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Madison City Schools Weekly Update


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April 9 Message from Dr. Nichols:


Dear MCS Family,

It has been another great week in the Madison City School District.

  • As a reminder, on April 9 elementary and middle schools will be administering the ACAP Assessment to virtual students in grades 2-8; therefore, April 9 will be an asynchronous virtual day for school-based students in grades K-8. The ACAP is required by the Alabama State Department of Education and may only be administered on school campuses. More importantly, results from tests such as the ACAP Summative, in addition to formative assessments such as iReady and STAR, are instrumental in providing guidance to help us meet students where they are and to help them continue to experience academic progress. Students who participate in these standardized tests will gain valuable academic information regarding progress, strengths, and areas to improve.

    Today, we have updated the elementary zone map with the latest revisions after our public meetings. I certainly appreciate all of the feedback that we have received in this process. My plan at this time is to present this zoning map to the Board for approval in April. I can assure any family who has been rezoned during this process that our district staff and school teams will do everything possible to make this transition smooth for you. As a reminder, all rising 5th grade students may complete a transfer request to remain at their currently zoned elementary school for their 5th grade year. Parents will have to provide transportation, and younger siblings will not be approved. If the family moves to a new school zone, the waiver will no longer be valid to remain at the school, and the student will need to attend the zoned school. These waivers will be available to you in May.

    Our team is working with administrators and teachers to finalize plans for summer learning programs, which will include both in-person and virtual options. These summer programs will focus on closing gaps due to COVID. Students will be invited to attend the summer in-person learning options as determined by gaps in learning that have been identified throughout the school year. The asynchronous virtual learning option will be available to all students throughout the summer. More details about the summer learning programs will be shared later this month.  

    I want to congratulate our Transportation Department. On Wednesday of this week, the State Department of Pupil Transportation conducted the annual State Bus Inspection at Madison City Schools Transportation Department. The inspection consisted of over 120 items checked on our 108 buses over the course of one week. The State Department of Pupil Transportation awarded us a report of ZERO deficiencies on all 108 of the buses. I certainly am proud of all of our Transportation team and commend them on this report as well as the excellent job they do every day for our kids. 

    I want to thank Sigmatech, County Commission District 2, and American Legion Post 229 for donating a new flagpole and flag at our Madison City Stadium. We enjoyed a dedication ceremony this morning. Our new flag pole is 60 feet tall and will hold a new 15x25 foot flag. 

    Next week on April 9th, the Governor will lift her mask order for our state. At this time, we plan to continue masking within the school setting through the end of the school year. Our district still has a large group of teachers and staff waiting to receive a COVID vaccine. Furthermore, once the mask order is lifted next week, we hope to have updates from both the ADPH and our local County Medical Officer on recommended procedures for the school setting. We will continue to monitor this situation. 

    Finally, I want to congratulate a team of freshmen students from James Clemens High School and Maanasi Limaye from Bob Jones. The James Clemens Team won the Toshiba Exploravision/NSTA competition for their region. These students include Angela Ai, Bhavya Chalasani, Aasim Musani, and Neil Sethi. They also have a mentor who is a senior at JC: Nikhita Mudium. Their project is entitled: Protein Revitalization for Narrowing Grafts. Maanasi was accepted into a highly selective summer research program called Research Science Institute (RSI), hosted by MIT and organized by the Center for Excellence in Education (CEE).

    RSI is one of the most prestigious STEM summer research programs in the country. It is a six-week, all-expenses-paid summer program. From a pool of about 3000 applicants, they select 80 rising seniors (50 from the U.S. and 30 international) each year. Many of the past RSI alumni have become Noble laureates, Fields Medal recipients, and CEOs of Fortune 500 companies. These alumni provide advice and mentorship to the participants for several years to come.

    Congratulations to these students and to their teachers and school staff who have supported and mentored them in their endeavors.

    I hope you have a great weekend. I certainly appreciate all of your support for our school system.

    Thanks,

    Ed Nichols

     
 
 





March 25 Weather Closing Update

Madison City Schools will be closed today (Thursday, March 25) due to the threat of a dangerous storm system.
After reviewing the latest weather updates early this morning, a decision was made to cancel school altogether today.
All after-school activities and programs system-wide remain cancelled.
Please be safe and weather aware.

Ed Nichols

 

 

March 24 Weather Statement

Dear Parents,

Tomorrow, the National Weather Service expects our area to encounter severe/tornadic activity in the early afternoon.
Therefore, Madison City Schools will dismiss school early tomorrow in the following intervals:

PreK -  10:30 a.m.

Elementary - 11 a.m. 

Middle and High Schools - 11:45 a.m

This is an evolving weather event that could require a school cancellation altogether. We will monitor the weather throughout the evening and alert you of any changes by 6 a.m. tomorrow.
All after-school activities and programs system-wide are cancelled for tomorrow afternoon.

Ed Nichols

 

March 12 Friday Update:

Dear MCS Family,

We’re all ready for Spring Break. This has been a tough year, and I want to thank our teachers, staff, students and parents for doing such a great job during this pandemic. As we begin our Spring Break, I wanted to make sure you had an update on our rezoning plan and other items of importance. We have prepared a new page on our website to share the revised elementary rezoning plan and for you to provide your feedback. Please visit our Rezoning Info page for all details. 

Also, please remember there are two opportunities for you to attend public hearings related to this rezoning plan:

1) March 22, 2021 at 4:00 PM – 5:30 PM - Public Hearing Rezoning for Elementary Schools
(Auditorium at James Clemens High School – 11306 County Line Rd., Madison, AL 35756)

2) March 22, 2021 at 6:30 PM – 8:00 PM - Public Hearing Rezoning for Elementary Schools
(Zompa Auditorium at Bob Jones High School – 650 Hughes Road, Madison, AL 35758)

We have again been blessed with a drop in both the positivity rate of Covid-19 in our community and the number of staff and students quarantined in our schools. In an effort to keep this downward trend, please let us know if your child develops any symptoms, tests positive, or has been exposed to someone who has tested positive for Covid-19 during Spring Break. Please utilize our Spring Break Covid-19 Reporting Tool to keep us informed.

