Coronavirus (COVID-19) Annoucements
March 29, 9:35 PM - Gray Stone Updates
March 29, 9:35 PM
Students, Staff, and Parents
I hope you are doing well and are healthy and safe in your homes.
We know this is difficult and can’t thank you enough for your support and commitment during this time.
There are a number of topics addressed in this email.
Be sure to read through everything.
As always, if you have concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.
The State Board of Education and the NC Department of Public Instruction have announced that student attendance will not be taken during this closure.
You may have seen reports of this through a variety of news sources.
While the state is not collecting this information, Gray Stone will continue to track, monitor, and report this information.
This is an important part of accountability and is an important way for us to monitor and address students who are having trouble staying connected.
Students are expected to be present for designated online class times and to complete all online assignments during independent learning times.
Completion of assignments is one way that we are assessing attendance.
The State Board of Education approved policy late last week that significantly impacts grading for this school year.
That policy indicates the grades will not be counted unless the school has the ability to provide remote instruction.
Because of the robust remote learning that Gray Stone is providing, learning and grading will continue.
We feel these continued efforts of both students and staff through the end of the year are essential to the academic progress.
The State Board of Education and the NC Department of Public Instruction have communicated to schools that no EOCs or EOGs will be taken this year.
While we are still waiting on the General Assembly to confirm this, we have been assured that students will not be held accountable for these standardized tests.
For non-standardized exams, we are encouraging teachers to convert to some type of culminating assignment such as a project, a paper, or presentation, that adds value to the student experience and demonstrates an understanding of key points in the curriculum for each course.
That being said, students will not have final exams IF they are able to complete 85% of all assignments during this remote learning time.
Many of you have seen the actions taken by the State Board of Education on Friday regarding seniors.
Their policy leaves us with a number of unanswered questions regarding grade calculations and GPAs.
In light of that, we encourage and, frankly, expect seniors to continue working in classes with a full effort while we sort out details.
We will get more information out to you as we get it from the state.
We believe that your engagement with classes is positive for you socially and the learning that is still to do will only help prepare you more for your next step in life.
End of Year Plans
At this time, we are hopeful that we will be able to return to school on May 18th.
This will allow us to finalize the year for all students in a meaningful way.
During that time, we will be able to hold many of the end of the year programs that we traditionally do.
We will get firm details out in early May.
Graduation and Prom are two events that are extremely important to our students.
We are doing everything we can to make sure that these events happen.
- Prom: May 23rd
- Senior Banquet: May 26th
- Graduation: May 29th
As a back-up plan, please know that we are considering June 18-20 as an alternate date should the need arise.
If we have to make an adjustment, we anticipate Prom, the Senior Banquet, and Graduation all occurring during those dates.
Service Project Presentations
Seniors will still be presenting their service project to a panel.
We have set aside three days for this to happen.
You will present on one of the days via zoom to a panel of 3 - 5 staff and community members.
You will need to make sure your presentation is digital and you are able to share your presentation.
The panelists will be able to see both your presentation and your video.
Please plan accordingly.
If any of you anticipate technical problems with this, please let us know.
The scheduled dates will be April 21, 22, and 23 from 1:30 - 4pm.
We will get you more details as we get closer.
We appreciate all of your support through these trying times.
Just know that we are committed to making this time apart as meaningful and relevant as when we are together.
March 27, 11:02 AM - Virtual Spirit Days
March 27, 11:02 AM
Your teachers have come up with some great Spirit Days for the next two weeks. Get involved.
It is virtually irresistible!
March 25, 11:16 AM - Updated Schedule
March 25, 11:16 AM
Parents, Staff, and Students
Thank you all for your hard work and commitment to education over the last two weeks.
As you know, Governor Cooper extended the school closure through May 15th.
We will continue to educate remotely through that time.
We have been getting feedback from parents, staff, and students about how the remote learning is going.
The feedback we have been getting is pretty positive, but as expected with any changes, some hardships definitely exist.
We will be transitioning to a less synchronous learning and more asynchronous learning by reducing the amount of required face to face time.
