WHPS Blog

Continued Closure & Family Needs Survey

Written by Seth Pozzi, Head of School on .

WHPS families:

Even though we just launched remote learning this week, we are pleased to hear so much positive feedback from our parents and the excitement of your children for this new way of learning. I know our generous spirits will rise to the occasion to engage, inspire and persevere through these next weeks, staying connected to support one another in this unique moment in history. We thank you for your partnership. Your kindness, compassion and support are extraordinary, and we are grateful.

We are continuing to monitor the coronavirus situation, including collaborating with the LA County Department of Public Health, CDC, and local officials. As many of you are aware, some California cities are being asked to shelter in place for the next couple weeks, and the local, state and federal officials are not yet in full alignment about the recommended next steps for schools. New information is coming out rapidly, and we want to ensure that our next steps are in the best interest of our children, families and staff. We would like to take a survey of our parents to help us gain insights about your needs to help us move forward to next month and possibly beyond.

Survey & Next Steps

We are asking ALL parents please respond to this survey by midnight on Friday, March 20. The survey will allow us to more formally assess the needs of our community. Once we have all of this information, along with the most current guidance from officials, we will reach out next week (by Wednesday, March 25) to let the entire community know about next steps and to share current information about what to expect as we go into April. 

SURVEY https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/COVID-19Needs 

We are sensitive to the difficulties the pandemic is causing for our families and staff. There is space in the survey where you can let us know about any special circumstance you are facing or share other suggestions and feedback with us. 

Again, We thank you for your cooperation, continued support and your invaluable partnership. 

Sincerely,

WHPS

Preschool Closing for 2 Weeks (March 16-27)

Written by Seth Pozzi, Head of School on .

WHPS Families,

We have decided to close our campuses starting on Monday, March 16, 2020.  We will remain closed for the next two weeks (March 16-27) and continue to monitor the situation on an ongoing basis.  At this time, there are no cases and no known exposures within the WHPS community. It is our hope that making this decision now protects our entire community and affords families and educators the opportunity for social distancing over the coming weeks. 

Home Learning

Next week, our staff will be on campus preparing as we transition to a home learning environment.  We want to support our families as much as possible, so teachers will be preparing weekly activity packages for each student/family and posting daily videos of circle time and instructions for the activity packages through the classroom pages. Parents will be invited to a staggered drive through the school once each week to pick up a package and resources for the week to share with their child.  We will be sharing more information on home learning next week for families.

Vacation Proration

Due to the unique circumstances, we want to do our best to support families and will be waiving the 2-weeks-notice requirement for requesting vacation proration.  From the 2019-2020 Toddler & Preschool Tuition and Fee Schedule:

Vacation

Vacation tuition prorations are available, with a minimum 2 week advance written notice, 8/19/19 – 8/14/20 at the following rates (each proration is based upon a full Monday to Friday week, individual days cannot be prorated):

  1. 1st and 2nd week, 50% of your regular tuition will be prorated for those designated weeks only.
  2. 3rd through 8th week, 75% of your regular tuition will be due.
  3. After the 8th week, 100% of your regular tuition will be due.

We also understand that what makes WHPS so special and unique is our teachers.  During the closure, our goal is to fully support our teachers salaries.  We hope as a WHPS family, you can understand the importance of this and in maintaining our tuition fee schedule for the remainder of the school year.

Closure, Next Steps, and Contacting Us

Today, WHPS is open and will remain open until 6pm. We will be closed March 16-27, though staff will be available each day from 9am-3pm to assist with any questions or issues you might have through phone and email.

When will we reopen?

We hope to return on Monday, March 30. However, we will be reevaluating conditions daily and providing updates as we know more about the scientific understanding and the community response. We are collaborating with the LA County Department of Public Health, CDC, and local officials

Notification and Updates

As this situation is continuously evolving, we will continue to provide updates by email and posted on our Facebook page. Any urgent notices will also be shared via our emergency text alert system. Text messages will come from the following numbers, which you may want to save in your phone:

  • Oxnard Campus: (833) 431-4666
  • Collins Campus: (833) 287-3308

Resources

Thank you for your cooperation and continued support. 

Sincerely,

WHPS

Elementary Closing for 2 Weeks (March 16-27)

Written by Seth Pozzi, Head of School on .

WHPS Families,

We have decided to close our campuses starting on Monday, March 16, 2020.  We will remain closed for the next two weeks (March 16-27) and continue to monitor the situation on an ongoing basis.  At this time, there are no cases and no known exposures within the WHPS community. It is our hope that making this decision now protects our entire community and affords families and educators the opportunity for social distancing over the coming weeks.

Home Learning

Next week, our teachers will be on campus preparing for Home Learning. Please stay tuned for additional information in your class Facebook group about getting set up with Seesaw, our online learning platform. We will be sharing login codes for your child’s classroom. This works best on a tablet or phone, and in preparation for the launch of Home Learning, we encourage you to download the Seesaw app.   

Our goal with Home Learning is to prioritize the most important areas of student learning to keep students on track and also maintain their feeling of connectedness and normalcy, as much as possible. This will include core academic lessons (reading, writing, and math) being broadcast, as well as teacher office hours online, where children and parents can chat, post questions, and share photos, screenshots, and videos.