On a final note, our middle and high school curriculum for the 2021-2022 school year has been approved by the MCS Board of Education. Digital versions of the curriculum catalogs, along with registration packets, can be found on the Madison City Schools website. School-specific information, including registration timelines, will be provided by each of the secondary schools no later than Tuesday, March 23, 2021. 

Have a great Spring Break!

Ed Nichols
Superintendent
Madison City Schools

 

March 5 Friday Update:

Dear MCS Family,

As you are probably aware, Gov. Ivey has extended the mask order until April 9, 2021. She has expressed that this will be the end of her mask mandate. Prior to Gov. Ivey issuing her first mask order in July of 2020, Dr. Karen Landers, Madison County Health Officer, had placed Madison County under a mask mandate. It is my understanding that Dr. Landers has not removed her order. Therefore, on April 9, 2021 all of Madison County will still be under a mask mandate unless Dr. Landers removes her order.

In the event that all mandates are removed, the Madison City School District will seek guidance from the Alabama State Department of Education, the Alabama Department of Public Health and the Madison County Health Department before we make any changes concerning masks in our school facilities.

I am encouraged by the recent decline in Covid issues in both our schools and our community and the increase in staff having access to the Covid vaccines. At this point the district has no plans to cease the use of masks for all staff and students this school year.

Earlier this week, I met with State Superintendent Dr. Eric Mackey who shared information about upcoming ESSER funds we will receive due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Madison City Schools will receive $2.3 million. These funds will be used to provide summer learning and sustained tutoring programs in reading and math to help close gaps in learning due to the COVID pandemic. These support programs will be in addition to the traditional summer school and tutoring programs already offered within the district. More details will be shared in mid to late April.

Today, the Alabama State Department of Education released the graduation rate and dropout rate for the Class of 2020. As a district, our graduation rate was 96% with a dropout rate of less than 1%. This is a direct result of the hard work and dedication of every member of our Madison City Schools’ family. Parents, I appreciate you entrusting your children to us. Thank you for your continued support as we work to surround your children with the education, support, and encouragement that helps them accomplish their goals.

I know you are eager to hear more about prom and graduation. I am excited to let you know that we will be having a Junior/Senior Prom. Watch for an email from principals next week about this formal event.

Our original graduation date was set for May 17; this date has not changed. Our team has surveyed the senior class to gather feedback on the graduation ceremony. The majority of seniors indicated that they would like to have one graduation ceremony for their entire graduating class. Our team is currently working to secure a venue that will allow us to hold a ceremony for the entire graduating class. Details about the venue will be released in the future, but for now, families can plan on graduation being held on May 17.

I appreciate your continued support of our schools.

Thanks,
Ed Nichols
Superintendent

 

February 24 announcement of  5-days a week schedule starting March 1.

Dear MCS Family,

We have been blessed in the last few weeks with a decline in both the positivity rate of Covid-19 in our community and the number of staff and students quarantined in our schools. With the positivity rate at near 10% and indicators from both the Huntsville Hospital System and the ADPH of declining Covid-19 issues, we will return all of our school-based students to an everyday schedule beginning Monday, March 1.

I know this is a change, but I feel that with the recent weather-related absences from school that it is the right time to reopen fully for all of our school-based students. Please know that we will continue to monitor the rate of infection in our community in the days ahead. Also, there will be a few days scheduled as virtual after spring break to address the required standardized testing for the district. Those virtual days are detailed in the calendar attached to this messenger. Below you will find specific information about the state standardized assessments.

Addressing Gaps in Learning

I realize that since March 2020, our students have experienced interruptions in traditional school due to the pandemic. Our team has been working on a plan to support gaps in student learning that will begin in the summer and extend into the 2021-2022 school year. After spring break, I will provide more information about these learning opportunities in addition to the summer school opportunities that are traditionally provided.

State Standardized Testing

In the upcoming months, the Madison City School system will administer standardized tests to all students in grades 2-8 and grade 11. These tests are required by the Alabama State Department of Education and may only be administered on school campuses. More importantly, results from tests such as the ACAP Summative and the ACT - in addition to formative assessments such as iReady and STAR - provide guidance to help us meet students where they are and to help them continue to make academic progress. Students who participate in these standardized tests will gain valuable academic information regarding their progress, strengths, and areas to improve. Therefore, we strongly encourage your child’s participation.

The elementary, middle, and high schools are developing schedules for school-based students and virtual students to complete the ACAP testing session and the ACT on campus. More information will come from your child’s school concerning testing dates and times.

In order to provide testing opportunities for both school-based and virtual students, there will be a few scheduled virtual days. On March 9, school-based and virtual 11th grade students will take the ACT on campus; therefore, 9th, 10th, and 12th grade school-based students will have an asynchronous virtual learning day. On April 9 and 23, virtual students in grades 2nd - 8th will be taking the ACAP Summative assessment on campus. Therefore, school-based students in grades Pre-K - 8th will have asynchronous virtual learning days on both April 9 and 23. The asynchronous virtual learning days mentioned are detailed in the calendar attached to this messenger along with the specific grade levels that will be virtual on those days. 

Attached to this messenger is a letter from the Alabama State Department of Education explaining the ACAP (Alabama Comprehensive Assessment Program) to parents. We encourage you to review the information.

Also included in this messenger is a form for parents of virtual students to complete. If you are the parent of a virtual student in 2nd - 8th grades, please complete this ACAP Form by March 1 to notify the school of your plans for your child(ren) to complete the ACAP assessment on campus.

We appreciate your continued support of our schools.

Ed Nichols
Superintendent


Attachments:
 messages/attachments/3bb0047b39e263d5fc29a836dd5d71da/MCS_March1-SpringBreak_2-24-21.jpg (82.5 KB)
 messages/attachments/db1e7224be6fe7ab162e39337ef7d6b2/MCS_March22-April_2-24-21.jpg (122.4 KB)
 messages/attachments/d060bae18dffffcb24356130c72c9d51/ACAP-Summative-Parent-Guide-SP-Spring_2021.pdf (179.5 KB)
 messages/attachments/fdda68efe840e6ef25654c578c874658/ACAP_Parent_Letter.pdf (645.7 KB)

 

Feb. 18 Message that Schools will be virtual Friday, Feb. 19

Dear MCS Family,

Madison City Schools will be virtual on Friday, Feb. 19 for all students.
The virtual platform will be asynchronous. Teachers will post work for students using the Schoology platform. I regret that our winter weather has altered our school schedules this week. However, this type of weather is a risk to our students, staff and teachers.

