Back to School 2020!
August 24, 2020
"Adversity causes some men to break; others to break records."
William Arthur Ward
Learning Option Choice Survey.
If you have selected a Flexible or At-Home learning Model, please also complete this survey.
2020-2021 Revised Calendar
Why did the school start and end dates change?
- Our district staff has determined that we need more time to prepare for high-quality, safe, and effective instruction and procedures in the district. With that need, we have determined that it is best to prolong our start date to provide ample time for preparation.
- In order to keep professional development days for staff to better adapt to our new learning formats, it was necessary to extend the year by 1 week in order to keep to our required number of instructional minutes (75,600).
During the 2020-2021 school year, families may select between three distinct learning models. In-Person Learning (on campus), At-Home Learning, and a Flexible Model will be available for students throughout the school year.
- Student Choice: Students may opt for a different learning model for a six weeks period. Once a student selects a specific learning model, the student will remain with that model throughout the entire six weeks. Currently, students who choose the At-Home Learning only model will not be eligible to participate in some extracurricular and on-campus activities. A list of extracurricular events that can be participated in through a remote environment will be provided.
- Students who wish to participate in extracurriculars and some CTE related courses, but participate in most class instruction in a remote learning model, will still be required to be present at the campus at some times in the day. This is called the Flexible Model.
- Career Technology Education and Electives: Ensuring that the state mandated curriculum (TEKS) is taught with fidelity, OISD may require students to participate in on campus instruction for that portion of the day where their presence is required for practice and demonstration of mastery of skills (Flexible Model). OISD will notify students and parents which courses may require their presence on campus for that component of their education if the student selects the Flexible Model.
- Students who choose the At-Home Learning Model will not be able to participate in or enroll in courses or extracurricular activities that require their on-site presence.
- All students may be required to be monitored by a school-provided test proctor during selected activities. Distancing measures commensurate with student choices will be implemented to the best of the district's ability.
- We will continue collaborating and reviewing the evolution of the virus as well as requirements, schedules, policies, and procedures to implement a quick and seamless transition.
- Login: students will continue to use district-provided logins through the Google Applications that are currently being used. More information regarding login, applications, and interactions will be delivered at a later date.
- Student Chromebooks: Olton ISD will provide to every student a chromebook and, when practical and applicable, should be taken home each night and used each day for learning. Teachers will be in contact with homes to give more guidance and details regarding the use of chromebooks.
- Student/Teacher Conferences: students engaged in on-campus learning should expect to receive the same support and guidance from staff in a face to face fashion as before. Students engaged in At-Home learning will receive guidance from their teacher regarding conferencing sessions outside of scheduled class participation times.
- Parent/Teacher Conferences: unless the situation suggests that it is necessary for parents and teachers to meet in-person, these conferences will be conducted through some type of virtual manner in order to continue to limit face to face interactions.
- WiFi Access: our teachers have been in communication with administration and we are making plans to ensure students in homes without internet access are able to check out a hot-spot to that their continuity of learning is not interrupted. Additionally, students are always welcome to sit outside their campus and access WiFi.
Health and Safety Measures
We will keep you updated on Olton ISD's procedures as new guidance emerges!
Infection Control Measures
Infection Control Measures
- Olton ISD will abide by all current Texas Governor Orders.
- Currently, the Texas Governor Orders include face coverings (cloth masks, gaiters, or face shields) which cover the nose and mouth and will be worn by 4th through 12th graders. PreK-3rd graders may wear face coverings if they choose. Provisions to not require masks during certain times or activities will be implemented.
- Social distancing measures will be encouraged at all times and will be implemented when possible.
- Water fountains are only to be used to refill a container brought by the student. Students may not share food or drinks.
- Students and Staff are encouraged to provide their own Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Olton ISD will have some PPE available as needed.
- Staff will conduct regular hand-washing and sanitization.
