At the end of September we shared a plan to bring all K-5th grade students back to in-person learning five days a week. Our schools have been moving through that process and students are being successful.
On October 23rd the Agency of Education updated their Strong and Healthy Start Guidelines for schools. In that update the physical distancing requirements have changed to allow students in PK-6th grade to be seated at a minimum of 3 feet from one another. This change will allow us to plan for students in 6th grade to return to in person learning full time.
At this time,Franklin and Highgate schools plan to move 6th grade to full time on November 16th. Swanton students will return full time the week of December 14th. Each school has a differing set of circumstances that impacts the timeline for students to return. The availability of adequate classroom space, appropriate furniture that can be placed 3 feet apart, and classroom staffing all needed to be considered in the development of this timeline.
Of course this transition depends on the success of maintaining a healthy school community, our ability to adequately staff our school and any changes in requirements form the Vermont Department of Health and Agency of Education.
Your school will be sharing more specific information with you about this grade 6 transition. We are excited to be able to serve more of our students in our schools full time.
The Missisquoi Valley School District (MVSD) continues to build on our commitment to educate every child in a developmentally appropriate and holistic way. To expand on this commitment over the last 12 months, MVSD convened a district-wide team of educators from all member schools to create a Pre-Kindergarten through Grade 12 framework that addresses the social and emotional learning skills that every child, adolescent, and adult should obtain during their time at MVSD.
This framework will support every child to become curious, engaged, and respectful members of their classrooms, as well as productive members of our community as they enter adulthood. This comprehensive guide focuses on the personal and social ways thatall students can achieve success, while assisting our educational professionals in creating, developing, and implementing strategies that promote this development. During our summer in-service faculty and staff were provided training and professional development on the various ways that we can foster social-emotional learning in our classrooms and will continue to be provided coaching and guidance in order to enhance this work in the months and years to come.
As this guide is the first of its kind in Vermont, we are excited to not only share this with our MVSD students and families, but also to share information about the great work taking place in our district with other schools communities across the state. If you have any questions or thoughts about this guide, please feel free to contact MVU Director of Student Affairs Steve Messier, at 868-7311 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As we shared last week our elementary school administrators have been working on a plan to increase the in-person learning of our younger students. The conditions we need to meet to bring Kindergarten-5th grade students back are:
The level of COVID-19 virus in our community and Vermont Department of Health guidance and data supports an increase to full in-person instruction.
Staffing in our schools is stable and allows us to operate reliably.
New routines are effective and efficient and we are able to maintain compliance with the guidance from VDH/AOE.
Right now the Vermont Department of Health, the Agency of Education and pediatricians are clear that Vermont is in an excellent position with respect to the level of COVID -19 virus in our state and region. Information about Vermont’s current level of activity can be found here. The CDC guidelines for reopening schools are also linked.
The staffing resources available and changes needed to bring all students back into K-5 classrooms varies from school to school. There are many logistical and physical classroom changes that will need to be addressed so that we can increase in-person instruction and ensure compliance with Vermont Strong and Healthy Start Guidelines. We believe that we can meet those requirements safely by planning with our teachers and staff over the next few weeks and by bringing students back in a phased approach. All students in Grades K-5 will be in school 5 days the week of November 16.
The Missisquoi Valley School District phased in-person transition is as follows:
Week of October 19th
Week of October 26th
Week of November 2nd
Week of November 9th
All Kindergarten and 1st grade students attend 4 days: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday. Remote Wednesday
All K-3rd grade students attend 4 days: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday. Remote Wednesday
All K-5th grade students attend 4 days: For Franklin and Swanton students M,T,TH & F. Remote Wednesday
All Kindergarten-5th grade students attend school Monday-Thursday in-person Friday No School
Students in 2nd-5th grade stay in Hybrid Schedule
Students in 4th and 5th grades stay in a Hybrid Schedule
Due to the General Election on 11/3, Highgate Students will bein school Monday, Wednesday,Thursday & Friday with avirtual learning day onTuesday/election day.
Friday 11/13 will be a parentteacher conference day for allstudents in grades PK-6.MVU students will have noschool.
Students in Grades 6-12 remain in Hybrid learning model.
Students enrolled in The Missisquoi Valley Virtual Academy (VTVLC) will continue with that program.
Our administrative team will be working together in the weeks ahead to implement this timeline and maintain a safe and healthy environment in our schools. Please understand that this timeline is subject to change should there be a change in health conditions or an inability to meet the requirements to operate reliably. We will need to continue to practice our physical distancing protocols, mask wearing and hand washing hygiene to be successful with this plan.
Although there is no plan to change the Hybrid model for 6-12th grade students at this time, please know that if conditions and Vermont guidelines for schools change, we will examine ways to provide more in-person learning for secondary students.
We feel confident that this phased in approach is the best way to increase the in-person learning for K-5th grade students while maintaining safe practices.
You can expect communication from your school’s principal in the upcoming weeks with more specific information.
As always, thank you for your support and keep well.
Department of Public Service Will Distribute Through Line Extension Consumer Assistance Program
Montpelier, Vt. – Governor Phil Scott today announced that the Vermont Department of Public Service has launched a Line Extension Customer Assistance Program (LECAP). LECAP provides up to $3,000 in assistance to help consumers extend telecommunications lines to their homes, with $2 million in total funds available.
“We know how important access to reliable internet has been during this pandemic,” said Governor Scott. “While expanding access has been a longstanding challenge in Vermont, I appreciate the efforts of the Public Service Department team, the Legislature and many private partners to help get more Vermonters connected. This assistance program is another step forward in this challenging work, which is critical to increasing equity in education heading into our school reopening this fall.”
This program was passed through Act 137 and developed in response to the COVID-19 emergency to help Vermonters access broadband.
“For the teacher or student living at the end of the dirt road with no internet access, the LECAP could be a lifeline,” said June Tierney, commissioner of Public Service. “This is a great opportunity for qualifying Vermonters who need broadband service but have not been able to afford the full cost of a line extension.”
Access to broadband (high-speed internet service) has proved critical during the COVID-19 pandemic, especially for students, patients and teleworkers accessing education, health care services and virtual offices due to closures and other pandemic mitigation measures. Hundreds of Vermonters without 25/3 Mbps broadband service live just out of the reach of current cable and other Internet Service Providers’ networks. Extending these networks to unserved and underserved areas can be expensive and the full cost can be unaffordable for those looking to take this step.
MISSISQUOI VALLEY SCHOOL DISTRICT Payroll During Emergency School Dismissal
procedure establishes how employees will be paid during school dismissal as
mandated by the Governor’s Executive Order declaring a state of emergency for
the State of Vermont in response to COVID-19.
employees will continue to be paid based on their current contract.
Funding of Employees:
During school dismissal all
employees will continue to be funded in the same manner as they are funded when
there is not a school closure.
Employees paid with federal funds
and multiple funding sources will continue to be paid from the same sources
they are paid from when there is not a school closure.
above procedures shall be in place while the school district is closed as
mandated by the Governor of Vermont.