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DMUSD Planning for Reopening

Dear DMUSD Families,

Last week the Governing Board of Trustees heard a presentation on the status of reopening planning:  Student and Staff Health and Safety. Our district is collaborating with public health and local school district and county leadership on creating plans for school re-entry that foster the overall health of children, staff, and communities. Schools are fundamental to child and adolescent development and well-being and provide our children and adolescents with academic instruction, social and emotional skills, safety, reliable nutrition, physical/speech and mental health therapy, and opportunities for physical activity, among other benefits.(American Academy of Pediatrics)

We realize we must be flexible in responding to new information and to public health orders.  We all will work together to support the overall health and well-being of all children, our families, and our community.  With the best interests of children in mind and in accordance with public health orders, we are working hard to prepare plans for students to be physically present in school with in-person learning and also provide an alternate option for families who choose a remote experience via a distance learning program.

During the 2020-2021 school year, all students will be enrolled in either:  a) in-person school at a school campus, or b) the district’s distance learning program. All parents/guardians recently completed an enrollment confirmation survey for the 2020-2021 school year, and parents/guardians will have the option to change their enrollment confirmation at the beginning of August.  

What will in-person school look like in August, based on what we know currently and per the California Department of Public Health Guidelines for Reopening Schools?

  • Daily attendance for all students, five days per week.
  • Daily symptom screening of all students and staff.
  • Routines to promote healthy hygiene, including frequent hand washing/sanitation.
  • Facial coverings for all students and staff per the health order as of the first day of school.
  • Physical distancing as practicable, understanding that six-foot distancing may not be practicable at all times, mitigation strategies include staggered arrival, recess, lunch, and dismissal times; indoor and outdoor markings and signage; plexiglass partitions in school offices; removal of non-essential furniture to maximize spacing in classrooms; reconfiguration of classroom seating and teacher desks; and expansion of the use of outdoor spaces, MURs, and other large common areas.
  • Requirement that students and staff with COVID-19 symptoms must stay home.
  • Separate area on campus for any person with COVID-19 like symptoms.
  • Protocols to enacted in the case that a student or staff member contracts COVID-19.
  • Frequently clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces during the day.
  • Clean and disinfect classroom and office surfaces each night.
  • Restricted campus access.
  • Limit sharing of equipment, instruments, educational materials and technology.
  • Additional personal protective equipment (PPE) for staff, as appropriate.

What will the distance learning program look like in August?
In addition to developing a plan to allow for full daily attendance for all students on campus, the DMUSD reopening plan will also include an option for LAUNCH, the DMUSD Distance Learning Program.  Launch is a robust, comprehensive distance learning program available in kindergarten through sixth grade.  The Launch staff will be comprised of DMUSD credentialed teachers who will be trained at facilitating distance learning. The pedagogy and instructional practice will align, to the degree possible, with in-person instruction, and district curriculum will be used in addition to curriculum designed specifically for a distance learning model.  

As always, the situation continues to change and we will modify our planning, as needed.  We will continue to provide you with updates via email and on our website as plans evolve in response to new health orders and new information.  

We appreciate your patience and support as we work with current public health orders to provide the best reopening plans possible, always keeping in mind our mission to provide every child an extraordinary school experience.

Sincerely,

Holly McClurg, Ph.D.
Superintendent