Our team has spent most of the day driving the roads in the Madison School District and accessing school parking lots and walkways. There are still many secondary roads with heavy water and slush.Tonight’s forecast is for temperatures to drop in the low 20s. The above freezing mark for tomorrow is not expected to occur until around noon.

All of the information we have received from the Madison Police, Madison Public Works and other services is that they have a great concern that the freeze tonight will create a serious black ice condition. These types of conditions on roadways and parking areas are hazardous for our bus transportation and individual travel of students, staff and teachers.

Finally, in the very near future when we achieve a true one-to-one technology platform for all of our students, we will have the opportunity to provide more synchronous instruction on weather days. We ordered 5,600 new laptops many months ago, but COVID-related shipping delays have slowed our progress toward going fully 1-to-1 with Chromebooks. In the next few months delivery of these devices will be complete and all of our staff and students will have the necessary equipment to more efficiently address remote learning options in the future.

Thank you for your support of our district,

Ed Nichols


Snowman holding sign saying Back To School Virtually



A followup Message about School on Feb. 18

Everyone,

Madison City Schools will be closed Thursday, Feb. 18, Please be safe today.

Ed Nichols
Superintendent 

 Feb. 17 Message announcing 2-hour delayed school start for Thursday, Feb. 18:

Dear MCS Family,

Due to the winter weather and the potential for dangerous road conditions, the Madison City School System will operate on a 2-hour delay on Thursday, February 18, for all students and employees.

Schools will open two hours later than normal and buses will run two hours later than normal.


All elementary students and secondary students in Hybrid Group A will attend on Thursday. Our district staff will check conditions and roads throughout the night.

If the conditions worsen and we are unable to safely have transportation services for school, a cancellation notice will be sent via school messenger no later than 6 a.m. Thursday. 

Thank you for your patience and understanding as we seek to keep everyone safe.

Ed Nichols,
Superintendent

 

Feb. 16 Message Clarification on All Virtual Day Wednesday, Feb. 17

Dear MCS Family,

A few parents have been confused with the earlier message concerning our school schedule. I apologize for any confusion and wanted to clarify these questions before tomorrow.

Both virtual and school-based students will have asynchronous lessons through Schoology tomorrow (Wednesday).

On Thursday and Friday of this week, all school-based elementary students will attend school. Starting Feb. 22 until spring break, all school-based elementary students will attend school Monday - Thursday with a virtual day on Friday.
(Here is a calendar of the schedule until Spring Break, contingent on no changes due to unforeseen circumstances). 

For our secondary students, Hybrid Group A will attend in person this week on Thursday, and Hybrid Group B will attend in person on Friday. The week of Feb. 22, the students in Hybrid Group A will attend in person on Feb. 22 and Feb. 24. The secondary students in Hybrid Group B will attend on Feb. 23 and Feb. 25. All school-based secondary students will have a virtual day on Friday, Feb. 26. Beginning March 1, all school-based secondary students will attend Monday – Thursday with a virtual day on Friday until spring break.

All lessons on the virtual days of Feb. 26, March 5, and March 12 will be asynchronous. I attached a two-page PDF visual chart of the elementary and secondary schedules.

Some parents have asked about the need for the asynchronous virtual day on Friday. As students are placed in quarantine due to Covid-19 guidelines, teachers have a significantly heavier workload as they serve both their in-person students and their students in quarantine. The virtual Friday is very helpful to our teachers as they prepare lessons for both our in-person students and those in quarantine. This time allows them to check on all students and not take away from their instructional time during the week.

Again, let me apologize for any confusion in my earlier message. It is always my desire to provide you clear communication for our district.


Ed Nichols
Superintendent


Feb. 15th Message on Feb. 16 School Closing Due to Ice

Dear MCS Family,

Madison City Schools will be closed tomorrow (Tuesday, Feb. 16) due to the potential for unsafe travel conditions and widespread power outages from the winter ice storm..

This will apply to all school-based and virtual learning students.
Alabama Governor Kay Ivey issued a State of Emergency for much of Alabama that includes the Tennessee Valley region.

Weather permitting, we will resume school Wednesday, with the “B” group for middle and high school students and all students at the elementary level reporting.
There will be an announcement Tuesday concerning the reopening of school.

Please be safe and weather aware,

Ed Nichols

Superintendent

 

Jan. 29 Message on New School Schedule

Dear MCS Family,

Due to the current data within our schools, we are adjusting our schedule for the next few weeks.

Elementary schools will remain in-person with an asynchronous virtual day. Middle and high schools will move to an A/B/A/B schedule with an asynchronous virtual day. Please know that we will continue to monitor our positive and quarantine numbers and adjust the schedule in the future if needed.

The schedule for the next few weeks will be as follows:

Elementary: School-Based Students
School-based students will learn in-person: February 1-4, 8-11, 16-19
All school-based students will learn virtually: February 5, 12

Middle and High: School-Based Students
Hybrid A group will learn in-person: February 1, 3, 8, 10, 16, 18
Hybrid B group will learn in-person:February 2, 4, 9, 11, 17, 19
All school-based students will learn virtually: February 5, 12

I appreciate your support of our district. Our administrators, teachers, and staff are doing an excellent job of serving our children.

Dr. Ed Nichols
Superintendent
Madison City Schools

 

Jan. 20 Message from MCS Lead Nurse Bonnie Davis:

Dear Parents/Guardians:

We have had a great start to school this week. Since our students have returned to a full face-to-face instruction schedule, please remember the procedures we use in case there is a need to quarantine a student.
These procedures are:

· 
If someone in your family tests positive for COVID-19, then that person should isolate at home with very minimal contact with others in the household.

