Runway Week in APS: Prepare to Take Flight for Successful School Year 20-21

All summer long, everyone in Atlanta Public Schools – teachers, staff, our partners, our students and their families – have all been preparing for a strange, unfamiliar trip that will be School Year 2020-2021. We have not been on such an educational journey before. But with all of the preparations we are putting into place, I feel confident we will experience joy and success (with just a little trepidation) as we take flight.

As everyone in our community knows, a season of pandemic and a season of protest require us to begin the year in a virtual space for a least the next nine weeks.

To prepare students, families, teachers, and staff for this journey and a great Day One on Monday, August 24, we have created a Runway for a Return to Learning, which includes our annual Back to School Bash!

The fun and final preparations for the journey began today!

During this week, all activities will be mostly virtual with some in-person activities needed in small or limited groups for parents to pick up needed supplies and materials for the first nine weeks.

As part of the Runway, we are paying particular attention to student wellness and preparation. We will find multiple ways – as part of our “trauma to transition” efforts – to connect with students to build relationships and ensure good mental health. This work is essential to ensure that all of our students – and all of us – remain well through these challenging moments.

As a district, we kicked off the Runway tonight with a Town Hall with our Runway for Learning culminating with a Day Party with DJ Ferrari Simmons from Streetz 94.5 at Noon on Friday, August 21. All events are at the district’s Facebook page.

We’ve created themes for each day to help guide preparations for the week.

Today – Be Informed

Tuesday – Be Prepared

Wednesday – Be Supported

Thursday – Be Connected

Friday – Be Excited

To help with Day One, we have made significant changes to our annual APS Back to School Bash. Yes, we will be distributing the backpacks and school supplies that our students need to thrive in an at-home environment.

Pop-Up Bash experiences will take place at each school during Runway Week, where students will visit their campus for important information and resources to start the school year. While there, students who registered will receive their backpack and other supplies at the designated Pop-Up Bash area. Contact your school for more information.

The flyer below details the complete schedule of events.

Nutrition

I also want to remind families to Order My Meals! Five-day meal bags with five breakfast meals and five lunch meals will be distributed at these 14 schools and along some bus routes. Also remember, that our families must place their orders by 11:59 p.m. today to receive their five-day meal bag on Day One, Monday, August 24. Families can also get to MySchoolBucks through the APS mobile app.

Remember on Day One – remember that’s Monday, August 24 – we will feed only APS students. Our families must go to www.atlantapublicschools.us/nutrition and click through the Order My Meals! button to order their meals at least a week in advance.

Back to School web site

Finally, I want to remind everyone that we have launched an APS website dedicated to all of your Day One news and information! This is a one-stop shop for your questions about registration, virtual learning, parent resources, and more. Please visit www.atlantapublicschools.us/backtoschool today!

In the meantime, stay tuned, stay in touch, and most of all BE WELL!

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