A Slap In The Face Of Non-Certified Employees At HVRHS and Region One 2

This story is quite frankly, upsetting and amazing at the same time to us at Robin Hood Radio….it was sent to us by an employee of Region One, by the way, we also recieved three calls from concerned employees on this subject as well. What I do not understand is that the High School and town education budgets for this year were all approved…so it will cost nothing more to just pay these people and give them the OPTION to come in to work if it feels safe…well, anyway, read the letter and you decide..it sounds like a lack of consideration for the non certified employees to me..a “slap in the face”. See the letter below.

So given the corona virus Region One has decided to attempt in taking part in online learning. Rather than just closing for 2 weeks (as of right now, could be longer) they have sent in a waiver to the state for online learning which means the days we are out would count as school days and days would not be added to the end of the year.

Teachers would “teach” from home and have assignments posted daily on google classroom. They would be available from 8:30-3:30 which is what the online school day would be.

As for us non certified employee’s like paraprofessionals we are expected to report to work if we want to get paid. A meeting was held with members of the region, the union president and our rep. They discussed this and given the circumstances we would be assisting our teachers who are home by doing daily “chores”. However cleaning will be going on, and we have to practice social distancing meaning we all have to work in separate areas.

Not sure how that is going to work! A meeting was called at the end of the day for faculty and staff. The faculty meeting was the biggest joke! We are in a crisis and all faculty and staff are expected Monday for a “professional development” day to prepare for this “online learning” even though we have not even been approved.

We all have to enter this building when even the President has declared an emergency.

After the faculty meeting those of the non certified who were present then met with principal and assistant principal to be told our school would only be open from 8:30-3:30 and those were the hours we had to work (mind you the meeting days before with other members and union reps said we could work our hours however we choose to), the work we would be doing is odd and end jobs that haven’t gotten done over the years like filing, dismantling bleachers etc. (completely not in my job description. My job is to help kids!)

Ian said they are offering us up jobs so that we can not apply for unemployment (nice! Glad that’s how he feels about his employees) when Pam sent her email out she said for the safety of students, families and faculty and staff the school was closing for two weeks minimum!

We however must be an exception because we must report to get paid! Not sure how is entering the building everyday is going to stop the spread!


Some additional details of the HVRHS trip to a Broadway play on Wednesday 1

Image may contain: sky, house, cloud and outdoor

Here are some additional details of the HVRHS trip to a Broadway play Wednesday. Students and teachers and chaperones loaded a bus this morning and went to the city to see a play. It was a FULL class of AP English/Politics students class in a coach bus that went directly went to the theatre. After the show the group ate out side in the open air, then got back on the bus and came home this evening to HVRHS. Estimates of the class size are 20-30 students from people who saw the bus unload this evening. This was not the Hamilton winners, as that was cancelled in advance by the theatre.

Remember now this Here is a press release from Pam Vogel on March 7, 2020

March 7 at 7:48 AM ·
Region 1 Superintendent Pamela Vogel has announced that the administrative team has decided to discontinue out-of-state field trips and programs that involve large groups of students at all grade levels due to the corona virus. Vogel said a parents meeting to discuss the high school’s international trips is planned. Two trips, one to the Galápagos Islands and another to Italy were scheduled in April. The Italy trip has been redirected to Ireland, Scotland and Scandinavia. Local events, such as plays and sports, will continue, Vogel said. Here is a direct quote from that letter:

10) Field trips at all grade levels are being discussed. We are using several criteria when making decisions, including 1) mode of transportation, 2) the destination, 3) local versus out of state or out of country, 4) if the presenter(s) has been traveling in areas where the virus is prevalent, 5) is this a “once in a lifetime” experience, 5) number of persons attending the event.

Here is a news release today:

A Broadway usher who worked two theaters on the Great White Way, potentially contacting thousands of attendees, has tested positive for coronavirus, venue operators announced Wednesday.

The usher worked performances of “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” at the Booth Theatre from March 3 through March 7, and “SIX” at the Brooks Atkinson Theater on the evening of Feb. 25 and afternoon of March 1.

Selection Of A New Superintendent Reply

The Region One All Board Chairs Committee met to discuss the search for a new Superintendent.
ABC and Salisbury Board Chair David Valcin, along with Cornwall Board Chair Catherine Tatge
suggested the Board promote Region One Assistant Superintendent Lisa Carter to the position.