· 
Quarantine for the family members (close contacts), does not begin until there is a break in close contact with the positive case.
For example, if the parents test positive for COVID-19 and the children are too young for self-care, then the child will isolate with the parents during their 10-day isolation, and then begin his/her quarantine on the 11th day for 14 days.

· 
Anytime someone breaks the closer than 6 feet for longer than the 15 minutes rule (the 15 minutes is cumulative time in a 24-hour period) the 14-day quarantine begins again. Please see The Quarantine and Isolation Guideline section of the ADPH Back to School Toolkit for further explanation (https://www.alabamapublichealth.gov/covid19/assets/cov-school-toolkit-121120.pdf) :

· 
A person can still develop COVID up until the 14th day from last exposure with a positive case.

· 
If your child becomes symptomatic during the 14-day quarantine, please notify your child's doctor for further evaluation.

· 
If someone is symptomatic and is waiting for test results, please keep others away from the ill person.

· 
10 Day Home Isolation for a positive case remains unchanged.

· 
Please continue to report to your child's school nurse any symptomatic, positive case, or exposure to a positive case regarding your child.

Thank you for your continued patience and understanding as we continue to keep all of our students and staff safe and healthy.


Bonnie Davis, BSN, RN
Lead Nurse, Madison City Schools


Jan. 13 Message from Dr. Nichols:

Dear Madison City Schools Parents,

Beginning Tuesday, January 19, after the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday, all Madison City Schools students who chose school-based learning will return to our schools for every day instruction. After reviewing our positive tests rates and quarantining data during our hybrid period, I feel that allowing our school-based learners back in our schools is manageable. It must be emphasized that masks, social distancing and other safety protocols will continue to be followed as outlined in our Madison City Schools Return to School Plan.

I will continue to daily monitor positive cases and quarantines in our schools. I know all of this has been a hardship for many of you and your students. Our teachers and staff are certainly feeling the strain of this unprecedented year, but they are committed to providing our students the highest quality of education.

Please know that I am grateful for your understanding and support as we navigate through these challenging times together.

Ed Nichols
Superintendent


Jan. 11 Message from Dr. Nichols:

The National Weather Service is forecasting black ice overnight and into the morning for North Alabama.
Therefore, Madison City Schools will be on a two-hour delayed school start on Tuesday, Jan. 12.  

This delay will be for both in-school and virtual students. 

Bus routes will be adjusted accordingly.

Reminder: MCS is on the staggered schedule this week for in-school students. ‘’A” group students are meeting Monday/Tuesday and “B” group students are meeting Thursday/Friday.
Wednesday will be a virtual day.

Please stay safe and weather aware.

Ed Nichols
Superintendent  


January 6 Message from Dr. Nichols re:  week of Jan. 11 schedule

Dear MCS Parents,

Following consultation with the Madison County Health Officer and with the current positive rate for Covid-19, traditional students in Madison City Schools (MCS) will remain on a staggered schedule through Friday, Jan. 15, 2021.

The schedule for next week is as follows:

Group A: Monday and Tuesday.
Wednesday - Virtual.
Group B: Thursday and Friday

Group Schedule Breakdown
● First Class Pre-K - Group A is A-L and Group B is M-Z
● Columbia - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● Heritage - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● Horizon - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● Madison - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● Mill Creek - Group A is A-L and Group B is M-Z
● Rainbow - Group A is A-J and Group B is K-Z
● West Madison - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● Discovery - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● Liberty - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● Bob Jones - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● James Clemens - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z

This announcement does not impact students enrolled in virtual classes.

As a reminder, school-based (face-to-face) students in the AA/BB rotation schedule should follow the guidance of their teacher on days they are not in the building. This includes classroom expectations, assignments, asynchronous instruction, Schoology requirements, etc.

MCS reminds stakeholders of the district’s health protocols while on campuses including requiring students and staff members to wear masks at all times, practicing social distancing to the greatest extent possible, encouraging frequent hand washing and sanitizing, adhering to directional signage, and prohibiting visitors in school buildings.

Parents of students who are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 should remain home from school, seek medical treatment and contact the local school nurse. Symptoms include new cough, new loss of taste or smell, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fever or chills, muscle or body aches, headaches, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea, and fatigue.

As a reminder, schools and offices will be closed on Monday, Jan. 18 in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Plans for the week of Jan. 18 will be announced prior to dismissing for the MLK holiday weekend.

Sincerely,

Ed Nichols
Superintendent

 

December 17th Message from Dr. Nichols:

Dear MCS Parents,

Let me begin by thanking you for your patience and support this semester. I know this has been a challenging year for all of us. However, our teachers, support staff and administrators have continued to do their best to provide our students with the highest level of education.

I know the past several weeks of using the hybrid schedule has been arduous for you and taxing on students, but it has allowed us to lessen the effects of the pandemic on the district.  As I have reviewed the rates of infection across our community, I have seen how the number of positive and quarantining cases directly affect our schools. In July, when we started the school year using a virtual platform, the positivity rate in our community was 14%. When students returned to school around Labor Day, the rate had dropped to 6.5%. However, as we drew closer to Thanksgiving the rate increased to 15.5%. Two weeks prior to Thanksgiving break, we increased from 8 positive tests and 189 quarantined to 59 positive tests and 888 quarantined at the Thanksgiving break. If the break had not occurred, we were at the point, like many nearby districts, of reverting back to a total virtual platform. Since coming back from the break using the hybrid schedule, we have seen a decrease in our positive cases to 39 and our quarantines to 350 (even during a rise of the infection rate in the community). While all of us want to return to our normal everyday routine, the hybrid schedule has been beneficial in allowing us not to be totally virtual.

With this in mind, we will continue with our hybrid schedule the first week after the winter break. The students will return on January 5, 2021, with the Group A students attending in-person on Tuesday/Wednesday and the Group B students attending in-person on Thursday/Friday. We will evaluate our case numbers early in the week and review adjusting the schedule for the second week. However, please make plans for your student if we must maintain the hybrid schedule for the second week. The breakdown of the groups is listed below.

Again, thank you for your support of our district during this unprecedented time. I know this semester has left all of us fatigued, but I hope that in this holiday season you will find time to renew your spirit and enjoy your family.

