COVID-19 » Reopening Plan

Reopening Plan

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Letter to the PVS Community from Dr J
August 7, 2020
 
Dear PVS Families,
 
We hope this letter finds you and your loved ones safe and healthy.
 
Now that the reality of Comprehensive Distance Learning for the fall for Multnomah County residents is sinking in, one question that has been bubbling up is...
 
"Should we just homeschool next year?"
 
While I completely understand the challenges of balancing distance learning for your children and working from home, the benefits of staying a part of the PVS community may well outweigh the challenges.
 
Benefits to Staying:
  • Your child will have a place at PVS when we return to learning in a traditional way. I have every faith that humanity will overcome this obstacle and be back in school 5 days a week in the future - when that happens, I want my kids to be at PVS!
  • Your child will maintain relationships with friends, and teachers. Many of you have joined the Village School because of our commitment to centering relationships, we are committed to keeping relationship centered during distance learning. You can expect regular weekly interactions with teachers and peers during comprehensive distance learning.
  • You have access to quality Waldorf instruction led by experienced teachers. Even as a trained educator I know I have my limitations. As a parent I can supplement as I choose and am able, BUT I can use the expertise of PVS teaching staff to guide my child's learning AND that learning is planned already, is engaging, integrated, and follows Waldorf lesson blocks and uses Waldorf materials.
  • Maintaining continuity and providing stability is reassuring for children. Right now everything is changing or has changed - by staying a part of PVS your child will have the security of as close to regular school as we can get for now.
 
As a PVS parent, I anticipate there will be some school assignments and activities that we do very well at as a family, and others that are a challenge for us, and I imagine it will be that way for all of you too. I plan to stay in contact with my teachers, let them know where our struggles are, do our best, and give myself and my children some grace.
 
Looking forward to seeing you all in the fall - even if it's over Zoom!
 
With all my best,
 
~ Dr. J
 
PVS will be implementing Comprehensive Distance Learning from September 8th - November 27th
 
Please note: All PVS families have the option of having their child continue with online instruction only even if PVS is able to open an in-person hybrid model further into the 2020-2021 school year.
 
 
Waldorf Star
Comprehensive Distance Learning Plan for Fall
July 31, 2020
 
Dear PVS Families,
 
We hope this letter finds you and your loved ones safe and healthy.
 
PVS faculty and staff have been working hard behind the scenes to plan for a safe return to school this fall. During this process, PVS reached a similar conclusion to that of the state, in Portland we could not safely have any form of in person learning for the start of the 2020-2021 school year. Accordingly:
 
PVS will be implementing Comprehensive Distance Learning from September 8th - November 27th.
 
We know this news will bring relief for some as well as new challenges, but we are committed to following the safest course for our students, staff and community. As educators, we thrive on our interactions with our students, and crave a return to what we used to know and love about school, however we also recognize that this is the best decision for our community at this time.
 
In October PVS will review the data and make a determination in collaboration with local health authorities and ODE about continuing with Comprehensive Distance Learning into January or entering into a hybrid model if it is safe to do so. We will be sharing our plan update with families no later than October 20th.
 
Please note: All PVS families have the option of having their child continue with online instruction only even if PVS is able to open an in-person hybrid model.
 
You should know that while our digital learning model last spring set the stage for this fall, our online instruction starting in September will be more comprehensive with clearer guidelines about what is expected from teachers and students. There will be increased interactions and feedback on academics across multiple subjects during the week, grades will be given and attendance will be taken. In addition to academic learning, we will be centering our focus on emotional and social supports for students and families, and maintaining a commitment to equity and social justice in our practices. PVS staff are working on developing these guidelines and procedures and we will be sharing more with you later in August as our instructional model takes shape.
 
Additionally, we are developing a COVID-19 tab on our webpage, and will be updating this with more information regularly.
 
Lastly I want to thank you for your patience, understanding and continued commitment to PVS. As a parent I have personally struggled with questions of safety for my own children as well as my staff, while also knowing the importance of in person learning for my kids. I am certain that many of you also feel these competing priorities within your own families.
 
Please know that we are dedicated to growing and learning during difficult time, and the staff is energized about the possibilities of developing an engaging, Public Waldorf learning experience for our students this fall.
 
With all my best,
 
~ Dr. J
Portland Public School District Update for Fall Opening 
July 20, 2020
 

Dear PPS Families,

We know you are eager to learn how students will safely begin school in the fall. The start of this school year is especially complex as we continue to adjust to the most up-to-date information from state and local education and health leaders. In the meantime, you can find more information about our planning process in our July 11 message (below on this page) to families and staff. 

