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Moving Forward Together 2020-21 School Reopening Update

Dear PSD Staff and Families,

We hope you are all doing well and enjoying the last few weeks of summer. Here are the latest updates regarding PSD’s fall reopening plan and other important information.

Board Approves Fall Reopening Plan
During their virtual study session last Thursday, August 13, the Peninsula School District Board of Directors approved PSD’s fall reopening plan. Students will start the school year in a fully remote platform and come back to schools for in-person learning using a staged approach.

Dr. Anthony Chen, Director of Health at the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department, joined the virtual meeting to give information on why he is requiring all Pierce County school districts to open remotely in the fall and answer questions from board members. Click here to read Dr. Chen's letter and here to read a health department blog post with answers to frequently asked questions.

Pierce County Councilmember Derek Young also participated in the meeting to discuss his plans to help build better broadband infrastructure and increase internet connectivity throughout the district. 

Fall Reopening Plan Updates
The first public draft of the Peninsula Schools Reopening Guidebook has been published and is posted on PSD’s website. An updated version will be available soon with more details on the stages and how we will decide when to turn the dial to the next stage. 

Now that the school board has approved the overall plan, school staff are working to create school-specific schedules, procedures, and ways to support their students and families. Schools will be reaching out to their families soon with more information about back to school activities.

Launch of District Reopening Webpage
Be sure to check PSD’s newly published web page, where you will find updated information on the reopening plan stages, parent resources, FAQs, COVID-19 information, and more. Check frequently for updates so you have the most current information.

Focus Group Outreach and Feedback
We want to thank the staff, families, and students who participated in the focus groups that were held over the past two weeks. Approximately 650 people participated in providing feedback.

Overall themes that were determined by each group included:

  • Explaining how metrics will be used to determine which stage of the dial of the reopening plan;

  • Equity of resources and variability;

  • Support for parents;

  • Flexibility of schedules; 

  • Consistency and predictability of student experiences and expectations; teacher expectations, support, and training; and communication across the system.

Each of these themes were presented to the PSD School Board at their meeting on August 13, as well as with district principals and administrators. Building principals are using the feedback to guide discussions with their staff on how best to support students and families. 

Student Meal Service - We Need Your Input!
The summer meal hubs and delivery routes will end on August 28 and the 2020-2021 school meal program and pricing will start on the first day of school, September 8. 

Please visit the PSD Nutrition Services web page for 2020-2021 meal prices and Free and Reduced Meal Applications.

If your student(s) will be regularly purchasing school meals from the 2020-2021 School Meal Program as we begin remotely, please assist us by completing the School Year Meal Program Survey by September 1. Student meals will be available for pick up prior to and during the school's scheduled lunch period.  The meal pick up site does not need to be the school your student(s) are enrolled in. 

Does your Student Need a Device or Hotspot?
For the 2020-2021 school year, all students in grades 5-12, and any students who need them in grades K-4, will be provided with a device to complete school work from home. PSD also has a limited number of hotspots available for families who are having trouble with internet access. Please complete this survey for each of your children by August 21 to help us prepare equipment for schools. Further instructions for pick up and distribution of devices will be coming from schools prior to the start of school.

Thank you,

PSD Leadership

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