OPS is returning to in-person learning. Click here for more information.

Preparing for a Responsible Return to School1 to 1 TechnologyCovid 19 FAQMeals2Go Information

100% Remote Instructional Model

Family Support Centers

Please contact your student's school or teacher directly if you have questions that can be answered by phone or email. We have also opened a weekly Family Support Center to assist with this transition.

UPDATE 8/25/20:
The Family Support Center will be open weekly at Morton Middle School. See details below.

Details:
Morton Middle School Cafeteria
-    Aug. 31 (Monday)
-    Sept. 8 (Tuesday)
-    Sept. 14 (Monday)
-    Sept. 21 (Monday)
-    Sept. 28 (Monday)
Each session runs from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The following services will be available for families
-    School Support Liaisons
-    Bilingual Liaisons
-    Counselors
-    Social Workers
-    Nutrition Services – to assist with meal applications and Meals2Go information
-    Technology Support 
-    Student and Community Services

Health and Safety Precautions
All visitors will be required to wear facial coverings while at any of the Family Support Centers. We ask all staff and families to maintain distance whenever possible for the health and well-being of everyone.

Technology Support
In addition to in-person supports, the district has produced several videos to help families navigate District provided iPads. To review resources, click here.
 

Early Elementary Remote Learning Update

Throughout the Responsible Return to School planning process we have shared that the 100% remote learning instructional model is intended to look different than what our staff and students experienced in the spring. We took our lessons learned from the spring and applied them to our fall planning. As part of our commitment to provide the best educational opportunities for our students, we continue to evaluate our practices and procedures and will evolve throughout the process. We also value the feedback we have received from stakeholders. We appreciate the continued partnership and flexibility of teachers and families.

Here is an update on adjustments we will be making to remote learning for students in kindergarten, first grade and second grade. 

Adjusted Daily Schedules for Kindergarten, First Grade and Second Grade Students
Beginning the week of Aug. 24, we are asking early elementary staff to adjust the daily schedule of students. Schedules will be adjusted to prioritize instructional time that includes more frequent and longer breaks. This change is ONLY being made for kindergarten, first grade and second grade students. There will be no adjustments to other grade levels at this time. 

Moving forward, students in kindergarten, first grade and second grade will be asked to be online for approximately half the day. More frequent and longer breaks will be built into the day. The focus of live instruction will be on reading, writing and math. In order to allow additional breaks and time away from a device, specials, social studies and science will continue but will be optional opportunities for families during remote learning. We encourage families to participate but understand students may need a longer break on particular days.  

Half of the day will be dedicated to 1 on 1 instructional support from teachers and paraprofessionals. Teachers and paraprofessionals will each provide 1 on 1 instruction with all students throughout the week.  Students will receive at least 20-30 minutes of individualized support each week. We believe this adjusted schedule prioritizes instructional time while accounting for less screen time and allowing for necessary breaks for younger students.

Special Education
Students in special education will continue to receive services. There may be adjustments to the delivery time and methods. Look for additional information from your child’s school. 

Grading
Grades will continue to be assessed for reading, writing and math. More details will be shared on grading practices for optional opportunities for families. 

Next Steps
Schools are working to make these adjustments to student schedules. Once the information is finalized, they will be sharing more details with families. The changes will begin no later than Wednesday, Aug. 26.

We look forward to learning with students in-person when it is possible to do so. We are actively planning and preparing for that time. We continue to monitor health conditions in our community and will communicate updates to families as we are able. As we plan for our return, we are continuing to evaluate our procedures. The activities and daily schedule must and will look different in each instructional model to accommodate current health and safety conditions and staff bandwidth. 

We are committed to ongoing communication with our staff and families. We appreciate the feedback shared so far and we look forward to strong partnerships that ensure strong supports and opportunities for our students.

Your student's school and teacher will be in touch with additional information the week of Aug. 24. Please do not hesitate to contact them with questions.

