COVID-19 Information & Resource Page
COVID-19 Information & Resource Page
St. Augustine Prep is committed to keeping the school community informed as the situation surrounding COVID-19 continues to unfold. Below you will find a list of frequently asked questions and Campus Communication shared with our school community. In addition, links to important information and resources are also included below.
Our focus as educators continues to be the health and safety of our community. In an effort to implement the necessary measures to help mitigate COVID-19, we have decided the following:
- The campus is closed for the remainder of the 2019-2020 academic year. Distance Learning will continue during this period.
- All campus activities and athletic events will remain canceled until further notice.
St. Augustine Prep Distance Learning Resources and Documents
Important School Contacts
Academics: Mr. Stephen Cappuccio ’96 (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Athletics: Mr. Michael Rizzo ’86 (email@example.com)
Student Mental Health & Wellness: Mr. Dennis Stahl (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Graduation: Dr. Dominic Puggi (email@example.com)
Timeline of Communication to School Community
May 3, 2020
As we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic, I want to continue my communication with you about these unprecedented times. Providing a healthy and safe campus is our top priority at St. Augustine Preparatory School. Unfortunately, the consequences of the virus outbreak are being felt around the world and, in particular, in the Tri-state area. The pandemic has negatively impacted many households who are dealing with increased anxiety, the impact of social distancing, and struggles with self-care on top of the many day-to-day day challenges they were already facing.
An Invitation from the Prep’s Health and Wellness Department
Brother Robert Thornton, OSA, Psy.D., an Augustinian Friar and our school psychologist, has kindly offered to invite you to join a St. Augustine Prep Parent/Guardian Support Group. The goal of this virtual initiative is to help you connect with others in the Prep community who are also seeking guidance and obtain some new and creative ideas for coping, stress management and resilience. If you are interested please email Dr. Puggi (Dr.Puggi@hermits.com) who will communicate dates and times of these gatherings.
As promised, I offer the following two resources linked below to assist you with supportive conversations you may be having with your son:
Class of 2020 Update
Although there still remains a good deal of uncertainty about the trajectory and duration of the pandemic, the Leadership Team remains committed to honoring and celebrating the many gifts of the Class of 2020. In that spirit, we are tentatively targeting the following for Members of the Senior Class:
- Commencement Exercises on Wednesday, June 24, 2020 at 4 p.m. Multiple scenarios, including both virtual and on-campus options, are in the planning phase based upon the directives of the Office of the Governor of the State of New Jersey.
- Distribution on Thursday, May 21, 2020: Cap, Gown, Hood, Tassel, Admission Tickets. Return of: Grant Books, Security Cards, Locker Cleanout and other end-of-the-year matters.
- Plans for a campus-wide “Camden Caritas Food Drive” to support the Neighborhood Center of Camden, a ministry of the Sisters of St. Joseph, may also take place on Thursday, May 21, 2020. Details are forthcoming.
In the days ahead, we will provide you with further communication about these events. We hope that by giving you advanced notice, you and your families may plan accordingly. I firmly believe our end of academic year traditions will be very memorable for the Class of 2020 and that this graduating class will always have a special place in the hearts of all who are St. Augustine Prep.
Through the intercession of Our Mother of Good Counsel, patroness of the Province of St. Thomas of Villanova, I ask for God’s blessing on each one of you and your loved ones during these challenging moments.
Fr. Robert J. Murray, OSA
April 19, 2020
Dear Prep Community,
I am writing to advise you that our campus will remain closed for the remainder of the academic year 2019-2020. Until that time, we will continue our new normal of online learning and virtual professional collaboration. This early decision to remain in a cyberlearning environment is the result of our mission to protect the health, well being, and safety of the community. In addition, the announcement will remove all of the unknowns and assist us in planning the academic focus of the school. As you will see below, we have extended the school year one week in order to provide students with additional instruction and review sessions given that classes met twice each week over the past month.
