Return to School Plan
The district has been working since June to develop a Return to School Plan. We have to be adaptive to the guidance of the state and health department guidance. The current plan is focused on a hybrid return in the RED mode. However, we will be ready to shift if directed by local or state health departments.
July 30: Safe Start to Success Update:
Today Dr. Dimyana Abdelmalek of the Thurston County Health Department issued her position that data about the transmission of COVID 19 throughout Thurston County makes opening of schools for in-person instruction unsafe. Other health officers around the state have issued similar statements in the past few days. As a result, we will begin the upcoming school year in 100% remote learning. All districts in Thurston and Pierce Counties have made the same decision.
We are incredibly disappointed that we will not be able to start the new year with students on campuses. However, the health and safety of our students, families and staff remains a high priority. According to Thurston County data, transmission rates have continued to climb to over 60 cases per 100,000 when the target was less than 25 cases per week in Phase 3. We need to continue to follow the guidance on hygiene practices and physical distancing to lower our county’s exposure.
When the Governor closed schools in March, we were under an emergency directive to modify instruction and grading. Since then, we have worked extensively to develop our online tools and practices and will be ready to fully support student instruction online. In the coming weeks, we will develop plans to distribute district devices to all K-12 students. We are planning additional professional development for teachers, and we will work directly with families and students who are in need of specialized services.
We have reached out to our local child care organizations and faith-based groups to determine what services and capacity exists to support working families. We will be posting information on our website to assist families in making connections.
We will continue to update our SAFE START TO SUCCESS website with resources and answers to commonly asked questions. At this time, we have put the online “OPT IN” survey and grouping assignments on hold; but we are hopeful that in the near future we can return to the Yellow Hybrid model.
Again, we know how important it is for students to connect with their teachers and their peers. We can make that happen in our remote learning program. Let’s work together to reduce the spread of this virus and return our students to in-person instruction as soon as we can.
July 27: Families were sent a newsletter update on the hybrid schedule selected and were asked to complete the "OPT IN" survey if they wanted their student to receive instruction 100% online. The "OPT IN" survey closes on August 5 at 5 p.m.
July 20: A feedback survey was launched seeking input on the hybrid schedule for in-person instruction. The survey closed on Friday, June 24, at 8 p.m.
July 14: Superintendent Wharton presented at the Yelm Chamber meeting. The presentation is available for review.