Transitioning to 100% Remote Learning Instructional Model

Health and safety has been our priority as we planned for a responsible return to school. Through the spring and summer our district prepared for a range of possibilities in the school year to come. We care deeply about our students, staff and families.

For the health and safety of our community, we will shift the start of school for students to Aug. 18. At that time, we will begin using the 100% Remote Learning Instructional Model. We believe this decision is in the best interest of our community’s health.

Omaha Public Schools will be in the 100% Remote Learning Instructional Model through the first quarter of the 2020-21 school year. We will continue to work with the Douglas County Health Department and other state and local officials to regularly evaluate health conditions in our community. If we are able to transition back to the Family 3/2 Model or 100% in-person learning, we will communicate that to staff and families.  

This decision was made after thoughtful consideration, with health and safety at the forefront. Throughout our planning process, we have also carefully considered the social and emotional well-being of our students. Our district recently hosted webinars to support families facing anxiety and to provide ideas for building an at-home learning space. Counselors, social workers, school leaders and district staff will be available for students and families throughout the time to come.

Why is OPS Making the Change Now?
Since our shift to remote learning in March, we have closely monitored the health conditions of our local and state community. We shared that our plans may have to transition quickly. We believe it is best for the health and safety of our students, staff and families to transition to the 100% Remote Learning Instructional Model at this time. 

We have adjusted the start of school for students by one week. This allows additional time for staff professional development and preparations.

Remote Learning Instructional Model for Students  
We have plans in place to ensure students engage and learn while we are in the 100% Remote Learning Instructional Model. In this model, both ‘live’ and ‘on-demand’ learning is supported through communication and interaction using district-provided, internet connected iPads and other technology tools. 

Students in Elementary School: 

  • Students will participate in live and on-demand instruction.
  • Classroom teachers will utilize a daily remote schedule that follows OPS remote time allotments for all core curricular areas as well as specials five days a week for all students.
  • Attendance, feedback, and common grading practices will be implemented.

Students in Middle and High School: 

  • Students will participate in live and on-demand instruction.
  • Students will likely have instruction for four courses per day. This will allow teachers to maximize instruction time. Students will be following an A/B schedule.
  • A specific daily schedule for students and staff will be provided that will allow for attendance, feedback, and common grading practices to be implemented.

Special Education Services:

  • Special education services will be provided virtually, based on the services in a student’s IEP.
  • Students receiving special education services will receive services live and on-demand. Coaching and support to families will also be provided by the special education service providers.
  • The IEP Team for each student receiving special education services will coordinate with the family to schedule virtual services.

All Students:

  • Students will participate in live and on-demand learning throughout the day.
  • Our district has created overlapping lunch periods with elementary, middle and high school for home environments with students at multiple grade levels.
  • Remote plans are suggested to have students engaged online no more than 4-5 hours per day.
  • Student attendance is expected and will be taken by teachers.

Will there still be a separate Remote Learning Program?
No, all students who enrolled in the Remote Learning Program will move back into their regular classes. This will be done so that all students and staff are on a consistent schedule and paired with their peers. As our district continues to monitor health conditions to determine the best instructional model for second quarter and beyond, we will determine what fully remote options may be available and appropriate at that time.

Questions for Staff 
Our staff will be available to answers questions via email and make phone calls as needed.  We recommend contacting staff via email first if you need to reach them.

Meals2Go Program and The Food Bank of the Heartland  
The OPS Nutrition Services team has worked with the USDA to provide balanced, nutritious breakfast and lunch meals to students learning from home. Take-home meals will be available on weekdays. To be sure staff prepare an accurate number of meals, they must be ordered in advance by a parent or guardian. For more information on the Meals2Go program, click here. Meals2Go will begin on August 18.

In addition, we are grateful for our partners at the Food Bank of the Heartland who have multiple pantry partners and distributions scheduled to assist families who need it. For more information, please visit foodbankhearland.org/Covid-19.   