This is clearly not how we envisioned the second semester. Our exceptional faculty, staff and leadership team have stepped up to support our students. As always, they have pulled together and demonstrated the professionalism, kindness, and competency so integral to our core values. In a very short period of time, all of our academic offerings were moved to state-of-the-art virtual platforms. It was an unprecedented team effort and an initiative that has been a part of the strategic plan for several years. I am very grateful for the continued commitment of the Prep Community to our students and their academic future.
How does this decision impact the school calendar?
The final meeting for the Class of 2020 is May 15, 2020.
Final assessments for the Class of 2020 are scheduled for May 18-May 20, 2020.
Grade submission for the Class of 2020 is May 22, 2020.
The final meeting for the Classes of 2021, 2022 and 2023 is May 22, 2020.
Final assessments for the Classes of 2021,2022 and 2023 are May 27-29, 2020.
There are no classes on Memorial Day, May 25, 2020.
May 26 is a Study Day for underclassmen with makeup assessments on June 1, 2020.
Underclassmen grades will be due on, June 5, 2020.
Third Semester is canceled.
Details related to Third Semester (e.g., finances), semester assessments, second semester/final grades, and AP Exams will be provided to you by Mr. Cappuccio.
Graduation for the Class of 2020
We have a team in place working on a commencement plan. At this time we cannot specify details because of the changing nature of the crisis. I will keep you updated. This is a class that will be remembered for putting the safety of others first. And so in a very real way, we will do our best to celebrate each one of them and their many gifts and accomplishments.
As we continue to navigate these challenging days, please feel free to contact me if I may be of assistance. Thank you for your continued commitment to the mission of St. Augustine Prep.
Know that you and your families remain in my prayers each day.
Fr. Robert J. Murray, O.S.A.
April 5, 2020
Dear Prep Community,
During this coming Holy Week, we experience once again the central mystery of our faith as we walk with Jesus along the way of the cross to a newness of life. We follow His faithful path from suffering through death to the joy of experiencing the empty tomb. We are especially reminded this year to pray for those around the world who have been afflicted with the virus and for those who have passed.
Let there be no doubt that this Holy Week will be one to remember, one that can stretch us. Although there will be no public opportunities to worship, there will be many opportunities to celebrate our faith remotely and each day to pause, to reflect on the gospel message and to be grateful for the gifts in our lives.
As we move toward a new experience of Holy Week and Easter, I invite you to remember that God is present and at work. God is bigger than our fears, bigger than our sense of loss. He is present and at work during this pandemic and reminding us each day to be a stronger faith-filled Prep Community.
Do not be afraid. The truth of Holy Week remains eternal.
Easter Break is within sight! Please use this time to recharge the batteries and get some rest! Continue to keep the lines of communication open with your teachers as this will remain the key to your success. Know that I am always available to meet with for any questions or concerns that you have. Happy Easter to you and your family!
Download Google Calendar – THIS WILL REALLY HELP YOU!
- The video attached below will show you how to do this.
- Google Meet invites will populate directly into the calendar.
- Google Calendar will simplify and assist with your time and schedule management.
Easter Break Schedule
- We are following the School Calendar (attached).
- We will have all classes on Wednesday 4/8.
- No Classes on Thursday 4/9, Friday 4/10 and Monday 4/13.
- Classes Resume on Tuesday 4/14.
- There will be no work assigned to students during Easter Break!
- Behavior in the virtual classroom should be no different than the traditional classroom.
- Respect for your teachers, fellow students, being dressed for class, and getting out of bed are just a few of the issues we have noticed.
- There is no substitute for good judgment.
- Core Rules of Netiquette – This link is an excellent resource for our current educational reality and future experience in college and the professional world.
- Do not hesitate to reach out, the entire faculty and staff is available by email or Google Meet.
- College Guidance is available as we start the process of Course Scheduling and Registration. They are an excellent resource.
- Mr. Stahl and Br. Bob are available to students every day.
- Information Technology continues to be available to students for any technical issues.
Parents and Guardians,
I hope this email finds you well. I am sure your households are as hectic as mine with jobs and children. Below is the Academic Update that was sent to your sons on Sunday. I wanted to keep you informed in regard to expectations of our students and faculty. I only ask that you encourage your sons to stay engaged and communicate – we are here to help them.
