I have been writing about what other school districts in Utah have been doing regarding their back-to-school measures. Today, I read what the Park City School District plans to do:
“As a result of our collaboration with health agencies and the hard work of our educational Return to School Task Force Teams, we are plan to open for full, in-person instruction for all Park City School District students. Our first day of the 2020/21 school year will be August 20, 2020 for K-12th grade students.”
So, Park City schools should be operating Monday-Friday in the normal manner from somewhere around 7 AM until 4 PM (or mid-day on Fridays). Likewise, there appears to be an online option, if families would prefer to go that route.
I had previously heard that Park City School District committees were to make recommendations on reopening by July 20th, and we would have to wait until after that to hear about plans for the fall.
I was concerned with that timeline, because the closer it gets to opening, the harder it is to make work-decisions based on childrens’ schedules. Kudos to the Park City Schools District, and all those involved, to provide parents with sufficient lead-time to make decisions.
So, it looks like the schedule will be business as usual. The district said that more details will be provided within the next few weeks. I assume that will include how buses will work, what the school-day will look like, what social distancing measures will entail, etc. I understand that details take time.
I don’t think any of us are prepared for the reality of business-as-somewhat-usual for our schools. Hopefully, we can work together as a community to keep teachers, students, and everyone else in our schools as safe as possible. However, I do think that providing a semi-normal school day has numerous benefits ranging from mental health, to easier access to school lunches, to fundamental learning, to allowing parents to earn a living. There are downsides, of course, but hopefully, we can mitigate those as much as possible.
I appreciate that the school district has given us a broad outline, so at least we can make plans. This school year isn’t going to be easy. However, having a plan makes it far better for working parents. Good job Park City School District.