Hopefully, this will reduce some of the stress points we have been hearing about.
Spring Break is still intact as scheduled and we will all welcome that break.
This new schedule will stay in effect until Spring Break at which point, we will evaluate where we are and where we need to go.
Feedback from stakeholders is valuable.
Don’t hesitate to share.
Please know that we are working on a number of end of the year issues and will communicate those as we finalize decisions.
We hope to have more information to share at the beginning of next week.
The new schedule begins tomorrow, Thursday, March 26th.
March 17, 4:31 PM - Free Local WiFi Locations in Rockwell
March 17, 4:31 PM
699 Lake Drive
Rockwell, NC 28138
Powlec Staton Funeral Home
913 West Main Street
Rockwell, NC 28138
March 16, 3:51 PM - Gray Stone Updates
March 16, 3:51 PM
Parents and Students
Thank you again for your patience as we work through details related to recent events.
Please pay close attention to the details outlined in this email.
It contains a lot of information and we hope it will answer most of your questions.
First of all, the decisions we are making today are based on the information that we have at this moment.
Every hour, we are getting information from a variety of sources that has the potential to change things.
Please know that our intentions are to provide for students and staff the very best way we can as we all navigate new territory.
We know that there are a number of events and trips scheduled through the spring.
At this time, all events are being put on hold.
We will communicate plans for rescheduling those events as we can.
Picking Up School Supplies
The school will be open for students to get materials tomorrow, Tuesday, March 17th, from 8:30am until 7pm.
Students should make plans to clean out lockers, both PE and school, and get all materials.
Part of our school sanitizing process will include cleaning lockers.
Anything left in lockers will be thrown away.
Be sure to check lost and found as well, because those items will be disposed of.
All athletic uniforms should be returned on Tuesday, March 17th.
Students should put the uniform in a large zip lock bag with their name on the outside.
We are doing this in an effort to make sure uniforms don’t go missing.
We will reissue uniforms if and when we are able to resume athletics.
As you probably can imagine, a major conversation across the state is about providing assistance to the families in need during this time - specifically lunches.
We certainly want to help those in need.
If you are able, please drop off food and supplies at the school when you come on Tuesday.
Our counselors are requesting non-perishable items such as dried pastas, spaghetti sauce, granola bars, and fruit cups.
Transitioning to Remote Learning
All Gray Stone courses will be transitioning to Remote Learning beginning Wednesday, March 18th.
Courses will meet four days per week through Zoom in a face to face format with teachers.
Each class will have a designated class time to meet each of those days.
One day per week will be for Independent Learning.
Students will receive assignments through Canvas which will be due by the end of that day.
Click the specific calendar for the next two weeks.
In the event that a teacher is unable to be present during the scheduled class, students will revert to independent learning through canvas.
How to Access Zoom Meeting Rooms
Students need a meeting link to join a teacher’s class.
Each teacher has a unique meeting link.
These links are listed on our Staff Directory page for now.
Students just need to click the link at the appropriate time to join a meeting.
Students should have access to a device with a camera, speakers, and a microphone.
Most laptops have this feature.
Headphones with a microphone are suggested.
The device will need to connect to the internet during the day.
Check our Alerts page for information about getting internet access at home if you are currently without.
Checking Out School Devices
Students who need to check out a school Chromebook can do so Tuesday, March 17th, from 8:30am - 7pm.
Students and parents will be responsible for any damages to the device which may include up to full replacement cost of $250.
As part of our transition to learning and with so many unknowns from the state, we are doing everything we can to make sure that we are able to finish the school year on time.
As such, we are adjusting our calendar slightly.
Monday and Tuesday of this week (March 16 and 17) will now be teacher workdays.
Friday, March 20th, and Monday, March 23rd, will now be educational days.
Friday will be an independent learning day and Monday will be a remote learning day.
We understand that this may cause conflict with already established plans.
Please reach out to us with issues.
How do Absences Work with Remote Learning?
Students will be required to login for each class each day during Remote Learning.
