MESSAGE TO USD 362 FAMILIES
Today, March 17, 2020, Governor Laura Kelly announced all school facilities will be closed for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. This will place tremendous hardship on our families and staff, and impact the social and emotional well-being of our students. The Kansas Department of Education (KSDE) has been working on contingency plans since mid-March, including how we can meet the ongoing learning needs of our students as well as provide breakfast and lunch for our students. We will know those plans in the near future.
Beginning next week, the administration will be planning meetings for individual staff members in small groups (Less than 10) to go over tentative plans and get the ball rolling on instruction. These meetings with staff will start during the early to mid-part of next week and will ramp up to resume instruction by the first of the month, if not sooner. Realizing that not all families have access to internet connections, KSDE has provided schools with 3 different instructional delivery methods. We are able to instruct via worksheets, small groups, as well as online computer based. At this point it would be safe to assume that your student will see a combination of the three teaching delivery methods being utilized.
As you know, our teachers are all trained to teach face to face. This will be a challenge for everyone involved, however, we promise you that we will do the very best job we can to assure that students are meeting curriculum standards. You should also know that the instruction will evolve throughout the next few weeks that we have remaining. In the end, it is our desire to do all that we can to keep students and staff safe while following local, state and national guidelines/protocols.
In addition to instruction, everyone is also wondering what will happen to spring activities. The Kansas State High School Activities Association has cancelled all spring activities. At this point in time everything on the calendar is considered cancelled with the exception of graduation. It is our desire to schedule graduation once the "all clear" has been given. At this point though all activities etc. are cancelled until June 1. No plans will be made for anything after June 1st until we are given the green light to do so.
Our staff and board of education will also be working on other critical issues, such as what this means for our seniors, how this will affect the next school year, and what impact this will have on our employees. We will provide updates on these issues as soon as the information is available. We are committed to working together as a community to support one another throughout these unprecedented times, and communication will remain a top priority.
As a reminder, this school closure is in response to the current public health crisis. The focus should remain on preventing the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
In this unprecedented time thank you for your patience while we work through the details to provide for our students and staff.
Wade Teagarden, Rex E. Bollinger Ed.D.
USD 362 Board President USD 362 Superintendent