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Superintendent Shares Data That Reflects Our Strong Return
Kings Glen Elementary School teachers, Carlene James, Samantha Teegarden, Jennifer Fedor, and Vicki Johnston, give four thumbs up for a strong start of the school year!
At the September 9 Fairfax County School Board meeting, Superintendent Scott S. Brabrand provided an update on Return to School, COVID, and Health Updates. This included the latest health metrics, and a plan under consideration to support students who are home due to a COVID-related pause, quarantine, or isolation.
100% of FCPS schools opened for 5 days of in-person learning and 100% remain open for in-person learning today. With 99.5% of students back for in-person learning, we are continually working to prioritize health and safety. Watch his full presentation. Some highlights include:
Current Quarantine Rate
Quarantine data provided by the health department indicates that 393 students and staff members were directed to quarantine in relation to closed COVID-19 cases from August 13 through September 8. This represents 0.19% of students and 0.19% of staff. We are developing a database to capture the number of students who are paused and/or quarantined and give a better understanding of how COVID-19 exposures are impacting students.
Staff Vaccination Requirement
We are proud that FCPS staff stepped up and vaxxed up to protect students. Of the contract and hourly staff who have responded to the survey 97.3% reported they are fully vaccinated.
Student-athlete Vaccination Requirement
FCPS requires student-athletes 16 and older to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination by November 8 to participate in winter and spring sports. All students are encouraged to be vaccinated as soon as they are eligible.
Lunch, Breakfast, and Snacktime Safety
We know that lunch and snack time remains an area of concern for our families, especially for those with children who are not yet eligible for the vaccine. Schools are making use of outdoor spaces as much as possible. To date, 136 tents have been installed to support additional outdoor learning and eating spaces for students and an additional 57 tent installations are planned. These tents provide year-round outdoor spaces for students to spread out. Schools are also making use of alternative indoor spaces, alternating seats, and staggering schedules.
Supporting Students in Pause, Quarantine, or Isolation
FCPS is exploring options to provide instructional support to students who are unable to attend school in person due to a COVID-19 infection or possible exposure. We will share more on this shortly.Wash Up!
A Big ‘Thank You’ to the 25,000+ FCPS Employees Who Responded!
Wash Up and Cover Up! Washing hands, covering coughs and sneezes, and other good hygiene practices are easy, everyday things we can do to stay healthy and stop germs from spreading.
Over 80% of FCPS employees have responded to the Employee Covid Vaccination Status Form. Thank you to those who responded quickly and for helping to keep our schools and offices safe with this additional mitigation strategy.
Vaccination status updates can be made through the same form link. Please login using your “username” @fcpsschools.net address when prompted. If you have not activated 2 step authentication, you can visit the Google 2-Step Verification page to enroll. If you have further questions about logging into Google or accessing this form, please contact the IT Service Desk at ITservicedesk@fcps.edu. If you have not logged into your Google account since June 7, you may not have set up your account and should look for an email message from the IT Service Desk with the subject “Google Access Using Backup Codes” with instructions on how to proceed.
Non-respondents will be required to undergo regular testing. Further information will be provided once it becomes available.
For other questions related to employee vaccine guidance, please contact Human Resources online at HR Connection or 571-423-3000.Employee Exemptions from Vaccine Mandate
The linked forms can be found on the Employee Resources page under COVID-19 Vaccine Exemption Forms.
Employees who are unvaccinated but have an approved exemption qualify for quarantine leave when the employee is directed by a health provider to quarantine.
Unvaccinated employees, regardless of exemption status will still be subject to testing. Information about testing for our unvaccinated staff will be shared very soon.
Questions? Contact the Office of Equity & Employee Relations, Kathy Krolak, email@example.com, or by phone at 571-423-3051.Employee Response to Close-Contact Identification
When a vaccinated staff member is determined to be a close-contact to a COVID-19 positive case in a school or FCPS office, the staff member should follow the same process outlined for students.
The Fairfax County Health Department determines close contacts and contacts individuals directly with appropriate guidance, including when to return to work. As a reminder, the following leave options are available.
- Vaccinated employees who are symptomatic and directed to quarantine are expected to telework as long as the employee is well enough to effectively complete their assigned duties and deemed appropriate by the supervisor.
- When a vaccinated employee is directed to quarantine by the Health Department or a treating medical provider and the employee is not well enough to telework, administrative leave will be provided. Up to 10 days of administrative leave will be provided per occurrence up to a maximum of 2 occurrences per fiscal year.
- Employees should submit leave requests in MyTime using the leave type “Administrative Leave” (“ADMIN-LV”) and reason code “Quarantine.” The employee’s supervisor is responsible for reviewing and approving the request in MyTime. Additionally, for individuals who are experiencing symptomatic COVID infection and not able to telework because of their illness, employees should report absences in excess of five days to our short-term disability (STD) vendor, Sedgwick. STD claims will be managed following established protocols.
Unvaccinated employees will be required to take their sick leave or leave without pay. Employees who cannot be vaccinated based on a medical or religious reason should be directed to the Office of Equity and Employee Relations (EER) to discuss an accommodation request.Save the Date: Open Enrollment begins on October 11!
