NSSD COVID-19 Staff Update

March 25, 2020

Andy Gardner Message

Hello NSSD Staff!

Sorry to send you written rather than video, but my film crew is currently moving into a new house, so writing is all I’ve got! I hope that you are able to get some rest over this “Spring Break,” and that you are staying distanced and safe. Here are a few updates for you on the District’s response to the shutdown…

Meal Service

Meal service is still happening at our four school sites. Our food service crew is an awesome group and they have seen their numbers go from under 100 meals served on day one to consistently serving over 300 meals per day! Great job and we appreciate their work.

Daycare at SES

The District is planning to run a daycare for health care workers and, possibly, area first responders. It will take place at Stayton Elementary School. The daycare will be staffed by SPAs, EAs, and Duty Monitors from all schools. Staff over 60 will not be required to report. Any EA who has any symptoms, who is vulnerable, or is taking care of a vulnerable person in their home likewise will not report. We ask that, if you have not already notified your direct supervisor, you notify Debi Brazelton if you have any such condition. We are working right now on the roster of available staff and intend to provide rotation for the work. This will not look like normal daycare, as groups will be “stable” and isolated from each other in the interest of worker and student safety. Our plan is to begin providing this service on April 1st. We will train staff on March 31st on the safety rules provided by the State. We will be checking each student for temperature and a set of screening questions daily under our nurses’ guidance. Remember that the parents are health care providers and are subject to screening as well. More information to come as we get closer.

Education in General

The Governor and the Department of Education have been working on multiple aspects of the crisis. The Governor’s new “Stay at Home-Stay Safe” order stipulates that schools are considered essential services in that we are all required to do the work in the Governor’s original order. (Pay employees and have them do 1) meals 2) daycare to support health care workers and 3) provide supplementary education services.) With that guidance in mind, we will be working to have teachers begin work this coming week on planning to reach out to our students. We will plan to have staff meet, either by coming in or by calling in/Google Meets on Tuesday, March 31st. Our goal is to have a formal plan and have it communicated to parents and students so that we can be up and running by April 6th.

We (Superintendents) currently have two call-in meetings per week where processes and solutions are vetted before they are finalized. The first priority is our graduating seniors, and then work will focus on HS students in grades 9-11 before moving to K-8. We will update you as new announcements are made. We hope to have information to release on how seniors will graduate as early as Thursday, March 26th.

On-Line Charter Schools

On-Line Public Charter Schools are currently closed as well. The State has frozen enrollments and will fund schools on their enrollments prior to the closure. They are using this as a rationale to not allow students to transfer to on-line schools during the crisis. While we have had only one request, there are districts who have seen an increase in activity. If you are aware of any parent who has done this, please ask them what on-line school they enrolled in, and we will communicate that information to ODE.

State Testing

ODE has been notified that their application for a waiver has been “Conditionally Approved” by the US Dept. of Education. This will mean that the State will not conduct State Assessments this year, which will also eliminate many related requirements.

In the meantime, I hope that all of you are doing well, that your families are OK, and that you are getting some rest. As always, do not hesitate to ask us for help or to clarify something further. Our goal is to support our communities, staff, families and students through this crisis, and to lay the groundwork for our eventual (and certain!) return. Thanks for all you do! Stay safe.

District Office Message

All District Office Departments and Principals have been meeting over the last two weeks to prepare for meeting the governor's order and providing supplemental education for our students and supporting staff in doing this work. ODE has defined supplemental learning as:

  • Resources for supplemental learning are not intended to replace classroom instruction or district-adopted curriculum. No content will be graded and all of these activities are optional.

On Monday, all building administrators will be meeting to plan what will occur next week for your return. At this time, it’s undecided who we will need to meet with on Tuesday or if we’ll be planning to meet with all staff on-site, virtually or both. Building principals will communicate with you asap Monday or sooner. If we do meet on-site, we will certainly be meeting in small groups and following all the distance requirements.

Principals are meeting virtually tomorrow morning to prepare for our Monday meeting. It’s great to have a week to plan with staff on how we can provide the supplemental supports for your students to begin on April 6. We will all need to be flexible and work together to implement what we plan. This may include printing and delivery of materials and issuing Chromebooks. This is an opportunity for all of us to learn new ways to support students and to assist them through these difficult times. Your support may look different, but has only grown more important.

In preparation for Tuesday, you can begin learning and practicing with Google Meets, completing the staff survey and brushing up on the Blackboard messaging features. I anticipate Google Meets, Google Classroom and Blackboard will be staples for connecting with students moving forward.

Enjoy the remaining of your Spring Break! We can do this!

Teacher Survey: Link

Blackboard Login and Support:

Google Meets Support: