5-22-2020 Updates

Good Afternoon HCS Community,
Many thanks to all of the families who came out yesterday (and those still to come today!) to pick up personal belongings of students from school.  It was wonderful to see so many of our precious smiling faces back at school, albeit from a distance and in vehicles!
I am reaching out today to share information regarding updates from the state, an upcoming HCS Town Hall, 2020-21 Budget Vote information, and other helpful reminders.    
Important Updates from Governor Cuomo's 5/21 Address:
  • Per Governor Cuomo, there will be no “in person” summer school this year. Summer school must be conducted virtually.  Note: HCS will initiate discussions regarding feasibility of a virtual summer school upon return from the long Memorial Day weekend. More information to follow.
  • Guidance will be issued next month about the opening of school in the fall.  Cuomo stated, “My position on the fall reopening is that I don’t have a position.” We anticipate more information being provided to districts in June.  Districts will be required to submit reopening plans to the state for approval by July.  
  • Responsibility for providing meals and childcare for healthcare workers continues. Note: HCS will initiate discussions regarding continuance of meals upon return from the long Memorial Day weekend. More information to follow.
  • Cuomo indicated that if the federal government doesn’t provide stimulus funding to the state, there will be reductions in aid of “about 20%.” We have heard varying % attached to aid reductions, but Thursday’s statement was more specific. 
Graduation Guidance
  • The Commissioner is working with the Department Of Health on guidance for graduation ceremonies. School leaders from around the state are hopeful that guidance on graduations will be released in the near future  (pending governor approval). 
  • Please note: Mrs. Klaehn continues to collaborate with Class Advisors, HCS Class of 2020 Task Force, Counseling Staff, and district leadership to develop plans for differing scenarios based on final guidance from the state.  Thank you for your patience as we “wait out” a final decision in effort to coordinate a Commencement Ceremony which is most consistent with HCS tradition.
You’re Invited: Honeoye Central School District Town Hall 
  • The Honeoye Central School District will be hosting a Virtual Town Hall Meeting for families and the community on Thursday, June 4, from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. The purpose of this Town Hall meeting will be to debrief the HCS response to our extended closing due to COVID-19. This event will be hosted virtually as a Google Meeting and access link information for the event will be shared prior to the event via email. 
  • To help drive the conversation, we are asking for community member input.  The input received through this exchange will allow us to answer questions and to identify areas of concern moving forward. The platform by which we will secure feedback is Thought Exchange. ThoughtExchange is a tool that analyzes trends and data based on the thoughts and ratings gathered. Initially, the exchange will ask you to list a thought. It is also important to go in and rate the thoughts of others and to return to the same link and to continue to rate responses until the thought exchange ends. 
  • Respondents will be asked to share their thoughts surrounding the question: Reflecting upon the district response to our extended closing due to COVID-19, what suggestions or feedback might you share surrounding how HCS executed our Plans for Continuity of Instruction, Meals, and Access to Childcare?
  • To participate and provide feedback,  please access the Thought Exchange link: https://my.thoughtexchange.com/546451815
  • The Thought Exchange link will be open for comment and viewing on 5/26 and close on 6/1.
  • Please note, responses are anonymous. Inappropriate, hurtful and off-topic responses will be removed and are deemed not appropriate for this platform or for the purpose of this outreach. Information collected will be used to allow us to better assist our students and community. We hope to use this tool again in the future, as applicable, to gather feedback from the HCS community.
Invitation to Participate: NYS BOCES Thought Exchange
  • If you have not already done so, please consider participating in a statewide virtual conversation about reopening schools. You will be able to read and rate other participants' responses. Based on those ratings, the most important thoughts will rise to the top. All contributions are anonymous. 
  • This is a statewide exchange facilitated by the 37 New York BOCES (Boards of Cooperative Educational Services). The exchange results will be shared with our elected officials so that they will have a more global understanding of the thoughts and ideas our community members have about returning to in-person schooling. I encourage everyone to use the link below to share your thoughts and help evaluate the critical issues.
  • Please Note:
    • If English is not your first language, there is a translation feature. 
    • This exchange will be live Monday, May 18 for approximately one week. 
    • Thought Exchange Link: https://my.thoughtexchange.com/333518046
    • Honeoye Central School District is a component district of the Wayne-Finger Lakes BOCES.
2020-21 Budget Information 
  • The 2020-21 Budget Hearing is scheduled for 6:30 on May 27 during the virtual Board of Education Meeting. Access information to the virtual BOE Google Meeting is posted on the district website (District, Board of Education, Meeting Dates).
