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2020-2021 RE-ENVISIONED - A MESSAGE FROM THE SUPERINTENDENT

2020-2021 Reenvisioned (LINK)!
 
Good Afternoon!
 
I hope this communication finds you well and enjoying the warm days of summer.  As you can conceive, we have spent a great deal of time envisioning our 2020-2021 reopening, taking into consideration guidance from the NYS Education Department, CDC, and the Department of Health.  We have also considered feedback from our community survey sent to families after this past school year as well as feedback from our faculty.  We fully recognize that not one size model fits all; therefore, we have arrived at a hybrid approach for reopening in September.  The draft visual document provides a broad overview of our recommended model based on the information we have today.  Please know that we are simultaneously working on a much more detailed guidance document that outlines critical steps and district-wide protocols.  We felt it paramount to include you in our thinking early on and share a broad overview today. We will be soliciting stakeholder input from both the community and our faculty and staff.  Our first effort for feedback will be via a *Thought Exchange (see below communication for details) We will also be forming smaller committees by building to look at all aspects of our planning.  Your input is valued and necessary as we work together for the safety of our entire school community.
 
Some insight into our planning, daycare has been and will continue to be an obstacle for our families.  We recognize that virtual or distance learning requires more parental support for our youngest of scholars.  For these reasons, we have proposed that all PK-6 students return every day with more physical distancing and reduced contact among students.  For grades 7-12 our scholars will be broken up into groups, with each group attending school physically only twice weekly and virtually the other three days.  Students with learning disabilities and ELL will be invited to attend four days weekly.  We are proposing that Fridays will be virtual for all scholars in grades 7-12.  Friday’s will allow for more individualized or small group student support office hours, professional development time, meetings, and time to work on virtual instructional planning.  The hybrid approach also allows for more physical distancing and reduced contact among students.
 
The planning and re-entry for our professional faculty are extensive; therefore, we are proposing to move our four annual Superintendent conference days reserved for professional development to September 8-11.  Our proposed first day of student attendance on campus will be Monday, September 14.
 
There are still several critical details that are being worked out, including transportation, student schedules, master schedule changes that allow for reduced transitions with one-way directional foot traffic, meal distribution, sanitation procedures, etc. 
 
We will finalize our reopening plans by July 30 for submission to the state. The final submission will also include plans for full return and full virtual return should we need to make those shifts. 
 
Thank you in advance for working with us as we prepare for a safe reopening for all members of our community.   
 
Warm Regards,
Kimberly Bell
 
*A Thought Exchange is an electronic platform used to replace a traditional survey.  It is a collaborative platform whereby participants are asked to share ideas in response to open ended questions.  Ideas are shared confidentially.  Participants are provided the opportunity to rate the thoughts of others.  This will allow the district to rank the preference of ideas from a large pool of contributors.