MANLIUS — The Bureau Valley School Board approved its return-to-school plans during Monday’s board meeting.
There will be considerable changes, with many cautionary health and safety guidelines in place, in light of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, which closed schools early in the spring.
Bureau Valley Superintendent Jason Stabler said the leadership team focused on three guiding principles while creating its 2020-21 Learning Plan: student, staff and community safety; social-emotional health of students and staff; and academic growth and achievement.
“We are excited to be able to get students and staff back in our buildings soon and look forward to working in-person again,” Stabler said. “However, we understand that each family has been and is affected differently by our current situation. So, to partner with our families, we have provided multiple options they can choose from to start school. Families can opt-out of in-person learning if they are not comfortable sending their child to school and select our remote-learning option.”
While Stabler remains hopeful BV will return to in-person instruction, he said it is also preparing and updating its remote learning plan for all students in the case of another forced shutdown.
“We have gathered information from our families and staff via surveys, focus group meetings and conversations that will significantly assist us in moving forward with both in-person and remote learning,” Stabler said. “There are still many logistical issues we are currently working through. We will communicate these changes with our stakeholders frequently as we work to finalize our plan.”
Students may opt-in to a remote-learning-only plan with an understanding that enrollment will be for the entire first quarter. Families must select this option no later than 4 p.m. Friday, July 31.
The first day of attendance has been pushed back to Tuesday, Aug. 18.
Student attendance times will be from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. with the exception of scheduled early dismissals or late starts. Grab-and-go lunches will be available for students in grades 6-12 to take home.
Pre-K through fifth-grade students will attend Monday through Friday and remain in their designated classroom with their assigned grade-level teacher.
Students in grades 6-8 will attend Monday through Friday, remaining in a designated classroom and teachers will rotate from period-to-period. Students will follow a hybrid schedule of both traditional and block schedules.
High school students will be divided into two groups: “Lightning” and “Thunder.” Students will follow a hybrid schedule of both traditional and block schedules with alternating days and groups for in-person and remote learning. Students with IEPs will be offered in-person instruction every day.
Bureau Valley schools will return to the district’s grading policy.
The following health and safety guidelines will be implemented:
● Face masks must be worn at all times (even when social distance is maintained) except when eating or outdoors.
● Designated staff will be trained on newly purchased sanitation supplies/equipment to increase efficiency and effectiveness.
● District staff and new signage will emphasize frequent hand washing and hand sanitizing and other personal hygiene.
● All students will have daily health screenings prior to boarding buses or entering schools, including symptom and temperature checks. Students exhibiting symptoms or fevers greater than 100.4 will not be allowed to attend.
● Social distancing procedures will ensure 6-foot physical distance from other persons to the greatest extent possible.