News + Notes

Reopening

08/11/20

Dear Oxbow community members,

We are very excited to welcome our next student community onto our campus in the spring! Though we remain committed to our decision to remain closed and offer online courses and on campus workshops for Fall 2020, we miss the daily joys of hosting a semester of students all eager to learn and grow together. The Oxbow community has always been marked by resilience, and we look forward to responsibly reopening with you and your children and our team during this pandemic.

As we continue to monitor the conditions of COVID-19 in our community and across the country, please keep in mind that our reopening plan may shift accordingly, especially as we get closer to reopening for in-person instruction for our spring 2021 semester cohort. The health and safety of our students and staff continue to be our utmost priority and at the forefront for establishing thorough safety precautions that will enable all of us to have a successful semester. Despite these efforts to implement strict protocols to keep us healthy, please be aware that the virus could still make its way onto our campus. To prevent this from happening, we must have support from all community members prior to arrival and throughout the semester. There are obvious risks associated with running a school during a pandemic. It is important that all staff and parents work together as a team to ensure the safety of the entire Oxbow community, as well as the local Napa community. While The Oxbow School is in very close proximity to state of the art hospitals and medical services, it is our goal to maintain a “prevention mindset” so that local members of the community can still easily access much-needed medical attention if necessary. We appreciate your support and look forward to partnering with you during these unprecedented times!

Warm regards,

Jennifer Jordan

Head of School

Current Conditions and California State Guidelines for Reopening Schools for In-person Instruction

80% of counties across California have been instructed to begin the school year in August using remote learning platforms. If the local health jurisdiction has been on the monitoring list within the last 14 days, schools must conduct distance learning only. Only until the local health jurisdiction has been off the monitoring list for at least 14 days can schools begin to welcome students back to campus for in-person instruction. While confirmed COVID-19 cases are relatively low in Napa in comparison to surrounding communities, Napa County is on the monitoring list until confirmed cases are stabilized and/or begin to decrease in number. We are hopeful that we will see a decline in numbers prior to our spring semester start date, allowing us to safely reopen the campus for an immersive in-person experience.

Guidance Once Re-Opened to In-Person Instruction

How should schools think about testing?

Once schools are reopened to in-person instruction, it is recommended that surveillance testing be implemented based on local disease trends. If epidemiological data indicates concern for increasing community transmission, we will increase testing of staff to detect potential cases as lab testing capacity allows. The Oxbow School intends to contract with a private testing lab to test and receive test results in a timely manner.

Who should be tested and how often?

School staff are essential workers, and the Oxbow staff includes: faculty members, tutors, chefs, maintenance workers, and office staff. Staff will be tested periodically, as testing capacity permits and as practicable. (State recommended frequency includes testing all staff over 2 months, where 25% of staff are tested every 2 weeks, or 50% every month to rotate testing of all staff over time.)

What if a school or school district reopens to in-person instruction, but the county is later placed on the county monitoring list?

Schools should begin testing staff, or increase frequency of staff testing but are not required to close.

Oxbow Re-Opening Phases

There will be 3 phases to the reopening strategy:

Phase 1 - All Oxbow students and staff will be required to self-quarantine at home, followed by a quarantine on campus and testing for COVID-19.

Phase 2 - If tests return negative, we will begin loosening restrictions on campus to allow for more interaction within the Oxbow community.

Phase 3 - If conditions continue to improve in Napa and it is deemed safe to do so, we will consider (but not guarantee) limited off-campus permissions with masks and physical distancing requirements in place. Please note that this travel will be considered only for short excursions into town or natural landscapes and may require staff supervision.

News + Notes

A Message From The Head of School: In Solidarity

06/08/20

As a community of artists, The Oxbow School stands in support of black communities across the country. The murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, Sandra Bland, Tyisha Miller, Nina Pop, and Ahmaud Arbery are tragic victims of white supremacy and brutality and their deaths and those that precede them serve as an urgent call to action for organizations like ours.

Read More

News + Notes

Fall 2020 Cancellation Announcement

06/08/20

On behalf of The Oxbow School community, we are writing to announce that the Oxbow campus will be closed for the fall 2020 semester. In keeping with guidelines set forth by the CDC and Governor Newsom’s safety requirements necessary for California schools to reopen, we feel this decision is in the best interest of the health and well-being of the entire community.