We are grateful for your continued support and feedback as it is certainly motivating for us as educators.
I hope this email finds you well and adjusting to our new reality. It was great seeing so many of you on Google Meet in your classes last week. Fr. Murray’s email yesterday confirms that cyberlearning is our current educational reality for the time being. With this in mind, we need to make a few adjustments to our approach to ensure consistent communication and engagement. Hang in there and keep up the good work!
Google Meet Requirement – Starting Tomorrow (Monday, 3/23)
- All classes will be required to meet live a minimum of once per week in accordance with the Cyberlearning / Class Window Schedule (see attached).
- This can be in video format, audio chat or discussion board.
- Some teachers may be using another platform that better suits their course needs.
- Attendance is not optional and will be part of your grade.
- Communication is of the utmost importance as we navigate cyberlearning.
- It is imperative that you check your email often.
- If you do not understand assignments or expectations, email your teachers and ask for clarification.
- Please know that your teachers are always available to assist you with any issues you are having in class.
- They want nothing more than to see you succeed.
Time Management & Organization
- For many of you, this past week and the weeks ahead will stretch your skills in Time Management and Organization.
- Schedule the week in front of you with adherence to “live” class meetings and due dates of assignments.
- Keeping a calendar or agenda book will greatly assist.
- As stated in my last email, try to create a workspace for your studies.
Points of Contact
- IT is available remotely every day to assist with any questions or concerns. (From Connectivity to Downloading Apps)
- College Guidance is available to meet. Reach out to your counselors to set up a meeting.
- Mr. Stahl and Br. Bob are available if needed. Reach out to set up a meeting.
- Unitas Advisors are always available to assist.
- Of course, Dr. Puggi, Mrs. Vogelsong and I are available with any questions or concerns.
Extended Cyber-Learning Daily Schedule (PDF): http://bit.ly/39TzWQ0
March 22, 2020
Dear St. Augustine Prep Community,
Projections about how long schools will be closed as a result of the virus continue to permeate the news and social media. Since my March 13, 2020 email, I have been reflecting on campus closure periods long enough for us to deliver the quality academic program associated with the Prep, but not too long to prevent us from being effective in our planning. With that in mind and in collaboration with the Leadership Team, I want to share the following with you:
- The campus will be closed until Monday, April 20, 2020. Cyberlearning will continue during that period.
- Cyber classes will not be offered in observance of the Easter Triduum on Holy Thursday, April 9, 2020, Good Friday, April 10, 2020, and Easter Monday, April 13, 2020.
- All campus activities and athletic events are canceled until further notice.
This past week I observed amazing on-line learning. We are very well prepared for this transition. Over the past several years, St. Augustine Prep has created a technologically sophisticated learning environment. Together we move into this new opportunity for our teaching/learning community.
I am deeply proud of our entire St, Augustine Prep community during these unchartered waters and will share periodic updates with you in the days ahead. Thank you again for your patience and support.
Be assured of my continued prayers for you, your families and those infected by this virus.
Fr. Robert Murray, OSA
Parents and Guardians,
I hope this email finds you well. The purpose of this email is to communicate St. Augustine’s Academic Plan for this extended time of Cyber-Learning. Though this method of delivering academic instruction is not new for us, we need to make alterations due to the amount of time that students will not be present for traditional instruction. Today, we met as a faculty to discuss our plan moving forward. Tomorrow, Tuesday, March 17th, we will begin our online instruction. Individual teachers will be the main source of communication in regards to assignments, assessments, timelines and expectations of individual courses. Copied below is an email that was sent to the students today. Many teachers have already engaged the students. There will be missteps and details that need to be ironed out by teachers and students; however, I am confident that if we exercise patience and strong communication all will be well. Our resolve in providing an excellent educational experience for your sons will continue to be at the forefront of all we do.
Acknowledging the fluid nature of this situation, we understand our families and students have additional questions covering a multitude of topics. We are working towards establishing solutions regarding these issues and we will be in communication throughout the upcoming weeks. In an effort to help navigate the rapidly-changing situation, we have created a COVID-19 Information and Resource Page which can be reached at hermits.com/virusinfo.
