James River Day School

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Thursday, March 26, 2020

Dear James River Families,
This has been another remarkable week for James River Day School and the entire country. As expected, on Monday, Governor Ralph Northam mandated the closure of all schools in the state, both public and private, for the remainder of the school year. However, closure only means that physical access to the building is restricted. It does not mean that your children’s education will stop. Rest assured that we will continue to provide our students a quality education through distance learning for the remainder of this school year.
While this is not what any of us were hoping, James River Day School, in partnership with you, will adapt and successfully meet the challenges of this new format. I have been especially proud of our faculty and staff as we have engaged in an exhilarating week of collaboration and planning. I am honored and grateful to work with such a talented team who are all dedicated to continuing to deliver our mission of cherishing and challenging our students. We see this as a unique opportunity.
You will receive an email outlining our distance learning program tomorrow, Friday, March 27.
Please note:
  • Our school building is closed and students and families are not allowed to enter the buildings. James River does have the exciting addition of a mailbox in the lower circle. Should you have paperwork or items you wish to leave for staff or administration, you may leave them there.
  • Graduation will be postponed. While we all are saddened by the loss of the special spring traditions that so define the James River Day School experience, the mandated school closure especially affects our eighth grade class, most notably Graduation. We are considering alternative options and dates to honor the eighth grade students’ hard work and contributions to our community. They will be celebrated and we will be sure to include the students in the planning.
  • No official decisions have been made regarding the James River Day School summer trips to Ecuador and Quebec. We will be evaluating those trips in the coming weeks and be in touch with the students and families signed up to travel.
As we move into distance learning for the rest of the school year, I am committed to providing each of you--each student, each family, each teacher--my support and my patience as we learn how to conduct school in this new way. I ask in return that each of you practice patience with one another and, perhaps more importantly, with yourselves. We are all learning new methods of teaching, communicating, and going about our daily responsibilities. I am also deeply honored by your commitment to your children’s education and to James River.
I look forward to continuing our partnership to cherish and challenge our students.
With best regards,

Peter H. York
Head of School