School re-entry news comes out online
Questions still linger about safety measures, reporting and school re-entry in general for the 2021-22 school year.
As with last school year, Rio Rancho Public Schools aims to keep all parents, guardians and staff informed about the latest developments that could impact education in the district. To stay up to date on the latest school re-entry news, visit rrps.net, the district’s social media profiles or sign up for the School Re-entry E-newsletter.
• School Re-entry news online and E-newsletter sign up: https://rioranchonm.sites.thrillshare.com/page/school-reentry-plan
• RRPS on Facebook: facebook.com/RioRanchoPublicSchools
• RRPS on Instagram: instagram.com/rioranchopublicschools
RRPS launches new website, mobile app
Rio Rancho Public Schools launched a new website and mobile app this summer for use by parents, guardians, staff and community members.
The new website, still at rrps.net, features a more user-friendly layout, more streamlined content, a new Live Feed section, enhanced event calendar and more.
As part of the new website launch, the district also upgraded and launched a new mobile app for both iPhone and Android devices. The app will keep parents, guardians and staff informed and up-to-date on all the latest events, alerts and news about Rio Rancho Public Schools.
Plus, the app lets users search the staff directory, research RRPS programs and services, check lunch menus, read through the district live feed and more.
Downloading the app is simple:
• Visit the App store or Google Play store on your smartphone or download the app for Android at https://bit.ly/3n0sdFW or for iPhone at https://apple.co/34RzWQc.
• If visiting the App store or Google Play store, search for “Rio Rancho Public Schools, NM” and look for the orange box with the RRPS logo inside.
• Click the install button.
Find bus stops online
Finding your child’s bus stop is easy with the Rio Rancho Public Schools online bus stop tool.
Simply visit rioranchonm.sites.thrillshare.com/page/student-transportation and click on the yellow button.
When prompted, enter your child’s student ID number as the “username” and your child’s date of birth as the “password.”
The date of birth should be in this format: two-digit month, two-digit day, four-digit year, with no dashes. For example, if your child’s birth date is July 8, 2008, you would enter 07082008.
This process will let you locate your child’s bus stop, along with pick up and drop off times.
During inclement weather, it is sometimes necessary to delay the start of the school day.
These delays allow time for snowy or icy roads to thaw, improving safety for buses and for parents/guardians and students driving to school. An abbreviated day begins two hours later than the regular schedule.
Bus schedules are also delayed two hours whenever a school delay is issued.
Information on school delays or cancellations is posted to the Rio Rancho Public Schools website, rrps.net, and provided to parents through the district’s emergency notification system and social media. Local TV stations including KOB 4, KOAT 7 and KRQE 13, and 770 KKOB AM radio station also broadcast school delay and cancellation information.
To learn more about inclement weather and delays, visit rioranchonm.sites.thrillshare.com/page/inclement-weather.
Parent University set
Parent University at Rio Rancho Public Schools offers free online webinars for parents, guardians, RRPS staff and community members.
Parent University classes have variety of topics, including:
• Student safety on campus;
• COVID safety practices;
• Student health and awareness issues; and
• Career technical education opportunities.
Classes typically start at 5:30 p.m. on the designated date and run about 90 minutes, with time for a question-and-answer session at the end. Most classes are held virtually and streamed live on the RRPS YouTube Channel.
The chat box is used for question submission so those watching can interact with presenters. Learn more and find the Parent University schedule at: https://rioranchonm.sites.thrillshare.com/page/parent-university
People may also watch previous Parent University classes on YouTube at: youtube.com/channel/UCP9OW2jpWtvi5aDgfWLQDQA
COVID cases info
Wondering where to find details about positive COVID-19 cases within Rio Rancho Public Schools?
In order to more clearly report RRPS confirmed COVID-19 cases and quarantines, the district has a web page with all details it is allowed to release. The web page, at https://rioranchonm.sites.thrillshare.com/page/covid-case-details provides details on how many cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in students and staff within Rio Rancho Public Schools and the resulting quarantines, if any.
The page is regularly updated as new cases are confirmed. Though school leaders expect to see a significant decline in cases, they still felt it was important to provide transparent information.
Students can get Wi-Fi financial support
Families who need assistance getting Wi-Fi and internet connectivity for the 2021-22 school year within Rio Rancho Public Schools only need to take two actions:
1. Apply for the Federal Lifeline Benefit: This benefit lowers the monthly cost of phone and internet service. Apply online at checklifeline.org/lifeline.
Lifeline provides up to a $9.25 monthly discount on service for eligible low-income subscribers and up to $34.25 per month for those on tribal lands. Subscribers may receive a Lifeline discount on either a wireline or a wireless service, but they may not receive a discount on both at the same time.