 

Please remember: we will only reopen school buildings if we can safely do soIf we are not able to safely open school buildings, all teaching and learning for every student will take place virtually/online until it is safe to return to school in person.

 

As we work on our reopening plans, we are taking into account the different needs of our students, including the support required for our students with special needs. We are also observing our guiding principles and Theory of Action, paying particular attention to how we can prioritize our students who have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic; specifically our Black, Indigenous and students of color. 

 

PPS website Fall Reopening update for July, 20, 2020 here.

 
Fall reopening plans are evolving
 
A Message from our Executive Director
June 26th, 2020
 
Dear PVS Families,
 
We hope this letter finds you and your loved ones safe and healthy.
 
This spring we all faced extraordinary challenges to meet the needs of our students, staff and families in the crisis of COVID. Through incredible effort and flexibility we were able to rise to this challenge as a community. Now PVS is preparing for our safe return to school next fall. Our children need access to an equitable, high quality education and all the nutrition, health, and social supports that come with it; at Portland Village School we are designing a re-entry plan that will safely meet these needs.
 
On June 10, 2020, the Oregon Department of Education (ODE) released Ready Schools Safe Learners guidance that puts forward the requirements and recommendations we are using to plan for next fall; for more in-depth information about ODE's plan, click the link above. Oregon Health Authority epidemiologists helped create and vet this guidance so that we could have clear health and safety protocols to follow for a variety of scenarios. The guidance describes what we know now, with an understanding that we will all need to navigate the state’s evolving efforts to mitigate COVID-19. ODE’s focus is on the safe reentry of students and staff to school.
 
PVS administration and staff are developing a first draft of our Operational Blueprint for Reentry so we can prepare for students to come back to school this fall. PVS will be using a hybrid model of instruction next year - this model will allow us to use a combination of in person and online learning throughout the week.
 
There are a few things to know about school in 2020-2021 - please know this is not an inclusive list, rather this was the information families might need to have in order to answer the survey questions to the best of their ability:
 
Safety Path:
  • Only essential students and staff will be allowed entry into the school buildings
  • School start and end times will be staggered by class next year, to avoid crowding
  • Health screenings will occur prior to student and staff entry in the buildings
  • Each cohort of students will have a contact log to be used by health authorities for contact tracing should the need arise
  • Upon entry of the classroom or school everyone will use hand sanitizer
  • Rooms have maximum capacity - capacity is determined by 35 sq. feet of usable space per person per room
  • Students will be physically distant (6 feet away) from their peers during their time at school
  • Students will be in assigned seats, using their own individual supplies
  • Staff will be wearing PPE provided by the school
  • Children in grades K-5 are not required to wear any PPE, students in middle school grades may wear masks if they and their families choose (younger students may as well if they choose but ODE recognized this was harder for them in the guidance)
  • Classrooms with exterior doors will use these doors for entry and exit
  • Classrooms who need to use main doors for entry and exit will have assigned doors
  • Transitions will be limited and scheduled to avoid crowding
  • We will be moving to cold school lunch next year - and cold lunch will be delivered to each classroom
 
Learning Path Current Knowns- your input will help craft this plan:
  • All children will have access to learning, either using the hybrid model if they choose, or fully distant learning should that meet family needs better
  • Students using hybrid learning will be placed in small group stable cohorts for their in-person learning times
  • We will work to ensure siblings have the same cohort days
  • Due to space requirements for social distancing, we will not have more than half of a class (i.e. one cohort) in attendance at a time
  • We will provide synchronous live streamed learning, and video recorded learning of in-class instruction for those who are learning at home, either in real time, or at a later time.
  • Any online learning next fall will be graded for academics and effort and daily attendance will be taken for during for children working from home and those in the classroom.
  • Movement, Dance and Music are considered high risk activities because of the need for deep breathing, we have yet to develop what those specials will look like for next year, but they will likely be outside or only in a distance setting and look different from how they have non-COVID times.
 
We all agree that it would be ideal to return to school as we have had it in the past - our society is based on this model, but we recognize that this is not possible for our school at this time. We need your help to plan what will be the best hybrid learning model for our community - please fill out this survey to help us crafting our path forward.
 
Thank you for your contributions, energy, and patience as we work together to keep our PVS community safe, engaged, supported and learning.
 
All my best,
~ Dr. J