Athletics and Activities Suspended
During our time in the 100% Remote Learning Instructional Model, all activities and athletics will be suspended. We understand the important role extra-curricular activities play in a student’s school experience. This suspension is for the health and safety of everyone.

Following CDC Guidance During 100% Remote Learning 
The purpose of our 100% Remote Learning Model is to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus. We ask that families, staff and community members follow the CDC and Douglas County Health Department guidance. The CDC recommends the best way to stop the spread in a community is to limit exposure to others.  

Next Steps  
Omaha Public Schools will be in the 100% Remote Learning Instructional Model through the first quarter of the 2020-21 school year. We will continue to work with the Douglas County Health Department and other state and local officials to regularly evaluate the health conditions in our community. If we are able to transition back to the Family 3/2 Model or 100% in-person learning, we will communicate that to staff and families.  

More information can also be found at ops.org. If you have school or classroom-specific questions, please contact your teacher or principal by email. If you have general questions for the district, please email info@ops.org. Because of the volume of questions we may receive, we will strive to respond within three business days.  

We miss our students terribly. They are at the forefront of every decision we make. Please take care of each other and lend a hand to those who may need it. We are one Omaha Public Schools Community.  

Frequently Asked Questions

When will students receive their iPads?
We are working to distribute iPads as quickly as possible. Please contact your student's school directly for details on their iPad distribution plan.

If students are learning at home, are activities and athletic events suspended?  
As Omaha Public Schools closes, all activities and athletic events will also be suspended. At this time, no outside organizations are allowed to use Omaha Public Schools and/or buildings.

If students are learning at home, will school meals continue?  
The OPS Nutrition Services team has worked with the USDA to provide balanced, nutritious breakfast and lunch meals to students learning from home. Take-home meals will only be available on weekdays. To be sure staff prepare an accurate number of meals, they must be ordered in advance by a parent or guardian. To follow school meal guidelines and for food safety, meals must then be picked up on a day-to-day basis from your student’s school(s). For more information on the Meals2Go program, click here.

In addition, we are grateful for our partners at the Food Bank of the Heartland who have multiple pantry partners and distributions scheduled to assist families who need it. For more information, please visit foodbankhearland.org/Covid-19.  Meals2Go will begin on August 18.

How will Omaha Public Schools be keeping families and staff informed regarding COVID-19 or Coronavirus? 
OPS is committed to regular, ongoing communication with staff and families. OPS will directly communicate with families via phone calls and emails. OPS will produce a weekly Health and Safety newsletter that will be sent via email to all families and staff each Wednesday.

Please ensure that your contact information is up-to-date with your student’s school to get the latest messages. Those interested in staying up-to-date can also follow the district on social media and/or visit the district website at www.ops.org.  

How will OPS be handling attendance/excused absences during the full Remote Learning Model? 
The best way for students to learn is to stay engaged in the 100% remote learning. OPS will be monitoring student and staff absences and will make updates available if they become necessary. 

Will school-sponsored travel be suspended? 
Yes, all school-sponsored travel groups are suspended through December 2020.

How can parents and the community support healthy schools? 
The CDC and the Douglas County Health Department recommend hygiene practices similar to that of cold and flu season. Those same recommendations still apply:  

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. 
  • If soap and water aren't available, use an alcohol-based sanitizer. 
  • Help students to wash their hands well  
  • Stay home when you’re sick  
  • If someone in your home is sick, stay home 
  • Cover your nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing  
  • Avoid close contact with anyone with cold or flu-like symptoms  
  • Avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands. 
  • Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched objects and surfaces. 
  • In addition, they also recommend the use of facial coverings.

Will there be an extended school year?   
At this time, the end of the 2020-21 school year has not changed.

What conversations should parents have with their children at home? 
We know families, staff and students face anxiety during this time. We are committed to keeping you informed and working with you to keep our school communities safe. Want resources to share with your children? The NASP Online has provided a resource for parents which can be found here.

Where can I find more resources?
More Information can be found from one of these Health Organizations.