So, from my home to yours, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Ed Nichols

Group Schedule Breakdown
● First Class Pre-K - Group A is A-L and Group B is M-Z
● Columbia - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● Heritage - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● Horizon - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● Madison - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● Mill Creek - Group A is A-L and Group B is M-Z
● Rainbow - Group A is A-J and Group B is K-Z
● West Madison - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● Discovery - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● Liberty - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● Bob Jones - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
● James Clemens - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z

 

 

Dec. 7 message from Dr. Nichols to parents of students who plan to be virtual next semester:

MCS Parents,

On Friday afternoon, all parents of middle and/or high school students who chose for their child(ren) to be virtual for the second semester should have received a confirmation email from our virtual administrator.

If you are a parent of a middle school and/or high school student that chose for your child to be virtual for the second semester, but you did not receive an email on Friday, please contact Jackie Jennings at virtual@madisoncity.k12.al.us.

Parents/Guardians of elementary students who chose for their child(ren) to attend school virtually during the second semester of the 2020-2021 school year received an email confirmation  Friday evening from their elementary school.

If you are a parent of an elementary school student and chose for your child(ren) to be virtual for the second semester, but you did not receive an email Friday evening or you have not already spoken directly with your child’s principal or designee about this, please contact your child’s principal.

Dr. Ed Nichols
Madison City Schools

Superintendent Nichols issued this districtwide communication on Wednesday, Dec. 2 regarding the school meeting schedule until the Winter Break on Dec. 18.

Dear MCS Family,

This week our district team has constantly monitored the current COVID-19 issue in our school district. Furthermore, we have requested guidance and information from our local health officials.

Given the current  outlook, Madison City Schools will continue on the current hybrid cycle until the winter break. This will apply to all school levels: elementary, middle and high schools.

This means the current schedule of splitting our students into A and B groups by alphabet will continue  through the next two weeks until schools dismiss for the winter break on Dec. 18.

The A group will attend on Monday and Tuesday and the B group on Thursday and Friday. All groups will be virtual on Wednesday to allow for buildings to be sanitized between rotational groups.

Here again is the split by student last name:

First Class Pre-K - Group A is A-L and Group B is M-Z
Columbia - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
Heritage - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
Horizon - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
Madison - Group A is A-K and  Group B is L-Z
Mill Creek - Group A is A-L and Group B is M-Z
Rainbow - Group A is A-J and Group B is K-Z
West Madison - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
Discovery - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
Liberty - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
Bob Jones - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
James Clemens - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z

We know this is a challenge to do, but with the rate of infection this high, if we don’t stay hybrid and keep social distancing at a maximum inside the schools, we could very easily and quickly end up quarantining large groups of staffs and students and cause the potential to have to go completely virtual.
I appreciate everyone’s patience and understanding and support.

On a side note, Bob Jones High School will remain virtual the rest of this week due to a boiler issue that surfaced yesterday. With the expectation of getting the heating system restored, we hope BJHS will join all of our schools on the rotational schedule next week.

Ed Nichols


Superintendent Dr. Ed Nichols Nov. 24th Message to the community:

Dear MCS Family,

As all of you are aware, the current numbers of COVID-19 have risen these past few weeks. In an effort to help us continue to have school-based interaction, please let us know if your students test positive or have contact with a COVID-19 case during the break by using this form. This information will allow our staff to be prepared for the return of school after this week.

With the rise in cases and the corresponding shortage of substitutes, we will follow a hybrid schedule next week after the break for all students. We wanted to make you aware of this change in order to give you time to prepare your family schedule. Prior to Thanksgiving break, the number of teachers in quarantine came very close to forcing the district to move to completely virtual. We believe if we can ease back in with this rotation after the break, it will allow us to have everyone back in school with fewer quarantines and positive COVID-19 cases prior to winter break and hopefully will allow all school-based students to return in full rotation before winter break.

The schedule will be to split our students into A and B groups by alphabet. The A group will attend on Monday and Tuesday and the B Group on Thursday and Friday. All groups will be virtual on Wednesday to allow for buildings to be sanitized between rotational groups. The AA/BB Rotation will be organized alphabetically by last name. If conflicts arise in siblings’ assigned rotation, students should come on the day assigned to the oldest sibling. The alphabetical AA/BB rotation will be as follows:

First Class Pre-K - Group A is A-L and Group B is M-Z 
Columbia - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
Heritage - Group Ais A-K and Group B is L-Z
Horizon - Group Ais A-K and Group Bis L-Z
Madison - Group Ais A-K and Group Bis L-Z
Mill Creek - Group A is A-L and Group B is M-Z
Rainbow - Group Ais A-J and Group Bis K-Z
West Madison - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
Discovery - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
Liberty - Group Ais A-K and Group Bis L-Z
Bob Jones - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
James Clemens - Group A is A-K and Group B is L-Z
If your student has previously had one of our loaner hotspots and needs it back for these virtual days, please submit a ticket. Each school should have several on hand beginning Monday. 

As we bring students back in a rotation after the break, please be aware of the following information: Parents can expect to receive an email from your child’s teacher. The teacher will share assignments for the students attending school virtually Monday (11/30) - Wednesday (12/2) via email and/or Schoology. Students attending school virtually Wednesday (12/2) - Friday (12/4) will receive information from the classroom teacher prior to leaving school on Tuesday with a follow-up to parents via email and/or Schoology. The assignments may differ based on the face-to-face instruction provided during the week; however, the workload should be similar for all students. 

Please note that the AA/BB rotation is for school-based students only. The teachers of virtual students will continue to communicate with parents in the usual manner. 

For Early Beginnings Pre-K and special education self-contained classes, students will not follow the AA/BB rotation; instead, students in Early Beginnings Pre-K and special education self-contained classes will attend in-person all week with the exception of virtual Wednesday.

