July 30, 2020
Dear Parents and Guardians of North Wasco County Students,
I hope this finds you well. This is a brief update on our plans for school this fall.
The state (Oregon Department of Education and the Oregon Health Authority) released the health metrics required for local districts to provide in-school instruction during the current pandemic. Based on this information we will begin the 2020-21 school year on-line in a Comprehensive Distance Learning format.
In order for families and staff to plan, we will use the Comprehensive Distance Learning format until October 16th. We will monitor the health metrics at the state and county levels to determine whether we continue with Comprehensive Distance Learning or if we are able to move to a hybrid model after October 16th. A hybrid model would be a combination of in-school and distance learning for students. We are also exploring a full distance learning format as an option for some students.
Please be aware that Comprehensive Distance Learning will not be the same as distance learning from this past spring, which was a response to the pandemic and was provided in a very short time frame. For this school year we will be following the guidelines from the Oregon Department of Education for Comprehensive Distance Learning which is more rigorous, providing a more engaging, robust learning experience for students. We are also actively planning for hybrid learning which will include some in-school instruction when we are allowed, based on improved health metrics at the state and county levels.
We know the importance of face-to-face learning, and the vital sense of community and connection that students have with their classmates and teachers. At this time the decision to open in a Comprehensive Distance Learning format focuses on our highest priority during this pandemic, student and staff safety.
Our administrators and building teams have been hard at work preparing our building blueprints, detailing the plans for the upcoming school year. This includes the steps we will implement to keep students and staff safe during in-school learning. Building blueprints will be posted on our district website next week, along with a way for parents to provide feedback. Please watch for a notice of this next week.
We all play an important role in limiting the spread of the virus within our community, which is reflected in our health metrics. The following are a few reminders for all of us:
Wear a face covering,
Watch your social distance,
Wash, wash, wash your hands.
Please take care, be safe and stay vigilant.