ABS Thursday Notes- September 2, 2021

Published for the Arts Based School Community

Sept 2, 2021

No School Monday, September 6: Labor Day

The Tragedy at Mount Tabor

Like many of you, we are still processing the tragic events at Mount Tabor High School yesterday, and we want to reassure you that we are trained and prepared to respond to a crisis like this. Even though we are aware that such an event can happen anywhere, confronting a tragedy like this within our own community is difficult. All of us at The Arts Based School stand in solidarity with our fellow educators and the students and families of Mount Tabor. 

Children absorb all that is around them, good and bad. Despite our best efforts to shield our children from distressing news, we know that they are listening, too, and they process things much differently than adults do. 

Our ABS counselor, Alexis Long, is here to help your child to deal with issues of grief and loss or any other concerns. She can be reached at [email protected] and is available Monday through Friday, 7:30-3:30.

If you’d like to explore further resources, here are two good links that address handling tragic events with your children:

How Does ABS Maintain a Safe School Campus?

In accordance with the recommendations of safety professionals, we do not publicly share all of the details of our emergency preparedness. However, we do want you to be familiar with some of our ongoing safety measures: 


Building Security

  • Exterior doors are always locked.
  • There are security cameras at all exterior entrances, monitored from the front desk.
  • We train staff, students, and parents to not open doors at-will for others. 

Campus Security

  • Students are supervised at all times by staff, escorted between buildings, and monitored during recess.
  • “No Trespassing” signs are displayed to allow police to remove strangers from campus.
  • There is a police station 2 blocks away from campus.

Critical Incident Response

  • Our plan was developed by The Center for Safer Schools.
  • All Teachers and Staff are trained annually in August.
  • Our plans are not made public.
  • Planning and training include lockdown procedures and emergency drills.
  • Law enforcement has reviewed and approved our plan.

Culture of Safety and Respect

  • We are mindful of creating a culture and climate of safety, respect, and emotional support within ABS.  
  • We regularly assess the overall school climate with student and faculty surveys.
  • We make sure students feel there are adults they trust to report concerns.
  • Staff and faculty are familiar with students and parents. 

How Do I Stay Up to Date with School Health Plans?

We’re doing our best to keep ABS families, staff, and community updated with the latest information about our health and safety plans as the requirements continue to be adjusted based on current COVID spread and the latest science. We will continue to provide information in multiple places, including direct email, Thursday Notes, and Virtual Parent Meetings. If you have specific topics or questions, please send them to us via this form so we can be sure to address them. In case you missed the Virtual Parent Meeting, you can watch the recording or review the slideshow to learn more about the COVID safety and mitigation protocols. 

Here is the Health and Safety page, which has the COVID Dashboard

COVID Screening at ABS

At Arts Based School, we seek to maintain a safe environment for students, staff, families, and the community. To support those goals, we have partnered with Concentric by Ginkgo to provide an optional and free pooled testing program. 

This week we conducted our first COVID pool testing. We collected and tested about 350 samples from students and staff who had completed consent forms. We received the results overnight and all tests were negative. This information is helpful in reducing the opportunity for the virus to spread from asymptomatic cases. We will conduct our next pool testing on Tuesday, Sept. 7. If you have not completed a consent form and would like your child to be included in the testing, please follow these steps.

To get started, please fill out the consent form with your permission to perform a COVID-19 pooled test for your student at ABS. This process should take no more than 5 minutes to complete using a computer or a smartphone. 

  1. First, click here (https://testcenter.concentricbyginkgo.com/minor-consent). 
  2. Then, enter this access code: 42DLUR
  3. Finally, enter your child’s information, and you’re done!

Note: If you need to provide consent for more than one child, please complete the process once for each child.

For more information, visit Concentric by Ginkgo’s website or reach out to Principal Hollis

Parent Council Meeting – Friday, September 10!

Please join us virtually for the first Parent Council meeting of the school year on Friday, September 10 at 12noon. All ABS parents, families, and caregivers are part of the Parent Council and are welcome to attend! You will receive an evite with the link today, if not contact Mrs. Hollis [email protected]

EOG Reading Results Going Home

Last spring the EOG Reading results were delayed for the State to scale the new tests. These results have now been released and will be coming home with your student today.

Kindergarten Speech Screening

We will soon begin screening kindergarten students for any speech or language difficulties. Ms. Meredith Bowles, our speech pathologist, will visit each kindergarten classroom to have a short conversation with each student. If further testing is required, the parents will be notified. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Ms. Bowles at [email protected].

Welcome to our Student Teachers

We’re delighted to be hosting two student teachers this semester. It’s an honor to be supporting and influencing the educators of tomorrow.

  • Madeline Coelho (Wake Forest University)- Second Grade with Ms. Jess
  • Ashlyn John (Wake Forest University)- First Grade with Ms. Sherell

Traffic Volunteers are still very much needed for school days! Please email Donna Brown if you can help tame the traffic in the mornings (7:45-8:15am) and in the afternoons (2:30-3:00pm).

Substitute Teachers: Critical Need

Of course, it’s nearly impossible to replace our great teachers, but our ABS subs do a mighty fine job when the need arises. Our school uses our own pool of subs and we’re always looking for patient, kind, and reliable people to add to our list. If you are interested in subbing at ABS, please reach out to Stephanie LeFever to learn more about it.

Looking for more information about our school?

Check out our website! You can find a form to pay your student activity fee, and much more! As an ABS parent, you also have access to the Parent Portal section of our website, where you can access directories, handbooks, a volunteer hours form, and detailed information about a host of topics. If you need help accessing the portal, please email Leah Lavin.

Around Town

Free Family Drum Circles

Take in the rhythms of West Africa and join Tam Tam Mandingue of Winston Salem as we drum together in ARTivity Park. These drum circles are sponsored by the Arts Council and Artivity and are FREE and family-friendly.

Where: ARTivity On The Green on Liberty Street, between 6th and 7th Streets, downtown.

When: 09/03/2021 | 7:00 pm - 09:00 pm - AND - 09/10/2021 | 07:00 pm - 09:00 pm