Our schools are busy getting ready to welcome our students! Our planning for the opening of schools this year has been like no other year. We have looked at each moment students are in our care; from the moment they step on the school bus in the morning until they are returned in the evening. We have examined how high school and middle school students change classes and how they move throughout the building. We have looked at how to keep our Pre-K and elementary school students safe with their classmates throughout the day. We have looked at lunch time, band and choir time, and recess. We have prepared to keep your children and our teachers safe.
We are finalizing a complete re-entry to school plan. Once our Board of Education and the State Department approves it, we will mail a copy of the full plan to every family with a student in the district.
We have also upgraded our facilities with safety in mind. We will have sensors that will identify students and staff with high temperatures. We are also upgrading our HVAC to install air purification modules that will help to prevent the coronavirus from circulating through the air ducts. We are also changing our visitation policy by greatly limiting who comes into our buildings while students are present. We believe that the best way to keep our students safe is to provide a space that has limited possibility of exposure to the virus.
We will be following the protocols as laid down by the West Virginia Department of Education and by the Doddridge County Health Department. We are training our teachers, food service personnel, custodians and bus drivers to make sure they are aware of proper hygiene and safety procedures.
A few students have opted to continue their education virtually. This will work best for those families with great, high speed, internet. If you do not have good internet service, we are placing Wi-Fi transmitters at a few county locations for our student’s use. Our students can login to the internet to download their work and take it home on their device.
We, of course, would love to see each student at school. However, we understand parents and students may prefer remote learning during this pandemic. We respect parents’ decisions and will do our best to provide a quality education to each student. More information regarding remote learning, including the locations to download materials will soon be available on our website: dcschools.us
The importance of reopening the schools should not be overlooked. We must maintain progress with our students, otherwise they will fall behind. Getting back to their grade level will be more and more difficult the longer they are away from school. For many students being in school is a return to much needed normalcy. A set routine of getting out of bed, riding the bus and coming to school can provide structure. Young people need that structure to prepare for the world after school. Students also need to learn the skills to prepare themselves for job opportunities after high school.
When we return to school we will continue to monitor your child’s safety. We will be in communication with the Doddridge County Health Department and the State Department of Education. If we need to, we will go to a full remote learning delivery of instruction.
We are so very excited about the return of students to our buildings. As educators we look forward to these new beginnings each year. This year our preparations not only included making sure our students have all of the supplies they need; but also making sure that we can care for their safety. Each of your children have a special place in our school system. We are prepared to welcome them.