The following communication was sent on 8/14/20 to all parents of 6th Grade Students:
Over the past week, we have been reviewing the constantly changing guidance regarding return to school metrics and the criteria released by the state. We have been meeting with our 6th grade team of teachers and our administration to develop a plan that would allow us to bring all of our 6th grade students back to an in-person environment, 5-days a week. What we realized is that based on the middle school schedule, in-person class sizes are averaging 24, which is too large to accomplish safe physical (social) distancing guidelines.
Therefore, after carefully considering our guiding principles, reviewing our health and safety plan, consulting our medical professionals, and working to achieve our goal of ensuring that we have class sizes that meet CDC recommendations, we have determined that we need to shift to a hybrid model for our 6th grade students. With our current level of staffing, and the inability to hire qualified and certificated 6th grade teachers at this time, we are simply not able to get our in-person class sizes down to a number that falls within the recommended guidelines.
This means that all secondary students (grades 6-12) will be attending school on our A/B hybrid schedule (last names A-K will attend on Monday/ Thursday and last names L-Z will attend Tuesday/ Friday with all students participating remotely on a Wednesday). We realize that this change to a hybrid schedule for your 6th grade student may modify your decision regarding in-person learning vs. remote learning. Therefore, if you would like to make a change to what education plan you chose for your 6th grade student, please call your building office as soon as possible (Southern: 610.670.0180 x1411; West: 610.670.0180 x1310).
Our elementary students in grades K-5 will continue to attend 5 days, in person. We are able to do this because we have reduced class sizes in our elementary schools to an average of 18 or less, which enables us to properly physically distance. We have been able to do this at the elementary level due to the number of students who have elected our Wilson Remote Learning option, as well as our ability to secure additional staff. Kindergarten students will continue with the AM/PM model, as communicated previously, and those class sizes average approximately 12.
We understand that this communication does not leave you with much time to adjust to this schedule change for your student. Please know that we have looked at all options to make the in-person model work for our 6th graders, but at this time, we are confident that moving to the hybrid model is the safest decision.
We are sure that you have additional questions so we wanted to provide you with a link to a communication that will be sent to all middle school families early next week. Thank you for your continued support and understanding during this ever-changing environment.