COVID-19

poudre school district 2020-21 school year planning

July 27, 2020  

How we plan to open: With approval from local health officials, our tentative fall plan is a gradual re-opening that allows staff and students time to practice new health and safety protocols, reacclimate to being in classrooms and pay close attention to students’ social and emotional needs. Thank you to the talented teams of licensed, classified and administrative staff who have been working on plans that prioritize learning as well as staff and student health and safety. This work is ongoing. Although we wish we could promise this decision will not shift between now and the first day of school, it would be irresponsible to do so, as COVID-19 conditions in our community are evolving daily.

We know you have many questions and are doing our best to provide answers prior to the start of school. Please know we are doing everything we can, so we are collectively prepared to provide students with the high-quality education they deserve. That said, it is likely health conditions will dictate that PSD will shift among the four phases of education throughout the year. We're counting on all of you, students and families to be ready to learn, adapt and follow health protocols so we have our best chance to continue with in-person education and keep everyone as safe as possible. Our next planned communication to staff and families is Aug. 10. 

“PSD Back Together Again” comprehensive 2020-21 school year plan: This document provides an in-depth look at the district’s plans for teaching and learning, health and safety, and more. It will be updated on an ongoing basis, as needed, and is available here.

First day of school: To best prepare for the start of the 2020-2021 school year, we are planning to delay the first day of school from Monday, Aug. 17, 2020 to Monday, Aug. 24, 2020 (for all grades PreK-12).  

PSD Together Again | First Four Weeks Schedule  

   

Monday  

Tuesday  

Wednesday  

Thursday  

Friday  

Week 1  

(Aug. 17-Aug. 21)  

No school for students 

 Early Childhood  

Teacher Collaboration and Safety Preparation Days; no school. 

  • Teachers and staff in all grades will use this critical time to learn and practice new safety and health protocols in a controlled environment and develop plans to teach students. 

  • Schools will continue planning for how education will look in any of PSD's four phases so that they are prepared for this evolving environment and the possibility of shifting among phases this school year. 

 Elementary School  

Middle School 

High School 

 

   

Monday  

Tuesday  

Wednesday  

Thursday  

Friday  

Week 2  

(Aug. 24-Aug. 28)  

   

Staggered  

Start  

 Early   Childhood  

EC A Group Morning  

and A Group Full-Day will attend half-day in-person (morning)  

EC B Group Morning  

and   
B Group Full-Day will attend half-day in-person (morning)  

EC A Group Morning  

and   
A Group Full-Day will attend half-day in-person (morning)  

EC B Group Morning  

and B Group Full-Day will attend half-day in-person (morning)  

Teacher Collaboration Day (No School for students)  

 Elementary   School  

Grades K-5   
A Group Half-day in-person (morning)  

Grades K-5   
B Group Half-day in-person  

(morning)  

Grades K-5   
A Group Half- day in-person (morning)  

Grades K-5   
B Group Half-day in-person (morning)  

Teacher Collaboration Day (No School for students)  

 Middle   School  

Phase 3:  

6th grade transition half-day in-person (morning)   
A Group; grades 7-8 full day remote  

6th grade transition half-day in-person (morning)   
B Group; grades 7-8 full day remote  

Grades 6-8   
A Group half-day in-person (morning), half-day remote; B group full day remote  

Grades 6-8   
B Group half-day in-person (morning), half-day remote; A group full day remote  

Teacher Collaboration Day; Grades 6-8 full day remote  

 High   School  

Phase 3:  

9th grade transition half-day (morning)   

A Group; grades 10-12 full day remote  

9th grade transition half-day (morning)   

B Group; grades 10-12 full day remote  

Grades 9-12  A Group half-day in-person (morning), half-day remote; B group full day remote 

Grades 9-12  B Group half-day in-person (morning), half-day remote; A Group full day remote  

Teacher Collaboration Day; grades  9-12 full day remote  

 

Week 3  

(Aug. 31- Sept. 4)  

Early Childhood  

EC A Group Morning  

and   
A Group Full-Day will attend half-day in-person (morning)  

EC B Group morning  

and   
B Group Full-Day will attend half-day in-person (morning)  

EC A Group Morning  

and   
A Group Full-Day will attend half-day in-person (morning)  

EC B Group Morning  

and B Group Full-Day will attend half-day in-person (morning)  

Teacher Collaboration Day (No School for students)  

 Elementary   School  

Phase 3:  

Grades K-5  A Group half day in-person  

Grades K-5  B Group half day in-person  

Grades K-5  A Group half day in-person  

Grades K-5  B Group half day in-person  

Teacher Collaboration Day (No School for students)  

 Middle   School  

Phase 3:  

Grades 6-8   

A Group half-day in-person (morning), half-day remote; B Group full day remote  

Grades 6-8   

B Group half-day in-person (morning), half-day remote; A Group full day remote 

Grades 6-8   

A Group half-day in-person (morning), half-day remote; B Group full day remote  

Grades 6-8   

B Group half-day in-person (morning), half-day remote; A Group full day remote   

Teacher Collaboration Day; Grades 6-8 full day remote  

 High   School  

Phase 3:  