- Students will have instruction on effective hand-washing and will exercise sanitization practices multiple times per day.
- All staff and visitors will be required to submit a self-screener for COVID-19 symptoms before coming onto OISD property each day.
- Students will submit a COVID-19 screener once per week. Parents/guardians should monitor their students throughout the week and not send to school students who exhibit any of the symptoms listed on the screener.
- Students showing symptoms may be sent to the nurse.
- Visitors, including parents, will be restricted for essential school operations. We are exploring options to increase visitor involvement, including eating lunch on campus, but we are not allowing it at this time.
- Parents may not walk their student to class. This is being implemented to reduce large gatherings and to minimize the number of people present in the building at one time.
- All visitors admitted to district buildings are required to wear a face covering and to complete a screening form.
- Any visitor who has been tested positive for or who has been in close contact with an individual who is lab-confirmed with COVID-19 must remain off campus until the 14-day incubation period has passed.
COVID-19 Criteria and Procedures
- Campuses will have multiple entrance points for students so that social distancing is implemented.
- Parents may drop off and pick up their children outside the campus buildings. Again, we are trying to keep down the number of people in the building at one time.
- Parents going through the pickup/drop off line will be required to stay in their vehicles during pickup and drop off.
- Parents walking up to the building to pick up their student will have a designated location to wait and will be required to wear a face covering.
- Upon entering campus, students will immediately proceed to their first period class in order to prevent large group gatherings.
- Breakfast and Lunch procedures are being implemented to ensure each child is fed and they are safe while doing so.
- Campuses will experience increased sanitizing practices with special attention to high-touch surfaces.
- Campuses will implement increased air flow when possible and practical.
- To the best of our ability and space, desks / tables will be arranged to maximize space between students.
- Shared supplies will be limited when possible.
- Student lunches and transitions may be altered to observe reduced gatherings and interactions.
- Olton ISD will continue to provide bus transportation. Parents are encouraged to transport their children to school if possible.
- Family members will be seated together, if necessary, to maximize space between students of different families.
- Bus windows will be partially open when possible to increase ventilation.
- Bus drivers and students are required to observe governor orders on the bus. At this time, they shall be required to wear a face covering (unless the child is 3rd grade or younger).
COVID-19 Criteria and Procedures
- Students/Staff presenting symptoms of COVID-19 will be evaluated by the school nurse and may separated from other students / staff and be sent home if symptoms are confirmed.
- Anyone determined to have been in close contact with someone who was lab-confirmed COVID-19 will be contacted.
- Close Contact is defined as: direct exposure to infectious secretions (cough/sneeze) or being within 5 feed for a cumulative duration of 15 minutes while not wearing a face covering
- Defined COVID-19 Symptoms are: feeling feverish or temp of 100+ degrees, Loss of taste/smell, cough, difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, headache, chills, sore throat, shaking / exaggerated shivering, significant muscle pain / ache, diarrhea
- Helpful COVID-19 information from the CDC is found here.
Return to School Criteria
- Any individuals who themselves either: (a) are lab-confirmed to have COVID-19; or (b) experience the symptoms of COVID-19 (listed above) must stay at home throughout the infection period, and cannot return to campus until the school system screens the individual to determine that the following conditions for campus re-entry have been met.
- At least three days (72 hours) have passed since recovery (resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications
- The individual has improvement in symptoms
- At least ten (10) days have passed since symptoms first appeared
- In the case of an individual who was diagnosed with COVID-19, the individual may return when all three of the previously mentioned criteria are met
- In the case of an individual who has symptoms that could be COVID-19 and who is not evaluated by a medical professional or tested for COVID-19, such an individual is assumed to have COVID-19, and the individual may not return to the campus until the individual has completed the same three-step set of criteria listed above
- If the individual has symptoms that could be COVID-19 and wants to return to school before completing the above stay at home period, the individual must either (a) obtain a medical professional's note clearing the individual for return based on an alternative diagnosis or (b) receive two separate confirmations at least 24 hours apart that they are free of COVID-19 via acute infection tests at an approved COVID-19 testing location found at https://tdem.texas.gov/covid-19/
- Students or staff who come into close contact with a lab-confirmed case of COVID-19 will be asked to self-quarantine for 14 days and should contact the school for evaluation of meeting the return to school criteria
- District communication will be provided to staff and students who come into contact with anyone who tests positive for COVID-19
- Olton ISD will immediately sanitize all areas that had exposure from someone who tested positive. In the event that this cannot be done before the start of the next school day, OISD may need to close for a day to complete this process.
