2020-07-29 HUUSD Board Update: Fall Reopening Plans

The HUUSD board held a special meeting on 7/29 to discuss the district’s fall reopening plan. 

We wanted to offer the community a brief update on where our reopening plans currently stand. We recognize the anxiety of this difficult time and appreciate community engagement during these consequential decisions. 

Committees composed of building administrators and nurses, and later teachers and staff, have been working throughout the summer to explore options and create HUUSD’s fall reopening plan. Among the numerous considerations used to evaluate potential reopening plans, these teams balanced: scientific and medical guidance, parent and staff survey results, physical distancing requirements, staffing realities, student needs, family circumstances, substitute teacher availability, sanitation requirements, special education considerations, and remote learning successes and challenges. 

On July 23rd, district leaders published their unanimously agreed upon 1-4 plan, one day of classroom instruction and four days remote instruction, with the intention of increasing the days of in-person instruction as conditions allow. Details on the Return to Learn plan can be found on the landing page of our website, huusd.org. The district hopes to offer a fully remote learning option for families who prefer that, but has not finalized this yet. 

Also on July 23rd, the VT Agency of Education published a new directive clarifying that local school boards have the authority to set policies to guide the development of reopening plans, or may choose to delegate the authority to the Superintendent. This news was unexpected and led to the special board meeting on July 29th. Though no decisions were made at this meeting, there was robust discussion on how our members are thinking. We encourage all to watch here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7jf9G9rd2PE

The Board will meet again Wednesday, August 5th to determine its role. If the Board decides to set new policies for reopening, it will aim to articulate those policy guidelines by August 12th in order to allow for implementation of any changes.

Again, we recognize that the uncertainty is challenging for parents, teachers, staff, students, and community members. We want to be as transparent as possible about the process as these plans continue to evolve. We invite all stakeholders, and especially students, staff, and teachers, to share their thoughts on reopening models. To share yours, please email the board at [email protected]

We invite you to join us on Monday, August 3rd for our second Q and A session with the Superintendent, starting at 6:30pm on Zoom (https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87401504765 or Toll Free Telephone: 888 788 0099 or 877 853 5247 Webinar ID: 874 0150 4765) and YouTube (tinyurl.com/huwebapp-youtube-live).

Thank you for your ongoing support of our schools, particularly at this vulnerable time when keeping our whole community healthy is the best way to ensure a return to school for our students.

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