Dear District 44 Families,
First, I want to thank you for your patience as we continue to carefully evaluate our approach to bringing students back onsite. By following our re-opening plan’s original timeline and focus of “slow, steady, safe,” this process will begin over the next few weeks.
The first groups of students projected to return include special education self-contained classrooms, students with 1:1 instructional aides and early childhood classrooms. Students within these programs will begin on-site instruction, at the very earliest, Monday, September 28th. These programs will attend our campuses four days a week, Monday-Tuesday & Thursday-Friday.
Our kindergarten program (which will remain half day), is projected to start, at the very earliest, on Monday, October 5th followed by grades 1-8, beginning no earlier than Thursday, October 15th.
Why say at the earliest? What could cause the date to change?
As shared in a previous communication, each factor included in this graphic materially impacts our ability to reopen school. We have broken down each component in this brief video to help explain what we would need to maintain to meet that September 28 date.
What will the day look like for K-8 students?
Teachers will continue to provide our remote teaching platform to both remote and on-campus students. Depending on the number of families that choose the on-campus learning option, we will know more about specific scheduling options and that will be communicated at a later date. Please know that we are not currently able to offer transportation other than to our special education students.
We will continue to follow the same remote learning schedule, with the only change being a 30 minute lunch for students. This is our short-term plan; our long-term plan is to return to five days a week, onsite. Parents please know that we are also continuing to look at our music program and work closely with our band, orchestra and music staff to continue at our schools.
Will we be bringing students onsite for screenings and evaluations prior to 9/28?
In-person screenings and evaluations will be scheduled for EL, SpEd, and Kinder students as needed beginning on 9/16. Further communication to these groups regarding screening procedures and instructions will be forthcoming.
What if I want my child to remain at home? Will that be allowed?
Yes, in the coming days the district will issue additional communication that includes detailed information to help educate our families about what onsite learning will look like in our schools. At this time, you will be asked to complete a survey regarding your preferred option. Once you select this option, it will remain in effect until mid-January.
What are our next steps and when can we expect more information?
More communication will be issued on Monday, September 21 that will contain specific information about what onsite learning will look like in our schools. This communication will include visuals and detailed information to help educate and inform our families. Once you have a chance to review, you will then be asked to complete a survey where you will indicate your learning preference.
We are excited to welcome your children back into our schools, but doing so in a manner that remains safe for everyone. Please look for additional information next week.