School Closing Update

BREAKING NEWS: Governor Kemp has just announced that schools will remained closed through at least April 24, 2020. This is 2 weeks longer than we last anticipated. You can read more HERE.

We will continue to work diligently to deliver instruction to your students during this time and will keep you updated with any new developments.

Please check the Parent Portal for information regarding enrollment and financial aid extensions.

COVID-19 Update

In accordance with Governor Kemp’s suggestion yesterday and guidance from the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Brookwood Christian School will move to Distance Learning effective Monday, March 16. We will remain closed for the week and update you on a week by week basis.

While our campus will be closed, the education of your child will continue. All staff will work remotely to best support students, including delivering digital and physical instructional resources to students while they are at home. Teachers will be available from 9 – 3 (just like a regular school day) with a break from 11:30 – 12:20 for lunch and students to take a break. 

The decision to close schools was not easy. After the private schools in Cherokee & Bartow closed, and the closing of Kinkaid, we knew this would be inevitable, we just did not want to create a situation where families had a student at home and siblings at school. After reviewing the closures of the public schools yesterday, we knew the time had come to transition students to our distance learning model  and close campus. 

We know that you may have questions regarding how the school closure will impact you, and we will work to provide you the answers.

We will continue to keep you updated on the next steps during the school closure process as we turn to our distance learning resources. We are in the process of getting materials together and you will start receiving information from teachers if you haven’t already. We will also keep important information on our website.

We know this is a very difficult time for our school families and the community. We will work together to get through this.

Look for more information throughout the day including phone numbers and contact information.

Parent Alert

Research shows that SMS open rates are as high as 98%, compared to just 20% of all emails. And, on average, it takes 90 seconds for someone to respond to a text and 90 minutes to respond to an email.

Because of this, we send out time sensitive information via our Parent Alert System, which is part of our Emergency Alert System.

From our alert system:

Selecting the Emergency option will override Family Individual Preferences.

Parents who have replied “STOP” to a text sent by the school have blocked messages with their cell provider and will not receive texts.

Please note that regular Parent Alerts are sent with reminders, school closings, inclement weather, and traffic advisories that may be time sensitive and get buried in email. Please be sure your settings allow for these alerts. We all check our texts faster than email 

We will NEVER send an Emergency Alert for weather, traffic, or closings, only for actual EMERGENCY situations.

To check/change your settings, login to the Family Portal and follow the following steps:

  1. Pull down the FAMILY menu on the left
  2. Select FAMILY HOME
  3. On the right look for Family Alert Cell Phone and it should say YES. If it does, there’s no need to do anything else.
  4. If it says NO, select the EDIT pen.
  5. Select the appropriate parent name(s)
  6. Change from NO to YES.
  7. Be sure to SAVE the changes.
1. Pull down FAMILY menu
2. Select FAMILY HOME.
3. If circled region says YES, you are good
4. If not, select the EDIT pen
5. Select appropriate parent(s)
6. Change from NO to YES
7. SAVE

School Closing Clarification

In light of recent events surrounding COVID-19 we want to clarify our school closing policy. We have previously stated that :

“If you hear Cobb County Schools close, we will automatically close. We will also close if any 2 of the following close: Bartow, Cherokee, Fulton, or Paulding. If conditions in your area are not safe to drive, and we are not closed, any absences will be excused.”

Please be advised this policy is with regards to closing because of weather conditions, which would make sense for us to close under those circumstances.

However, school closings as a result of illness are an entirely different matter and not based on similar criteria.

We will continue to be in contact with the Cobb County Health Department, the Georgia Department of Public Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, along with other appropriate state and federal agencies as we monitor any changing conditions.  Likewise, if any concerns arise in our school we will share that information with the appropriate departments immediately.

At this time we have no plans of closing school unless the above agencies order us to do so.

Fortunately, because of our accreditation, in that unlikely event, we have a plan that will not require us to make up days. Please note, we are NOT expecting any closings, but under the advice of health agencies, we are developing a plan in the event of a situation.

In the event we are ordered to close, we will send out a parent alert. Please make sure that your settings in the Family Portal allow you to receive these and click HERE for details regarding parent alert settings.

As with any communicable illness, we strongly urge families to keep sick children home and to limit contact with those who are ill.

Click HERE to find more information regarding measures we are taking at school regarding COVID-19.

