Monday, August 10, 2020

Worcester: what we know so far

Let me just say up front: this is not going to be exhaustive, it is still going to abide by the ban on direct dealing, and things may well change this week.
A path forward?

The plan as proposed so far: Most students start the year remote for at least the first quarter (mid-November). Students with the highest amount of need have the opportunity for in-person learning. The district then shifts or phases into a hybrid model (of 1/4 students each one day a week) sometime after the first quarter.

What needs to be decided now by families: The district is asking families to fill out a form to denote if they will switch from fully remote to hybrid when that becomes available, which at the earliest will be in November, in the district proposal. That does not change what will happen on September 15. The following Connect-Ed is going out to families this week: 

This is Superintendent Binienda. I am calling this afternoon, to let you know it is time for you to select your choice of learning plan for Quarter 2 for each of your children who attend the WPS.  Although we are beginning the school year with 100% remote, we need a count of each child's selection for Quarter 2 to effectively plan for any transitions. There will be a process for you to change your response as we progress into the Fall semester.  Please go to the WPS website  click on the yellow ribbon, then click on the Educational Model Selection Form. You will need to use your child’s WPS ID and date of birth to fill out the form. If you do not know your child’s student number, call Coralys at 774-303-9719 or Michelle at 508-799-3115.  

Please fill out this form by Monday, August 17.

Yes, the form still has what was to be the original due date of Friday. Don't let that throw you off.

What happens this week: There is a meeting for Spanish-speaking families Tuesday evening at 5:30.

The Worcester School Committee meets and votes Thursday evening starting at 5:30. Yes, this is mostly still pending Committee vote (we won’t, for example, be changing to send everyone back into buildings, as we have already made clear, but this is subject to deliberation and further amendment). Entirely unsolicited opinion? Fill the form out Friday or over the weekend. 

Will the remote learning be taught by WPS teachers? Yes, for the entire year. 
Even after the hybrid kicks in? Yes.
Can we switch our answer later? Yes (see Superintendent Binienda's Connect-ed above)
Will my child still be in the school or program they currently are in if they choose to be remote this year? Yes, they will.

This will be updated as there is more to say or things change.

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