Closure, Next Steps, and Contacting Us

Today, WHPS is open and will remain open until 6pm. We will be closed March 16-27, though staff will be available each day from 9am-3pm to assist with any questions or issues you might have through phone and email. 

When will we reopen?

We hope to return on Monday, March 30. However, we will be reevaluating conditions daily and providing updates as we know more about the scientific understanding and the community response. We are collaborating with the LA County Department of Public Health, CDC, and local officials.

Notification and Updates

As this situation is continuously evolving, we will continue to provide updates by email and posted on our Facebook page. Any urgent notices will also be shared via our emergency text alert system. Text messages will come from the following numbers, which you may want to save in your phone:

  • Oxnard Campus: (833) 431-4666
  • Collins Campus: (833) 287-3308

Resources

Thank you for your cooperation and continued support. 

Sincerely,

WHPS

Preventing Coronavirus

Written by Seth Pozzi, Head of School on .

 
WHPS families,

Our staff and students are currently taking all recommended precautions to prevent the spread of illness, the most important being hand washing! We need your help following our sick policy and your understanding that if your child presents any of these symptoms at school, they will need to go home right away. 

Coronavirus • Flu • Norovirus

WHPS prevention efforts:


WHPS is participating in weekly CDC school briefings on prevention and containment of coronavirus. Current prevention steps include:

  1. Disinfecting classrooms with bleach solution, as prescribed by California DSS and CDC.

  2. Extra sanitizing of equipment, toys and manipulatives.

  3. Teaching and monitoring proper hand washing according to CDC guidelines.

  4. Following and strictly enforcing our sick policy for students and staff (see graphic above).

  5. Stocking up on all necessary supplies to maintain safe facilities.

 

We need your help: 


Follow Sick Policy

  1. After being sick, children must be fever-free for 24 hours before returning to school.

  2. We ask families to exercise extra caution in keeping children home if they are exhibiting any symptoms to keep our school community healthy.

Reinforce proper hand washing with your child at home.

Coughs and sneezes

  1. Teach your child to cough or sneeze into a tissue or their arm.

  2. Remind your child to wash hands any time they cough or sneeze.

  3. Remind your child to avoid touching their face.

Travel

  1. If returning from other impacted areas/countries, please keep us informed and consider monitoring symptoms at home prior to returning to school.

 

Boost your immune system and avoid illness: 


  1. Take steps to avoid infection, such as washing your hands frequently.

  2. Get adequate sleep.

  3. Exercise regularly.

  4. Eat a diet high in fruits, vegetables and vitamin D.

  5. Hot showers are recommended.

 

Talking to kids about the coronavirus (parents’ discretion):


Two good resources for talking to kids about coronavirus:

 

We are taking all possible precautions and will continue to share relevant updates with the community.

Thank you for your continued support,
Seth Pozzi
Head of School
 
 
 
 

No Quid Pro Quo (Kids)!

Written by Seth Pozzi, Head of School on .

Intrinsic Motivation
When Rewards Can be a Bad Thing

Experiences from age 0-8 influence how kids will think for the rest of their life. No one wants to raise an adult who will always think: “What’s in it for me?” when confronted with a task or responsibility. But you might be surprised to know that some commonly used discipline and “positive reinforcement” strategies can actually contribute to this kind of mindset. 

Here are a few suggestions that can help ensure we are building up intrinsic motivation and not a “What’s in it for me?” mindset in our children. 

Avoid Rewards, Incentives & Bribes
One strategy to keep in mind is to avoid giving children a reward for doing something that is a basic expectation: going to school, separating without tears in the morning, putting dishes in the sink, getting a good grade, doing homework, reading, etc. These kinds of rewards often influence a child’s behavior in the short term but don’t promote intrinsic motivation. 

Rather than giving rewards, we strive to give children words to tell them exactly what behavior is working and why. 

  • You put your toys back in their spots so they won't get broken or lost. 
  • You put your book back in the right bin so we can find it next time. 
  • You put your blanket in your nap bag so it will be there when you need it tomorrow.
  • I saw you get out your homework and get started so you will have time to play later. 

Emphasize how they might feel over your own approval. 

  • You worked really hard on the art project. 
    • Instead of: I am so proud of you.
    • Try: I bet you feel proud.
  • You remembered to put your dishes in the sink without being asked today. 
    • Instead of: I love that you did that. 
    • Try: That’s really responsible. 

Please & Thank You
While important aspects of politeness, the words "please" and "thank you" suggest that an action was optional. Responsive Classroom reminds teachers to avoid thanking children when they do something that is a basic expectation: Lining up quietly, putting our supplies away, cleaning up the lunch tables. Just like the prior examples, the ideal response reinforces the behavior that is working and why. 

  • Instead of: Thank you for pushing in your chairs.
  • We might say:
    • You remembered to push in chairs so no one will trip.
    • Let’s go back and try that, remembering to push in chairs so no one will trip.

Similarly, at home, you can try "noticing" and remarking about the desired behavior without the "please" or "thank you," if the behavior is an expectation, as opposed to a personal favor. 

That's not to say you can never say "please" or "thank you."  They still very much have a place in the lexicon, but they can be used more appropriately if the child does you a favor or a gesture of kindness. For example, "Thank you for grabbing me a tissue when I sneezed" or "thank you for holding the door".

Finally: I noticed you read through the entire article and learned a bit more on how to help build intrinsic motivation.

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