Hello – So finally here we are …….. about to begin the last week of work with students. During this academic year with the many events ECA held, the re-accreditation self-study work, the MSA/CIS Team Visit, COVID 19, the quarantine restrictions, social distancing, gasoline/other shortages and with implementing instantaneous online learning …… we clearly demonstrated that we are a resilient, continual learning organization – the creative ideas, motivation and professional work of ECA faculty, together with parent, student and community support, all contributed to a very different yet successful year. On behalf of the ECA Board of Directors and ECA Faculty and staff I thank you for your support during this academic year.
Many thanks for your positive feedback to the Superintendent’s Webinar. Here is the link to the complete Webinar (about 55 minutes long):
During the Webinar I gave general information about planning for opening ECA in August. As you know this is subject to many factors outside of the school’s control. During June and July we shall be carefully monitoring the situation and will be sending you updated information on Monday August 3.
Meanwhile, on behalf of ECA faculty and staff, I wish you all a relaxing vacation. Online, on campus, anytime, anyway – ECA is Here to Stay!
We have six (6) faculty leaving ECA this June. This is the lowest number of overseas faculty members leaving ECA for the past 5 years. We have contracted (4) new overseas faculty and will send you information about these faculty on August 3.
On your behalf I thank the following exiting faculty, and wish them success, for their excellent work and interaction with ECA students:
- Carla Layug – Elementary Teacher
- April Pleasants – Library Director
- Mark Pleasants – Secondary Principal
- Nick Nannen – Secondary Teacher
- Debbie Reed – Secondary Counsellor
- Martin Kattam – Technology Director
2. Important Dates:
Early payment discount —-> June 5
Digital yearbook link ——> June 5
Student end of year reports ——-> June 12
ECA Annual Report ——> Published on the ECA Website —-> June 12
3. Community Service Opportunity – Project Coromoto 2020
FYI: This link will take you to a voluntary service learning opportunity.
May 24, 2020
“The survey results highlighted numerous areas of perceived strength, most notably: the safe environment the school provides for children and in general for all members of the school community; the way in which students are engaged and challenged with their learning; the extensive use of technology to enhance learning; and the effective use of assessment to inform learning and teaching.”
“Teachers engage students, employing practices that serve to achieve the high-quality learning defined in the guiding statements”
“Commendations mainly relate to the development of a stimulating learning environment, the learning support provided to students, and the extensive and effective use of technology to enhance learning.”
“In conversations with students, most students indicated that they are very happy in the school, and remarked: “when you’re in this school you just forget about other problems (outside of the school)”.
“The school fosters students’ leadership and voice and has channels through which students can give input to the school regarding their learning and well-being.”
“Parents also mentioned that they appreciate the openness of the school and free access to the community.”
“The school has a strong performance appraisal system for faculty ….”
The Visiting Team commends…. “The superintendent and board for managing to recruit and retain high-quality staff under the current political and economically adverse circumstances.”
May 18, 2020
CIS Re-Accreditation Achieved – Congratulations ECA! I am very pleased to inform you that we have just received the following notification from the Council of International Schools (CIS):
“Following the recent Team Evaluation visit, I am pleased to let you know that CIS has completed its review of the Team Evaluation Report and awarded International Re-Accreditation to your school – allow me to be the first to congratulate you on this achievement. Rosanna de Kock CIS School Services Advisor. “
The CIS Accreditation Team Visit report is a very detailed document which will take some time to fully review and evaluate before the main commendations and recommendations are shared with the ECA community.
This important achievement is the result of committed, dedicated professional work from our ECA faculty and staff. On behalf of the ECA community I have sent the following message to them:
“On behalf of the ECA Board and community I congratulate you and give thanks for all of your accreditation work and positive participation during the past 30 months which has resulted in this magnificent positive achievement!.” Terry Christian – ECA Superintendent.
Plans for Opening ECA for Student Learning on Thursday, August 13.
