Updates from Ms. Snyder 8/10

August 10, 2020

 

Dear North Hampton Community,

I am writing with information about the North Hampton School’s proposal for the start of the 2020-2021 school year. We are living in an uncertain time and share the goal of a safe return to school when we can meet health and safety guidelines and deliver instruction in a more traditional model. Right now, the North Hampton School Board has approved a proposal for an approach to instructional delivery that matches our current situation. In making the recommendation, we considered class size, space availability, and staff availability. It is our current plan, but subject to change should our situation change. In considering NHS plans, we used the Return to School Task Force guiding values of Safety, Equity, Wellness, Teaching and Learning. This structure is for the start of the school year and an SAU 21-wide plan for monitoring pandemic conditions and considering adjustments to the structure is being developed.

NHS Return To School for Fall 2020

Grades PK-4: In-Person instruction with a shortened day at NHS OR Remote Learning Academy

Grades 5-8: Enhanced Virtual Learning

 

Back in July, parents received links to 2 separate surveys. The results of the second survey indicated that 32% of parents were either interested in or wanted more information about the Remote Learning Academy option and that 68% were in support of ‘in-person’ instruction in school. We know that these numbers can change and that we haven’t reached all families yet. This letter is intended to provide the necessary information for parents in grades K-4 to make the decision between RLA and ‘in-person’ instruction, as well as to provide important distinctions between Enriched Virtual Learning in grades 5-8 and last year’s Crisis Remote instruction. We are committed to responding to providing a robust virtual program of studies for our students. A separate letter to preschool parents will contain information about our Preschool program.

 

Information for Families of Students in Grades K-4:

The Remote Learning Academy (RLA) is open to families who choose it across the SAU. There may be students from all towns in any given grade level who choose this option. Teachers will be assigned based on requests for remote assignments and the match of the teacher’s certification and knowledge of the grade level or subject matter. If you choose this option, there could be students or teachers from other SAU 21 towns. If we have multiple NHS students at a specific grade, we would make every effort to group them together in the same remote class. 

NHS will also offer ‘in-person’ instruction with restrictions for students in their regular classroom with a shortened school day. There will likely be a delay in receiving your child’s classroom assignment until we know which students will choose the Remote Learning Academy. This delay is to ensure that our class sizes are as uniform as possible. When we say, ‘with restrictions,’ we are referring to the necessary health and safety procedures that could make the school day feel different. Here are some of the adjustments and precautions we have planned:

  • School Hours will be adjusted 
  • Current plan for school hours is 8:25 AM-1:25 PM with students eating lunch in their classroom
  • Students and staff are expected to wear masks while indoors 
  • Mask breaks will be planned
  • Masks will not be required outdoors unless students are closer than 6 feet
  • There will be one-way stairways and some one-way hallways
  • Signs have been purchased and are being put in place to remind students of one-way halls and to stay 6 feet apart
  • Six foot separation in seating will be established
  • Enhanced cleaning protocols will be followed for sanitizing common areas during the day and at night
  • Water bubblers will be disabled for drinking but still operational for bottle filling
  • Rented tents will be available for outdoor classroom space
  • Arrival and dismissal procedures will be adjusted 
  • UA classes will be delivered remotely either to the classroom or for home access
  • Devices for tech access will be provided and students will learn online platforms to be able to pivot to remote learning if needed
  • Daily student and staff health screening is being developed
  • We plan to use plexiglass dividers for small group instruction 
  • Building use will be limited to students and staff--visitors will not be allowed unless there are special circumstances
  • Field trips are suspended until further notice


 

Information for Families of Students in Grades 5-8:

Enriched Virtual Learning is being planned with distinct differences from the Crisis Remote teaching that was provided last spring. It is our goal to deliver instruction that is engaging and provides for small group meetings and supports, in addition to ‘real time’ lesson delivery each day. Here are some of the components of Enriched Virtual Learning:

  • Devices will be provided for students
  • Materials will be available for pick up at the school on a scheduled basis, ie. library books, packets, text books, etc.
  • Both synchronous and asynchronous instruction will be provided, with an increased emphasis on ‘real time’ instruction
  • Breakfast and lunch pick up will be available
  • NHS teachers will deliver curriculum and instruction
  • Daily morning meetings or Advisory meetings will be planned
  • Attendance will be taken and content lessons will be taught each day
  • There will be a schedule of classes for students each day
  • Special Education services will be provided
  • If your child has an IEP, your child’s special education case manager will contact you to arrange for services
  • We hope to set up small group orientation times outdoors if possible

We hope this information is helpful to you. Again, we will continue to work out details and send more specific information regarding the 2020-2021 school year as it becomes available. We appreciate the support of the North Hampton community and families as we navigate these stormy waters. We remain committed to the health, safety, and wellness of our students and staff as we plan for instruction.

Warm regards,

 

Susan Snyder                           Rebecca Carlson                            Tracy Griffenhagen

Principal                                    Curriculum Coordinator                Dir. Special Education/Asst. Principal