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Preliminary Information About Morehead Plans for In-Person Instruction for Spring 2021

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Morehead Montessori Preliminary Information for Spring 2021 FAQs- Spanish

Preliminary Information About Morehead Plans for In-Person Instruction for Spring 2021

UPDATED February 22, 2020

 

In partnership with district and parent leadership, we are reaching out to provide additional updates on the in-person opening of school. We know everyone has many questions. We wish we had all the answers! We know many of you are trying to make the right decision based on the health and safety of your children. A great deal of uncertainty does not make those decisions very easy.

It is important to understand that we are still working on the logistics of the daily routines, systems, and structures. What is planned today may not be true tomorrow, much less in a couple of weeks.  We are also concurrently planning for Morehead’s physical space while awaiting final parent survey results.

Below are Frequently Asked Questions and tentative answers. Please remember that this information is what is known right here and now and can change at any time. We will continue to provide you with updates and new information as it becomes available. 

We are on this journey together and decisions are being made with the health and safety of our children in mind. We all want what is best for our students and children. Please continue to reach out with your questions and concerns to cynthia_webb@dpsnc.net. Frequently Asked Questions with tentative answers will be added to this document weekly.

 

 

FAQ

Will PK families have to pay the tuition fee if we choose to return to in-person learning?

It has been clarified that the option for children to return to in-person instruction is not “Plan A” so the PK tuition waiver is still in effect. In addition, last year the Board of Education voted to follow the Durham PreK fee structure for PreK tuition. In the fall, Durham PreK suspended all parent fees due to COVID. This includes in-person and virtual instruction.

Visit https://www.dpsnc.net/Page/722 to view the sliding scale fee chart.

Will students be kept 6 feet apart?

We will follow social distancing protocols according to guidelines and recommendations for Plan A. 

What happens if I pick in person school and don’t think the safety measures are good enough.  Can I switch to remote only?

The survey choices are intended to remain until the end of the school year. If families have concerns, contact Principal Webb (cynthia_webb@dpsnc.net)

Will teachers be teaching in person and virtual at the same time?

We will be able to finalize classroom structures to meet the needs of in person and remote environments once we have final survey results. More information will be coming. 

Can we eat lunch outside if we do in person school?

An option to eat outside, weather permitting, will be available.

Why are we doing Plan A for elementary?

“It shall be in the discretion of the local board whether in-person instruction shall be provided under Plan A (Minimal Social Distancing), Plan B (Moderate Social Distancing), or both Plans as necessary to address the needs of different school settings. Local boards of education shall continue to provide remote instruction options for students to elect to participate in, at the discretion of the parent or guardian, for the remainder of the 27 2020-2021 school year.”

What can parents do to support in person learning?  What supplies can we help provide?

Teachers will communicate with families any needs for their classroom.

Can we set up big tents outside like they have at Durham Academy for outside learning? Could parents bring their tailgating tents to help with costs of tent rentals?

Setting up tents is not permitted at this time. Any updates will be shared with the community.

How much time during in person school will be spent on Chromebooks?

In person classroom teachers will use DPS Chromebooks as carefully planned educational tools as needed for instruction and enrichment. Students should bring their DPS device to school each day. Families needing access to a device should contact the school (919-560-3954).

Will there be Before and After Care?

Yes, for elementary students. More information about these offerings is forthcoming.

Can Morehead’s HVAC system support in-person learning?

Our HVAC system had a top to bottom inspection earlier this month and it is capable of sustaining students and staff during in-person learning.

Could you email a link to the survey to the Morehead listserv?

Yes. You can access the link here until February 24th:  Spring ‘21 Learning Preference Form 

What will in-person learning look like for Morehead students in each class?  3. 5 days, 4 days? 

In person learning will take place for elementary students four days each week: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. Wednesdays will continue as an asynchronous learning day for all students.  The asynchronous learning day will allow teachers time to collaborate on teaching and learning including instructional planning in their professional learning communities. Additionally, it allows for our operations team to complete district-wide inspection and restock of supplies, as well as to conduct training for its staff.

Will students have the same teachers, or possibility of teachers teaching online while kids are in person?  

We will be able to finalize classroom structures to meet the needs of in person and remote environments once we have final survey results. More information will be coming. We cannot guarantee that your child will remain with their current teacher, whether remote or in-person, due to the unpredictable demand for either option. Students will receive instruction from teachers from their school except in very unusual circumstances.

Will my student be moving to “Ignite” if they stay virtual? Who will provide virtual learning for my student?

Students who remain in virtual learning will receive instruction and support from their school’s teachers. Ignite Online Academy is planned to be a separate virtual DPS school beginning in the 2021-22 school year and will be an ongoing option for families seeking teaching and learning at home.

Why will elementary students be in four days a week? 

 

DPS is following current North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services guidance supporting Plan A in elementary schools. There will be fewer students in schools due to families choosing remote instruction, providing greater social distance than during full capacity. In addition, DHHS notes the reduced prevalence of COVID-19 spread among that age group and in smaller school populations. DPS also recognizes younger students’ greater challenges with remote learning.

