Mercy Abounds

10-17-2021Nurse's LetterShannon David, RN, NCSN

One of the joys of being in the front office is interacting with students who come in happily bearing “yellow” cards. Following OLMC’s Student Learning Expectations, this year’s focus is on being “Merciful”. The yellow cards are given to a student, by an administrator, teacher or staff member, when spontaneous acts of generosity, compassion, forgiveness or support towards another are witnessed. Each card details what the student did. No matter how small the act, it is celebrated! We want students to realize that collectively, seemingly small acts of mercy help to build a more compassionate and caring community.

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Fall Break Shouldn’t Break Us!

10-03-2021Nurse's LetterShannon David, RN, NCSN

Whether it’s the slightly cooler morning temperatures, the fading evening sunlight or simply the arrival of pumpkin spice everything--Arizona “fall” has arrived and with it “Fall Break”! Whereas, last year, boarding an airplane and traveling across the country, attending football games and concerts, or gathering in groups was discouraged, this year those things are possible. Recall that in October 2020, many restrictions related to the pandemic were still in place and a great fear of a surge in cases following fall break activities across the country, loomed. This year we have the benefit of all we have learned, having worked together, “Home & School”, to create and maintain a healthy environment in which our children can learn and grow.

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Vaccines, Revisited and the Message Behind the Mask

09-26-2021Nurse's LetterShannon David, RN, NCSN

Among the greatest medical advances of the past 100 years, vaccines to prevent viral illnesses have had a profound impact on the health of the world’s population. Just one year ago, a vaccine to help control the spread of coronavirus was a hoped for possibility. The week before Christmas 2020, the vaccine became a reality. Like vaccines that predated it, the coronavirus vaccine has had a significant impact on the spread of illness. The data graphs for the weeks of initial vaccine administration (MCDPH Data) provide visual evidence of its effectiveness.

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The Importance of Vigilance

09-19-2021Nurse's LetterShannon David, RN, NCSN

Tomorrow will see the occurrence of a “first” for this school year. It will be the first day that we have NO members of our school community in isolation or quarantine since the beginning of the current school year! Add to this--sports are back (with a record number of student athletes participating), field trips are scheduled, and community events are being planned--and it is not hard to see why we consider ourselves blessed! Within our school community, we are in a good place.

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Exposures, Close Contacts & Quarantines

09-12-2021Nurse's LetterShannon David, RN, NCSN

Many have asked how exactly the school gets notified of a COVID positive case and what protocols are followed once that happens. As a strong testament to the strength of our “Home & School” partnership, in all cases, we have received notification through parents before it comes from the Health Department. “Self reporting”, as soon as possible, is so important because it gives the school the opportunity to respond quickly, when necessary. Critical aspects of our infection control strategies are the timely identification of those who are sick and need to be isolated and the timely quarantine of close contacts.

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Trust of Not

09-05-2021Nurse's LetterShannon David, RN, NCSN

The phrase, “Trust, but verify”, rooted in Russian proverbs and first introduced to Americans by President Ronald Regan in 1986, is used quite often in our common culture. It can be found on memes, coffee cups and t-shirts, and is frequently invoked by “friendly adversaries” as a sound philosophy for dealing with one another. While this approach can be understood on a geopolitical stage, it may not be the best approach amongst those desiring to build strong relationships within a community. Afterall, oftentimes the act of checking--verification--means there was no trust to begin with.

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Safe Environments

08-29-2021Nurse's LetterShannon David, RN, NCSN

In May of 2016, A World at School asked children, from all over the world, to draw pictures of what a safe school would look like. Though representing many different countries and cultures, the colorful drawings conveyed one unifying message: “that all children, no matter where they live or what their situation is, want to learn in a place that is safe and secure.” (Safe Schools in Drawings). The need for safety and security is so foundational that Maslow places it at the base of his Hierarchy of Needs.

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Observational Learning

08-22-2021Nurse's LetterShannon David, RN, NCSN

One of the greatest challenges, over the past 18 months, has been how to interpret and apply the many data points that track various aspects of the Pandemic. As most are aware, data is gathered at the global, continental, national, state and local levels (county, city, district) and can be easily accessed by anyone, at any time.

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Team Play

08-15-2021Nurse's LetterShannon David, RN, NCSN

Upon first entering the office at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel School, numerous children are drawn to the glass fronted trophy cases holding many of the large, shiny trophies won by OLMC athletic teams over the years. Impressed Little Falcons often stand and gaze as if The Vince Lombardi, The Commissioner’s, or The Larry O’Brien Trophies sit on those shelves! Team sports play has always been a very important part of the OLMC school culture. While pandemic restrictions prevented sports play last year, this year--sports are back! Judging by student response (over 100 have signed up) our Falcons are eager to get back to the courts and fields.

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Risk Management

08-08-2021Nurse's LetterShannon David, RN, NCSN

For decades, the children of OLMC have made our parched, barren field their playground. With little complaint, they have found creative ways to exercise, play self-styled games and have even ”named” a few of the trees that surround the perimeter of that humble space! Witnessing the installation of the bright green and vibrant blue play structures--with slides, swings and climbing apparatus--has been a great source of joy over the summer months and we look forward to seeing the children try out the new equipment.

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