USD 383 eyeing Jan. 5 for return to five-day-a-week school on-site

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The superintendent of Manhattan/Ogden Schools says the district is anticipating a return to on-site learning five days per week at the start of 2021.

In a letter to district families and staff Thursday, Dr. Marvin Wade stated that “unless there are drastic changes to the Coronavirus metrics, the five-day-a-week schedule will begin Jan. 5.” To help prepare for the transition, Wade outlined a partial list of additional COVID mitigation efforts that have been initiated.

  • Families will again have an opportunity to move between instructional delivery models.
  • Class size ranges effective January 5 have already been determined based upon district commitments.
    • The majority of elementary on-site classes will have less than 20 students.
    • Between November 10 and December 22, secondary master schedules will be created that reduce class sizes. With a few exceptions (band, orchestra, choir and physical education), secondary on-site classes will be 25 students or less – with many classes below 20 students.
  • All elementary and secondary classes will continue with preventive efforts currently in place.
    • Additional mitigation measures will be taken when classrooms exceed 20 students, such as adding Plexiglas barriers, reconfiguring classroom seating, and/or installing classroom filtration units if part of a building is not equipped with a filtered recirculating outside air system.
    • Common spaces, such as dining areas, may include installation of partitions, expanded seating and/or additional social distancing signage.

The district says as it plans for remote and on-site learning changes, it’s important families contact them if they want to request a change from remote to on-site or on-site to remote learning.

  • If you DO NOT intend to change the mode of instructional delivery, there is no need to submit the Student Instructional Preference Change Form explained below (your child’s current remote or on-site status will remain in effect on January 5).
  • If you DO intend to change the mode of instructional delivery from remote to on-site learning or from on-site to remote learning, you should complete one Student Instructional Preference Change Form for each of your children and return it to the main office of each child’s school by the end of Tuesday, November 10. Completed forms can be submitted via email. Each school will notify parents of the email address to which change forms should be sent. All requests received by November 10 will be granted, but those received after November 10 will only be considered on a case-by-case basis. This deadline is important so we can ensure each family will be provided the model they select. We are also on a tight timeline for creating balanced schedules that support class size limits.
  • Our schools will build schedules and assign staff to reflect the choices of our families in both remote and on-site groups. Here are some general considerations as you make your remote or on-site selection:
    • Elementary students returning to on-site from remote learning will be placed in their home schools whenever it can be done, though this may not be possible in all situations.
    • Secondary students who shift to remote learning may not have access to every elective course available to on-site learners.
    • Any student that is eligible and wishes to ride the school bus must know that masks and hand sanitizer are required, and that minimal social distancing can be expected as buses reach capacity.
    • Instructional changes made January 5 will be for the remainder of the school year, as the district does not anticipate offering another window for moving between onsite learning and remote learning.
    • Remember, hybrid is not a selection option. The choices are only remote learning or on-site learning (with hybrid as a district contingency within on-site learning).
  • The district will honor all requests made by November 10 to change from remote to on-site learning or from on-site to remote learning.
  • Once again, the Student Instructional Preference Change Form does not need to be completed if you intend for your child to remain in his or her current remote learning or on-site learning assignment.

The district recently decided if COVID metrics continue to be stable, hybrid learning will remain in effect until winter break.

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