The school district staff has completed the COVID-19 Preparedness and Response Plan and the Board of Education reviewed and adopted the plan at the meeting last night. Click here to read the plan.
The plan is written in a format to submit information to the State of Michigan that ensures the District is meeting the required components of the state’s Return to School Roadmap. To help present this information in more reader friendly format, we are also working on a “Family Guide” document. We hope to have that ready for next week’s Tuesday Update. Below are several sections of that document and will provide some helpful information to supplement the details in the COVID-19 Preparedness and Response Plan.
Health Screenings: Our district will provide health screenings for each student prior to entering the school building or a school bus. In order to conduct the health screenings at bus stops, a bus aide will join the morning routes. This staff member will greet the child outside the bus and help them with the screening. This includes a temperature check of the forehead using a touchless thermometer. When students arrive at school by private vehicle, designated parking spaces will be provided and a staff member will come to the vehicle. If families would prefer to conduct these screenings each day at home or prior to coming to the school/bus stop, the schools will have forms available for use with that option.
Staggered Drop Off/Pick Up Times: In order to provide social distancing and time for health screenings, bus routes and private vehicle drop-off times need to be adjusted. Not every student will come into the school at the same time and students will not be coming to school as early. Because our start and end of day procedures will take more time, teachers will adjust their schedules before beginning and ending lessons each day. Students and teachers will utilize this time to conduct help sessions, answer student questions and provide supplemental supports for students.
Face Coverings: We will be implementing the same face covering protocols required for all schools across the state. The face mask guidelines are described in the plan. There are some differences depending on location on campus and age of the students. We understand that wearing face coverings will be an adjustment.
Social Distancing: Each of the transitions in school is designed to implement social distancing as much as possible. One-way hallways/staircases for example. Similar to what you see in grocery stores. Staggered release times from classes will be used to reduce the amount of people moving around at one time. Furniture in classrooms will be reduced to only the necessary items, allowing for more spacing. Each instructional space is being analyzed for social distancing options. We may need to use rooms or spaces differently during PHASE 4. Not all of our classrooms are the same size, some classes will have smaller class sizes in those spaces. We also have other larger spaces in our buildings that may be better utilized as temporary classrooms. By rethinking how we use the building space, we can expand our options during PHASE 4.
Outdoor Spaces: There is outdoor space that can be used for instruction, a lot of it in fact. In addition, when we maintain social distancing outside, staff and students can remove their face coverings.
Breaks: Everyone will need and benefit from some breaks throughout the day. Staff are encouraged to use the outdoor spaces on campus with students and for themselves during break times.
Curriculum: This will not be a normal school year. We cannot expect to do all of the things as normal with the students. We have to focus on the primary/essential curriculum and teach that first and teach that well. Language Arts and mathematics are the two most pivotal areas for K-12 students. With the essential reading and math skills, students can expand to other content, but without them, a person will endure lifelong hardships.
The master schedules for courses and time periods for classes will be adjusted. We don't know exactly how long those schedule changes will be necessary. Our region may remain in Phase 4 for a semester or for the whole year. That will be determined by the human response to COVID-19. Each building's schedule is different. Each school is working to finalize those adjustments. We hope to have that information available for next week’s Tuesday Update.
PHASE 5 - This phase will be much like Phase 4, however face coverings for both students and staff are strongly recommended, but not required at all times. We will continue to implement social distancing protocols as much as possible. Our instructional delivery models will remain largely the same through the end of what is the “current semester”. Students who chose to be online students may continue with that option for the remainder of the school year. If an online student wants to return to school for in-person instruction, he/she should complete the current semester and then transfer.
As we have previously discussed, each family may choose the type of school option that is best for their situation this year.
Option 1 - In-person at School
Option 2 - Online at Home
Student Registration: The student registration cards are being completed online this year. The form is up and running on the website’s main page. There is a pencil icon with the word “Registration” underneath. Within this form you can register your child for either the online program at home or the in-person option at school.
2020-21 Calendar Updates: The revised calendar dates were also adopted by the Board last evening.
September 8 - First Day of School for All Student (online and in-person)
November 26-27 - Thanksgiving Break (unchanged)
December 21-January 1 - Christmas Break (unchanged)
April 2-9 - Spring Break (unchanged)
May 31 - Memorial Day Holiday (unchanged)
June 11 - Last Day of School
END OF UPDATE