Come support NHS staff and learn about our THRIVE Transition program tonight on Youtube’s Renton Live! Click here to watch.
Admin April 28th, 2021
Posted In: School News
Hello NHS families!
I am the incoming NHS Board President, Nick Corrigan, and because I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting many of you, I wanted to take a moment to introduce myself. I am a life-long Puget Sound resident, having grown up, attended college (UW for undergrad and SU for law), and found employment in the region. I live in Browns Point, Tacoma with my wife, step-son, and daughter, but spent most of my formative years just south of NHS on East Hill in Kent. I work as a Compliance Manager for the Amazon Prime Air drone program, but I have also practiced law and worked in human resources and logistics in my career. My personal interests include football, soccer (playing, coaching, watching), distance running, home brewing, puzzles, and gardening.
I was introduced to NHS about a year-and-a-half ago when a board member friend of mine asked if I wanted to learn more about the school. At the time, I was looking to volunteer and wanted to engage with a local organization that did more than just talk about helping those in our community. I was delighted by the congeniality of the board, their individual and collective passion for the school, and how they helped NHS achieve its vision and mission. As I learned more about the school, I was (and continue to be) inspired by the educators and administrators who have devoted themselves to the educational needs of NHS’ students.
Having never held a role as board president, I sought inspiration for this note by reviewing a few of Mark’s newsletters from last year. As I read through his notes, I found myself re-reading his comments from April 2020. A few things stand out to me. First, we have come a long way from the uncertainty and fear we all felt at this time last year, when details about the virus were still unknown, governments were enforcing stay-at-home orders, and the main goal was to keep hospitals below “the curve”. Despite our progress, we must continue to exercise the safe practices that have brought us this far. I, along with the Board, have reviewed the school’s return-to-the-classroom plans and am confident that the school’s preparations and mitigations will keep the students safe and healthy.
The second thing that stood out to me as I read Mark’s note from a year ago is just how very hard all of us have worked to continue to deliver the intended education outcomes for the students of NHS. When the pandemic hit, Marla and her staff didn’t miss a beat in transitioning to online learning. Similarly, parents had little time to adapt to an entire body of new responsibilities at home, balancing their own shifting work requirements while coordinating at-home learning and helping educate their children. From the anecdotes shared with the Board, this new-normal has not always been easy for parents or students, but your resolve, dedication, and patience are evident from the degree of engagement your children have retained with their teachers and the school.
In 2021, I’m looking forward to a few things. I’m looking forward to getting back to in-classroom learning and know that the students (and parents) are eager for this too. I’m looking forward to zooming out to meet people IRL, and Zooming a lot less. I’m looking forward to attending live student performances and school BBQs (when it is safe to host them). I’m looking forward to the summer golfing fundraiser (and suspect you’ll be getting some information soon on our FUNdraising campaign). I’m looking forward to connecting more with my fellow Board members and am hopeful that we can increase Board membership this year (please contact me if you are interested in joining).
I’m looking forward to serving New Horizons School, the Board of Directors, the faculty and staff, and you, the parents. I’m looking forward to getting to know all of you more in the coming year.
I have included my contact information below, and hope that you will feel comfortable contacting me if you have any questions, concerns, or topics you’d like to discuss.
Sincerely, Nick Corrigan
2021-2022 NHS Board President
Admin April 23rd, 2021
Posted In: School News
As a school community, we have all worked together to stop the spread of COVID-19 and protect one another. We truly appreciate your ongoing support as the faculty, staff, and I continue to monitor the rate of transmission in our community as well as other variables such as the roll out of vaccines and the presence of the three new variants. The rate of transmission in King County is 5.7 (average over the past 14 days), which is considered to be moderate). 821,781 vaccine doses have been given in King County, and people in Phase 1B, Tier 2, which includes high-risk critical workers as well as people with disabilities, are now eligible. As our state moves into Phase 3 of the “Healthy Washington: Roadmap to Recovery” plan on March 22nd, more people will be resuming activities they enjoy. (Click on links for sources).
On March 15th Governor Inslee announced his Emergency Proclamation 21-05 “Children and Youth Mental Health Crisis” stating that every K-12 student must have the opportunity for on-site learning. (Click on link for source).
With the trend in case rate, the increased availability of the vaccine, and other variables, I am pleased to announce that New Horizon School will offer on-campus, in-person instruction in the Hybrid Model beginning April 20th. We know that in-person instruction is critical, and we are excited to welcome your children back to the school. Rest assured that we will implement all CDC guidelines for schools and continue to monitor the ongoing risk of transmission as the pandemic continues. For those parents and students who are out of state or choosing to remain online, we will still have that option available.
We’ve distributed two family surveys recently, one to determine how many families would opt for sending their students back to school part-time in the Hybrid Model, and a second to determine each family’s level of commitment to the learning model they plan to select as well as preferences, questions, and concerns. Thank you to all who completed the survey, helping us to make our final decisions and plans.
Based on survey results, almost 66% of NHS families plan to send their students to campus in the Hybrid Model, 23% plan to have their students continue in remote learning, and 11% are unsure at this time.
Masks, Bottled Water, and Lunches: To clarify, NHS will provide cloth masks to all staff, faculty, and students daily. The masks will be professionally laundered each night and replaced with freshly laundered masks daily. Parents may opt out of having their student using the provided mask and instead send another CDC approved mask to school daily with their student if they wish. NHS will purchase and provide sealed, individual, bottles of water to all staff, faculty, and students daily at no cost to them. NHS will purchase and provide catered, individually wrapped, boxed lunches to all staff, faculty, and students daily at no cost to them. Parents may opt out of having their student eat the provided lunch and instead send an individual lunch with their student each day if they wish.
Please see the information below for additional information about the NHS Hybrid Model. Feel free to email me with any questions or concerns.
Marla L. Veliz
Admin March 19th, 2021