Dear SLUSD Community,
The SLUSD Board of Education has heard from many families and staff members regarding their preferences for returning to school in the fall. SLUSD has also recently surveyed staff and families to gather up-to-date community voice. Throughout this time, district leaders have been monitoring local public health conditions and evaluating SLUSD’s capacity to ensure safety for all students and staff, given the increase in COVID-19 infection rates.
Given these factors, district staff presented a phased plan to reopening schools at tonight’s board meeting, with a distance learning model to start the 2020-2021 school year. After much discussion, and with a clear priority for the health and safety of our community, the board of education made the difficult decision to move forward with an online start to the school year.
During this first phase, the district will:
- Implement necessary safety and hygiene protocols to prepare for a return to in-person instruction as soon as local conditions allow
- Train staff in both safety protocols and distance learning instruction
- Orient students and families to the distance model of teaching and learning
- Continue to distribute meals to all children 18 and under
- Negotiate working impacts for in-person instruction with bargaining unit groups
The district has learned much about distance learning during the spring and Summer School which will greatly improve the planned distance model. Details include:
- Daily live instruction with consistent schedules and required attendance
- Use of Learning Management System (SeeSaw for TK-5, Schoology for 6-12)
- New curriculum for Science, History-Social Science, and World Language
- Support for specialized groups, including personnel to support at-home learning. increased teletherapy services, and at-home access to mental health services
- Parent training & support for managing distance learning
This announcement will be significantly disappointing to many members of the community who were preparing to welcome back students, even in smaller numbers. Since the initial closure on March 13, the district has been clear that schools would not reopen to in-person instruction until it was safe to do so. Given the current local conditions, it does not appear that point has been reached.
SLUSD will provide updates about the distribution of needed materials to start the school year, the 2020-2021 school calendar, and other important topics after completing negotiations with all bargaining partners. All updates will be posted on the district’s website at www.slusd.us and questions may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your patience and collaboration through this challenging process.