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Planning Return to Hybrid Learning January 11

 

November 30, 2020

 

Dear Woodridge 68 families:

I hope you were all able to enjoy some version of Thanksgiving. In our current socially distanced and COVID-responsible status, the holidays are certainly looking different than they have before. As of today, infection rates remain high and health department predictions are for a “surge on the current surge,” eliminating the chance of returning prior to winter break with the exception of some limited special education services. But, with the hopeful introduction of a COVID vaccine in the near future, new treatments, and our continuing vigilance, brighter days are ahead. As we enter the holiday season and winter break approaches, Woodridge 68 is already looking ahead and planning for January. 

If feasible, the district will return to the hybrid learning model with remote option starting Monday, January 11. The hybrid learning model with remote option will remain the same as it was in October. Please remember that return to in-person learning could be delayed if DuPage County remains in the substantial transmission (red) category and the DuPage County Health Department recommends closure in consultation with the District, Governor Pritzker issues an executive order, or Illinois goes back to Phase 3 of Restore Illinois Plan.

Based on our conversations with the Board of Education, community feedback, and our internal discussions, we have decided to move the hybrid/remote selection period to December 8-15. Please be sure to read through this email and take the requested action beginning December 8. 


Special Education

For students receiving special education services, Woodridge 68 will follow a multi-stage approach to in-person instruction beginning November 30. The stages include full remote learning with in-person special education assessments and evaluations (currently in place), intermittent instruction to support remote learning, targeted instruction for students in specialized programs (MLP/Transitions/Self-Contained Early Childhood), alternative core or functional skill instruction, hybrid instruction, and full in-person return. The detailed plan is posted on the district’s hybrid/remote learning website and includes information about programs and settings, description of services, group size, in-person duration, rationale and transportation. Please note that this plan will also be subject to change dependent upon community transmission data. 


Food Service

Woodridge 68 will continue to provide boxed breakfast and lunch to all students according to USDA guidelines. When the school district moves to the hybrid learning model, the schedule for meal pick up and remote delivery may change. Watch for information in early January as we finalize those plans.

If your child returns to school in-person under the hybrid model, and you would like him/her to go home for lunch, please contact your school principal to make arrangements. We will no longer be asking you to make this decision in Skyward, as we had issues with the lunch selection process in Skyward. This will not, however, be a day-by-day decision. Families are asked to make that commitment through February. A number of logistics are involved, and schools need to plan accordingly. If a student is to go home for lunch, s/he must be picked up by a parent/guardian and returned to school in the allotted time. You will not be allowed to carpool with other children outside your household.


Transportation

Bus service will resume for students who are eligible for transportation services and choose the hybrid model. Families are asked to make that commitment through February whether an eligible student will take the bus or families will provide their own transportation.

Masks and social distancing will be required for all students on the bus, and students may be assigned a seat.


ACTION NEEDED BY DECEMBER 15

Based on the information above and posted on the district website, families are asked to commit to the following between Tuesday, December 8 - Tuesday, December 15, 2020:

Will your student move to the hybrid learning model or continue with fully remote learning beginning Tuesday, January 11? This choice for your student is effective through February 2021. If you choose hybrid, you may choose to move your student to remote during this time. However, your student will not be able to move from remote to hybrid during this time. Please note that teacher placement is not guaranteed.

If your student is eligible for bus transportation services, will your student ride the bus? This choice is effective through February 2021. Masks and social distancing are required for all students on the bus, and students may be assigned a seat. 

Beginning December 8, log in to Skyward Family Access and click ‘Online Forms.’ Each of the two questions listed above is a separate form. If you do not complete these forms, answers will default to your previous choices from October. If your student is not eligible for bus transportation, you may skip that form. Both forms must be completed for each of your students. If you have misplaced or forgotten your Skyward username and/or password, click here.

This may seem like we are asking for a commitment at an early date, but there are a number of plans that must be made both within the district and with outside vendors, including but not limited to, classroom assignments, transportation and food service. In addition, with the holiday break occurring, preparation and planning time will be limited.


Looking Ahead

As we have come to expect, these plans are subject to change depending on the County and local numbers, and whether we remain in the substantial (red) category for community spread. We will continue to keep you updated over the next several weeks. The district’s hybrid/remote learning website can be used as your go-to resource of detailed information. How to find the hybrid/remote website? Go to woodridge68.org and click on the ‘Select a School’ dropdown menu in the upper right of the screen.

We are looking forward to seeing students’ faces in-person again. To accomplish this, we all must continue the 3W’s that are shown to be successful: wear a mask, watch your distance, and wash your hands. Together, we can make a difference.

 

Dr. Patrick J. Broncato

Superintendent of Schools