During June, July and August we will be evaluating and planning for potential scenarios. In particular, we will focus on developing effective protocols for the following:
- The impact of Venezuelan government quarantine, gasoline and school operating regulations
- Ensure a complete cleaning of the ECA Campus
- Ensure ongoing campus cleanliness protocols
- Delineate campus access restrictions
- After evaluating appropriate healthcare medical advice identify and implement safe community hygiene, health and safety measures:
- Before faculty, staff, students and parents return to school
- Whilst school is in session
- Ongoing evaluation of medical advice received to make appropriate modifications to our health and safety measures
- Define and maintain on campus social distancing protocols for the whole community
- Determine and implement viable student learning options for:
- Face-to-face learning
- Online learning or
- Depending on the circumstances a combination of both a and b.
- Define and implement ECA’s on campus restricted activities
- Realign academic calendar as needed, depending on the circumstances, in August and September,
Currently, as long as it is safe to do so, we are planning to receive students and continue with student learning beginning Thursday, August 13, 2020. By August 3 at the latest, when definite Venezuelan government’s quarantine regulations and related information are confirmed, and it is safe to do so, we shall send further information to the ECA community.
ECA Secondary School Leadership Positions – Academic Year 2020-2021: Mr. Mark Pleasants will be leaving, after 4 years at ECA, to become Superintendent at the American School of Recife, Brazil. On behalf of the ECA community I congratulate and thank Mr. Pleasants for his commitment, dedication and professional work at ECA and wish him success with his new responsibilities and life in Brazil.
After consultations with Secondary faculty and the ECA Board of Directors we decided to distribute the secondary leadership responsibilities through two newly created academic and daily operational positions (Deans) – one for Middle School (Grades 6 to 8) and one for High School (Grades 9 to 12).
As a result I am pleased to announce that, after interviews with the Secondary faculty and ECA Administrators, we have appointed Julia Baranowsky as Middle School Dean and Cynthia Abdallah as High School Dean.
As Superintendent I will be working with Julia Baranowsky (Middle School Dean), Cynthia Abdallah (High School Dean) and Michelle Till (Elementary Principal) to ensure that both Elementary and Secondary student learning and daily operations function smoothly during the coming academic year.
ECA Digital Yearbook 2020: Due to the current quarantine restrictions there will be no physical copies of the yearbook. By Friday, June 5 we will send a link so that you can have access to a pdf version of the yearbook.
ECA Superintendent Zoom Webinar Invitation – End of Year Information – Tuesday, May 26 at 4pm: I cordially invite you to reserve this time to virtually join me for a Zoom Webinar. During this time I will be giving information related to the following topics:
- ECA End of Year Report 2019-2020
- CIS Accreditation Commendations, Recommendations and Implications
- Student Enrollment/Staffing – Academic Year 2020-2021
- Goals and Aspirations – Academic year 2020-2021
- Online Learning at ECA – What have we learnt? – Projections for the Future
- General Administrative Information
I will be sending a link for this Zoom Webinar on Monday, May 25.
The CDC has some good basic resources for mental health and coping. I hope that you find this information helpful.
The following guidelines will help parents and students to establish effective online learning routines:
- Monitor email and Schoology/SeeSaw updates and be sure to check in with your child daily about the distance learning tasks, activities and assessments they are working on.
- Designate a place where your child will work independently on his/her assigned tasks.
- Ask your child to provide a brief summary of the learning he/she is engaging in for each class to ensure their understanding of the content and of the process they are being asked to engage in to demonstrate their learning.
- Ask your child about their calendar deadlines and support them, as needed, in submitting assignments according to the established deadlines.
- Remind your child to email his/her teachers if your child or you have questions or if you need extra help and support.
- Our faculty will be on hand to help and provide support within 24 hours.
- Establish daily routines for engaging in the learning experiences.
- Identify a comfortable, quiet space in your home where you can work effectively and successfully.
- Regularly monitor online platforms (SeeSaw, Schoology, email) to check for announcements and feedback from your teachers.
- Complete assignments with integrity and academic honesty, doing your best work.
- Do your best to meet timelines, commitments, and due dates
- Communicate proactively with your teachers if you cannot meet deadlines or require additional support.
- Collaborate and support your ECA peers in their learning.
- Proactively seek out and communicate with others as the need arises.