Reopening Steamboat’s schools: FAQ |

Reopening Steamboat’s schools: FAQ

The following questions have been answered by Steamboat Springs School District Brad Meeks:

1. What is the exact protocol for dealing with a positive case in the hybrid model?  

See guidelines here.

2. Can you specifically discuss the number of cases necessary to move to a distance learning plan, the plan for notification, and how you plan to guide students between regular in-school learning and distance learning?

See guidelines here.

3. Are you planning on providing free testing for staff and administrators? And is mass testing for staff and students an option? 

In May 2020, Governor Polis announced free coronavirus testing available to all Coloradans with symptoms. See the Routt County Public Health website for testing information. Call 970-870-5577 to make an appointment to get tested for COVID-19 by the Routt County Public Health Department.

4. Have you considered a synchronous rather than asynchronous model for distance learning? If not, please explain your reasons for not using this model.

Distance/remote learning provided by schools will include synchronous components. Details will be released the week of Aug. 11. Watch the SSSD website for updates.

5. What sanitation protocols will be followed and what other safety precautions will be put in place – plexiglass, PPE, windows and doors open for ventilation? 

See SSSD precautions listed here.

6. Was there a survey conducted among employees and teachers about their comfort levels in returning to in-person learning? If so, what were the results and do you think you got enough input from faculty and staff?

Yes, there was a survey conducted among SSEA members in late July regarding the school district’s re-opening plans. A vast majority of respondents expressed some level of stress and anxiety about returning to work.   However, a majority of the respondents expressed support for returning to school under the Phase 3 hybrid plan of attending school in-person every other day based on their understanding of the current public health conditions.

7. With the hybrid model — given the kids are not in school 2 or 3 days a week and are likely participating in sports, attending other child care facilities, or doing other activities and seeing friends — how can you ensure the effectiveness of carefully constructed cohorts during all the time the students are not in school? 

We encourage SSSD families to review these CDC guidelines for personal and social activities.

8. Can you describe the plan for the online learning program?

Information is available on our website.

9. Can you describe the plan for in-person learning? 

Information is available on our website.

10. What transportation will be offered and what will that look like? 

This information will be released the week of Aug. 17. Watch the SSSD website for updates

11. How will orientation be handled for incoming sixth graders, kindergarteners and freshmen? 

This information will be sent directly to families with students who are new to their perspective schools this year. 

12. Can you share and summarize the results you received when you conducted a survey of families about school reopening? 

A survey was conducted of families in May 2020. Response rate was 71%. When asked about comfort level with students participating in-person: 

51% said Yes, I am 100% comfortable, 44% said Yes, if social distancing and safety protocols are followed in accordance with public health recommendations, 6% said No, I am not comfortable.

13. When is the deadline for parents to make decisions about learning options? And how are you communicating with parents about these options? 

Parents have until Aug. 13 to enroll in the 100% online learning program. Learn more here.

14. How will elementary teachers have a lunch break if lunch is in the classroom. Doesn’t lunch in the classroom negate safety protocols with students taking off masks in an enclosed space? 

Teacher breaks will be scheduled by each school and that information will be shared with staff/teachers directly.

15. How will special classes, like music, art and PE, work throughout the day? 

Each school is making plans for providing specials classes and will provide that information directly to their students and families. 

16. What factors were considered when making the decision to go from five half-days a week to two full days and three every other week at the elementary level?

Multiple factors played a role in this decision, including transportation, minimizing exposure of our drivers, better alignment with the A/B cohorts with the middle and high schools to accommodate families and considering the impact on parent work schedules with having to leave work mid-day.

17. What will in-person learning look like at the high school?

Information is available on our website.

18. How is the district handling teachers that are at-risk for COVID-19? 

Given personal and unique circumstances as well as confidentiality requirements, staff have been encouraged to reach out to SSSD HR to discuss their situation.

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