Thank you for your patience as we work together through this unprecedented time.
The purpose of this email is to follow up on the email I sent the other day and to explain the plan moving forward for the next couple of weeks and possibly beyond. We will not be following the daily bell schedule. Attached is the schedule that we will be utilizing below. Please let me know if you have any questions and also feel free to ask your classroom teachers! Let’s make the most of this situation!
Keep in mind that everything we do moving forward is considered a regular school day.
Assignments will be graded and you will be held accountable for the work that needs to be completed.
The attached schedule was designed for your well being and not to overload your days.
Teachers will email you with assignments and expectations consistently throughout the week.
I encourage you to keep the lines of communication open with your teachers.
By now some of your teachers have already contacted you about class meetings.
If a teacher is requiring you to meet live, you are required to attend. Failure to do so will impact your grade.
The Class Windows and Schedule attached can be utilized by teachers as a live class session or as office hours.
Class Windows will ensure no conflicts between classes and also create time for you to ask any questions you may have of your teachers.
Class Windows are not the only time for you to work for individual classes.
You will notice that there is no Class Window on Friday. This is a day for you to complete your assignments.
Extended Cyber-Learning Daily Schedule (PDF): http://bit.ly/39TzWQ0
Prep Parents and Guardians,
Thank you for your patience as we work together through this unprecedented time. I am emailing you this evening to take note of the message forwarded below, this email was sent to your sons earlier today. Tomorrow afternoon, a detailed message outlining our plan for the next two weeks will follow.
Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions or to seek additional info. To do so, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will address your message as expeditiously as possible.
I hope you are all well and enjoying the last day of spring break. As we are on the advent of some uncharted waters, I wanted to share some thoughts in regard to our current situation. Tomorrow the faculty will be meeting to discuss our plan for the next two weeks. Though Cyber-Learning is not new to our school, we will have to adjust our plan and approach as we are staring at a longer period of time of not being on campus. The plan will include all aspects of Cyber-Learning including schedule, assignments, lecture, discussion, assessment, and other logistical issues that may arise. Some of your teachers may have already been in contact and all will be contacting you by Tuesday to communicate the plan for their courses. Tomorrow afternoon, I will be sending a more detailed email to all. In the meantime, below are some items for your consideration:
- Business As Usual! – This interruption is not an extension of vacation. You are expected to switch gears and get back to work! Teachers will be teaching and students will be learning.
- Patience – This is something new to you and your teachers. I am most confident that all will be well, but please be patient especially this week as things evolve.
- Communication – Communication with your teachers will be key. Do not hesitate to contact them through email or MyPrep with anything you need or difficulties you may be having.
- Tomorrow – You are permitted to come to campus tomorrow from 9-1 to gather items you may need over the next two weeks.
- Technology – The majority of learning will be delivered in an online format. Our IT Department is available to assist you with any questions or issues that may occur. Juniors, Seniors and those utilizing iPads need to download the following App: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/hangouts-meet-by-google/id1013231476
Please let me know if you have any questions moving forward. Thank you for your time and attention! I am looking forward to having you back on campus soon!
Dear St. Augustine Prep Parents/Guardians, Students, Faculty & Staff,
Unfortunately, the Coronavirus has begun to impact the State of New Jersey. Our focus as educators continues to be the health and safety of our community. In an abundance of caution we have decided the following:
- Our school will be closed from Monday, March 16, 2020, and will reopen on Monday, March 30, 2020.
- Students will be able to enter the buildings at St. Augustine Prep on Monday, March 16, 2020, from 9 am to 1 pm to pick-up any belongings they will need until our campus re-opens. No one will be permitted on our campus during the closure. This includes our athletic facilities and all buildings.
- It is important that students take home all books, devices, and personal items on Monday, March 16, 2020, during the designated time.
- All extra-curricular and co-curricular activities including retreats, athletic events both on and off grounds, field trips, and social events are canceled until further notice.
- The SAT will be administered tomorrow Saturday, March 14, 2020, at St. Augustine Prep.
