Caldwell School District Update
Monthly newsletter from Superintendent Shalene French
In this newsletter:
- Delayed start of school; switch to blended learning
- When will secondary A/B and elementary morning/afternoon schedules be available?
- Next week's registration activities
- Online only option sign up deadline Thursday, Aug. 6
- Cloth face coverings are required for school
- Tips for families getting ready for school
- Superintendent French & Chairman Pesina provide more detail on items in this newsletter in this video update
Delayed start of school; switch to blended learning
In case you missed last week’s update, we delayed the start of the school year and are planning to open with a mix of in person instruction at school and online learning at home.
Reducing the number of students in our schools by half, supports our plan to create physical distance to prevent the spread of the virus when people are in our buildings. You can read more about our prevent efforts in our Reopening Plan.
Depending on your child’s schedule school will start either Thursday, Aug. 27 or Friday, Aug. 28. Under this model, students will attend in person part time and online. Here’s the schedule:
Elementary students (Kindergarten through fifth grade) attending either morning or afternoon every day except Wednesday. Wednesday is an online learning day for all students at home.
Secondary students (6th to 12th grade) attending either on a “A day” schedule which will be in person Monday and Thursday; or a “B day” schedule Tuesday and Friday and Wednesday is an online learning day for all students.
According to Southwest District Health Department, we are currently in “red” or substantial spread. We are hoping our community will take preventative actions - washing hands, social distancing, wearing face coverings etc. -- and conditions can improve so schools can fully open at some point.
When will secondary A/B and elementary morning/afternoon schedules be available?
One of the reasons to delay the start of school was to provide time for staff to prepare the elementary and secondary schedules and assign students them.
We’ve never done this before and it will take time. Please be patient. We recognize that this makes arranging child care for younger students challenging. We will get this done as quickly as possible.
Some considerations we are making:
Keeping siblings and children living at the same address on the same A/B or a.m./p.m. schedule.
Splitting enrollments at schools by 50% for one shift and 50% in the other shift.
Principals are reviewing a first draft. We’ve already heard from some there are family groupings we missed.
When schedules are ready, schools will share with parents. We’re aiming for mid-August. We hope to accommodate unique circumstances for families that may need a different schedule than the one assigned to them. Our first priority is ensuring we reduce the number of students in the schools to prevent the spread of the virus.
Next week's registration activities
Next week is when our in-person registration events are scheduled. Most of this “paperwork” can be done online by logging into Skyward here: https://skyward.caldwellschools.org/
Parents will receive information from their child’s school about whether you need to attend in person or not registration. Schools will be practicing social distancing and face coverings should be worn.
Online only option sign up deadline Thursday, Aug. 6
At the request of parents concerned about sending their child for any in person instruction, we are offering a K-12 online only option. Caldwell High Administrator Karen Cameron is managing this for us. Each school will have a staff member -- counselor or other person -- assigned as a contact for families. The deadline to sign up is Thursday, Aug. 6. Learn more about this online at: https://www.caldwellschools.org/apps/pages/Onlineschool. Karen also answers some common questions in the video.
Cloth face coverings are required for school
Cloth face coverings are required for students, staff & visitors in our schools. They’ve been added to our school supply lists. Here are some great tips from the American Pediatric Association for parents to help their children wear face coverings: https://www.healthychildren.org/English/health-issues/conditions/COVID-19/Pages/Cloth-Face-Coverings-for-Children-During-COVID-19.aspx
Free meals for students before school starts
While the start of school is delayed, we will be providing grab-and-go meals that include a breakfast and a lunch weekdays Aug. 19-26. These will be available to from 10 to 11:30 a.m. at the following school sites:
Van Buren Elementary
Lewis & Clark Elementary
Caldwell High School
Tips for families getting ready for school
Thank you for your patience as we prepare for the new school year. Please follow the recommendations of our health care professionals: wash your hands frequently; stay 6 feet away from others; wear a face covering; stay home when you are sick. It is our dearest hope the health of our community will improve to green and children will be able to return to school full time every day.