Edmond Public Schools reopened Thursday, August 20 for the first time since the global pandemic shuttered schools in early March.
Students who are not currently enrolled in Virtual Edmond are attending classes two days a week and taking remote classes three days a week.
Blended Model of Instruction
The part in-person and part remote classes blended model of instruction aligns with the newly-released Oklahoma State Department of Education (SDE) School Safety Protocols wherein districts in counties with greater COVID-19 outbreaks, including Oklahoma County, are strongly encouraged to transition to alternative schedules (A/B weeks, rotations, hybrid model, etc.) to reduce the number of individuals in school buildings and ensure greater social distancing. In this scenario, students will only attend school in person on assigned days. A blended model of instruction involves splitting each school site’s student population into an A and B group.
No general education students are in the buildings on Wednesday. This is a day for teachers to build their Canvas lessons and for cleaning and disinfecting the buildings between groups of students. The remote learning that will take place during a blended learning scenario will be provided by the classroom teacher through Canvas. Grades and attendance are taken, even on remote learning days, and that the remote learning portion is not optional.
How Does an A/B Schedule Work
This helpful video from Associate Superintendent Angela Grunewald explains more about how the A/B schedule works.
How Were Student Schedules Decided?
The district’s portal, Infinite Campus, auto-generated the A and B groups for all 25,000 students at one time on August 11. The only parameter it protected was households, keeping siblings in the same group, no matter their age. Unfortunately, the district will not be able to accommodate specific schedule requests.
What About Students on an IEP or 504?
There are exceptions to the blended model of instruction that may apply to students with disabilities who are unable to receive instructional services through remote learning. Placement, and district services for these students, will be carefully decided by each school site’s Individualized Education Program (IEP) or 504 Accommodation Plan team. Special education personnel reached out to families of children with disabilities to schedule an IEP team meeting prior to the start of school.
What Safety Precautions and Procedures are in Place to Help Mitigate the Spread of COVID-19?
Every department in the district has played a role in collaborative problem-solving to implement precautions and practices intended to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
The following Return to School Guidelines explains the safety procedures and protocols as well as the day-to-day operations for elementary and secondary students with an emphasis on a layered approach to virus mitigation. Plans in the guidelines are subject to change as new information becomes available or as new situations arise related to COVID-19. New or updated information can be found in the highlighted sections.
Will Meal Service Continue Even on Remote Learning Days?
The Child Nutrition Department is providing drive-thru meals at all locations for distance learning students. Both breakfast and lunch are available at the same time. Children do not have to be present at pick-up, but whoever picks up the meals will need to provide the student’s name(s) to check off the roster as meals are passed out. Unlike the summer meal program, meals will need to be picked up at the child’s home school because we will need to confirm they’re enrolled, charge them according to F/R/P status at their school, as well as ensure that the meals are appropriate for the child’s grade level. Here are the site-specific times/pick-up locations. This information is also posted to the Child Nutrition Website.
What Happens if COVID-19 Cases Increase or Decrease?
The district will revisit the reopening plan often to ensure that we are doing everything possible to give our students the best education while also providing sufficient safeguards for students and staff alike. At some point in time, we may move to a more restrictive or less restrictive teaching model if the COVID-19 data changes. Scientific understanding of the novel coronavirus is increasing rapidly, so efforts to mitigate transmission of COVID-19 will necessarily evolve with additional research and experience.