Lifeline also supports broadband internet service and broadband-voice bundles. Federal Communications Commission rules prohibit more than one Lifeline service per household.
Income at or below 135 percent of the federal poverty guidelines qualifies, as does participation in certain federal assistance programs.
2. Apply for the Federal Emergency Broadband Benefit: Those who qualify for Lifeline will automatically qualify for EBB when they apply. Apply at fcc.gov/broadbandbenefit.
The Emergency Broadband Benefit, once available, will provide a discount of up to $50 per month toward broadband service for eligible households and up to $75 per month for households on tribal lands.
Eligible households may also receive a one-time discount of up to $100 to purchase a laptop, desktop computer or tablet from participating providers if they contribute more than $10 and less than $50 toward the purchase price. The Emergency Broadband Benefit is limited to one monthly service discount and one device discount per household.
RRPS @ Home offers free tech assistance
Rio Rancho Public Schools issues a Chromebook or similar computer device to all students for use in school, along with all necessary software.
To assist parents, guardians and students with any tech issues that may arise while using district devices, the RRPS Information Technology Department has created RRPS @ Home. This website features technology updates, frequently asked questions, parent resources, tech ticket submission forms and more.
Learn more at: https://sites.google.com/rrps.net/onlineeducationalresources/home.
School calendar and important dates
Staying looped in on your children’s school schedule and days off is vital to ensure they meet all necessary deadlines and are ready to learn each school day.
This year, students will have an extended school year, per the state and the New Mexico Public Education Department. This means students will have 192 instructional days with middle and high school students starting school Aug. 5 and elementary school students starting school Aug. 9.
Classes will end May 27 for all students except graduating seniors, who will finish May 20.
Find the full calendar, which shows all holidays and other important dates, at rioranchonm.sites.thrillshare.com/page/rrps-calendar
SAFE program for elementary students
Rio Rancho Public Schools’ before- and after-school program, Students Achieving For Excellence (SAFE), is gearing up to welcome students for the new school year.
Parents interested in enrolling their students for SAFE, but whose children are not already signed up, should visit the program website, https://sites.google.com/rrps.net/safe/home, and click on the “registration” tab.
SAFE provides before- and after-school supervision of students in a fun and academically enriching environment. The program allows students to extend their learning beyond their regular classes through a variety of activities and projects offering life skills; health and fitness; a homework club; interactive experiences in science, math, technology, engineering, art and music; daily snacks; and community guest speakers.
The activities are designed to keep children safe, inspire them to learn and assist working families.
A non-refundable registration fee is required at the time of registration. Rates for the program vary depending on the session or sessions parents want their children to attend.
A complete rate schedule, along with additional information and online and downloadable registration forms, is on the SAFE registration website.
After-school programs for middle school students are offered by the City of Rio Rancho Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department. Parents may contact Parks and Rec at 891-5015 for further information.
School supply lists
Elementary schools within Rio Rancho Public Schools have adopted a standardized list of supplies for the 2021-22 school year to make it easier for parents/guardians and teachers. The standardized list is below.
High schools and middle schools generally do not post grade-level or school-level lists because the needs vary considerably from course to course. At the beginning of the semester, teachers will inform students what supplies they will need for each course.
Parents can purchase basic supplies such as pens and pencils, notebook paper and rulers in advance.
Many local organizations donate school supplies to Rio Rancho schools to help families who cannot afford to purchase them. Families who need assistance and parents with questions about school supplies should contact their child’s school office.
Elementary School Supply Lists
Before buying supplies, check with your child’s school.
In some cases, particular elementary grade levels will offer to purchase supplies for families for a fee of $30. If that is the case, you will have the option to purchase your own supplies or pay the fee.
Required: grades K-5
• Masks (for all elementary-aged students, per the NMPED)
• 2 boxes of 24-count Crayola crayons
• 1 box of 24-count Crayola colored pencils
• 1 box of 10-count washable Crayola markers
• 2 boxes of 24-count Ticonderoga pencils
• 3 pink or white erasers
• 6 chisel-tip black Expo brand markers
• 2 bottles of Elmer’s white glue
• 8 Elmer’s glue sticks
• 1 Fiskars child scissors (blunt tip)
• 2 wide-ruled composition books
• 1 1-inch-wide binder with clear view cover
• 4 plastic pocket folders with prongs
• 1 supply box
• 1 set of headphones or earbuds
Optional school supply donations for classrooms:
• Facial tissue (required for kindergarten)
• Hand sanitizer
• Disinfectant wipes
Note: All of the above information provided by Rio Rancho Public Schools.