From Dr. Robinson:
- What is the school start date for students?
Answer: Currently the start date for students in grades 1-12 for in-person back to school will be Monday, August 24. This date was changed from the original start date of Wednesday, August 19. For Kindergarten the start date will be after Labor Day. It will be Wednesday, September 9 with a parent visitation day by appointment on Tuesday, September 8. These extra days will be used by staff to review safety items and processes, and prepare for the new year.
- What is going on with high school fall athletics?
Answer: As of today fall athletics are up in the air for contact sports. Contact sports, as determined by the Ohio High School Athletic Department, are Football, Boys and Girls Soccer, Cross Country, and Field Hockey. Scrimmages for the fall sports of Football, Soccer and Field Hockey have been put on indefinite hold for now. There is a great deal of concern by Health Departments and some school districts and counties regarding the potential for the spread of virus as well as how to deal with spectators and they have put those sports and others on hold. This will be updated as information becomes available.
- What will determine if our school will go to Remote (stay at home) Learning?
Answer: There are many issues that could cause the district to go on Remote. It could depend on recommendations of the Health Department due to attendance of students, teachers, or support staff. The district will definitely go on Remote if our County is labeled Purple even if we do not have a concern with attendance.
- What does Option 2, Online Learning, consist of for students?
Answer: Students will be expected to work remotely and independently using a Chromebook. In grades K-5, Manchester teachers will utilize a variety of methods, including videos, video meetings, and supplemental online resources and programs to instruct students. In grades 6-12, a third party core curriculum program will lead students through required content. In grades 6-12 students will have access to a Manchester teacher to help facilitate learning of material for completion. Academic integrity, honesty, and student motivation will be of the utmost importance for quality student learning.
5. What would happen if a teacher or student tests positive for covid? How would that be handled? We know this will happen at some point throughout the year, so it would be helpful for parents to know what protocol would take place.
Answer: A teacher or a student, who has tested positive, are supposed to be reported to the Health Department when a positive test is identified. The Summit County Health Department begins a contract tracing. The school will also begin tracing as to whom the student was in contact with for 10 minutes or longer and by how much distance. The teacher or student cannot return until there is a letter from the Health Department. The number of days depends on community spread within a family unit.
Unfortunately the time in getting the response to testing can be quite long so the real question to be answered is what is done if someone exhibits symptoms at school or elsewhere.Here is how we will handle that piece:
- The person will be separated from others if they are student--- if a staff member immediately relieved of duties and sent home.
- The school will make sure the student or staff member has a face covering on.
- There is an isolation room in each building that will be designated for students to be picked up from and the staff member must leave immediately.
- The isolation area, which is not the clinic, will be sanitized.
- The isolation room must be monitored and supervised when the student is in the isolation area.
- For students; the administrator will contact the parent or others to pick up the student immediately. They will not be transported home by bus.
- Any area that the person was in will be sanitized immediately.
- Parents of students in the room will be contacted as well so they can monitor their child for symptoms to determine quarantine needs versus isolation. There will also be written documentation for parents of the concern in order to answer questions they will have.
6. Why wasn't a hybrid schedule an option for Manchester? I feel a lot more parents would have felt way more comfortable with that as an option. Is it too late for that to be considered?
Answer: Many different plans were reviewed. With our class size, especially using an online piece with our plan, it was not believed that a hybrid would be a deterrent for spread and it was a concern with lost days of learning. The discussion for our district, as it was with many small districts around us, was that no matter how few you put into a class it only takes one to spread the virus. We have made sure that we adhered to the guidance regarding distance in order to keep everyone safe. As far as being too late to consider a hybrid plan; it is not too late but if we need to adjust the district plan because of any type of spread we would then determine the need to go remote. To do this we have made sure that all students will have an electronic device, unlike in the spring, and teachers would then teach daily to their students online. It should be noted however that our order of Chromebooks, due to many schools needing them, are on back order and hopefully will be in very soon.
7. What will a school day look like for my children if I decide to send them back to school? Will they be switching classes? What will lunch look like? Will they have lunch in the cafeteria? Will they be allowed to talk and interact with their friends?
Answer: The in-person school class should look like any other day for students as far as classroom presentations but will be different by building. If they are at Nolley we are working to keep cohorts of students together with staff as much as possible. This will enable us to trace easier if needed. We will try to do the same as much as possible at the Middle School but there will be class changes. At the high school, due to the specialization, there will be movement. We are placing limits in each building on how many students will be in the cafeteria at the High School and Middle School. Students again will be brought in by cohort groups at grade levels at the Middle School — all students will have seating that faces in one direction and areas are sanitized before the next group enters. We will have students at Nolley eating in classrooms as needed. Servers are masked and shielding is around the cashier. Student will not be allowed to touch the inputs for lunch orders as that will be done by the cashier. Students will be allowed to talk to friends and where possible be outside with their cohort group. Staff members will be instructed to make sure in classrooms that there is no sharing of materials, books, etc… We want it to be as normal as possible with safeguards for everyone.
8. Are masks going to be provided for students? What is the extent of "plexiglass" within the classrooms?
Answer: We will have masks for students that do not have one but we would like for students to have their own when they come to school. Masks are required to move about the room and building just as they are if you would go into a store. Students must have a mask to get on the bus as that is a confined space with limited air flow and distancing. If they forget their mask, each building as well as the bus driver should have extras. We will work in, with safe distance, the opportunity to remove the mask for a short period of time, during the day. Students will not be permitted to associate with others however without their mask on. We are not using plexiglass in the rooms for students as we are requiring all students and staff to wear a mask. The Health Department has stated that even the face shields, which is a form of plexiglass, allows droplets or spray to get under or around the shield but a mask does not. If someone is closer than 6 feet they should have a mask on even if wearing a shield. With a mask the data of meta analysis testing in various scientific studies is that there is little difference at 6 or 3 feet distance for droplet spread so masks versus plexiglass or shields is the recommendation.
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