On Monday, March 16, 2020, the faculty and staff at St. Augustine Prep will meet to discuss our Cyber-Learning policy and it’s delivery over the next two weeks. Additional plans which may affect the school community will be sent to you via email and the Honeywell Alert System. (Please CLICK HERE for instructions on how to update your Honeywell Alert System profile and notification preferences)
As a reminder, you can reduce the risk of spreading respiratory viruses like COVID-19 by implementing the following procedures:
- Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds.
- Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol if soap and warm water are not available.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with anyone who is sick.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.
- Do not share any food, drinks, cups, utensils, etc.
- If you are sick, stay home and avoid contact with others.
Thank you for your patience and understanding as we navigate this unprecedented matter.
Be assured of our continued prayers for all those affected by this virus.
Fr. Robert Murray, OSA
What is Coronavirus Disease 2019?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a respiratory disease first detected in Wuhan, China. There are now cases around the world, including the United States. There are many types of human coronaviruses, including some that cause mild upper-respiratory illnesses. COVID-19 is a new disease not previously seen in humans.
For updated information about COVID-19 cases in New Jersey, CLICK HERE to visit the New Jersey Department of Health’s website.
How to take care of yourself
There is no vaccine to prevent COVID-19, and there are no medications approved to treat it. That means the best strategies to prevent the spread of the disease are common-sense actions everyone can take.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, and disinfect your hands.
- If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into the inside of your elbow.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe. Disinfectant spray and wipes, and hand sanitizer are available to the University community through the Dean of Students Office.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after using the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
- The illness is more severe in people with underlying health conditions. The CDC recommends getting a flu shot if you haven’t already been immunized against the flu.
COVID-19 is a respiratory illness caused by a coronavirus strain first detected in Wuhan, China. There are many types of human coronaviruses, including some that cause mild upper-respiratory illnesses. COVID-19 is a new disease not previously seen in humans.
Common signs of infection include:
- Shortness of breath
In severe cases, particularly in people with underlying severe and chronic health conditions, the infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, and death.
Based on what is known about similar coronaviruses, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention believes COVID-19 spreads mainly from person to person:
- Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about six feet).
- From respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
- Possibly from touching a surface or object that has the virus on it, and then touching the mouth, nose or eyes.
People are thought to be most contagious when they are most sick. Some spread might be possible before people show symptoms; there have been reports of this with this new coronavirus.
The incubation period is the time between exposure to a pathogen and the appearance of first symptoms.
The CDC believes at this time that symptoms of COVID-19 may appear in as few as two days or as many as 14 days after exposure. This is based on the incubation periods for similar viruses.
The CDC advises that for the majority of people, the immediate risk of being exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19 is thought to be low. There is not widespread circulation in most United States communities, but the elderly, those with compromised immune systems and pre-existing health conditions are the most vulnerable. For more details, please see CDC guidelines on risk assessment.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash, and disinfect your hands. If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into the inside of your elbow.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- If you haven’t already been immunized against the flu, get a flu shot.
The CDC does not recommend the routine use of respirators or face masks among the general public.
If you see someone wearing a mask, do not assume that they are at risk. There are reasons for wearing a mask that have nothing to do with COVID-19.
For up-to-date information, please check the following websites:
To date, CDC has not received any reports of pets or other animals becoming sick with COVID-19. At this time, there is no evidence that companion animals including pets can be infected with or spread COVID-19. However, since animals can spread other diseases to people, it’s always a good idea to wash your hands after being around animals.
Academic Instruction and Student FAQ
Classes resume on Tuesday, March 17 – CLICK HERE to view the weekly class schedule moving forward.
Overflow is a block of time to allow you to complete additional work that may have been assigned throughout the week.
F period for sophomores will be a free period until we return to campus. (You’re welcome, sophomores. – Sincerely, Mr. Cappuccio)
The Mother & Son Dance (March 22) and Junior & Senior Prom (April 8) have both been postponed indefinitely. If you registered for either event, then you will be completely refunded in the next week. The League Apps registration links for both events have been temporarily closed.
With the hope that we can still host the Junior & Senior Prom, we are working with Carriage House to secure a date in late April or early May. An email with updated information and registration links will follow in the upcoming weeks