Grades 9-12  A Group half-day in-person (morning), half-day remote; B Group full day remote  

Grades 9-12  B Group half-day in-person (morning), half-day remote; A Group full day remote  

   

Grades 9-12  A Group half-day in-person (morning), half-day remote; B Group full day remote  

Grades 9-12  B Group half-day in-person (morning), half-day remote; A Group full day remote 

Teacher Collaboration Day; Grades   
9-12 full day remote  

 

Week 4  

(Sept. 7-Sept. 11)  

 Early   Childhood  

Labor Day  

(No School)  

EC A Group Morning  

and   
A Group Full-Day will attend half-day in-person (morning)  

EC B Group morning  

and   
B Group Full-Day will attend half-day in-person (morning)  

EC A Group Morning  

and   
A Group Full-Day will attend half-day in-person (morning)  

EC B Group morning  

and   
B Group Full-Day will attend half-day in-person (morning)  

 Elementary   School  

Labor Day  

(No School)  

Phase 4:  

Grades K-5 all students full day in-person   

Grades K-5 all students full day in-person  

Grades K-5 all students full day in-person  

Grades K-5 all students full day in-person  

 Middle   School  

Labor Day  

(No School)  

Phase 3:  

Grades 6-8   

B Group full day in-person; A Group full day remote  

Grades 6-8   

A Group full day in-person; B Group full day remote  

Grades 6-8   

B Group full day in-person; A Group full day remote 

Grades 6-8  

A Group full day in-person; B group full day remote 

 High School  

Labor Day  

(No School)  

Phase 3:  

Grades 9-12  B Group full day in-person; A Group full day remote 

 
 

Grades 9-12  A Group full day in-person; B Group full day remote 

 
 

Grades 9-12  B Group full day in-person; A Group full day remote 
 

Grades 9-12  A Group full day in-person; B Group full day remote 
 

Early Childhood Education (preschool) – Staggered start  

  • Early Childhood Education (ECE)’s originally scheduled first day was Aug. 24, so ECE will be in alignment with the planned first day of school for grades K-12.  

  • Group A morning-session students and full-day session students will attend school for half a day in the mornings on Mondays and Wednesdays the first three weeks of school.  

  • Group B morning-session students and full-day session students will attend school for half a day in the mornings on Tuesday and Thursdays the first three weeks of school. 

  • A/B group information will be communicated with ECE families as soon as possible. 

  • There is no school for students Sept. 7 because of Labor Day. 

Elementary – Staggered start   

  • Staggered start to practice safety protocols, reassess students and prepare students; students will have work everyday 

  • A and B student group assignments are available now in ParentVUE

  • There will be no school the first two Fridays, to give teachers and staff time to adjust plans and evaluate what worked and didn’t as they practice health protocols with students. 

  • There is no school for students Sept. 7 because of Labor Day. Starting Sept. 8, students will move to Phase 4 (in-person education with health protocols).  

  • Please note that PSD will monitor health conditions from week to week and may make changes to this schedule for the first few weeks of school as needed. 

Secondary – Start in Phase 3  

  • There will still be transition days for 6th and 9th graders. 

  • Students will start in Phase 3 (in-person, at-home hybrid).  

  • A and B student group assignments, for Phase 3, are available now in ParentVUE

  • Students will not be in school during the hottest part of the day until after Labor Day, a common request from families. 

  • Students will learn remotely the first two Fridays during Teacher Collaboration Days 

  • There is no school for students Sept. 7 because of Labor Day. Beginning the week of Sept. 7, PSD intends to transition to full-day schedules for all middle school students, with the A cohort of students attending two days a week a full day and the B cohort attending two days a week for a full day. Students who are not in the school building will learn remotely. 

  • Please note that PSD will monitor health conditions from week to week and may make changes to this schedule for the first few weeks of school as needed. 

Face coverings and personal protective equipment (PPE): Face coverings will be mandatory for all staff and students to be in school (except for those who have a medical condition that prevents them from wearing a one). 

  • This decision is supported by the Larimer County Department of Health and Environment. It also aligns with Colorado Gov. Jared Polis’s July 16 statewide mask order, requiring that face coverings be worn at all times in indoor public spaces, such as classrooms. 

  • Parents/guardians will be responsible for providing face coverings (which must follow county guidance and cover your nose and mouth).  

  • Personal protective equipment (PPE) will be standardized at the district level through a work-order system. The district will order and distribute PPE; do NOT stockpile supplies at the school level. Operations’ PPE plan is attached to this email. Click here: PPE information for staff  

Health and safety: Important safety protocols will be in place at all schools to limit the spread of COVID-19. Among those are: 

  • Maintain 6 feet of social distancing to the fullest extent; may not be possible in all instances.  

