Superintendent's Update - 7/17/2020

Superintendent's Update - 7/17/2020
Posted on 07/20/2020
Superintendent's Update - 7/17/2020

Dear Medway families, 

I hope that you and your family are well and have had some time to enjoy this beautiful summer weather.  We have been working hard to develop reopening plans as recommended by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.  In the Initial Guidance for Fall Reopening, DESE asked districts to develop three reopening models:  In-Person learning with new safety requirements, Hybrid learning, and Remote learning.  Planning for any of these models is a monumental task. While we have been working on planning since receiving the guidance on June 25, there is a great deal of work to do and many unanswered questions.      

It is important that we provide multiple opportunities for our community to share feedback and ask questions.  At this point we are able to share the results of the feasibility study for In-Person Learning.  We have scheduled a webinar on Thursday, July 23 at 5:00 p.m.  During this webinar we will present the current thinking about an In-Person Learning experience for the fall.  We will also provide some information about the specific plans for each building.  Participants will be able to ask questions and share comments.  For those unable to attend, we will be sharing the video of the webinar following the event. To register for the webinar, please follow this link

In addition, following the webinar, we will begin surveying parents.  In particular, we will be seeking information on (1) whether, at this moment, you would send your child back to school if we reopen fully, and (2) whether you will use bus transportation services.  You should expect the first survey next Friday.  We will do our best to simplify the survey and are looking for a high participation rate.

Our building principals will also be communicating the opportunity to participate in regular, weekly meetings with parents so that they can continue to share planning efforts, and gather feedback and questions.  

As we continue to gather feedback, receive guidance from DESE, and watch the COVID-19 trend data, we will be well positioned to make a decision about reopening.  The Medway School Committee will be meeting on August 13 to review plans and vote on reopening (In-Person, Hybrid, or Remote) for the start of school.  

Planning for the unknown is a tremendous challenge.  I recognize that there are deep divisions around whether schools should reopen.  While that may be the situation, it is prudent to ensure that we have done our best to plan for all three reopening models.  It is possible that we would need to migrate from one model to another depending on the current data associated with the COVID-19 health pandemic.   

We humbly ask for your patience, honesty, and support as we navigate the unknown.

 

Be well,

  

Armand Pires, Ph.D.

Superintendent of Schools

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