The other Board Chairs did not feel that they would better serve the Region by doing a broad search.

Carter could apply through that process if she wished to seek the Superintendent position.

After a discussion about the potential search committee membership, the Board voted to appoint themselves as
the search committee with the intent of adding members from various groups within the schools and communities
of Region One.

The Board also voted to obtain RFP’s (Requests for Proposals) from two consultants, one of which would be hired
to assist with the search process.

The Board will meet again to review and choose the consultant. The Region One Board will then have a special
meeting to approve funding for the search consultant. The fee is estimated to be $10,000.00 which would need
to be allocated from the current Regional spending plan.

Region 1 Corona Vitus Update Reply

Dear Parents, Students, Staff, and Board Members: Yesterday, Monday afternoon, I requested that the Administrative Team come together to more fully discuss the possibility of school closures and how we would manage this successfully, should we be faced with this.  The intent of this letter is to let you know, if we are faced with the situation where the Coronavirus has reached a point in our area or in our state where we must close schools, that we have a plan for how we can continue to provide an education. We now know that the state of Connecticut has given two options to schools, should we need to close. These choices are either to have school days until July 1 or to provide virtual learning when schools are closed before that time. Without going into any great detail in this email, but which we did go into at our meeting, we discussed how we will ensure that our teachers would continue to connect with students through virtual learning. In other words, we will use computer applications such as SeeSaw and Google Classroom to communicate each day with students, as well as utilized learning packets that include books and other materials.  We will do the following in our planning for school closures: 1)  We will be communicating with families to make certain that every student has access to the internet and an appropriate device. 2)  Teachers will plan daily lessons and communicate these to students and families within a day or less after school has been closed.3) We will do our best to see that all materials students need during this time are sent home as soon as possible (workbooks, textbooks, materials, etc.).3) Lessons will include “new” learning, as well as review, but the pace of lessons will be somewhat slower than regular classroom lessons.4) The school “day” for students will be 8:30 AM-2:30 PM. The teachers’ workday would be from 8:30 AM-3:30 PM. 5) Teachers will share their phone numbers and email addresses with students and parents, so that any questions and needed communications that arise can be addressed.6) We understand that we may have some students who may need to do the bulk of their schoolwork in “after school hours”, when parents are at home, in order to monitor their student’s learning.7) We are addressing how we will provide education to students who, due to a severe disability, would be unable to benefit from virtual learning. We will find the best way to continue to provide an education to all students.8) I will be meeting with the non-certified staff unions to determine a way we can utilize staff members to assist in the schools, even though students are not present. We understand that personnel are reliant upon their salaries and should not be penalized for school being closed. However, non-certified may elect to not work some or all of the days that school is closed and to forego payment for this time period.9) For those students who are on free or reduced lunch, we are planning for ways that we will provide school lunches for several days, possibly food for a week, during the time that school is not in session. This will likely be through sacks or boxes with healthy food products, already prepared, that families can stop by the school to pick up.10) Field trips at all grade levels are being discussed. We are using several criteria when making decisions, including 1) mode of transportation, 2) the destination, 3) local versus out of state or out of country, 4) if the presenter(s) has been traveling in areas where the virus is prevalent, 5) is this a “once in a lifetime” experience, 5) number of persons attending the event. If we decide continue to go forward with an event, parents will be asked to sign a form that states they understand any health risks that may be involved. If any cancellations are to occur with events, students, staff, parents and community will be notified through email, social media, and School Messenger. Please know that, should school closures occur, we are preparing so that everyone is as ready as possible. As we frequently hear, “Prepare for the worst and hope for the best”. The best would be that school will continue as always. But, if we are faced with a school closings, we want our students and parents to know that our teachers and administrators will do all that we can to see that learning does not stop, that our students are given a different way to learn, and that we can all do our best to adjust to a new way of doing things. We all hope that we do not have to consider this again for another century– but I hope that we can all commit to making this work the best way possible. Thank you.We will continue to stay in communication with everyone. Dr. Pam Vogel, Region One Superintendent

Marshall Miles Interviews Michael Berkeley And Lori Belter, Housatonic Musical Theatre Society: ​Rodgers & Hammerstein’s “The Sound of Music,” Thurs March 12 at 7:30PM; Fri March 13 at 7:30PM; Sat March 14 at 2PM & 7:30PM Reply

Housatonic Musical Theatre Society
Sound of Music poster, s.jpg