- Any student requiring quarantine will transition to At Home Learning for that period of time.
- Yes. All staff members will receive COVID-19 prevention training prior to the opening of school. All students will receive instruction on health protocols related to minimizing the spread of COVID-19 at the start of the school year.
Will my child have to wear a face covering?
- OISD will continue to follow governor orders. Currently, students are required to wear face coverings if they are in grades 4-12.
- Because wearing face coverings in certain situations and locations is a requirement by the Governor, it will be necessary to mandate all designated students and employees wear a face covering when in specified locations and under specified rules. If a student refuses to wear a face covering when instructed, the student will be enrolled in a learning format more suitable to their choices.
How many students will be assigned to each classroom?
- At this time, class size requirements are the same as during a regular school year. Social distancing will still be implemented when possible.
Will there be an attendance requirement for At-Home students?
- Yes, the Texas Education Agency (TEA) will require daily attendance and daily participation in the At-Home Learning or Flexible models. Students will be required to participate in online classes daily and traditional attendance requirements and rules apply.
May a student opt for paper packet learning for the 2020-2021 school year?
- No. To ensure the instructional continuity and equal access to high quality instruction, OISD will offer a digital platform for homework, assessments, and other related tasks.
Will cafeterias be open and will school meals be served?
- School breakfast and lunch will still be provided. We are still in the process of determining the best method of ensuring students are fed and are kept safe. More guidance will be provided at a later date.
Will students have recess or the ability to play and socialize with other children?
- Yes. Campuses will seek to minimize the number of students in one place at one time
Will I be able to come to the cafeteria to eat with my child?
- Until guidance and precautions that are being taken are able to be loosened, we will not be allowing visitors to eat in the cafeteria. We are exploring other possibilities to make eating with your child, on campus, a possibility.
Will bus transportation be provided for students?
- Yes, transportation will continue to be provided. Parents are encouraged, however, to transport their children to school if possible. Family members will be seated together on the bus to maximize spacing.
Will students be able to participate in extracurricular activities?
- Students who are engaged in On-Campus learning will be able to continue normal participation in their extracurricular activity. Students who are engaged in At-Home Learning will not be eligible for extracurricular participation other than those that can be completed in a digital environment (list will be provided). Students in a Flexible Model Environment will be eligible to participate in all extracurricular activities, including those that will require their presence for participation. As a reminder, students may not change their learning method until a new grading period (six weeks) begins.
Will students be able to have field trips and off-campus activities?
- There is currently no guidance on this question at this time.
Can students change their commitment from In-Person to At-Home learning after the start of the school year?
- Due to the scheduling complexities inherent in these two options, parents will be asked to make a commitment for at least one full six-weeks grading period. Special circumstances that affect a family will be considered on a case-by-case basis by the campus principal.
Will an ARD/504 meeting be required if At-Home Learning is chosen?
- ARD and 504 meetings will be scheduled on a case-by-case basis. For students served in special education, the schedule of instructional and related services should be accurately documented in the ARD/IEP to reflect the supports and services the student requires for FAPE. A parent/guardian may request an ARD or 504 meeting at any time.
Will STAAR/EOC be administered in 2020-2021?
- Yes, current guidance and planning from TEA indicate that students will be required to take the STAAR/EOC exam.