  • Build a shared culture of hygiene and handwashing.   

  • Separate students into cohorts, as possible, to reduce contact and possible COVID-19 exposure and to allow for contact tracing as necessary.  

  • Enhanced cleaning of high-touch surfaces and sanitizing of buildings and restrooms 

  • No visitors or volunteers will be allowed in schools. 

  • All field trips and/or other activities allowed outside school, including 5th grade Eco trips, will not be allowed for at least the first quarter (roughly 9 weeks after the start of school). 

  • PSD is actively collaborating with county health officials on plans for possible exposure, contact tracing and school closures and will share more prior to the start of school.  

  • Common health and safety signage in PSD buildings 

  • Learn more on PSD’s Health and Safety web page

Technology 

  • Laptops will be distributed to secondary students prior to the first day of school. 

  • Laptops will be distributed to students in grades 3-5 in their classrooms. 

  • Laptops will be distributed to PSDV students at their home/primary school prior to the start of school.  

  • Students in grades K-2 will receive devices for this school year, and we will share more information about distribution as it is available. 

  • The district is assessing whether students have access in their residence to reliable internet services (internet access via cell phone does not count) to access their remote educations. Please log into ParentVUE and complete a quick acknowledgement to assist PSD in this important work. 

  • PSD will provide consistency and easy access to a student's remote learning resources in one place via online teacher learning pages. For example, an elementary teacher's page may feature messages from the teacher, and links to Google Classroom, Microsoft Teams, other learning applications. 

  • The district will provide Help Guides for families to learn how to navigate these primary applications to support their students. 

Expectations  

  • We expect all students, staff and families to follow all health and safety protocols, guidelines and procedures this school year to keep everyone as safe as possible. 

  • All staff are required to use the COVID-19 Daily Screening app and must get a "green light” from the app to work before entering a PSD facility. Staff who are sick must stay home.  

  • Any students experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or are otherwise sick should report to the nurse’s office where they will be evaluated, and a determination will be made about whether they need to go home. Parents/guardians will be contacted and asked to pick their student up from school, if it is determined they are too sick to be at school.  

  • Staff should report to their supervisor if they are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and leave work.  

  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention developed a list of underlying medical conditions that put people at a higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19. As a reminder, employees with an underlying medical condition listed by the CDC that puts them at a higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19, may request reasonable accommodation to reduce the risk of exposure under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). You are not required to inform PSD if you have one of these conditions. However, if you wish to request accommodation because you are at greater risk of serious complications from COVID-19, you will need to complete the COVID-19 Reasonable Accommodation Request Form. If you do not wish to complete the form but would like to request an accommodation, please contact Director of Records & Risk Management Kristin Bennett at 970-490-3627 or kbennett@psdschools.org. As part of the interactive process under the ADA, PSD may request documentation of your underlying medical condition. PSD may also send a questionnaire to your healthcare provider asking about your limitations. 

  • Additional answers to frequently asked staff questions and guidance for the 2020-21 school year are forthcoming. 

PSD Virtual: The deadline to enroll in PSD Virtual, our 100 percent remote education option for PreK-12 during the 2020-21 school year, has been extended from Aug. 1 to Aug. 8. Submit your “PSD Virtual Intent to Enroll” through ParentVUE. For more about PSDV, including answers to FAQs, visit the PSD Virtual website. Email questions to psdvinfo@psdschools.org

Transportation: PSD will bus students for whom transportation is a legally required service (i.e. foster families, McKinney-Vento students, students with transportation services in their Individualized Education Plan). The district will also likely be able to bus additional students, following local and state health guidance, and will determine the limited ridership from among families that applied to receive services in the 2020-21 school year. More information here

  • The Transportation Department will notify families if their student will receive bussing services after Aug. 1.  

  • Face coverings will be required for all drivers/riders to board the bus.  

  • All buses will be disinfected at least twice daily.  

Meals: Students in grades PreK-12 will pick up sacked meals in the cafeteria. To support social distancing, elementary students will eat in the classroom or outside, while secondary students will pick up meals and eat in the cafeteria, designated common spaces in the school or outside. 

Site decisions: PSD has set standard expectations for all schools regarding health and safety, teaching and learning, and more. Beyond district expectations, principals and their teams are planning for how things will look at their schools in all phases of education. Decisions that will be made by schools and communicated to families include but aren’t limited to: 

  • Master schedules 

  • Building-specific arrangement of desks and tables to allow for 6 feet of distancing as possible  

  • Passing periods (timing, traffic patterns, markers to promote social distancing)  

  • Restrooms (who will monitor the number of students at a time, cleaning rotation) 

School registration: Online registration will re-open Aug. 1 for new PSD student enrollments for the 2020-21 school year. Starting Aug. 1, parents/guardians of new-to-PSD students can register online using OLR. For additional information regarding Online Registration visit the district website. 

For the most-up-to-date information about the return to school, please visit the PSD 2020-21 School Year web pages.