I have not posted in a few days because nothing much has changed. We are still working very hard to get ready for the start of school, including plans to roll out our NTI system and getting our campus ready for a safe return. More information will be put out closer to time for school to start, in the mean time, do not hesitate to contact us at the school or board office if you have any questions.
If you got to listen to the governor yesterday, the main thing he said about schools was that no one would be allowed to start in person classes until the third week of August. Our board had made that decision a couple of weeks ago to help our staff have more time to get ready for the year and take advantage of the states offer of a flexible calendar. I believe we will get more guidance from KDE and the governors office about starting school in the upcoming weeks. We will keep you informed if anything changes. As of now, we are still starting in person classes on August 24th. Next blog post will be Monday, August 3rd.
The governor is supposed to be putting out more information on school issues this week. The KHSAA is also meeting this week and will issue further guidance on high school athletics. I will continue to monitor and keep you updated as I find out information. I may get behind on my blogging this week as I have meetings Wednesday through Friday, but any major announcement will still be made on Facebook and by one call. We will be making a one call and social media announcement today or tomorrow about NTI and other school opening issues. Also, I posted two classified jobs today, one at the elementary school and one at the preschool. Those can be applied for on our website and more information can be obtained by calling the schools.
I want to thank everyone who was at high School and middle School registration yesterday. It went very smoothly and everyone followed local health department protocols without complaint. I failed to mention in my one call this morning that although high school registration was yesterday, it was just grades 10-12 and freshmen will register separately. If you were not able to come yesterday, please make a contact with your school soon so they will know your intentions for the year. Thank you, your cooperation is so much appreciated.
Just a quick note this morning to let you know that during registration, it is very important for you to let us know if your student(s) is going to start the year on NTI. I realize that we are still a month away from the first day of school and things could change in either direction, but the closer we are to the actual number the better plans we can make for both our students who are going to be here and the ones that will be staying home as well. For the ones who will be starting the year on NTI, communication is very important and we need as many ways as possible to communicate with you.
We are getting very close to rolling out information on what NTI will look like this year, both for those that choose it during regular school time and for all students if at any time a shutdown is mandated. Within the next week, a one call and social media post should be sent out. One quick note, for those that do not have internet access and choose paper and pencil packets this year, those will have to be picked up and dropped of at the school weekly. Someone will be available to come to your car for that. Also, if you choose not to attend when school is in session, you may come to the school during regular lunch and breakfast time and pick up a meal. Masks will be required for that. In case of an entire district shutdown for one week or more, meals will be delivered to the same drop spots we used last year.
One piece of information that we will be getting out at registration is what the protocol will be for students who choose to start the year on NTI. If a family starts the year on NTI, they are committing to a quarter, or what is sometimes called a nine weeks. After that, they can decide whether they want to come back to live classes or continue on NTI. It is not practical for students to jump back and forth on a daily or weekly basis. Of course if the student starts the year with live instruction and is forced to quarantine or has to miss time because of sickness, that student may return when is it physically feasible.
Happy Friday everyone. My message for the weekend is patience. Now that we have a start date, we are really firming up plans for reopening live and virtually for some, but we are also keeping an eye on the constant changes that still seem to be swirling around. What might seem to work right now, might not be the best thing for August 24th, because things could be better or worse. We are making plans but also being careful not to release anything that could change suddenly, still being over an month away from our start date. The best thing to do as a parent right now as it pertains to school is to do what we are doing, keep gathering information and planning while being flexible and patient. We anticipate in the next two weeks getting closer and closer to our final plan.
Not much new information today, we are still waiting for our one call system to be active and I will be making a call with some information, but nothing that has not already been made public. I know many of you have questions about what NTI will look like, not only for those who choose that option but for times that the whole district may be forced into that. We are working on what that will look like every day, and when teachers return soon for PD and work days dealing with NTI, it will begin to take more focus. We believe we did the best we could do with the situation that was presented to us to finish off last year with NTI, but we are going to improve on it this year and work on ways to make it more effective and beneficial. We are still looking forward to that day when it will not be needed at all and everyone is back to live classes!
With the new start date that was announced yesterday, there may be some changes coming to our registration times, and some may stay the same. Soon, we will be sending out one calls and posting information on Facebook about registration dates and locations. Once again, they may be the same, but some may change because of our start time. At these registrations and orientations, please keep in mind the current state rules on social distancing and face coverings. As we are required by the state put these measures in place for our students when school starts, we will also be modeling those at our events here! Later in the week, I will be talking more about our NTI plans and how excited our staff is to see as many students here in person as possible.