Teachers will take attendance from those who are signed in.
That attendance will be marked in our student information system just like always and notifications will go out if a student is marked absent.
Please communicate with the school if your child is sick or unable to participate in Remote Learning just like you would if your child missed school.
You can email the office by contacting Shannon Lisk (email@example.com) or Tina Holt (firstname.lastname@example.org).
First of all, your service project presentations originally scheduled for this Friday have been postponed.
We will get you information later about rescheduling that.
\Please continue to prepare for that anyway so that you will have it done when the time comes.
Secondly, if you need your cap and gown for senior pictures, just email Mr. Morris or Mrs. Nance to coordinate picking it up.
You can check it out temporarily by coming to the main office.
Thirdly, don’t panic.
We will make sure that you get a graduation!
The work you have done needs to be celebrated and we are committed to making that happen.
Your registration forms for next year are due.
Please make every effort to bring those with you on Tuesday to turn in to the main office.
Don’t forget your application for online courses if you need it.
Please know that we are here to support you during this time.
Administrators, counselors, and other support personnel are available via email.
Please don’t hesitate to reach out with your needs.
Please Be Patient
While we feel like our staff and students are better prepared than a number of schools for this transition, we know that it will probably be bumpy.
Please be tolerant of teacher’s struggles and student issues knowing that we are all working towards solutions.
As we told the staff today, everyone needs a little grace - students, teachers, parents, and administration.
We will work through all of these issues together.
March 16, 2:43 PM - Charter to offer free Spectrum broadband & Wi-Fi
March 16, 2:43 PM
In the coming weeks, many Americans will be affected either directly or indirectly by COVID-19 and Charter is focused on serving and supporting our 29 million customers.
Americans rely on high speed broadband in nearly every aspect of their lives and Charter is committed to ensuring our customers maintain reliable access to the online resources and information they want and need.
To ease the strain in this challenging time, beginning Monday, March 16, Charter commits to the following for 60 days:
- Charter will offer free Spectrum broadband and Wi-Fi access for 60 days to households with K-12 and/or college students who do not already have a Spectrum broadband subscription at any service level up to 100 Mbps. To enroll call 1-844-488-8395. Installation fees will be waived for new student households.
- Charter will partner with school districts to ensure local communities are aware of these tools to help students learn remotely.
- For eligible low-income households without school-aged children, Charter continues to offer Spectrum Internet Assist, a low-cost broadband program delivering speeds of 30 Mbps
- Charter will open its Wi-Fi hotspots across our footprint for public use.
- Spectrum does not have data caps or hidden fees.
March 15, 5:18 PM - Gray Stone Updates
March 15, 5:18 PM
Parents and Students
Thank you for your patience as we put together our plans for this school closure and get guidance from the state as to what it actually means.
The governor’s executive order closes all public school for students beginning Monday, March 16th.
In clarifying calls with state leaders, they are encouraging the use of remote learning where available; therefore, we are working towards making that possible and effective as quickly as possible.
There will be no instruction on Monday whatsoever.
We will follow up with more information after our staff meets Monday afternoon.
The communication that we send on Monday will include information about retrieving belongings that are still at school and other items necessary to implement moving to a digital platform.
We are receiving a lot of phone calls, texts, and emails asking questions.
Please know that we are working as quickly as we can and will bring you information in a timely manner once decisions are made.
We appreciate your patience.
High School Students...
Please keep in mind that your online classes through Stanly Community College or NC Virtual Public School are not facing any disruptions at this time and you are still responsible for keeping up with those courses and their specified deadlines.
March 14, 7:32 PM - School Closure
March 14, 7:32 PM
Dear parents, staff and students
This afternoon, Governor Cooper ordered all public schools closed through March 30th.
Gray Stone, as a public charter school, will adhere to this closure. We are still evaluating what this means.
We continue to seek guidance from state officials.
In the meantime, we encourage families to prepare for the possibility of converting to remote learning.
We will communicate with families directly through email as decisions are made.
Thank you for your patience as we navigate this difficult situation.