WWS Updates - July 23, 2020
The only certainty these days seems to be uncertainty. We know that reaching district-wide consensus on the best path to return to school may be unachievable, but Westfield Washington Schools’ commitment is to provide the best educational experience possible for our students while adhering to the guidelines set forth by state and local health departments.
WWS has revised the Return of the Rocks Plan and will be reopening all nine schools (K-12) under a hybrid plan, which will allow students to alternate in-person attendance throughout the school week. By splitting students into two groups, we are reducing the number of students in buildings and on buses, which allows for greater opportunity to social distance and meet health and safety guidelines. This hybrid plan will be in place until we are able to transition back to a regular school schedule or unless circumstances would cause us to change direction. We will be evaluating this plan on a monthly basis and will communicate any changes two weeks in advance unless we are forced to close immediately. Our first evaluation will be September 1. Our priority is to maximize face-to-face instruction for as long as possible. PLEASE NOTE: Families may still opt into the 100 percent virtual learning option at the beginning of the school year. Please review additional details, including considerations for WHS athletes, here. (link will be active again soon)
Students with last names beginning with the letters A through K will be on the Gold Team. Students with last names beginning with letters L through Z will be on the Green Team. The Gold Team will attend in-person on Monday and Wednesday, and Team Green will attend in-person on Tuesday and Thursday. Fridays will be virtual learning for all students. At home days (not in-person) will be virtual learning for students. There will be no delayed start Wednesday.
Each school will communicate with families regarding education plans for students receiving special services. Each school will also be communicating to its families with their building plans/specific details relating to our hybrid plan as well as the 100 percent virtual learning plan no later than Friday.
Governor Holcomb mandated in an announcement yesterday that masks will be required for all staff and teachers as well as students in 3rd grade and up. However, our mask policy, which was shared in a previous communication, will remain the same. Our hybrid plan provides an opportunity for smaller groups of students and more opportunities for social distancing in classrooms. To review the masks requirements, please click here for the Return of the Rocks FAQ.
We realize there may be some exceptions to Team placement; for example, some families have students with different last names and/or different residences. In those circumstances, consideration will be given to adjust Team placement. If your family would like to request a Team adjustment, please respond accordingly in the survey below.
Please see the revised school calendar for information on which days students will be attending in-person and which days will be virtual learning days. CALENDAR Please note - the first week of school (Thursday, August 13 and Friday, August 14) the Gold Team will attend in-person on Thursday and the Green Team will attend in-person on Friday. Additionally, the week of Labor Day, the Green Team will attend in-person Tuesday and Thursday, and the Gold Team will attend in-person Wednesday and Friday.
Additionally, we understand that childcare is critical for many of our Rocks families. TOTS preschool and the All Aboard program (for Pre-K students) will open beginning on the scheduled date of August 12th and will not be doing an alternate day schedule. The WWS staff is working on developing additional childcare opportunities for our working families to help meet this need while the district is on the hybrid plan. We are also looking at ways to assist families needing childcare and who might be experiencing financial hardships. Please complete the below survey to help us evaluate the childcare needs of our families. To learn more about these childcare programs, please email [email protected]
As we have stated in previous communications, cleaning of our buildings and buses is a top priority. Necessary handwashing supplies such as soap and paper towels will be stocked and there will be access to hand sanitizer in common areas or locations where soap and water is not readily available.
In addition to the routine cleaning, we will be cleaning and disinfecting the schools throughout the day, including frequently touched surfaces such as door handles, handrails, tables and bathrooms, with EPA-approved disinfectant for COVID-19. Disinfectants will be available to staff to use in classrooms as needed during the school day. Buses will be cleaned and disinfected after AM and PM routes.
Parent Survey - IMPORTANT
Please complete this survey by Monday, July 27th to indicate the following:
- If your family will be opting into the 100 percent virtual option
- If you would like WWS to consider adjusting your student’s team
- If your student will be riding the bus
- If your family has childcare needs.
Thank you! Go Rocks!
Dr. Sherry Grate, Superintendent