Gunston Elementary Return to School Guide
Gunston Return to School Specifics
New Concurrent Learning Bell Schedule
Preschool (morning) 9:00-12:15
*The building opens for in-person students at 8:50 am. Classes begin promptly at 9:00 am. Students are expected to be in the classroom when the second bell rings at 9:00 am. Attendance records are marked “tardy” when a student is late for and not in their classroom by 9:00 am. Do not send your child to school before 8:50 am. There is no supervision of students before 8:50 am. There is also no supervision after school dismisses at 3:30 pm
Kiss and Ride: Drop at 8:50 a.m. Pick up 3:15 p.m.
Required Commitment Form for All Students Returning to In-Person Instruction:
Parents/guardians who chose an in-school instructional option for their child will be required to complete a Parent/Guardian Health Screening Commitment Form as students are phased back into in-person learning.
This document indicates the parental/guardian’s agreement and commitment to completing a daily health screening prior to sending the student to school and also to keep ill students at home. This form is required to be returned before the start of the in-person school day.
This form can be completed in SIS ParentVue if you have created your account.
-or you can return one by email. Email the completed and signed Health Commitment Form to Lourdes Presnell, Registrar, at @email. Please submit the form prior to the student’s return to school. Thank You!
Additional Forms for all In-Person students:
Prior to your child’s return to in-person learning, if you have not completed this school year already, you will need to complete these forms:
In Virginia, public school students aged 5-18 are required to attend school regularly. That is true whether FCPS is offering distance learning or in-person instruction. Teachers will take attendance during learning sessions and ensure that all students are counted. Parents can find more information at FCPS Return to School.
All students are expected to be in attendance on Mondays. Attendance can be recorded through participation in morning meeting, completion of a google form assigned by the teacher, participation in small group support or asynchronously .
When parents know their child is going to be absent or tardy from school. State law requires that parents provide a satisfactory explanation for a child’s absence for all or any part of the school day. This will eliminate the need for the school to make a call to the home or workplace to confirm absences.
You can provide attendance information in one of these ways:
- Online Attendance Form can be found on the Gunston website
- Attendance Answering Machine: 703-541-3636 (messages can be left 24 hours a day)
- Attendance Email: GunstonElem.Attendance@fcps.edu
Please be sure to provide:
- Your child’s full name
- The teacher’s name and grade
- The reason for the absence or tardy
- If your child is sick, please provide a specific description of the illness.
A note about bus transportation changes: Parents of students needing to change transportation for a particular day need to call the office by 3:00 p.m.
Mondays at Gunston
Students will all start with Morning Meeting at 9:00.
Grade level groups that have not returned to concurrent learning will have groups and schedules as directed by their teacher after Morning Meeting.
Groups that have returned for in-person concurrent learning will also start with Morning Meeting at 9:00 a.m. but will complete independent work afterwards.
I think, at this point, my child would benefit from attending school 2 days a week. May I change my original preference for learning?
In preparation for students’ return, schools created staffing plans based on the number of students who selected in-person instruction earlier this school year. Students who have already selected to return to in-person instruction will be able to do so for two days a week. Due to social distancing requirements, schools may not be able to accommodate additional students who wish to change their selection from virtual to in-person instruction. For parents requesting changes to full-time virtual vs. in-person instruction, principals will do the best they can to accommodate the requests, however, it may not be possible to accommodate changes if classes are at capacity. If you would like to request a change in learning environment, please email @email and @email .
Correct and consistent implementation of the mitigation strategies allows FCPS to provide students with in-person instruction even if COVID-19 transmission rates are high in the community. The CDC says that as schools re-open for in-person instruction, it is important to have systems in place for monitoring and assessing COVID-19 mitigation strategies.
What will Safety Teams be doing?
They will spend about two hours observing multiple locations at the school:
- Arrival or dismissal
- Care rooms
- Staff break rooms
- Cafeteria, if observing during lunchtime
- Outdoor play areas, if observing class during recess
- Other common areas frequented by students
- Large, structural playground equipment is currently off-limits at recess.
- Staff will encourage students to play games or activities that minimize close physical contact and allow for social distancing.
- Everyone must wear masks at all times because occasional close contact is expected during play.
- 10 ft. distance is to be maintained during physical activity.
- Students will wash their hands with soap for at least 20 seconds at the end of the recess period before returning to class.
Subject to updates.
All students have access to a grab and go lunch this year. If your child will participate in school lunch, they do not need to bring money. Lunches will be delivered to the classroom and all students will eat in their classrooms. Students will remain at least 6 feet apart and face one direction during lunch.
Parents with students needing to change transportation for a particular day need to call the office by 3:00 p.m.
Schools will be sending bus transportation information to parents before the start of in-person learning. Seating capacity will be reduced to allow for social distancing. Students are reminded to wear a face coverings when riding the school bus. Students will be required to sit in seats as marked on the school bus.
Bus stop information will be available at the school and in ParentVUE. Here Comes the Bus App is available and provides school bus arrival information. We will be using the new bell schedule beginning February 16. The bell schedule adjustment will be necessary due to social distancing requirements which limit capacity on school buses. A bell schedule change will apply to both in-person learning as well as students who are doing full-time virtual learning. • Students should load the bus from back-to-front and unload from front-to-back. • Students are to be seated one per seat and closest to the window unless they are siblings coming from the same household. • The first seat located behind the driver must remain empty except for the driver’s own children/grandchildren • Bus stop information will be available at the school and in ParentVUE. • Here Comes the Bus app is available and provides school bus arrival information.
Late Arrivals and Early Dismissals Procedures for Gunston
Parents will need to walk their student to door 1 and ring the bell. A staff member will come out to retrieve your student.
Parents will need to share early dismissal information with the front office and their child’s teacher. Pick up and drop off will be done outside at Door 1. Please bring ID and ring the bell.
School Supplies and Communal Classroom Items
Students will be required to label and maintain their own personal set of required classroom supplies.
Students will keep their supplies in their backpack and take them to and from school each day.
Students will not be allowed to share electronic devices, toys, books, games or learning aids unless they can be cleaned or disinfected.
Students should bring their own water bottle for use during the day.
If you choose to send a snack with your child, everything needs to be disposable. Due to health procedures, we will be throwing everything out and sending nothing home.
Water fountains can be used to refill water bottles if practical, but students and staff should not be drinking directly from any water fixtures; individual water bottles should be used instead.
Gunston cannot have in person volunteers or visitors at this time.