Dear DHS Students,
We are sorry that circumstances prevented us from wishing you well when schools needed to be abruptly closed. As I locked the doors to the building on Thursday, I felt a deep sense of sadness, shared by your teachers and our DHS staff, that our community has been disrupted. As the adults in your lives, we guide you through heartbreaks, failures, losses and disappointments because we have all experienced these things in our own lives. Here we are traversing a new landscape together and the uncertainty can be unnerving. I find that when things feel uncertain, finding ways to help others reduces worry and gives us a sense of control. So what is within our power to do in these circumstances?
- The most important thing you can do is likely going to be the hardest. Even though friends will be returning from college and you will not be at school, it is important that you limit contact with one another. With the weather improving and the days getting longer, it will be particularly challenging, but we will only be able to slow the spread of the virus if we remove the conduit for spread – human contact. As many of you know, I am a biology teacher so I have some credibility when it comes to this advice. Pretend there has been a blizzard and you are snowed in, but the good news is you can go for a walk or read a book in the backyard!
- Find ways to reach out to one another and remain in contact via technology. Who would have thought that I would encourage social media? You can experiment with Google Meet to bring groups together to rehearse parts of the musical or share reviews for AP courses.
- Your teachers will post two weeks of learning materials on Google Classroom by tomorrow morning at 8 am. You can work through these units together using digital tools and encourage one another to engage in this work. There may be changes to this plan in the coming days, so getting started will be helpful for all.
- We do not have much information about AP testing but The College Board has indicated that there will be some limited flexibility with testing dates. Those of you in AP classes will have units posted on Monday morning and can also take advantage of this time to begin to review. Working together online, you can support one another, reviewing one unit at a time.
To our seniors, leaders of our school community, this situation presents even more disappointments for all of you. We have you on our minds, and things like the prom, senior internship, etc. will be reviewed as we move forward. We will be in contact with you regularly to keep you informed.
For those who are having difficulty with this situation, I am attaching resources that are available to you from our support staff at DHS Parent Resource – Mental Health Supports. All of your school administrators are working and can be contacted via the emails listed below. If you have anything to share with us or questions for us, we welcome hearing from you during this time. We are meeting with each other regularly using Google Meet and will share other platforms with you as we experience them.
We are defined by our Blue Wave Pride and the spirit of community we share. This is not diminished by our distance from one another. I believe it will be made stronger because we will be reminded of what is truly important as we prioritize those things in a challenging time. We will find ways to sustain our community in new ways, and I thank you for partnering with us. We already miss you!
With much fondness,
Darien Human Services would like to reassure town residents that our essential services will continue to be available during the current health crisis.
Residents in need should contact the department at 203-656-7328 or email Ali Ramsteck, Director, at email@example.com, to schedule an appointment prior to coming to Town Hall. We are available for appointments Monday through Friday, 8:30 – 4:30.
All families with children currently receiving Free or Reduced Lunch through the Darien Public Schools will be eligible for a grocery store gift card through the Human Services Department, please call 203-656-7328 for more information.
There has been some interest in donations to help financially struggling families in Darien. We welcome gift cards to grocery stores (Stop and Shop, Palmers, Trader Joes, Whole Foods, Shop Rite, etc). Monetary donations are always appreciated as well. Our office is located in Town Hall, 2 Renshaw Rd, Room 109.
If find your family needs assistance, don’t hesitate to call Human Services.
Don’t miss the chance to bid on a gift card to The Melting Pot in Darien, a mini session with Tiffani Photography, one free month of Mathnasium services and two prime student parking spots at DHS for the 2020-21 school year. Check back in next week’s DPN or follow the DHSPA Facebook and Instagram accounts for special announcements including a new set of raffle items coming March 16th!
The SSO online auction is heating up! Late-night TV fans will want to get in on the bidding action for tickets to The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon; Late Night With Seth Meyers; Saturday Night Live Rehearsal Show; Today with Hoda & Jenna & Friends; and Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen.
Check our SSO page for links to the raffle and the auction.