The Valley Central School District, along with all Orange County Schools, is exploring the many different variables related to opening school in September. As with all decisions regarding COVID 19, the District takes direction from the Governor, the State Education Department, the CDC and the local health department when making all decisions. We are looking at possible scenarios for September, including:
(1) Regular School with Health Guidelines and Checks in Place: This plan would involve regular school with a regular schedule while implementing required state and local health guidelines.
(2) A modified school schedule (e.g., school every other day) paired with online learning, that allows for social distancing.
(3) A continuation of a full time distance learning environment.
The reality is that we do not know which of these scenarios we will be faced with in September. It may be that we are pivoting between some version of all three scenarios throughout the year.
After the Spring 2020 term, we surveyed students, parents, and teachers regarding their online learning experiences. Our key takeaways were that we need more authentic learning experiences, a little more structure, more interaction, and more student accountability. Accordingly, we are working to develop a more effective and powerful model of distance learning that includes more interaction with classmates and teachers.
Valley Central would like to determine the comfort level under each of these scenarios and the top concerns of district parents. We are particularly interested in knowing whether families would not send students back into the school environment (under scenario 1 & 2 above) and whether families would not make use of district transportation given the inherent difficulties with social distancing on a school bus.
Please complete the following survey by July 10, 2020. Completing the survey provides the district with the current intentions of the community and does not commit a family to their answers. The survey is truly a first attempt to assess the disposition of our parent population as it relates to the different September scenarios. Please note that the district considers the health and safety of its students and employees of utmost importance. The district will use the survey responses to better inform its decisions, however, the district is not able to guarantee that each comment will be addressed in its final 2020-2021 school plan.