Take Care of Yourself: September is Self-Care Awareness Month
It’s never too early to begin thinking about your health plan options for 2022! Each year, FCPS provides a window of opportunity to review your medical and dental elections, update your plan selections, and make decisions about what might be the best option for your unique situation. This year, Open Enrollment will run from October 11 through November 5. Learn more about Open Enrollment
Do you sometimes feel like you’re running on empty by the end of the day? Do you tend to put your own needs last? September is Self-Care Awareness Month: a reminder to refocus on you and your wellbeing. Fill up your cup with on-demand fitness and wellbeing classes to restore energy, elevate your mood, and focus on your own health and happiness. Download the Wellbeats app or go to portal.wellbeats.com to get started. Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Forgot your login information? Here is how to access your account:
- Visit https://portal.wellbeats.com/
- Click Login and enter your FCPS email address
- Click “Forgot My Password”
- Wellbeats will email you a code to reset your password
Flu shots are free for all full-time, part-time, hourly, and substitute employees on contract in SY 21-22. A drive-thru flu clinic open to all FCPS employees will be held at Gatehouse on October 2. Alternatively, most insurance plans (along with Medicare) provide no cost flu shots at your doctor’s office or pharmacy. Check with your insurance plan for details.
Drive-Thru Flu Clinic
Location: Gatehouse Administration Center
Date: Saturday, October 2
Time: 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Appointments are required. Make your appointment now. Questions? Email email@example.comStarting Soon: Walktober Wellness Challenge
Make physical activity part of your daily routine by joining the month-long fall-themed virtual wellness challenge, Walktober! You will have the chance to earn prizes for yourself and your school by collecting leaves for logging your activity. Get all of the details on the Employee Wellness Website. Fall is the perfect time to get outside and get moving!
Mark your calendar! Registration begins September 20, the challenge starts October 1. Register on fcps2021.walktober.com
Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.orgStay Safe at Work! Tips from Office of Safety and Security: Slips, Trips, and Falls
Sexual Harassment Prohibited in FCPS
Keeping the FCPS workplace safe and free from injuries is not just the Office of Safety and Security’s (OSS) mission, it is every FCPS employee’s responsibility. There are many causes for employee injuries and illnesses, but so far this year, slips, trips, and falls (STFs) are the leading cause of injuries among FCPS employees. A recently observed common cause for STFs is employees using chairs and other furniture to access overhead areas or items not reachable while standing on the ground. Several FCPS employees have suffered injuries ranging from simple bruises to multiple broken bones (fractures) requiring surgery, hospitalization, and lost time at work, due to falling off chairs while standing on them. Learn more.
Policy 4950, Sexual Harassment, states that no person in Fairfax County Public Schools shall be subjected to sexual harassment. It is the intent of the School Board to maintain an environment free from sexual harassment of any kind.
Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature amounting to or constituting harassment are prohibited. Employees should report complaints of sexual harassment to their supervisors or program managers.
If, for any reason, an individual prefers not to address their concerns directly with a principal, supervisor, or program manager, he or she may consult with, or file a complaint with, the Office of Equity and Employee Relations by calling 571-423-3070.Receive $1,000 for Referring a School Bus Driver!*
It's true–a $1,000 recruiting bonus is available for any FCPS or Fairfax County employee who recruits a school bus driver! Applicants are required to pass hiring and training standards, and drive for a minimum of 90 school days. *Other conditions may apply. Learn more about driving for FCPS or view the job description. Please email email@example.com or contact Connie Lovejoy at 571-423-3023 with any questions.
New Incentive - New drivers will receive a $3,000 signing bonus - $1,500 after consecutive employment of 90 workdays, and $1,500 will be given after the first 180 working days (paid school days) if the driver receives a satisfactory yearly evaluation and is recommended for continued employment with FCPS Office of Transportation Services.
New Hourly Rate for School Bus Drivers - We are also excited to share that the hourly pay for bus drivers has increased to $22.91!Calendar Reminder-Religious and Cultural Observance Day: Thursday, September 16, Yom Kippur
Religious and cultural observances are designed to allow students the opportunity to miss school for observances not already designated as school holidays. Regulation 2234 specifies these days. The regulation states that teachers shall create ungraded lessons or activities on the observance day that:
- reinforce previously acquired material
- engage students in meaningful learning
- are not the sole opportunity to engage in lessons or activities on that day
When creating school schedules, teachers and school staff shall not schedule the following activities on days specified as religious and cultural observances;
- New graded assignments or activities
- Tests, quizzes, or other assignments
- Field trips, school pictures, guest speakers, or assemblies
- Sporting events, school-sponsored special events and activities (for example, prom, back-to-school nights)
- Auditions or tryouts that cannot be rescheduled
Employees wishing to observe religious/cultural observances on these dates, as schools and offices are still open, should request a religious accommodation as outlined in Regulation 4817 – Religious Accommodation for Employees. Employees will be permitted to make up 16 hours of any time they miss for religious or cultural observances.Check Out the Parent Resource Center Materials for Staff
OurFCPS Faces Profile - Erin Ferguson
The Parent Resource Center Lending Library contains over 10,000 books, eBooks, DVDs, and CDs on topics related to educating all children including those with learning challenges, mental health concerns, special needs, and disabilities. Browse the library online. Sample topics include LGBTQ+, Military Families, School Leadership, Classroom Management. Contact the PRC at firstname.lastname@example.org or 703-204-3941 to have these materials sent via pony to your school or office.
Erin Ferguson, advanced academics teacher at Canterbury Woods Elementary School, has taught for fourteen years and is in her fourth year of teaching for FCPS. Her favorite hobbies include photography, reading, walking, following her favorite New York teams, and adding rare items to her various collections. Find out more about Erin and what some of those rare collectables are.
- FCPS Cares.
- Human Resources.
- Job Openings.
- People on the Move.
- Savings for Staff.
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