2021-2022 Return to School Plan

 

Sargent Public Schools 

Return To School Plan 2021-22

Schools across the nation are expected to receive federal funding through the American Rescue Plan Act, ESSER III.  A REQUIREMENT to receive this funding is the development of a shared plan of school operations and the collection of feedback from the community on the district’s efforts to return to school.  The plan must include 9 components, listed under Maintaining Health and Safety. This feedback can be based on last year's plan, a draft of this year's plan, or a combination of both. A survey for input must be shared and posted.  A draft of this year's plan is below that includes a link to public comment survey questions that will be open until the end of the month.

The purpose of this document is to outline the protocols Sargent Public Schools will follow for in-person learning in the 2021-22 school year. The return to school protocols were created to create a safe and predictable environment that can be used by parents, students, staff, and community during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Sargent Public Schools recognizes that while it is best practice to have responses planned and to be prepared for a wide range of scenarios, individual's health situations are unique and private information. The Sargent Public Schools will work with staff, students, and families to develop the best possible response in regards to the scenarios that occur and reserve the right to act in the best interest of the health of all students and staff of the Sargent Public Schools. The district realizes that COVID-19 is unpredictable and as a result, these protocols may need to be modified as needed to ensure the safety of all staff, students, and patrons.  

Public feedback is welcome at this survey.

Participants in the focus group used to develop the 2020-21 Return to School Plan included school administrators, guidance counselors, school staff members, school board members, and community members.

Maintaining Health and Safety

Mitigation strategies listed below are required in the District’s plan.  By checking the box before each time, Sargent agrees to include information in the plan to address the components listed below:

✓Universal and correct wearing of masks

✓Modifying facilities to allow for physical distancing (e.g., including using of cohorts/podding)

✓Handwashing and respiratory etiquette

✓Cleaning and maintaining healthy facilities, including improving ventilation

✓Contact tracing in combination with isolation and quarantine, in collaboration with the State, local, territorial, or       Tribal health departments

✓Diagnostic and screening tests

✓Efforts to provide vaccinations to school communities

✓Appropriate accommodations for children with disabilities with respect to health and safety policies

✓Coordination with state and local health officials.  Including the needs for support and technical assistance to implement strategies consistent to the greatest extent possible, with relevant CDC guidance.

Universal and Correct Wearing of Masks

Green, yellow, and red will be based on the current health status of the District with information provided by the Loup Basin Health Department. Plans are to start school in the Green Zone and it is our hope that we will remain in the Green Zone for the 2021-22 school year. Zone information will be reviewed based on current cases in our community. 

In the green zone, students and staff are not required to wear masks but may do so if they choose.

In the yellow zone, students and staff will be encouraged to wear masks, but not required.

In the red zone, students and staff will be encouraged to wear masks, but not required.  Masks will only be required if mandated by local, state, or federal government.

Modifying Facilities to Allow For Physical Distancing

Students will not be cohorted or socially distanced unless there is a significant increase of COVID-19 cases in our area. 

In the green zone, students and staff will not be required to socially distance.

In the yellow zone, students and staff will be encouraged to maintain social distance when eating food, singing, or while not wearing masks.

In the red zone, students and staff will be encouraged to maintain social distance when eating food or singing if unmasked.

Handwashing and Respiratory Etiquette

In the green zone, students and staff will be encouraged to frequently wash/sanitize hands.  Hand sanitizer will be available in all classrooms and common areas.

In the yellow zone, students and staff will be encouraged to frequently wash/sanitize hands.  Hand sanitizer will be available in all classrooms, common areas, and as students enter the building.

In the red zone, students and staff will be encouraged to frequently wash/sanitize hands.  Hand sanitizer will be available in all classrooms, common areas, and as students enter the building.

Cleaning and Maintaining Healthy Facilities

In the green zone, staff will have access to disinfectant spray in the classroom to clean and sanitize classroom furniture and materials as needed.

In the yellow zone, staff will disinfect desks and other high touch surfaces between classes.  Custodians will spray classrooms with the disinfectant sprayer daily.

In the red zone, staff  will disinfect desks and other high touch surfaces between classes.  Custodians will spray classrooms with the disinfectant sprayer daily.

Contact Tracing And Quarantine (Isolation)

Sargent Public Schools will work with local health departments to assist with contact tracing as needed.  Students and staff testing positive for COVID-19 will use the following protocol:

Diagnostic and Screening Testing

Sargent Public Schools will not provide or conduct testing for COVID-19. 

Appropriate Accommodations For Children With Disabilities

Students’ IEP teams will determine appropriate accommodations for students with disabilities and communicate those to the students’ educational team as appropriate.

Efforts To Provide Vaccinations to School Communities

Sargent will work with local health departments to provide a location for health departments to administer COVID-19 vaccinations as well as use district communication platforms to share information regarding vaccine clinics to the school community.  Students and staff will not be required to be vaccinated.

Coordination With State and Local Health Officials

Sargent Public Schools will work in cooperation with state and local health officials. The superintendent will attend webinars put on by the Governor, Education Commissioner, and Loup Basin Health Department to stay abreast of current information.

Ensuring Continuity of Services 

Sargent will ensure continuity of services by providing in person instruction.  The school calendar will continue to serve as a guide to indicate when school is in session.  Students will be expected to attend school in-person on the days when school is in session unless they are home due to illness.

In addition, Sargent has developed a plan for instructional materials that offer virtual access for students who need to learn from home at any point during the school year.  All students will have equitable access to rigorous grade level content.  

Beginning in the fall of the 2021-22 school year, 7th and 8th graders will complete a success skills course that not only supports their transition to secondary education, but also teaches them important study and reading skills.  The purpose of this course is to give students the necessary skills to be well organized, prepared to ask questions in class, study in effective ways, develop and accelerate reading skills, and have ownership of their progress and learning.

Students' health needs will be met by offering all students a free breakfast every morning, free lunches throughout the school year.  In addition, students will receive guidance counseling services that support stress and anxiety management on a weekly basis by the school guidance counselor.

Staff and students' emotional and mental health needs will be met through the district LMHP (Licenced Mental Health Practitioner), which offers free sessions of various mental health services.  Students and staff may access these services as needed throughout the year.  Some of the services offered include counseling, stress and anxiety management, and holistic wellness services.

Public Comment Requirements  

In August of 2021, a parent survey will be conducted to gather input on adjustments needed to the return to school plan.  The feedback to the survey will be used to make adjustments to the return to school plan as needed.  Both the survey and any revisions to the back to school program will be documented and will be retained for future reference.  Adjustments will be made on Board of Education approval.

Uniform Format

Sargent ensures this plan is in an understandable and uniform format by using the template provided by the Nebraska Department of Education.  This plan will be posted on the website in English to ensure that it is easy for all parents and students to access.  This plan can be translated if requested. Any parent who wishes to have the plan explained to them verbally may schedule a meeting with district administrators.