Please see our post on Facebook for today's message. The board voted last night to move our start date to the 24th and there is very good information on the post about it. As soon as our one call system is back up and working, I will do a one call about the new date as well. Thanks.
Please remember that no matter which method of instruction you choose this year, you will still have to come register your student during regular registration. We will take as many steps as possible to make that is a safe experience, but there is information that we have to have of course. Being able to replicate in person instruction is impossible, but we are working to find the best alternative possible for parents who choose NTI. Much more information will be fourth coming, but we want to formulate the best plan possible and make sure it is what we want before we put the plan into action. Part of the plan will be what the instruction looks like of course, but another part will be how long the commitment will be for the families who start the year on NTI. As you all know with this situation, things change quickly and lots of moving parts to all of this!! Thank you for your patience, we want to have a good plan and not release something we have to change several times.
Happy Friday everyone! I wanted to talk a little about face coverings as some questions have come up. In my Facebook post, I encouraged everyone to find a face covering that there student likes and is comfortable with. For those students that do not come to school with one, we will have disposable ones for that day for them to use, but obviously we cannot provide one for every student every day, and these will probably not be as comfortable as one they are more familiar with. I hope that you and your student can find a covering that is as comfortable as possible and that we can continue to work here to find ways to keep them off as much as possible. That is what continues to be our goal. Our Family Resource Center is working hard to have some face coverings available at registration for you to take home and try. The Family Resource Center has been a great help to the district since the pandemic started in March and continues to provide services to our families. Make sure and tell Allison and Julie how much they are appreciated if you see them!!
In the spirit of transparency, I want to update everyone on our potential start date. As of now, we are still starting the first week of August, but we are closely monitoring the situation and as we have all learned during this pandemic, things change extremely quickly. If need be, we are reading to move to a later August start if circumstances require that. We will of course keep you updated, but its better to be prepared for the early start, then push back if we have to.
The other issue that we continue to work on and will roll out when we have all the pieces in place is our NTI option. I will continue to stress how important it is for students to be here in person if they can, but we want to have the best possible option for our community for those that can't be here. Work continues daily on this, and just like the start date, we will continue to update you whenever we have a decision or any new information.
As always, please contact me here at the office if you have any questions.
I would like to use this platform today to encourage anyone who is or has ever been interested in possibly being a substitute to really consider it this year. It can be teacher, aide, or cafeteria worker. We had so many people volunteer last year to help with meals and feed staff, it was extremely encouraging. As I have mentioned before, visitors to the schools will be limited, but we will possibly need even more substitutes this year.
Substituting is a great way to get involved with helping the school and earning money too. To get started, just give the board office a call and set up a time to come get paperwork underway. To be a substitute teacher, you have to have 60 college credit hours. To be a substitute aide or food service worker, there are less restrictions. Also, if you are interested in driving a bus, now is a great time to get started with the process. We may even have a full time route open soon, and always work for substitute bus drivers. That process takes a little more time of course, but is an extremely rewarding job that makes connections that last a lifetime.
There is very little more rewarding than getting involved in the lives of children and helping them reach their goals. Being a part of our school system serves both of those areas and you are for sure needed. Thank you so much to our substitutes who have already been serving in the past and I look forward to seeing you again. Even during these difficult times, I feel so blessed to be a part of a small community that comes together to help each other!
July 7th, 2020
I believe during these different times, communication is even more important than usual. To that end, I am going to start blogging as often as possible to continually get out information you may need or want. I can't promise it will be every day, but I am going to try.
I want to give you a little information on our start date today. The board will meet Monday, July 13th to set an official start date, but discussions are constantly on going about what would be best. We share a vocational school with both Mayfield and Graves County, so we have to stay as much in line with them as possible so those students do not miss instruction. They are both starting the first week of August, so that will for sure figure into our decision. Also figuring into that decision is the amount of time teachers will need to get ready for this year, so we are trying to balance those. You will see schools all over the state starting at all different times this year, each district has to look at its own population and see what fits best.
I also wanted to reemphasize what I said in my original Facebook post about masks. Masks will be mandatory at times of course, but we are working daily on figuring out ways to social distance so mask can be down in the classroom as much as possible.
Thanks for taking the time to read, and I hope this and future messages will be informative as we move forward this year.