academy Welcome Back Night (K-12) Details to follow
  • September 6 & 7, 2021 - School CLOSED
  • September 13 & 14, 2021 - Senior Class Pictures

Re-visit Campus Day

On August 16th, from 2:30 pm-4:30 pm, all current RA Students, along with parents/guardians, are welcome to come to visit campus. This is a chance to walk the halls, see some familiar faces, and take a peek at your new classrooms. There is no formal program. Please enter through the main parking lot (Fillmore St) and the Upper School Main Entrance. Please do not park in the carline/loop area.

Some staff may be wrapping up in-service training, but those who are available will be present in their classrooms and offices.  No appointment is necessary.

Summer Information

You can find updates regarding Summer School, Supplies lists, and Summer work on the Renaissance website. Also, check back for updates throughout the summer. Summer Information Pages on our school website (www.rak12.org).

Uniform Needs

Students will be required to return to regular daily uniforms for onsite learning. Be sure to check your stock and update if your student has transitioned to a new color! Resources and specifics can be found on our school website's School Uniform Page. 

Regarding Schedule Changes for Grades 7-12

Drop/Add Days:  August 10th & 11th, 10 am-2 pm and 5-8 pm via Google Meet

What if there is an issue with a student's core class?

  • If the student was scheduled incorrectly (for example- the student already took US Government and is scheduled in it again), please contact Mrs. Behrens via email immediately.
  • If a change to a core class is needed (not due to being scheduled incorrectly), use the appointment link to schedule a meeting and write a comment explaining the change you are seeking. When schedules are available to students in early August, this appointment link will become active.
  • Please note: core class changes involving switching OUT OF Honors or AP courses will require a parent/guardian present, scheduling INTO Honors or AP courses will require teacher recommendation, changes to fine arts courses will depend on availability, changes to different sections of the same course cannot be accommodated at this time.

What if there is an issue with a student's fine arts class?

  • A student needing to change their fine arts course should sign up for a 10-minute virtual appointment using the link.
  • When schedules are available to students in early August, this appointment link will become active.
  • *Please write a comment that explains the change you are seeking.

What if a student attends their scheduled fine arts class and then wants to change to a different fine arts course?

  • There will be a final Add/Drop period Wednesday, August 25th, and August 26th.
  • Middle School may schedule times between 12:20pm-2pm; High School may schedule times between 8:20am-9:20am and 2pm-3:30pm. (Link will be shared the week of August 23rd.)
  • *Changes to fine arts courses will depend on availability, changes to different sections of the same course cannot be accommodated at this time.

Students/families who are in need of a non-schedule related meeting should use this link to select a time: https://calendly.com/traceybehrens/15min The appointment times will open for this calendar the week of August 30th.

Repeat Information -

The following previously shared information was also included in this week's communication (as a reference and reminder):

From July 23rd, 2021 Email:

  • RA Counseling Dept. "Transitioning Back to School" Night (8/11/21)
  • Volunteer Coordinator - Be sure your clearances are up to date

From May 14th, 2021 Email:

From April 23rd, 2021 Email:


View January 2021-July 2021 Emails


View August-December 2020 Emails
View March-July 2020 Emails

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