 

Why will schools will be closed to in-person instruction one day a week? 

 

Wednesdays will continue as an asynchronous learning day for all students.  The asynchronous learning day will allow teachers time to collaborate on teaching and learning including instructional planning in their professional learning communities. Additionally, it allows for our operations team to complete district wide inspection and restock of supplies, as well as conduct training for its staff.

 

What happens for social distancing if all/most students opt in? 

Safety measures all staff and students will be required to wear a face-covering throughout the school day in addition to complying with social distancing and handwashing standards. Custodians will also disinfect high-touch surfaces throughout the day and sanitize the building each evening. Morehead floors have spacing stickers every 6 ft on the hallway floor.

What do specials and lunch look like?

Students will continue to have specials. Recommendations for cafeteria use are being developed. An updated specials and lunch schedule will be released soon. 

Given there is such limited information at this time, will we be locked in to our survey responses?  Or will we be able to change if once the plan is shared we are uncomfortable with it?

Survey decisions will reflect a choice for the remainder of the school year. Should a family change their mind, contact Principal Webb (cynthia_webb@dpsnc.net).

Will teachers be teaching on-line and in-person at the same time?  Or will there be a teacher doing in-person and a separate one for on-line? 

We will be able to finalize classroom structures to meet the needs of in person and remote environments once we have final survey results. More information will be coming.

Can you share what the lunch plan is for the students?  Will kids be eating at their desks or in cafeteria in shifts?  Will they eat outside when the weather permits?

Schools are awaiting cafeteria use versus eating in classroom recommendations. Weather permitting, eating outdoors is an option.

Will kids have outdoor rec time?  

Students will have 30 minutes of recess each day.

Will the school hours be the same as they are now?

At this time, yes. However, any adjustments to transportation routes/tiers for middle and high school could have an impact on elementary start and end times. More information will be provided should there be an adjustment in our current Morehead bell schedule.

When does in-person school start? 

Below is a timeline for the return of teachers and students:

Elementary Schools:

 

  • March 8: Teachers return
  • March 15: First day for students and before/aftercare begins

 

For the full School Board PRESENTATION and timeline for the return to school, please refer to the attached documents.  

How many students will be in each classroom? 

The number of students assigned to a classroom for the 2020-21 school year is an average of 18 students for grades PK-3 (according to House Bill 90). Upper Elementary classrooms currently have 20-21 students on class rosters. How many students in classrooms will be determined by how many families choose to remain in remote learning. If more families choose online, there will be fewer students in physical classroom spaces.

Who will be teaching my child? 

All efforts will be made to keep your student with their teacher OR a teacher from our school, regardless of learning preference selection, but we cannot GUARANTEE teacher continuity at this time.

Will Morehead still be teaching in a Montessori style? 

Some things about in-person learning will likely mean Morehead will look a little "less Montessori" than usual. We are working to deliberately include as much Montessori focus and methods as possible while limiting sharing of classroom materials.

Will the students still receive specials such as Art, Music, PE, and Media? 

Yes, students will still receive instructional support from their specials teachers. 

How will EC, AIG, and ESL services be provided to students?  

We are ensuring that our students will receive the services they need from specialized instructors in the most safe and efficient way possible. More details will be shared.

Will each student be assigned their own device? 

All students should have been provided a device during remote learning  they will be responsible for bringing to school each day. Contact the school with any questions about accessing devices (919-560-3954).

What can we do to support teachers?

Please continue to be patient. 

Communicate with teachers directly when you have questions or concerns. 

Utilize teacher office hours. 

Keep address, phone numbers, emergency contacts, and emails up to date.

When will families receive updates?

Morehead updates by Principal Webb typically occur each Sunday via robo call and email. Mid-week updates are shared as they arise.

Can any sort of in-person gatherings (outside) happen under Plan A?

More information is forthcoming regarding access to outside spaces on campus.

Can you give us an idea of what a typical day will be like?

Any updates to daily remote/in-person schedules will be determined after the survey results are finalized. More details to come.

 

Important Links:

Durham Public Schools: https://www.dpsnc.net

Morehead PTA: http://moreheadpta.org/

Morehead Web Page: https://www.dpsnc.net/morehead

DPS Before and After-School Programs. https://www.dpsnc.net/domain/86

July 9 DPS Town Hall Recording: https://www.youtube.com/watch?fbclid=IwAR1V8mjSi6gW1jTVJgHDcxOjPw5yIibyZS5bszlGlgBxGpWZn-alcYmVu88&v=dvw1MbVwMSY

Ignite Academy FAQ: https://ignite.dpsnc.net/learn-apply-to-ignite

NC Public Health Toolkit: https://files.nc.gov/covid/documents/guidance/Strong-Schools-NC-Public-Health-Toolkit.pdf

DPS New Families Enrollment: https://www.dpsnc.net/domain/141