News & Updates 12/11/20

From Todd:

Week of 12/14-12/18

Throughout the pandemic, we have put people’s safety first while balancing that focus against the best academic experience we can provide. As we look at the positivity rate on the island and the benefits of in-person education next week, it becomes a very different situation based on a student's age and program. With that in mind, we have approached a return to school factoring in cohorting, grade levels, and potential for expanding exposures. Clearly, we need to balance the online experience, with the importance of being in the school setting, and with the ultimate safety of our students.

Grades PK to 3rd 

Grades PK to 3rd will return to regular in-person programming with the standard drop off and pick up times for the week of 12/14-12/18. The schedule for specials will be altered to lessen potential exposure and to maintain the grade cohorts. Friday will still be a half day and dismissal will be at 12:00.

Grade 4

The 4th grade will remain in remote learning through winter break. Please see this LINK for close contact quarantine guidelines.

Grades 5-8

The Upper School will continue with remote learning. The structure of our schedule and program requires that each student see more than five teachers each day, and that level of exposure for all parties remains a problem with the current high rate of infection on the island recently. The staffing demands of the Upper School are also more substantial, and although teachers who had a close contact can teach remotely, they cannot be in a classroom. Upper Schoolers are able to more independently manage their own online experiences and technology resources. When we consider all of the above factors, the experiences and safety of the Upper School students and staff is best served by staying in the remote program next week.


In order to avoid additional exposure, there will not be afterschool programming next week.

Friday 11/18
Friday 11/18 is still a half day, and whether you are online or in person, it will also be Pajama Day.


If a parent is not comfortable with having their child in school next week, please reach out to the teacher and a stream can be established.


There are colds and flus working through the community right now. Although we are having approximately half of our students in person next week, if your child is sick, please keep them home and have them take a Covid test. The link below is for the Buoy program which can assist families in making that decision.


Next week, we will be finalizing our testing program with CIC and the Broad Institute. At this point, we will be testing the entire community on January 4, and then an A group and a B group will alternate testing weeks. This schedule is subject to adjustments as conditions change. As a result of this testing, we will be establishing a Covid Fee for each student. We have not finalized the amount, but It will be under $250 and we will be reducing the fee for students receiving financial assistance. 

New York City Ballet

Finally some non-Covid news!! I was in touch with Tommy Bresette from the Nantucket Golf Club Foundation this week about some holiday programming that is being provided to schools on Nantucket. NGCF and the Bari Lipp Foundation will be providing tickets for all students to see an online performance of the NYC Ballet the weekend of December 25-27. More details to follow but here is a link to a trailer: NYC Ballet.

Happy Chanukah!! Have a great weekend and be safe.

Nantucket New School