Finally, the date of November 30this approaching for families to decide whether to choose the virtual option for the second semester or the school-based option. If you do not make a selection, you will automatically be assigned to school-based for the semester. Use the following links to submit your intent form prior to the November 30th deadline: 

(Updated note: The links below closed after the signup deadline)

Secondary Spring Semester Intent Form (for all students grades 6-12)
First Class Pre-K Spring Semester Intent Form
Columbia Elementary School Spring Semester Intent Form
Heritage Elementary School Spring Semester Intent Form
Horizon Elementary School Spring Semester Intent Form
Madison Elementary School Spring Semester Intent Form
Mill Creek Elementary School Spring Semester Intent Form
Rainbow Elementary School Spring Semester Intent Form
West Madison Elementary School Spring Semester Intent Form
I would remind you to please check our Virtual FAQ page for the most current updates to the questions that have been submitted to our Virtual Administrator. Please feel free to continue to send your questions to virtual@madisoncity.k12.al.usbecause we are updating our FAQs regularly. Also, on Friday morning, Nov. 27 at 11 a.m., I plan to hold a live WebEx (Click here to join the WebEx) for anyone interested to answer many of the questions we’ve received from you concerning the virtual option for the second semester. Although the WebEx will not be an open question and answer session, I do plan to have our team assembled so we can continue to share information and gather questions to give you as much information as possible before the Nov. 30deadline. If you cannot make the WebEx meeting, we will record the session and add it to our FAQ page.

We appreciate your continued support of our school district.

Sincerely, 

Ed Nichols

 

The November 20 COVID update is under the health services page: 


This is a Monday, Nov. 16 E-mail from Dr. Nichols regarding signups for 2nd Semester Learning Options:
Dear Parent(s)/Guardians,

As we near the midpoint of this school year, plans are being finalized for next semester for both school-based and virtual-learning platforms. Now is the time to choose the learning platform for your child(ren).
It is very important that Madison City Schools receive your learning platform preference forms by Nov. 30.
We want to emphasize that the Nov. 30 deadline applies to all levels: elementary, middle and high school students. Parents should submit this new form even if their child is virtual and the form was completed a few weeks ago.

Please note that when you choose for your student to be virtual or school-based, you are committing your child for the entire spring semester. If a response to the 2nd Semester Intent form is not submitted, then your student will be placed in school-based classes for the upcoming semester.

Elementary parents, your principal will send out information very soon with the learning intent form with other information that may be helpful.
Secondary parents will find the learning intent form in this letter from Dr. Nichols email sent to the community on Nov. 16.

An FAQ page is also attached addressing issues at both elementary and secondary levels.

Thank you,
Ed Nichols,
Madison City Schools

 


Friday, Nov. 13 COVID report from Dr. Nichols:

Dear MCS Family,

Below you will find the COVID-19 update for this week. Normally we place this on our website, but I felt the need to make sure all of you received this update. As you may be aware, the number of cases has risen in Alabama. We have also had a rise in positive tests in Madison County. I just want to assure you that we monitor these changes daily as they relate to our school district.

Our plan at this point is to continue to offer our school-based option. If we see a rise in a specific school or grade level, then we will possibly select a virtual or rotational option for the school or grade level affected by the positive test(s). This decision can be based on the number of positive tests or the lack of staff due to positive tests and quarantines.

I encourage all of us to refocus our attention on wearing our masks, distancing in public, and washing our hands.

Also, please make sure that you are reporting COVID-19 information pertaining to your family to your local school nurse. You can find guidelines, protocols, and helpful information pertaining to COVID-19 on the school district website under Departments then Health Services.

This week, we have a total of twenty-five (25) new positive cases of COVID-19 in our district. We currently have 437 staff and students in quarantine from being associated with positive or presumptive cases.

The breakdown is as follows:

Positive Cases:
Columbia: 1 employee, 0 students
Heritage: 0 employees, 2 students
Horizon: 0 employees, 0 students
Madison: 2 employees, 1 student
Mill Creek: 0 employees, 0 students
Rainbow: 0 employees, 0 students
West Madison: 1 employee, 0 students
Pre-K: 0 employees, 1 student
Discovery: 1 employee, 0 students
Liberty: 3 employees, 2 students
Bob Jones: 1 employee, 5 students
James Clemens: 0 employees, 5 students
District: 0 employees

Quarantined (Does not include new positive cases):
Columbia: 2 employees, 9 students
Heritage: 2 employees, 31 students
Horizon: 0 employees, 5 students
Madison: 1 employee, 14 students
Mill Creek: 1 employee, 25 students
Rainbow: 0 employees, 10 students
West Madison: 1 employee, 16 students
Pre-K: 2 employees, 13 students
Discovery: 5 employees, 32 students
Liberty: 1 employee, 32 students
Bob Jones: 8 employees, 132 students
James Clemens: 3 employees, 60 students
District: 7 employees

Dr. Ed Nichols
Superintendent
Madison City Schools


The weekly COVID-19 report on positive cases and quarantines in Madison City are logged every Friday on the Health Services department page: https://www.madisoncity.k12.al.us/domain/131 .

For the week of Nov. 6, Madison City Schools had a total of eight (8) new positive cases of Covid-19 across our district. We currently have 189 staff and students in quarantine from being associated with positive or presumptive cases. The school-by-school breakdown is under the health services link above.

Here is the October 30th report:
This week, we have a total of four (4) new positive cases of Covid-19 in our district. We currently have 117 staff and students in quarantine from being associated with positive or presumptive cases.
The breakdown is as follows:

Positive Cases:
Columbia: 0 employees, 0 students
Heritage: 0 employees, 0 students
Horizon: 1 employee, 0 students
Madison: 0 employees, 0 students
Mill Creek: 0 employees, 1 student
Rainbow: 0 employees, 0 students
West Madison: 1 employee, 0 students
Pre-K: 0 employees, 0 students
Discovery: 0 employees, 0 students
Liberty: 0 employees, 0 students
Bob Jones: 0 employees, 0 students
James Clemens: 0 employees, 1 student
District: 0 employees
 
Quarantined (Does not include new positive cases):
Columbia: 1 employee, 3 students
Heritage: 1 employee, 6 students
Horizon: 1 employee, 4 students
Madison: 0 employees, 7 students
Mill Creek: 1 employee, 21 students
Rainbow: 1 employee, 4 students
West Madison: 1 employee, 15 students
Pre-K: 0 employees, 3 students
Discovery: 1 employee, 3 students
Liberty: 1 employee, 9 students
Bob Jones: 2 employees, 18 students
James Clemens: 1 employee, 6 students
District: 3 employees.   


