Pending board approval, The Methow Valley School District, working in partnership with labor leaders and the Okanogan County Public Health Department, plans to begin the new school year on Tuesday, September 8th, following Labor Day weekend.
The decision to delay the beginning of the school year is three-fold:
- Provide MVSD officials and the Okanogan County Public Health officials the additional time needed to jointly assess and evaluate the current number of COVID-19 related cases and rate of increase/decrease, enabling the MVSD and OCPHD to make an informed decision regarding the safe reopening of our schools for in-person instruction.
- Provide all staff with the time needed to participate in mandatory COVID-19 safety training and professional development in preparation for the delivery of instruction to students participating in one of three learning options – A: Hybrid Model, B: Remote Learning, or the C: REACH program.
- Provide the additional time needed for staff to develop balanced class placements, cohort assignments, adjustments to schedules, and for students and parents to participate in registration, orientation, meet and greet activities, digital device checkout, and parent training.
A few other noteworthy items associated with the change in the start date include:
- Kindergarten Orientation will take place remotely on Friday, August 21 at 9:00 a.m.
- LBHS Registration will take place Tuesday, August 25th through Thursday, August 27th in person, masked up, outdoors on the school campus. Students can also register online. Questions? Call MVSD School Guidance Counselor Erika Spellman at (509) 996-2215 or email her at: email@example.com
- Kindergarten Parent-Teacher Conferences, scheduled with individual students and families will take place on Monday, August 31st – Thursday, September 3rd.
- Kindergarten’s first official school day will take place on Monday, September 14th.
- The six Professional Development Days currently embedded in the calendar throughout the year will be reduced from six to three days (Friday, October 30th, Friday, January 22 and Friday, March 26th).
- Graduation (Friday, June 4th) and the last day of school (Friday, June 11th) will remain the same.
When Will the District Make a Decision about Option A: Hybrid Model?
The MVSD has a long-standing history of working closely with the Okanogan County Public Health Department. This hasn’t changed… We are currently working together to assess and evaluate the results from the free COVID-19 testing being facilitated in the Methow Valley. Working within the recommendations set forth by the CDC and WA Department of Health, we plan to use the available data to make an informed decision by Friday, August 28th.
How Can I Help?
There are a few ways you can help. They include:
- Participate in the free COVID-19 testing taking place on Friday, August 21st in Twisp (1238 East Methow Valley Highway) from 2:00 to 7:00 pm. The safe reopening of our schools, inclusive of a hybrid model (option A) is dependent upon our ability to accurately assess the current health and wellness of our community.
- Practice social distancing.
- Wear your mask in public.
- Wash your hands.
Once finalized, we will send out an updated 2020-21 MVSD School Calendar to every family and post it to our website. If you have additional questions, please send them to Tom Venable, MVSD Superintendent at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for working with us to facilitate a safe reopening of our schools!