September 23, 2020
Last night, the CUSD Board of Trustees made the decision to have CUSD return from Fall Break (Monday, October 12th) in a 50%-Blended Program Model. This is a communication to give you some initial information so you can prepare, knowing more detailed and definitive information is to come, from specific school sites as well as the district.
• Student Groups---students will be grouped alphabetically and by household, aiming for an average of 50% of students per day, per site
• Student Schedules---students will attend on site two days a week, on a minimum day schedule. The exact days of on-site attendance are to be determined. Students will be provided three days of distance learning when they are not scheduled to be on-site
• On-line Program---for any families preferring to remain in a 100% On-Line program, we will be working to identify who they are and how best to meet their needs. Any family will have the ability to make this choice if they do not wish to access the Blended Program model. Dependent upon the level of need in this area, and the resulting shifting of staff to meet the student demand, other school sites will be impacted which could impact students regarding teacher assignments they currently have, class sizes, etc. All of this will take some time to move forward with, in terms of process and implementation.
• Reopening Plans---there are already established site and district plans for reopening schools. These have been provided to all and are posted on the school and district web pages. They outline areas such as hand sanitizing/washing, face coverings, physical distancing, cleaning/disinfecting protocols, health services protocols in COVID-cases, campus access procedures and more. Please review those in advance.
• Face Coverings---as has been communicated, and will be strictly enforced, all staff and all students in grades 3-12 will be required to wear appropriate face coverings (which will be provided as necessary). Anyone not wearing a face covering will not be allowed to enter campus/classrooms. Students in grades TK-2 are strongly encouraged to wear face coverings.
• Physical Distancing---guidelines from State Public Health are as follows, and this is what we will align our protocols to…
Buses---Maximize space between students and between students and the driver on school buses and open windows to the greatest extent practicable.
Classrooms---Maximize space between seating and desks. Distance teacher and other staff desks at least six feet away from student desks. Consider ways to establish separation of students through other means if practicable, such as, six feet between desks, where practicable, partitions between desks, markings on classroom floors to promote distancing or arranging desks in a way that minimizes face-to-face contact.
• Recess/Break/Lunch Times---schedules will be adjusted so large gathering of students from different classes are avoided
• Sports/Extra-Curriculars/Co-Curriculars---we will provide guidance on what we can and can’t do specific to practices, events and activities to make sure we are aligned with state and local public health guidelines on gatherings of students
• Pre-School and After-School Programs---if we are in a position to expand enrollment and access, parents will be notified
• Bus Schedules---once finalized they will be communicated to families. We will aim for an average of 50% capacity for the buses and the pick-up/drop off times will be aligned to the minimum day schedules at the school sites. All healrth and safety protocols (face coverings, hand sanitizing, physical distancing) will be followed. More details to come.
• Food Service---students who are on site will be provided with grab and go meals (breakfast to eat either in classrooms or in MPR if spacing available, lunches at the end of the day for elementary students to eat at home and during the day for middle/high school students). Drive through grab and go meals will be provided for students who are not on-site on those given days. Delivering meals to designated bus stops may not be able to continue. More details to come.
• Staffing Capacity—as we make the transition to a 50%-Blended Program model, if CUSD faces a staffing shortage due to COVID-related impacts, issues and concerns, this will affect our ability to offer on-site and on-line learning opportunities to the same capacity, to whatever yet to be determined degree. Adjustments will be made as needed, which may impact the programs for students.
• Student Supports---extra efforts will be made to engage students who may be more “vulnerable” than others and provide what extra support as might be helpful (academic, social-emotional).
• Volunteers---there was discussion of adult volunteers on campus to assist with school operations, given the challenges of enforcing health/safety guidelines, and overall areas of need. Any offer in this area is appreciated, however, we also have to follow the health/safety protocols regarding adult to student physical distancing (6 ft apart), and limiting campus access overall, so there will be some constraints. Work with your site administration in this area.
This will be a team effort as we make this transition. There will be challenges to address and the patience, flexibility and cooperation of all involved will be essential. Our staff has been amazing in navigating the Distance Learning path and will rise to the challenge to move forward with a Blended Program model. All of this comes with a profound impact on our staff, and on/for all involved, and will take time to effectively implement and address areas of need as they arise, ongoing.
We know that our parents/guardians and students have faced significant challenges in our COVID-impacted Distance Learning world, and we expect the issues and challenges to continue, to varying degrees, as we move forward. We are committed to working together to see this through, as best we can, for all involved.
Stay Healthy, Be Well.
Calaveras Unified School District