THIS IS THE FRIDAY, OCTOBER 23 REPORT.

This week, we have a total of eight (8) new positive cases of Covid-19 in our district. We currently have 121 staff and students in quarantine from being associated with positive or presumptive cases.

  • Positive Cases:
    Columbia: 0 employees, 0 students
    Heritage: 0 employees, 0 students
    Horizon: 1 employees, 0 students
    Madison: 0 employees, 0 students
    Mill Creek: 0 employees, 0 students
    Rainbow: 0 employees, 0 students
    West Madison: 0 employees, 1 students
    Pre-K: 0 employees, 0 students
    Discovery: 0 employees, 0 students
    Liberty: 0 employees, 1 students
    Bob Jones: 1 employees, 2 student
    James Clemens: 2 employees, 0 students
    District: 0 employees
     
    Quarantined (Does not include new positive cases):
    Columbia: 2 employee, 3 student
    Heritage: 0 employees, 10 students
    Horizon: 1 employees, 2 students
    Madison: 0 employees, 5 students
    Mill Creek: 1 employee, 4 students
    Rainbow: 0 employees, 3 students
    West Madison: 1 employee, 14 students
    Pre-K: 0 employee, 2 student
    Discovery: 1 employees, 6 students
    Liberty: 1 employees, 23 students
    Bob Jones: 5 employees, 8 students
    James Clemens: 3 employees, 24 students
    District: 2 employees.

 


THE FOLLOWING COMMUNICATION WAS SENT BY SUPT. DR. ED NICHOLS , on Friday, Oct. 16, 2020.

October 16, 2020
Dear Madison City Schools Family,
 
I want to welcome everyone back and hope each of you had an enjoyable
Fall Break. Our second nine weeks of school is off to a great start. When we return on Monday, October 19, all students will attend every day for those that have selected school-based instruction.
This week, we have a total of nine (9) new positive cases of Covid-19 in our district. We currently have 97 staff and students in quarantine from being associated with positive or presumptive cases.
The breakdown is as follows:

Positive Cases:
Columbia: 0 employees, 0 students
Heritage: 0 employees, 0 students
Horizon: 0 employees, 0 students
Madison: 0 employees, 0 students
Mill Creek: 0 employees, 0 students
Rainbow: 0 employees, 2 students
West Madison: 0 employees, 0 students
Pre-K: 0 employees, 0 students
Discovery: 0 employees, 0 students
Liberty: 0 employees, 0 students
Bob Jones: 0 employees, 1 student
James Clemens: 3 employees, 2 students
District: 1 employee
 
Quarantined (Does not include new positive cases):
Columbia: 1 employee, 1 student
Heritage: 0 employees, 7 students
Horizon: 0 employees, 6 students
Madison: 0 employees, 7 students
Mill Creek: 1 employee, 3 students
Rainbow: 2 employees, 3 students
West Madison: 1 employee, 2 students
Pre-K: 1 employee, 1 student
Discovery: 0 employees, 12 students
Liberty: 0 employees, 7 students
Bob Jones: 3 employees, 8 students
James Clemens: 3 employees, 25 students
District: 3 employees.
 
Beginning next Friday, instead of sending you our weekly updates via School
Messenger, we will post our COVID-19 updates on our website, no later than 4:30 PM each Friday. You will find this information by going to Departments, Health Services, and then COVID-19 updates.

This week, the Alabama Department of Public Health released an update for its back to school toolkit. This update changes some of the definition and requirements of
quarantining close contacts of major symptoms. We will post information concerning
these updates on our Health Services link on our website on Monday.
Thank you for your continued support of our school district.
 
  
Ed Nichols
Superintendent




Friday, Oct. 2, Report to the Community

Dear Madison City Schools Family,

I want to thank all of our school district teachers, staff, and administrators for the hard work and dedication for this first nine weeks of school. I can assure you next to the word hero in the dictionary you would find the names of the wonderful employees that we have in our school district.

For this week, we have a total of 6 new positive cases of Covid-19 in our district. We currently have 202 staff or students in quarantine from being associated with positive or presumptive cases. The breakdown is as follows:

Positive Cases:


Columbia - 0 employees, 0 students

Heritage - 0 employees, 0 students

Horizon - 0 employees, 0 students

Madison - 0 employees, 1 student

Mill Creek - 0 employees, 0 students

Rainbow - 0 employees, 0 students

West Madison - 0 employees, 0 students

Pre-K - 0 employees, 0 students

Discovery - 0 employees, 0 students

Liberty - 0 employees, 3 students

Bob Jones - 0 employees, 0 students

James Clemens - 0 employees, 2 students

District - 0 employees


Quarantined (Does not include new positive cases):


Columbia - 3 employees, 17 students

Heritage - 0 employees, 21 students

Horizon - 1 employee, 6 students

Madison - 2 employees, 10 students

Mill Creek - 4 employees, 6 students

Rainbow - 5 employees, 11 students

West Madison - 0 employees, 6 students

Pre-K - 0 employee, 3 students

Discovery - 0 employees, 29 students

Liberty - 0 employees, 38 students

Bob Jones - 16 employees, 6 students

James Clemens - 2 employees, 13 students

District - 3 employees.

When we return from Fall Break on October 12, James Clemens High School students will attend every day for those that have selected school based instruction.
On October 12, the students at Bob Jones High School will return on the A/B rotation with Wednesday, October 14 being a virtual day. Students with last names A-K will attend Monday/Thursday and L-Z will attend Tuesday/Friday. On October 19, the Bob Jones students will return every day for those that have selected school based instruction.

During Fall Break if anyone in your household has major symptoms, positive results, or awaiting test results for COVID-19, please keep your student at home on October 12 and contact your local school nurse for further instruction. I appreciate all that our community is doing to help us maintain safety for our employees and students.

Thank you,

Ed Nichols
Superintendent
Madison City Schools

 

Sept. 25, 2020, Report to the Communuty

Dear Madison City Schools Family,

 I want to begin by thanking Madison City Schools (MCS) Nurse Bonnie Davis and the entire MCS nursing staff for the tremendous job they are doing in this pandemic environment. These nurses are going above and beyond to serve our MCS families.