Coronavirus Update

You are probably aware of recent events and the concern over the global 2019 novel coronavirus (also reported as COVID-19 or 2019-nCoV) outbreak.

Most of these cases have been reported in China, Europe, and other Asian countries. At this time there are 28 cases in the United States, over half if those are on the west coast. To date, there have been no cases reported in Georgia. However, with the media attention surrounding this event and the fact that your child’s health and safety are our highest priority, we want to assure you that we are closely monitoring this situation and are prepared to address any situation should it become a concern in Georgia and the Brookwood Christian community.

Common viruses circulate every year in the United States, and they usually cause upper respiratory illnesses such as the common cold (rhinovirus and other, non COVID-19, coronaviruses), influenza, adenovirus, etc. These can  have symptoms such as fever, cough, and shortness of breath, which are also symptoms of COVID-19. According to the Georgia Department of Health, the overall risk of coronavirus to the general public and schools is very low. However, that does not mean that we should not take reasonable cautionary steps and continue to monitor the situation.

For the general American public, who are unlikely to be exposed to this virus at this time, the immediate health risk from COVID-19 is considered LOW.

So far, it seems the new virus is more likely to infect older adults, particularly people with chronic health problems. And those who have died from the virus in China tend to be much older, with an average age in their 70s.

We are encouraging students to follow basic measures for everyday preventative steps to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, including:

• Wash hands regularly with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom or before eating. To ensure 20 seconds sing the Happy Birthday song twice or the ABC song, including the “now I know my ABCs” part.

• Dry hands! Wet skin spreads germs. Use paper towels rather than air dryers as studies have confirmed they spread germs at an alarming rate.

• If soap and water are not available,use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer (hand sanitizer should NOT replace hand washing if available).

• Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, and wash hands afterward.

• Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth as much as possible.

• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

• Keep sick children home from school and limit their contact with others while sick.

• Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces, including cell phones, keyboards, and doorknobs using regular household cleaning spray or a disinfectant wipe.

• Get a flu shot every year. It is not too late to get one now.

Brookwood Christian School is committed to the health and wellness of our students, faculty and families. We are following the above procedures at school and will send home students with fever or obvious signs of illness.

We will continue to be in contact with the Cobb County Health Department, the Georgia Department of Public Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, along with other appropriate state and federal agencies as we monitor any changing conditions.  Likewise, if any concerns arise in our school we will share that information with the appropriate departments immediately.

Fortunately, because of our accreditation, in the unlikely event of school closings, we are able to use distance learning and home assignments to count toward hours. Please note, we are NOT expecting any closings, but under the advice of health agencies, we are developing a plan in the event of a situation.

Sources:

  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Situation Summary. Atlanta, Georgia: Centers for Disease Control & Prevention; February 25, 2020. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/summary.html?
  2. Journal of the American Medical Association. Characteristics of and Important Lessons From the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Outbreak in China. Chicago, IL: American Medical Association; February 24, 2020.  https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2762130
  3. Lysol.  Coronavirus: Understanding the 2019 Novel Coronavirus. Reckitt Benckiser LLC: Parsippany, NJ; https://www.lysol.com/healthy-home/understanding-coronavirus/ (accessed 2/26/2020)
  4. Facitlity Management. The Great Debate: Paper Towels vs. Air Dryers. FM Communications: Danvers, MA; http://facilitymanagement.com/restroom-paper-towels-air-dryers/ (accessed 2/27/2020)
  5. National Public Radio. Coronavirus Is Contagious, But Kids Seem Less Vulnerable So Far. Washington, DC: National Public Radio; February 20, 2020. https://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2020/02/20/807483553/coronavirus-is-contagious-but-kids-seem-less-vulnerable-so-far

Emergency Alert TEST

Today at 5PM we will test our Parent Alert
EMERGENCY ALERT system.

We hope we never have to use this other than an annual test. We will NEVER do a test during school hours. If an Emergency Alert is sent during school hours, it will say “EMERGENCY” and it will be an actual emergency, and you will receive information and instructions.

Today’s TEST ALERT will read:

“This is a TEST of our EMERGENCY ALERT. No action is necessary. Thank you.”

If you do not receive today’s alert, please check your settings in ParentWeb. You may have to reset your selection.

Please be advised of the following from our alert system:

Selecting the Emergency option will override Family Individual Preferences.

Parents who have replied “STOP” to a text sent by the school have blocked messages with their cell provider and will not receive texts.

