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District and Reopening Task Force to gain feedback from families through survey before selecting a model for reopening in the fall

on July 9, 2020

The Warwick Valley Central School District will ask families in the district for their preferences regarding students returning to school and traveling on the buses in the fall. The short survey, an idea generated from the Reopening Task Force, will be distributed on Thursday, July 9th. Data gathered from the survey will then be used to help the task force select a model for reopening schools in September.

The survey will ask parents and guardians if they are inclined to send their students to school regardless of the district’s plan or circumstances, if they will decide after they see the district’s plan, or if they will keep them home until a reliable treatment or vaccine is developed. It will also ask them whether they are planning to have their students ride the district’s buses.

The survey also asks them to rank their preferences for the five reopening models that are currently being considered:

  • Youngest students in school daily (but socially distanced); older students mostly virtual
  • Hybrid of in-person and remote instruction with alternating days
  • All students receiving remote instruction daily
  • All students receiving in-person instruction daily
  • Hybrid of in-person and remote instruction with alternating weeks

The survey is anonymous and will have no bearing on parents’ final choices for the fall. It is only meant to gain a general understanding of sentiment in the community. It will be distributed to families via email.

Once the task force has the results of the survey, it will choose a reopening model for the next school year. Families will then have another opportunity to provide their input via an open-ended survey to provide their input and concerns regarding the task force’s chosen model.

“The Reopening Task Force and the Warwick Valley Central School District want our parents and guardians to be involved in this process of reopening our schools in this very difficult and unprecedented time,” said Superintendent Dr. David Leach. “I am very interested in seeing how our school community feels. Once we have this input, the task force will make a decision that fits the Warwick Valley community.”

The task force has already ruled out utilizing any reopening models that do not involve effective social distancing.

Any model that is chosen will need to be approved by the state. It is not yet known when New York State will provide reopening guidance to school districts, but the task force – composed of school staff and community members – will ultimately need to choose a model that meets state guidance. And, of course, the model may need to change based on circumstances (i.e., if there is a regional outbreak).

“I think we all share the collective goal to get our students back into our schools,” Dr. Leach said. “But, our highest priority is to do this in a safe way for everyone.”

 

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