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We have gathered many comprehensive resources in this special section.  Our plan is to provide more community outreach and opportunities to help, along with updated news and information.  We will update information, as it is available.  Check for emails and postings on this page.  

We WILL get through this together, ONE Troy. Please know that we are thinking of you and your families every day—and forefront in our minds are those of you who are working in health care or as first-responders and essential workers.  

Stay safe everyone—and be well!

 

Kerry Birmingham
Director of Communications & Strategic Initiatives
Troy School District

Important Email Announcements for Parents

SHOP & DROP DONATIONS: 

So many of you have offered to help that we have created a “shop and drop” donation drop off in addition to our grocery pick up on Fridays. We DO NOT want anyone to make an extra trip to the store to buy things to donate, but if you are shopping for your own family and want to pick up some extra items, you can drop them at Morse from 3-4pm every Friday (you can also donate online at tinyurl.com/TSDcares.) We truly appreciate the willingness of this community to help one another:  Bridge the Gap Shop and Donate.pdf 

IN NEED OF GROCERIES: 

If you or someone you know is in need of groceries to get through this period, please know that we can help. In addition to our Our Bridge the Gap program, we are pleased to announce that we have partnered with Gleaners to help as we head into Spring Break. Gleaners is bringing a truckload of food to Morse this Wednesday, April 1st from 12:30-3:30pm. All are welcome, and again it is a drive-up opportunity for anyone in the community with children in the home: Gleaners.pdf

A quick (and inadequate) thank you to some local businesses, including Emergency Restoration, Jimmy Johns and Grand Tavern of Troy for their generous donations of food and necessities. We are also working with a wonderful TSD family to bring a hot meal option to TSD—more on that in the next few days, but we are so grateful for their help.

PARENTS OF SENIOR STUDENTS: 

A special word to the parents of high school seniors (and I am one myself, as is Dr. Machesky.) We have immense sympathy for the unique position that your students are in—and understand that the uncertainty and disruption is especially difficult for them, as this is clearly not how they planned to spend their final semester. It may be some time before we can answer all of the “what ifs” but know that we have teams doing everything we can to address their particular needs.

STUDENTS/EXTENDED LEARNING: 

Please note that changes will be taking place for the remainder of the school year.  Look for instructions from our curriculum department April 6, 2020.  Continue working on classroom and course assignments, as outlined by your teacher.  Students 6th-12th grade will find their materials on Schoology (please turn on notifications!) Elementary students will receive their materials through parents/guardians’ email addresses until further notice.

NO SECONDARY THIRD QUARTER GRADES: 

Given the interruption we are experiencing in our traditional academic calendar, we are going to approach grading for semester 2 in a different way. This year, we will not be posting Q3 grades for any of our middle schools or high schools. Instead, Semester 2 grades will be based upon all grades gathered from January 27 through the end of the school year. The grading process for quarter long classes at the middle school level will be shared upon our return to school.

TECHNOLOGY HELP: 

Due to a high volume of calls to the Help Desk, we are recommending that parents/students try the following steps before calling. 
Some of you are reporting having difficulty connecting your child’s device to your internet at home OR connecting to certain websites or apps. Our amazing tech team has prepared these helpful handouts (which are also posted on every elementary school website): 

If you are having difficulty connecting to Wifi, SeeSaw or other programs, it is recommended that you try the following steps before calling the Help Desk.

In addition, these tips and a video showing a student walking through how to connect at home is available on our tech department website:  https://www.troy.k12.mi.us/techhelp
 
If you still need help with this or other technology issues, our Help Desk will be available from 7am-3pm each weekday for the near future. You can email helpdesk@troy.k12.mi.us or call (248-823-5092)

ELEMENTARY SPECIFIC RESOURCES:

Our Elementary Team has developed this great Family Tip Sheet for what to expect during our Extended Learning program and what you can do at home to make this a success: Extended Learning Family Tip Sheet.pdf 
They have also provided a Sample Weekly Schedule so you can see what a typical week will contain: Sample Elementary Weekly Schedule.pdf 
Elementary Specials Weebly: Our amazing Elementary Specials Teachers have developed an awesome TSD Specials Weebly with extended learning opportunities for students in all specials areas: TSD Specials Weebly
Check out https://www.storylineonline.net/, which features videos of celebrated actors reading stories to children (hearing James Earl Jones reading “To Be a Drum” is mesmerizing—and he shares a little of his own struggles with reading out loud/stuttering at the beginning, plus there are readers as diverse as Betty White and Rami Malek.)