Please note that regular Parent Alerts are sent with reminders, school closings, inclement weather, and traffic advisories that may be time sensitive and get buried in email. Please be sure your settings allow for these alerts. We all check our texts faster than email 🙂

We will never send an Emergency Alert for weather, traffic, or closings, only for actual EMERGENCY situations.


Parent Meeting

We will have our Fall Parent Meeting this Friday, August 15 at 9 AM.

After you drop of your student(s), just park and stay for the meeting in the auditorium of the 200 building.

We will have coffee & tea while giving you an overview of school information and the upcoming year as well as answer any questions you may have regarding this school year, FACTS, volunteering, etc. This is optional but highly recommended for new parents, if possible.

We will also do a drawing for a door prize! 🙂

See you then!

Click for Facebook Event

Important FACTS Updates

Brookwood Christian is in the process of implementing several services to make things easier for our families, students, staff, and to consilidate & minimize redundancy in the office.

Features to look for:
-Premier Billing (FACTS Tuition & SIS merge)
-Grant & Aid Applications
-Online Application and/or Reenrollment
-Giving

PREMIER BILLING

As many of you know, in Fall of 2017 we began utilizing FACTS Tuition to reduce the amount of time spent in the office dealing with bookkeeping and deposits. Within 3 months, the only regret we had was not doing it sooner!

During the Spring of 2018, McGraw-Hill announced that Engrade would no longer be an option for Student Information Systems (SIS) and Report Cards, so the logical step was RenWeb, a “sister company” of FACTS, both of whom have been leaders of these services for private schools across the U.S.

During the Fall of 2018, FACTS & RenWeb formally merged into one company and as we learned this summer at the FACTS conference, many changes are coming that will make things easier for both our families and staff.

The biggest one, which we are in process of implementing, is having FACTS Tuition and FACTS SIS system integrated into ONE easier to use system, Premier Billing. Below are some of the benefits for our families:

Simplified Enrollment

  • FACTS offers a faster, easier way for parents to enroll using Premier Billing. Parents simply select a payment plan as part of their enrollment/re-enrollment process.
  • Re-enrolling parents can pay registration fees using the stored bank account information in FACTS and view their enrollment fee payment in their FACTS financial activity.

Easy Login

  • Parents can view academic information and pay tuition and fees from any device with one username and password.
  • Premier Billing allows parents to access correspondence and account details, add funds to their prepay accounts, and make payments on tuition and bills from a single login.

Information Security

  • Your family data is kept under digital lock and key with the highest security standards in the industry.

GRANT & AID

This service will streamline applying for scholarships and aid (excluding the Georgia Special Needs (SB10) Scholarship). With a true, independently determined need of our families, this can not only make it possible to find other sources of funding, but also give a clear picture of need for other funding and grant writing.

  • Easy online application guides families through the entire process.
  • With one application and a single application fee, families can apply for aid at multiple FACTS schools.
  • All required verification documents are easily uploaded.
  • Families are alerted of their award status via email and can accept or decline online.
  • FACTS offers in-house customer service center staffed with best-in-class live agents and web chat.
  • Accessible through all modern internet browsers with a responsive design that gives families access through their preferred device, from desktop to tablet to phone.
  • FACTS provide the highest security standards in the industry when it comes to the collection and storage of financial and demographic data.

ONLINE APPLICATION & ENROLLMENT

Using a cost-effective school enrollment solution allows us to go paperless and view applications and enrollment packets as they are completed – saving time, resources, and making school budget projections more accurate. Benefits for families include:

  • Easy applications. School admissions solutions shouldn’t be complicated. Responsive application design and pre-populated demographic fields make admissions and enrollment a breeze.
  • Quick and simple. Families can sign up for payment plans during enrollment or re-enrollment.
  • No paper needed. No more leaving work early to turn in school paperwork. Parents can make their application fee payment on the go and send/receive referral forms online.
  • Access from anywhere. Parents can complete application and enrollment packets with any device – from laptop to smartphone.

FACTS GIVING

This service will make it easier for people to donate. Whether it’s our families, our alumni, or the broader community, this gives us the flexibility to create various appeals and events, and offers donors the ability to give via online gifts, text, pledges, event registrations, and more.

