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Second Semester Phased Return In-Person

Phased Return In-Person After Winter Break

From our layers of precautions to the pioneering OPS PROTECTS testing program, Omaha Public Schools makes each decision with health and safety at the forefront.

With that in mind, Omaha Public Schools will begin the second semester of this school year with a phased return in-person. Staff will teach from their classroom and students will start the semester as scheduled on Tuesday, Jan. 5 using their district-provided device from home. 

Here are the dates for that phased return in-person:

  • Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2021: All students begin with remote instruction following the normal bell schedule. JP Lord School and the Zoo Academy return in-person five days a week.

  • Monday, Jan. 11, 2021: K-12 ACP, Transition, Elementary BSP, Early Childhood Special Education, Homebased/Homebound, and Hearing Impaired classrooms return in-person five days a week.

  • Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2021: All students return in-person following the Family 3/2 Model attendance calendar. Gateway to College, OPS/UNO Middle College Program, Parrish and Student Success Program return in person five days a week.

In-person instruction will continue with the Family 3/2 Model in the weeks that follow Jan. 19. At this time, there are no district-wide changes to our instructional model between now and winter break.

We know students learn best in-person. We are also working closely with public health leaders and medical experts for the health, safety and well-being of everyone in our school communities. This phased return in-person at the start of second semester will limit traffic on-site and allow students and families to return to their routine following an extended winter break.

Of course, health conditions have and continue to evolve rapidly. If adjustments are needed, we will update staff and families directly, with as much advance notice as possible.

The Remote Learning Program will remain an option for students who wish to continue learning full-time from home during the second semester.

Please look for additional information to come.


Regreso en persona después de las vacaciones de invierno

Desde nuestras precauciones hasta el programa de pruebas OPS PROTECTS, las Escuelas Públicas de Omaha toman cada decisión con la salud y la seguridad en primer plano.

Con eso en mente, las Escuelas Públicas de Omaha comenzarán el segundo semestre de este año escolar con un regreso gradual en persona. El personal enseñará desde su salón de clases, y los estudiantes comenzarán el semestre según lo programado el martes 5 de enero desde casa, usando el dispositivo provisto por el distrito.

Estas son las fechas para el regreso en persona en etapas:

  • Martes, 5 de enero de 2021: Todos los demás estudiantes comienzan con instrucción remota siguiendo el horario normal de clases. JP Lord School y el Zoo Academy regresan en persona cinco dias cada semana

  • Lunes, 11 de enero de 2021: K-12 ACP, Transición, elementaria BSP, Educación Especial para la temprana edad, basado en casa, y estudiantes con problemas de audición regresan en persona cinco dias cada semana.

  • Martes, 19 de enero de 2021: Todos los estudiantes regresan en persona siguiendo el calendario de asistencia modelo Famila 3/2. Gateway to College, OPS/UNO Middle College Program, Parrish y Student Success Program regresan en persona cinco dias cada semana.

La instrucción en persona continuará con el modelo familia 3/2 en las semanas siguientes al 19 de enero. En este momento, no hay cambios en todo el distrito a nuestro modelo de instrucción entre ahora y las vacaciones de invierno.

Sabemos que los estudiantes aprenden mejor en persona. También estamos trabajando en estrecha colaboración con líderes de salud pública y expertos médicos para la salud, la seguridad y el bienestar de todos en nuestra comunidad escolar. Este regreso gradual en persona al comienzo del segundo semestre limitará la congregación de personas en el sitio y permitirá que los estudiantes y las familias regresen a su rutina después de un receso de invierno prolongado.

Por supuesto, las condiciones de salud han evolucionado y continúan evolucionando rápidamente. Si se necesitan ajustes, actualizaremos al personal y las familias directamente, con la mayor anticipación posible.

El programa de aprendizaje remoto seguirá siendo una opción para los estudiantes que deseen continuar aprendiendo desde casa a tiempo completo durante el segundo semestre.

Por favor busque información adicional próximamente.

Winter Weather Update

We know this year has presented challenges unlike any other, so it is especially important to maintain student engagement even if winter weather gets in the way of learning at school. Thanks to our 1 to 1 Technology Initiative, we now have the opportunity to support students with teaching and learning at home.

"Live," or synchronous teaching and learning will take place in the morning, with teacher availability for questions or additional support in the early afternoon. Teachers will take attendance.

For elementary students, inclement weather days will begin from home at 8:50 a.m. with a morning check in, just like a regular at home learning day in our Family 3/2 Instructional Model.

On inclement weather days, secondary students will follow a shortened class schedule, with specific times depending on a block or nine-period schedule. Most secondary schools will begin an inclement weather day from home at 8:40 a.m., with Central High and South High beginning the day at 8:20 a.m.

It is important that students bring their district-provided iPad home each evening and families charge them each night to be prepared for the next day's learning.

OPS Pilots COVID-19 Testing Program

Throughout 2020, we have shared that the health and safety of our students, staff and their families are at the forefront of all that we do. Our layers of precautions are a demonstration of that commitment to our community.

Ahead of our return to in-person learning, all Omaha Public Schools staff participated in proactive testing for COVID-19. That approach helped identify anyone who may have contracted the virus without symptoms and provided valuable information as our district prepared to welcome students.

Having completed our phased approach to returning in person, our focus is responsibly maintaining in-person learning. To support that work, we are excited to announce a partnership with the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC), Nebraska Medicine and OneWorld Community Health Centers to provide regular, proactive, saliva-based testing for COVID-19. The pilot program, called PROactive TEsting for Community Transmission of SARS-CoV-2 or PROTECTS, will begin with Marrs Middle School, Norris Middle School and Bryan High School. Testing will be required for staff and optional for students who are learning in person. There will be no cost to students or staff for the tests.

As part of the partnership, supervisors from UNMC will assist at school with the collection of saliva samples from staff and participating students.

  • If a student or staff member were to test positive, OneWorld will contact the staff member or parent/guardian to communicate the test result and provide guidance on next steps.
  • Positive results would also be communicated to Omaha Public Schools and the Douglas County Health Department for contact tracing.
  • Personal information is otherwise kept strictly confidential.

In addition to saliva testing at Marrs Middle School, Norris Middle School and Bryan High School for staff and students whose families opt-in, crews will test high-touch surfaces, air and wastewater samples weekly at these locations. Those additional tests will provide a more complete picture of where COVID-19 may be present and best allow our district staff to respond. At UNMC, the anonymous testing data will be used for research into COVID-19.

This partnership helps ensure we can continue to learn in person in a responsible way. This will be a multi-month pilot program that will begin at Marrs Middle School, Norris Middle School and Bryan High School and could expand to other school communities in the future. Please visit the FAQ for additional information on the proactive testing program. We care deeply about those we serve.

Accessing Counseling Curriculum

As educators adapt rapidly to the changing environment, School Counseling is evolving alongside to help students stay engaged, ready to learn and on track to reach their college and career goals. We are proud to share with you that OPS students in grades 6-12 are now able to access their OPS Social/Emotional and Post-Secondary/Career curriculum online. 

Each week when students log in to their Naviance account they have access to new lessons, surveys, and reflections on topics including self-discovery, academic skills, career planning, and success skills. These activities support students’ postsecondary planning needs in addition to their social emotional learning needs. 

At OPS, we remain committed to ensuring our OPS community has the tools and resources needed to support students’ mental well-being, keep them on track for graduation, and assist them with college and career planning.