Carta para familias - Regreso al aprendizaje en persona
We shared in August how deeply we want to learn in person with our students. At the time we transitioned to our Remote Learning Instructional Model, we shared that we would continue to evaluate conditions with a focus on returning in person when possible.
We appreciate the hard work our staff, students and families invested as we started the year remotely. We received a range of feedback, some voicing appreciation for remote learning and others expressing their preference to return. We recently shared our plan for a phased approach to return in person using our Family 3/2 Instructional Model for most students. This summer, we shared that in the Family 3/2 Model, students attend based on the first letter of their last name. Students with a last name A-K attend each Monday and Tuesday. Students with a last name L-Z attend each Thursday and Friday. Groups alternate each Wednesday. Students learn at home the remaining days each week through our 1 to 1 technology initiative.
Whether students return using the Family 3/2 Instructional Model or attend five days in person is based on specialized services, programs or experiential learning.
On days when students learn at home in our Family 3/2 Instructional Model, elementary students will attend a morning meeting and later access on-demand lessons in English Language Arts and math. Secondary students will virtually attend their regular day of classes via Microsoft Teams.
Remote Learning Program
Remote learning will remain an option for families who feel it is best for their student during this time. There will be differences in the full-time Remote Learning Program when compared to our current instructional model.
At the elementary level, students will join a morning meeting with their class via Microsoft Teams. From there, students will access on-demand lessons provided by district staff, which align with district curriculum and pacing. Students will have individual or small group work time with their teacher at least once weekly via Microsoft Teams.
At the secondary level, students will access their classes via Microsoft Teams along with classmates who are learning via the Family 3/2 Instructional Model. Secondary remote learning will mirror the school day schedule.
Students who choose the Remote Learning Program while our district transitions to the Family 3/2 Instructional Model will continue to receive special education services in the same manner they have since the start of school. Each student's Individualized Education Program (IEP) team will determine whether services will be provided remotely, in person, or a combination of the two in order to ensure that every student's IEP is fully implemented.
It is important to note that for a student to be successful in the Remote Learning Program, it is extremely important to have an adult at home to assist with learning. Teachers will take attendance daily and district grading practices will be followed in the Remote Learning Program.
Families will receive an email to determine whether your student(s) will return in person or participate in the Remote Learning Program. That form must be completed by Sunday, Sept. 20 to allow schools time to plan and prepare. Families with more than one student will be able to make individual decisions for each student. Based on the amount of interest, ongoing collaboration with staff and feedback, portions of the Remote Learning Program may evolve in the weeks to come to best serve our students. If you did not receive this email on Wednesday, Sept. 16, please contact Student and Community Services at 531-299-0314.
Health and Safety
Health and safety has been our priority as we planned for a responsible return to school. We care deeply about our students, staff and families. Our Family 3/2 Instructional Model allows for enhanced social distancing in addition to our layers of precautions which include district-provided facial coverings, hand sanitizer throughout our schools, frequent hand-washing and enhanced cleaning and disinfecting procedures. We take these measures most seriously.
To limit the spread of COVID-19 in the greater Omaha community, we encourage students, staff and families to follow safety precautions in their time away from work and school. A community-wide focus on health and safety will support the students we serve. To watch short videos outlining our health and safety procedures, visit the Omaha Public Schools YouTube page.
Students will receive meals in the school cafeteria on days when they learn in person. Meals2Go will also continue on days when students learn from home and for students in the Remote Learning Program. With an adjustment to federal funding procedures under the CARES Act, students may receive school meals at no cost to families for the immediate future. Meals will be available for pick up each Monday (two days of meals) and Wednesday (three days of meals). Because Nutrition Services staff will also be serving meals to students at school, beginning Oct. 5, elementary and middle school Meals2Go pickup will be 9:30-10:30 a.m. and high school pickup will be 8:30-9:30 a.m.
With our return to in-person learning, we plan to proceed with winter season athletics and other extra-curricular activities, which begin in November.
Students would be able to attend practices on days when they are not on-site through our Family 3/2 model. However, students participating in the Remote Learning Program would not be eligible to participate in extra-curricular activities on-site.
In the event a school were to temporarily transition to remote learning due to a significant number of cases identified on-site, extra-curricular activities would be suspended while students learn from home.
We continue to plan for the opportunity to play fall sports in the spring season.
OPSF Kids Club
Families who participate in the OPSF Kids Club and other before and after school programs should look for additional information in the near future.
To allow staff time to prepare for a return to in-person learning, we will recommend additional days for professional development to our Board of Education. An updated district calendar reflecting our Family 3/2 Instructional Model will be provided the week of Sept. 21.
Please look out for the follow-up email with additional information about the Remote Learning Program so your family may make the right decision for your student(s) during this time. Those selections must be completed via the link in that email by Sunday, Sept. 20.
If you have school or classroom-specific questions, please contact your teacher or principal by email. If you have general questions for our district, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Because of the volume of questions we may receive, we will strive to respond within three business days.
Looking beyond the timeline shared here, we anticipate increasing in-person learning for our earliest learners. The well-being of our district community and our responsibility to the greater Omaha community are at the forefront of each decision we make.
Throughout our return to in-person learning, we will continue monitoring health conditions in our community. Our conversations with the Douglas County Health Department and University of Nebraska Medical Center are ongoing. We value collaboration among our staff, with families and community partners and we are grateful for your support.