While no one knows what the future holds, it is our responsibility to ensure the safety of our greater community--students and families, faculty and staff, and the essential workers with whom we interact. Until there is adequate testing and contact tracing available across Napa county, welcoming a new cohort of students from across the country is unsafe and inconsiderate to our local community.

As a residential community, it is paramount that we have heightened sanitation and distancing measures in place before we resume in-person instruction with future students. The Oxbow Safety Committee plans to utilize the next few months to thoroughly research emergent best practices, develop disinfection protocols, and install protective equipment throughout campus that will enable us to maintain a 6-foot physical distance while still taking advantage of our beautiful studio spaces and shared housing. We are optimistic that the next several months will provide ample time to optimally secure the campus with creative solutions, allowing spring students to feel comfortable while building a meaningful community through a shared passion for art.

We intend to stay true to our mission by providing a world class arts education, for it is our belief that the world needs art more now than ever before. Please stay tuned for Oxbow Online offerings and Workshop opportunities coming soon.

We look forward to providing an array of online offerings and hosting a vibrant Spring student cohort on campus in early 2021!

Be well,

Jennifer Jordan, Head of School

Beth Karpfinger, Board Chairperson


SIGN UP HERE TO RECEIVE MORE INFORMATION ABOUT OXBOW ONLINE OFFERINGS & WORKSHOPS.

News + Notes

OS42 Quaranzine

04/24/20

Projects showing OS42's creativity, grace and grit have been compiled into the Quaranzine magazine by Oxbow's Dean of The Arts, Chris Thorson. Please enjoy this magazine with student works that include selections from OS42's distance learning art projects, materials lists, and "Who are you?" projects.

Quaranzine V.1 Quaranzine V.2

News + Notes

COVID-19

03/19/20

Dear Friends and Visitors of The Oxbow School,

The health and safety of the community is our utmost priority. Due to the spread of COVID-19, The Oxbow School has suspended on-campus programming and transitioned to distance learning until it is safe to travel. We believe suspending on-campus programming is the best way to protect the welfare of our Oxbow community and neighbors in Napa as we are committed to help “flatten the curve”—that is, to contribute to the national effort to slow the spread of COVID-19 to ensure broad access to healthcare for our most at-risk populations.

We appreciate your cooperation and understanding. We are committed to doing our best to navigate this new reality with everyone. The Oxbow faculty are working diligently to create and implement a dynamic and meaningful experience for our current students. Check out our Instagram for lively updates and stay at home art projects and recommendations.

While we are all living in uncertain times, we encourage you to take this time to embrace the present moment by fostering virtual relationships with your loved ones for support, compassion, and connectedness.

For prospective students and families, please know that your interest in The Oxbow School is important to us. We take tremendous pride in being the preeminent thought leader in arts education for young people. We look forward to welcoming you to campus once we reopen.

Unfortunately Oxbow has had to postpone many of our annual fundraising events which directly support student scholarships. Please considering "joining us" for the Oxbow Anti Event to benefit student scholarships and support the arts!

Warm regards,

Jennifer Jordan

Head of School

News + Notes

Annual Gratitude Report

10/29/19

More than $730,000 in student scholarship awards was provided in FY 2019! We are truly grateful for the generous support of our many donors from across the globe and the significant impact their contributions make on the lives of Oxbow students. Our commitment to creating opportunities for all students to create, grow, and thrive would not be possible without them.

See full FY2019 Annual Report HERE

News + Notes

Annual Student Scholarship Fund

10/29/19

Did you know that nearly half of all students who have attended Oxbow received scholarship support? YOUR contributions to our Annual Scholarship Fund really do make a difference in a student’s life. No gift is too small as every gift combined allows the school to continue providing an extraordinary experience to ALL talented and deserving students. Look for our Annual Scholarship Fund letter in your mailbox or make a tax-deductible donation online at any time.

Donate Online

News + Notes

Head of School Announcement

08/27/19

On behalf of the Oxbow Board of Trustees and our Faculty and Staff, we are thrilled to announce the appointment of Jennifer Jordan to the role of Oxbow Head of School. After thirteen years with the school as an English teacher and Academic Dean, and five months of great work serving as Interim Head of School, the Board unanimously voted to elect Jennifer into this role.

Read full Press Release.

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