For this week, we have a total of 30 new positive cases of Covid-19 in our district. We currently have 228 staff or students in quarantine from being associated with positive or presumptive cases. 
Here is the breakdown:

Positive Cases:

Columbia - 0 employees and 1 student

Heritage - 0 employees and 0 students

Horizon - 0 employees and 0 students

Madison - 0 employees and 0 students

Mill Creek - 0 employees and 0 students

Rainbow - 0 employees and 1 student

West Madison - 0 employees and 1 student

Pre-K - 0 employees and 0 students

Discovery - 1 employee and 0 students

Liberty - 0 employees and 1 student

Bob Jones - 2 employees and 20 students

James Clemens - 0 employees and 3 students

District - 0 employees

 

Quarantined (Does not include the 30 new positive cases listed above):

Columbia - 8 employees and 35 students

Heritage - 0 employees and 15 students

Horizon - 1 employee and 8 students

Madison - 0 employees and 3 students

Mill Creek - 1 employee and 8 students

Rainbow - 2 employees and 1 students

West Madison - 1 employee and 6 students

Pre-K - 1 employee and 1 student

Discovery - 6 employees and 42 students

Liberty - 1 employee and 35 students

Bob Jones - 21 employees and 23 students

James Clemens - 1 employee and 5 students

District - 3 employees

Last week, we isolated 120 members of the Bob Jones football program out of caution to our positive test. After review, the majority of these players are not considered close contacts and will return from isolation on Sept. 28. 

 

Thank you,

 Ed Nichols

Superintendent

Madison City Schools



Sept. 23 Message To The Community


Dear MCS Family,

Let me begin by saying thank you for your support, patience and dedication to our school system. Like you, these past few weeks have been challenging for all of us in the district.

I want to update you on a change to our middle and high school schedules starting next week.
Our school-based learners in middle school will come off the A/B rotation and begin a full five-day weekly schedule starting Monday, Sept. 28.

James Clemens will begin an A/B rotation for school-based learners starting Monday, Sept. 28, with Wednesdays being a virtual day. Students with last names A-K will attend Mondays and Thursdays and L-Z on Tuesdays and Fridays.

We have made a decision to delay the return of students to Bob Jones until Oct. 12, after the fall break. This is due to the number of quarantined staff members.
Our school staff, administrators and nursing team are doing a great job of monitoring the situation for the health and safety of our students, employees, and families.

I will continue to give you weekly COVID updates on Friday of each week. We are working diligently to get all of our students back to daily school-based instruction.

Sincerely,
Ed Nichols

 

SEPT. 18 FOLLOWUP MESSAGE FROM DR. NICHOLS

Dear Madison City Schools Family,

By now, you are aware of the announcement I sent out today concerning the cancellation of the Bob Jones High School football games and the change in our secondary schedule. This week, we returned our middle school students on a rotational schedule and the elementary schools completed their first full week of school-based learning.

For this week, we have a total of 15 (fourteen are students and one employee spread across five schools) confirmed positive COVID-19 cases in our district. We have 170 quarantined that are spread across seven schools from being associated with positive or presumptive cases.

Here is the breakdown:
Positive Cases:
Columbia - 1 student
Rainbow - 1 student
Liberty - 1 student and 1 teacher
Bob Jones - 9 students
James Clemens - 2 students

Quarantined:
Columbia - 5 students and 1 teacher
Mill Creek - 1 student
Rainbow - 1 student
Discovery - 21 students
Liberty - 10 students
Bob Jones - 120 students and 10 teachers
James Clemens - 1 teacher

I know delaying the start of the high school rotation is not what any of us wanted this year. However, due to the loss of teaching staff to quarantine and the shortage of substitute teachers, I felt the need to delay the high school rotation. Madison is a small community and we are not sure how these positive cases at Bob Jones could affect our teaching staff in other schools.
Currently, 37 of the Bob Jones and James Clemens teaching staff have accepted extra teaching assignments on their planning period to accommodate the scheduling demands of school-based and virtual classes. Due to this number of extra teaching periods, we cannot easily cover teaching positions vacant due to the effects of quarantined staff. School principals have reported difficulties in acquiring substitute teachers this year. Our substitute teacher pool is very low compared to previous years.

The Alabama Department of Public Health is currently active in the contact tracing of these cases and will update us as needed. As I have stated from the beginning of the school year, we will be flexible in our schedule and our plans to meet this ever-changing issue. If we find out next week that the need for quarantining is not as widespread on our teaching staff, we can adjust our school-based plans. Our goal is to return our secondary students to everyday school-based learning like our elementary students.

Although we have had these increases of cases this week, I want to thank our staff and teachers for doing a great job of following the procedures and protocols we set for the district. I want to make sure all of you know that this sudden spike in the BJHS football team is not because the coaching staff did not follow our procedures. All of our coaches in the district have done a great job since the summer of adhering to the AHSAA and Madison City guidelines. 

Dr. Ed Nichols,
Superintendent



FRIDAY SEPt. 18, 2020 MESSAGE FROM DR. NICHOLS

Everyone,

Today, I received information from the Bob Jones High School principal, athletic director and head football coach, that we have 9 BJHS football players who have tested positive for Covid-19.

After consultation with the ADPH and the AHSAA, we are announcing the cancellation and forfeiture of tonight's football game against Florence High School and next week's game against Auburn High School.
I believe that this is in the best interest of players, coaches and fans on both sides. At the current time, we are evaluating which members of the team are considered "close contacts" by the ADPH guidelines. Therefore, in an abundance of caution, we are isolating the BJHS team until Sunday, September 27, as we evaluate this situation.

Furthermore, we are delaying our school-based reentry schedule for all high school students for one week. Both of our high schools will resume school-based learning on an A/B rotation on Sept. 28.
Until further notice, all middle and high school students will continue on an A/B rotational schedule. Additional information will be a part of our Friday Covid-19 update this afternoon.


Ed Nichols,

Superintendent

Madison City Schools