  • Donors can easily donate from any device via credit card, debit card, or ACH.
  • Text-to-give capability makes giving easy and convenient for our donors and for fundraising events.
  • Progress tracker updates, so donors can see their immediate impact on a project’s goals.
  • Donors can choose to cover transaction fees.
  • Supports one-time gifts, recurring donations, and pledges.
  • Email and text receipts make it easy to track individual giving and organize information for tax purposes.
  • No worries about payment or demographic information thanks to FACTS’ industry-leading security standards.

All four of these services are currently in
the implementation process. We will let you know once they are available for your use.

Thank you so much for your patience and understanding during this process, we are confident that once implemented this will make things so much easier for all of us. If you have ANY questions, Ms. Tammy will be available during Sneak-a-Peak, Wednesday, August 7th from 1-3pm.

FACTS SIS Set Up Information

Please note that ONCE YOU START setup, you will have SIX HOURS TO COMPLETE SETUP!

Follow this link: https://bcs-ga.client.renweb.com/pwr/

Then click on: Create New ParentsWeb Account

  • Follow the instructions using the email address that received setup email or it will not recognize you as affiliated with the school. It may take 10-15 minutes to get the reply email with the link for password selection. If you did not receive a setup email please contact the office.
  • Please note that your password must be 6-8 characters using at least one letter and one number and NO special characters. If you go over, it will not let you know, and you will have to contact FACTS to reset, so be careful!

  • Once you have completely registered, you should be able to login. On the menu bar at left you should see a link for “Web Forms”. When you click on that it will take you to a list containing “Family Demographic Form” which will display 6 forms that need completing at your earliest convenience.
  • Some information may already be complete, but please review for typos and transmission errors. We realize that some of this is the same information on your registration paperwork, but there is no other way to get it uploaded in a timely manner. Once this is completed, you will not have to do this again, other than address/phone#/email/etc changes as they occur. Items in brackets are optional [optional]
  • For each form, once you are finished, click “Save” at the bottom, then “Return to main form” up top to get to the next form.
  • Do not use “quotes” for any field. Doing so will invalidate that field and we will not see the information.
  • Please note that we will not allow your child to leave campus with anyone that is not
    • CUSTODIAL PARENT,
    • EMERGENCY CONTACT, or on the
    • APPROVED TRANSPORTATION LIST!


FORMS:

Student Demographic Form:

  • Correct legal First, Middle, Last, plus Nickname, birthday, gender, ethnicity
  • Mailing address where student resides
  • Main Parent Contact as Home or Cell (depending),
  • email is for student school email, if applicable, otherwise leave blank
  • [Religious Affiliation]

Student Medical Form:

  • Physician & insurance Info – Please make sure Permission to treat is on correct preference and Insurance information is correct.
  • Please complete the medication list, using notes to tell us administration times at school, along with medical conditions & allergies.
  • Include anything you would want emergency responders to be aware of.
  • Be sure to check “yes” for permission to treat if you wish to have emergency responders/hospital treat you child in the event of an emergency. The default for this is “no” and without permission they will not be able to until you are able to be contacted to give permission.

Custodial Parent Form:

  • Name, phone number(s), email(s), and address(es) [birthday] [religious]
  • For each parent, the bottom there are buttons to select if and where you want alerts. Set those to your desired settings.
  • If a parent on birth certificate is not allowed custody of child, we need a copy of court order in office file and we will also set an alert in SIS.

Emergency Contacts:

  • You can list up to 20 people who we should contact in an emergency
  • DO NOT LIST ANYONE YOU DO NOT WANT TO PICK UP YOUR CHILD IN AN EMERGENCY,
  • Please list in order of how you want us to contact (hopefully we’ll never need these)

Approved Transportation Form:

  • Please list those ALLOWED TO PICK UP YOUR CHILD FROM SCHOOL.  
  • Any regular pick ups please put in notes, i.e. ‘Suzy rides home with her Aunt Mary every Friday’ in Aunt Contact

Grandparents

  • [Any grandparent info you wish]
  • you can click Add Grandparent out in main menu.

 

Next Week Travel Advisory

From ACWORTH POLICE DEPARTMENT:

Please be aware that Main Street is scheduled to be paved on Monday, April 22 and Tuesday, April 23 from the Caboose to roughly Dallas Street. The intention is to keep one lane open during the paving process, however please expect brief delays. Storefront parking from Lemon Street to Dallas Street will not be available during the paving.

On Wednesday, April 24 and Thursday, April 25 paving will move to the area under construction on Northside / Southside Drive. The intention is to keep one lane open during the process to allow access to the businesses located in the construction area.