PSYCHOLOGICAL RESOURCES TO HELP ALL CHILDREN THROUGH THE CLOSURE: 

We recognize that the closure of school, as well as general anxiety surrounding COVID-19, can be very difficult for children. Our phenomenal school psychologists have some great resources to share with parents. The following link has tips for talking to children about COVID-19, translated into different languages: 
 
 
And here are some resources our psychologists have compiled from NYT Parenting to help parents navigate through having children home and engaged in extended learning (it’s possible that you may have to enter an email address to read these for free—I did not.) :
 
First page of the PDF file: NO ONE GOES HUNGRY WITH LOCATIONS FLYER

RESOURCES TO KEEP CALM AND MANAGE EMOTIONS: 

Many students of all ages may be struggling right now—as are many adults. Our wonderful school psychologists have shared some resources that may be helpful for you as you help your children deal with the numerous emotions they may be experiencing:

Courtesy of Jessica Garrett:

Keep Calm and Structure On: How to manage emotions and build structure at home during COVID-19: https://makesociallearningstick.com/keep-calm-and-structure-on-how-to-manage-emotions-and-build-structure-at-home-during-covid-19/

An article for parents on how to get a hold of and reframe negative thinking, courtesy of Sara Ventimiglio:

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-high-functioning-alcoholic/202003/empowering-our-minds-against-pandemic

I am also attaching two resources shared last week in case you missed them—a handout that centers on caring for yourself, as parents and caregivers: Care for the Caregiver-Parents and Teachers_Final.pdf  and a helpful article with tips on motivating students to stay engaged at home: S2H8_Engagement_Home.pdf 

We understand that you are in unchartered territory as well, and it’s critical to remember that the most important thing during this crisis is the physical and emotional health of you and your family. We have all struggled to find a balance in this new environment, but please, focus on well-being first.

ELEMENTARY REPORT CARDS: 

Available now in PowerSchool.

ELEMENTARY PARENT TEACHER CONFERENCES CANCELLED:

If you have questions or concerns, please reach out to your child’s teacher.

NO SECONDARY THIRD QUARTER GRADES: 

Given the interruption we are experiencing in our traditional academic calendar, we are going to approach grading for semester 2 in a different way. This year, we will not be posting Q3 grades for any of our middle schools or high schools. Instead, Semester 2 grades will be based upon all grades gathered from January 27 through the end of the school year. The grading process for quarter long classes at the middle school level will be shared upon our return to school.

COMCAST PUBLIC WIFI HOTSPOTS:

Hotspots are now FREE and in our area! Comcast has opened up its public Xfinity wifi hotspots for free. We are busy getting individual hotspots to families who don’t have internet at home, but this is a great solution in the meantime and wonderful for houses with intermittent outages. Put your zip code in this map to see if there one near you:  https://hotspots.wifi.xfinity.com/mobile/?nc
Here is an article about the free wifi, as well as other programs Comcast has to help:    Click Here
 

SECONDARY LITERARY RESOURCE

SORA by Overdrive app    : The SORA app (available in the app store and Google play) is an e-reader and audio book player which allows students to select books from our libraries and read at home. All of the Troybery and Battle of the Books books are on there, plus thousands of others. Students choose “Troy School District” and then sign in with their regular TSD login (no cost.)

TROY PUBLIC LIBRARY RESOURCES: 

TPL has many resources for our students, including those available through their Virtual Library Card, which is available to all. In addition, Tutor.com is available through TPL to help students continue their learning from home. More information here: Troy Library Resources.pdf .
 

TSD TROY PUBLIC LIBRARY E-CARD: TSD has partnered with the Troy Public Library to provide a free TPL electronic library card for your child—all you need to do is opt-in on PowerSchools

What is an eLibrary Card? 
  • It’s not an actual library card—it’s a “virtual” card. 

  • Students use the code 212739 plus their student ID number to gain access to TPL electronic materials, including eBooks, authoritative information for all levels of student research, global studies, worldwide news and much more! 

Why should I sign up? 
  • Your child will be able to access eBooks and audio books 24/7 through the Sora (secondary students) or Libby app.  

  • Can’t make it to the library? Have them use their iPads to check out and read books! 

  • The eCard can be used for the Teen Homework Help section, which provides students access to databases as well as Tutor.com, a free online homework help service 

My child already has a TPL card. Do I need to sign up? 
  • Your child can use his/her personal TPL card to access these resources, but s/he might not have the physical card accessible at school. Since the ecard uses your child’s ID number, it’s easy for your child to set up and access the TPL resources from school. 

OK, how do I sign up?