  • The Budget Vote and Board Elections will be held Tuesday, June 9, 2020. 
  • The Annual Meeting for election of school board members and budget vote will take place remotely. Absentee ballots will be mailed to qualified voters by the district. NOTE: Qualified voters will vote by absentee ballot ONLY. 
  • To be an eligible voter, an individual must be:
    • 1) a US citizen
    • 2) at least 18 years of age
    • 3) a resident of the school district 30 days or more prior to June 9, 2020
  • Absentee ballots must be received at the District Office by 5:00pm on June 9.
  • If you have not received your absentee ballot by June 2, please contact our District Clerk, Jennifer Green, at jennifer.green@honeoye.org or at 585-229-4125. 
  • Board Elections: Each of two (2) candidates, who receive the greatest number of votes, will serve a three-year term beginning July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2023.
  • The annual HCS Budget Booklet mailing has been printed and is en route to homes.
  • If you have any questions or concerns specific to BOE Elections or the Budget Vote, please contact our District Clerk, Jennifer Green, at 585-229-4125 or Jennifer.Green@honeoye.org.
One More “Meet the Principal” Event Scheduled
  • We have one more “Meet the Principal” event scheduled for Tuesday, May 26 from 10:00 - 11:00.  I hope you will consider joining me for a facilitated Question and Answer discussion with Mrs. Klaehn. This session will allow you the opportunity to “get to know” our secondary principal better and to pose questions or share ideas that you may have.  
Coming Soon: Parent Pick Up of Medications
  • Marybeth Tonkery will be communicating and coordinating directly with applicable families surrounding the pick up of any medications and/ or other health related items. 
  • It is anticipated that all medications will be scheduled for pick up on May 28th. 
  • Please reach out to Marybeth Tonkery if you have any questions or concerns regarding medication pick up.
Final Request: Internet Service
  • Due to the recent events surrounding school closures that were required due to COVID-19, HCS would like to gather accurate and updated information regarding our student's internet service and the ability that each student, family and/ or resident has or does not have to connect to the internet. Your response and participation in this survey is greatly appreciated, the information will help us better prepare in the future if we ever need to close school for an extended period of time. It will also assist us in advocating for resources needed to ensure all residents within the HCS boundaries have the ability to connect to high speed quality internet service at an affordable price.
  • If you have not already done so, please answer a few short questions at this link.
  • This survey will close on 6/1/2020.
For Your Consideration… Take a "Hot Lap" of HCS Highlights
  • On a typical day, before COVID-19, my professional practice has included a deliberate “anchoring” into purpose and “my why” by conducting a hot lap (walk and visit of a few classrooms) around the district. Inevitably, each and every day I would find joy, promise and purpose in the smiling faces of our students, the genuine and caring interfacing amongst students and staff, and the vibrant LEARNING and TEACHING!  
  • School buildings may be closed, but school is still in session. It has been a whirlwind and flurry of activity for HCS faculty and staff during the extended closing due to COVID-19.  COVID-19 has presented challenge upon challenge, and yet districts have persisted.  There is no shortage of evidence surrounding the level of creativity, innovation, passion and commitment exhibited by teachers and support staff during the extended closing. If you have a few moments, please consider taking a virtual “hot lap” of HCS with me via Twitter Feed. There are numerous Honeoye Central School District highlights relative to student learning, best instructional practices, athletics, music, and sheer celebration of the HCS community.  Thank you in advance for your consideration of this request. As interested and time permits, you might get started with the following: 
    • Superintendent, Mrs. E. Bridget Ashton - @EBridgetAshton
    • Honeoye Central School District - @HCSDistrict
    • Elementary School Principal - @MargieWrightHCS
    • Secondary School Principal - @KlaehnMrs
    • Bulldog Athletic Department - @HoneoyeSports
    • Honeoye Vocal Music - @HoneoyeVocal
    • Honeoye MS Bands - @HCSMSBands
    • There are MANY, MANY MORE individual HCS teacher and staff member Twitter feeds...
Thank you for your continued partnership with HCS during the extended closing due to COVID-19!  We got this... We will reach the other side of COVID-19. Thank you for all that you have done and for all that you will continue to do.  Hold on to hope.  
Warmest regards to you and yours,
Bridget Ashton
Elizabeth Bridget Ashton
Superintendent, Honeoye Central School District
8528 Main Street
Honeoye, New York 14471
On Twitter: @EBridgetAshton