UCA sets opening plan

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Union Parish has moved to begin school on September 8. The Board of Union Christian Academy agrees that this step is in the best interest of the students. Therefore, the Board of Union Christian Academy voted on July 27, to be a unified parish and begin school on September 8. An updated school calendar will be posted to the school web site in the next few days. In order to make up for the 17 days lost at the beginning of school five days of professional development for teachers have been removed, two days of fall break have been removed, and school will go four days longer at the end of the year. That leaves six days to make up. These days are being made up by adding minutes to the day. School for the 2020/2021 school year will run from 7:30 until 3:00. Students will have the same number of instruction minutes with the new schedule as with the original schedule.

Additional information about the opening of school will be posted on the official school website at www. ucalions.org.

While the 2020/2021 school year will bring many changes there are many things that will remain the same. The major constant is that the faculty and staff of Union Christian Academy remain committed to helping your child grow academically, mentally, and spiritually. In addition, some things that remain the same are:

1. Drop off locations remain the same for elementary and for high school. We will still begin accepting students at 7AM.

2. The uniform policy and dress code have not changed. This is published in the student handbook which will be placed on the school website shortly.

3. Lunch prices have not changed.

4. We will be having in person classes 5 days a week.

5. We will still be offering After Care Services. Understand that while we will be trying to social distance this will be the only time of the day that we will be having elementary age students mix with other grades.

6. UCA students will be able to ride the bus 5 days a week. Since Union Parish School are not in session on Mondays. The Monday routes and drivers may be different. You will have to contact Union Parish School Board for more information on the bus routes.

On the UCA Website you will find a “Start Strong Plan” that outlines many of the changes that deal with the COVID 19 Pandemic and the protocols that will be in place this year. Briefly below you will find some of the changes that you can expect this year. We are working to provide Virtual Instruction to our students who request this model. You must let the school know by Noon on Monday, August 24, 2020.

1. Temperatures will be taken as soon as the students arrive at school and again at lunch. If a student is a drop off and they run a fever greater than 100.4 you must take them back home.

2. If a child becomes ill during the day, they will be placed in an isolation area until someone can come get them.

3. Students in grades K3 through 6 will be static. That means they will remain in one room with the same students all day. Any teacher other than their homeroom teacher will come to their room.

4. Students in grades 7 – 9 will change classrooms but they will move as a group.

5. Students will go to the cafeteria to get a hot to go lunch and return to their classroom to eat lunch.

6. Students can bring their lunch, but this year microwaves will not be available. Therefore, do not send lunches that must be heated.

7. If your child rides the bus, Union Parish School Board requires that any student in grades 3 and above must wear a mask on the bus at all times.

8. When students arrive at UCA, they must wear a mask into the building and into their classroom. In the classroom a student in encouraged to wear a mask to the extent possible. Anytime students are moving around the building, they must wear masks. This means high school students must wear a mask during all class changes. Teachers will be in their classrooms at 7:15 to accept students so we will not be having larger groups of students mixing together.

9. Parents when you come to the school, we encourage you to remain at the door. If it is necessary that you enter the building, your temperature will be checked. Any person who enters the buildings must wear a mask and have a temperature check.

10. Parents pick up will take a bit longer since we will be staying in the building so we can socially distance. When teachers see your car, they will call for your students to come to the pickup. Please, bear with us we are only trying to protect the children.

11. For the time being there will be no large gathering of students during the school day. This means that until the pandemic subsides there will be no chapel. Bible class will still be held in each grade and at the high school level Mr. Douglas will be broadcasting into several of the classrooms to small groups.

12. There will be many opportunities for students to wash and/or sanitize their hands. The school has ordered a large quantity of hand sanitizer. We have already received 8 gallons.

13. At the high school level the desks, will be sanitized between each class.

14. Water fountains have been turned off. We have ordered water bottles for each student. (we hope they arrive before school starts) The water bottle should be filled at home before the students arrive at school. During the student’s lunch time the water bottles will be refilled. At any time a student needs more water the students will be assisted in refilling their water bottle.

15. The official time school starts is 7:30AM and the official end of the day is 3:00PM. Students will be counted tardy if they arrive after 7:30AM.

16. If a student or faculty member comes in close contact with a positive COVID 19 case or a student or faculty member test positive, we will follow the flow chart from the Louisiana Department of Health to determine who must quarantine and for how long. (Flow chart can be found on website. www.ucalions.org.)