MS Q&A with Mr. Strikwerda and a Note on Athletics – August 2020
In person school Q and A
1. How is a typical day schedule going to be different this year?
Students will be in grade level cohorts. Each grade will have a slightly different schedule so the grades are not mixing with the other grades during the day. Students within each grade will be mixed up during the day. Drop off and pick up are staggered by 5 minutes for each grade. For pick up, we will make designated areas for each grade. For drop off, we will have our students go directly to their first period class. We understand that some parents will not have flexibility as to when they can drop off their students but by staggering the drop offs this will help in keeping the students in each grade separated.
2. Will there be an orientation day?
We will start the first day of school on August 24 with orientation occurring in each student’s first period class.
3. Will students have to wear masks?
Students will be expected to wear a mask. We are anticipating middle schoolers to be compliant and there is limited grey area here (e.g., for a medical condition). We have scheduled breaks that are embedding in the class periods to eliminate students eating and drinking during class.
4. Will passing time be longer in order to allow the teachers to clean the rooms in between classes?
At the middle school, there is a 5 minute break between each class that is unique to each grade. Breaks, other than lunch recess, are embedded in the blocks. We are able to set-up schedules so that each grade has lunch recess at a different time.
5. How often will touch points (desks, bathrooms, light switches, door knobs) be cleaned throughout the day in each building? By whom (custodial staff, teachers, etc.)?
Every 4 hours the touch points will be cleaned by the custodial staff. Teachers will clean their classrooms between each class.
7. Will teachers be taking students outside for a portion of each class if weather permits?
We welcome teachers to teach outdoors whenever it can transpire within the content and structure of the lessons.
8. At the M.S. What does lunch look like?
We are eating in our homerooms and outdoors we will be spread out with just grade levels.
9. In band, what is the difference between wearing a mask with a slit or no mask at all?
Based on a study that came from the University of Colorado, playing the brass instruments with a mask with a slit and the covering on the bell of the instrument reduces the amount of aerosol spray released into the surrounding area.
10. Will the renovation be completed on time?
We are so excited to get into the newly renovated middle school. The renovation has been going well, so we anticipate that it will be completed on time.
HC-Sync Q and A
1. If a student is participating in HC-Sync are they able to move through the day at their own pace or will they be locked into following their class schedule?
They can do their classes at their own pace.
2. Will the teacher for each content/class of HC-Sync be highly qualified in that content area?
Yes, the teacher will be highly qualified in that content area, unless there is a short-term unforeseen circumstance.
3. Will students be able to contact directly and have conversation with each subject’s teacher or will this have to go through the coordinator?
To be determined by the number who choose HC-Sync. The most likely scenario at the middle school is the teacher for in-person and for HC-Sync will end up being the same. If this is the case, you would go through the content coordinator at the middle school for communication.
4. Will teachers be having to do in class teaching as well as Sync teaching?
This is the most likely scenario for most classes at the middle school. This is dependent upon the numbers and could be subject dependent.
A Note from Athletics
Dear Parents of Holland Christian Middle School Students,
There is eager anticipation for athletic opportunities to be fully available for students again and we hope your child is able to participate in at least one sport. You may be a first time school sports parent or well versed in how school sports work. Regardless, we consistently seek to do things well and want all parents to be well communicated with and receive important updates on athletics. Currently, the MHSAA has given us direction to proceed with fall sports being played on time. This means middle school fall sports will begin on August 24 (except football, which will begin on August 19). Our Middle School fall sports opportunities are soccer and football for boys, volleyball and tennis for girls and cross country for both genders. 6th graders can participate in cross country and tennis in the fall and have additional select school sport opportunities throughout the athletic year as well. Zeeland Christian has cooperative agreements with Holland Christian for football, tennis and cross country in the fall with additional coops in upcoming sports seasons as well.
The best way to get started is to get registered with our online athlete registration, Final Forms, and select all sports your child is interested in participating with. Many of you have done this already, but this is the first step for all students and we do not want to miss any… especially for fall sports. More information and signup is available at the following link:
Through the registration process, you will have access to information such as our athlete handbook and core values. Specific information about Middle School Athletics such as season dates and sport opportunities can be found on our website as well:
I miss the sounds of athletes chatting on their way to practice, students cheering their classmates on, coaches high fiving a player with a smile, and teammates celebrating achievements together. The fun, yet challenging environments students compete in as athletes are some of the best classrooms we have at Holland Christian. The character and life lessons are difficult to learn, coming as they do through adversity and competition, but that is precisely what makes them so meaningful and lasting.