NWCS Coronavirus Update 3/8/20

Dear NWCS Families:

What a start to the year! The ongoing news regarding the Coronavirus is definitely concerning and is constantly evolving. While there has not been any cases in Briarcliff, our host school district, there has been increasing cases in nearby areas and there will likely be more and more cases before the situation becomes more stable. Principal Chan and Vice Principal Fang, along with Dean Wang, the teachers and the board, have been in constant communication over the last couple of months regarding contingency plans. At this point, we’d like to take this time to provide an update on our efforts and outline the upcoming course of action.

1)    Initially we took an approach to follow our host school’s (Briarcliff) closures as to whether or not we will have classes. However, with the increase in cases in nearby areas, and considering our families all come from different school districts, we erred on the side of caution and cancelled school yesterday (3/7/20). Yesterday’s closure is considered a “snow day.”

2)    As Principal Chan noted previously, we started exploring various options for remote learning a few weeks ago, and at this point have identified Google Meet (https://meet.google.com) and ZOOM (https://zoom.us) as the best programs for our teachers. We have signed up for accounts as needed and are now working on training the teachers and staff in its use. In fact, while there was no school yesterday, the teachers were at school in person getting up to speed with these tools for remote teaching. (A big thanks to technology gurus Harry and Yuan Chi for helping with this effort!)

3)    Again, erring on the side of caution, we will transition to remote learning starting next week, 3/14/20. Teachers will be in touch this week regarding the platform and method for doing so (either google meet or zoom, and potentially with modified schedules), and families will need a phone, laptop, or similar device to join the class.

Please note: It will take a little transition time for everyone to get used to this, so we ask for everyone’s patience and assistance with this. However, ultimately our goal is to continue with the core curriculum for each class, with modifications as needed. We will also be asking for parent’s help in setting up the technology for their kids.  We are working to limit the learning curve as much as we can, but this will need every parent’s help and supervision to make remote learning work from a distance. If there are any parents with expertise with remote conferencing/teaching and can help, please let us know.

4)    We will continue to monitor the situation and determine when it makes sense to resume classes in person at Briarcliff. However, at this point we think it is likely that we will continue with remote learning for the month of March, and potentially into April as well. We will communicate this on a week by week basis.

Principal Chan, Vice Principal Fang and your children’s teachers will be in touch over the course of this week regarding more specifics for remote learning.

In the meantime, if you have any questions, please email Francine at Vice-Principal@nwcsny.org.

We have such a wonderful community of families, and I will miss seeing everyone (as well as eating rice rolls!) in the coming weeks. However, safety is our top priority, and we hope that these measures will help keep our families as safe as possible, while still continuing with learning Chinese. We look forward to seeing everyone in person again soon!



NWCS Co-Chairperson, 2017-2020


P.S. My sister is an integrative medicine doctor at the Cleveland Clinic. She wrote the attached article for an event at her work that I found helpful. I’m sharing it here in case others find it helpful as well.

Cold and Flu Prevention


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