NO CHANGE for Westside: YELLOW Status Aug. 18 – Sept. 4
Updated August 10, 2020
The following is a message from Westside Superintendent Dr. Mike Lucas.
We continue to plan for school starting next week on Tuesday, August 18th in our Yellow Mode. We appreciate the decisions being made by other school districts in the metro area and wish them all the best as we all embark on the 2020-21 school year. We will continue to make the decisions we feel are best for our school district as our size is much different than almost all of our metro peers. Below are some updates as we make the final push towards next week.
- We had approximately 1,224 students (20%) sign up for our at-home/extended campus learning option for 1st
- 634 at the K-6 level
- 178 at Westside Middle School
- 412 at Westside High School/West Campus
- We are expecting approximately 4,776 students in-person on our campuses (80%) using an altered schedule and de-densified/social-distanced manner as classes begin.
- The routines and protocols being put into place at our schools will be much different than what our students remember from March 12th, our last day of in-person learning last year.
- Due to our Yellow Mode and 20% of our students learning from home this quarter, many of our K-6 classrooms will only have 7-10 students in them at a time.
- With WMS and WHS being at 25% capacity, it will make de-densifying and social-distancing much easier. Many classrooms will have less than 7-10 students in them at a time.
- Classroom set-ups will allow for ample distance between student desks.
- Our cafeterias and hallways will be less than 40% full with numerous safety precautions in place to include altered seating, elongated schedules, and safe-distancing signage.
- We want to be State Champions in the 3 W’s as we all fight to beat COVID-19:
- Wear a mask
- Wash your hands
- Watch your distance
- We are thankful to be able to provide at-home/extended campus and in-person/on campus options to all of our families.
- The Yellow Mode we will begin the year with is our plan from August 18th through September 4th. We intend to continually analyze the infectious disease rate and number of confirmed cases per million in the coming weeks as we further our weekly dialogue with local health experts.
- We will be making an announcement on/around September 1st as to what our plans are for Tuesday, September 8th when we return from Labor Day.
- Our Yellow Mode is a challenge for us all. We know it puts a strain on families trying to juggle work, childcare, altered school schedules, and more. It puts a lot of strain on our school staff as well. That’s why we’re only committing to it for the first few weeks.
- We are thankful that Yellow allows us to see our students, establish some routines and relationships, and allows for some peer interaction.
- Our curriculum delivery, both in-person and for those learners at home, will be in real-time and more engaging than last spring. It still won’t be perfect. It is the best we can do right now and it will get better as we iron out the kinks.
- We have put in a lot of time on curriculum work to have thoughtful and meaningful lesson delivery to all students. Yellow, with all of its challenges, will allow us to be able to readily pivot to Red (all students at home) or Green (traditional 5-day schedule) with all willing learners on campus. The way our lessons are constructed during this initial Yellow phase will not miss a beat if/when we switch to a different mode.
- The modular schedule at WHS was not made for Yellow Mode so we are doing our best to keep it intact, offer all of our robust curriculum offerings, to include AP courses, etc.
We are excited to see our students next week, whether in-person, or on-line. This is a monumental challenge for everyone from our students and their families, to our staff. Each day we will get a little better. Please be patient and supportive of us as we try this out for the first time in school district history. We hope to be able to get into our Green Mode in September.
Thank you for all of the support you’ve been showing our teachers and staff. Westside is a special place and we will come out of COVID-19, at some point, stronger than we were when we went into it.