Dear School of the Osage Students, Families, and Community- 
Welcome back to the 2020-2021 School Year! It has been an amazing first two days of school. Our campuses have been full of smiles and laughter. Our food services director reported that the students were “excited for school lunch!” Our high school principal reported that our high school students were excellent leaders and role models of safety protocols throughout the building (social distancing, wearing masks, keeping their own water bottles, etc.). Heritage administrators reported that there were excellent “air hugs” all over the place.  The Upper El, Early Childhood Center, and Middle School were thrilled to see all the parents and high fives that came through the drop off lines. All the way around, our staff is incredibly grateful to be back in true action. We are all very hopeful that you feel the same way. 
Here are a few details from our perspective. For starters, thank you to everyone for your patience and support related to transporting students during this pandemic. Our buses are much less full thanks to all who helped transport students to campus. We were able to socially distance more than usual on our routes because of all of the people who helped safely transport students by car. We also recognize that this, in turn, created more traffic and longer drop off lines (aka added hassle for all). We are so grateful for the all-around team effort on this. We know that the more we are able to lower the number of people in close contact- such as on buses- the less likely we are to have additional contact tracing issues. Again, we are apologetic for the traffic inconveniences and grateful for the help. We will continue to work on doing everything possible to help ensure an even more smooth traffic flow. 
While I am on the topic of drop-off, we also recognize that we can make an immediate improvement. To better accommodate families and ensure appropriate staffing levels, we have established a staggered opening time for our buildings. Our Middle School and High School will open doors at 7:00 am; the ECC, Heritage and Upper Elementary will open doors at 7:30 am.  This will allow for staggered opening to assist parents in dropping off multiple children, allow for students in activities at MS and HS to access the building/temp screenings before going to their activities, and keep students socially distanced as they enter the building (instead of bunching up at the doors waiting to get in).

Thank you for all you have done to help get students back into schools. Please do not hesitate to reach out if you have questions or feedback. We open our football season this Friday at home against Fulton, and the band will be premiering new uniforms. If you are up to it and feel comfortable, please come out and celebrate the new year with us. We will give you an air “high-five” from at least 6.5 feet away! 

Be Well.

Dr. Laura Nelson
[email protected] 

*Indian Support Hotline: 
573-552-8878 or [email protected] 

OHS- 573-348-0115
OMS- 573-552-8326
HE- 573-365-5341

Additional Community Support Resources:
Hope House Food Pantry at (573) 365-0099
Camden County Community Assistance Hotline at (573) 346-6145  
Miller County Community Assistance Hotline at (573) 692-0426