Jul 22, 2020
NDPA 2020-2021 Reopening Plan
I want to start by thanking you for your patience and participation in this process. I know you are all anxious to know what school is going to look like at NDPA and what plans we will need to make to accommodate our new educational model. I appreciate those that have participated in the surveys we have sent out. Your input has been invaluable in building our plan.
I want to give some input into the process and timing of our decision. I am sure you all, as have we, have seen and heard other districts presenting their return to school plan. As you have seen, many districts have many plans. Each, I believe, are trying to accommodate their specific population and needs. We are trying to do the same.
Our first step was to send out surveys to teachers and families to gather information on what the needs, and concerns, are for our population. From that, it is clear that two areas are of most concern. First, a sanitization plan for the building and PPE requirements for students and staff. Second, reduction of the number of people in the building, specifically class sizes. Overwhelmingly respondents wanted online and alternate schedule options.
Knowing these were the concerns and needs, we started to develop a plan to address those above others. We also appreciate that we are our own school and can do things the NDPA way. However, we recognize that we are located in the middle of Davis School District and have some fairly rigid guidelines from USBE. In an attempt to be similar to surrounding DSD schools and charters, we held two meetings last week. The first was with Charter school directors in the area and then one with DSD superintendent and others from his office. We gained a better understanding of their plans as well as the rational they used in making their decisions. It was important for me to have these meetings prior to publishing our plan. Additionally, we met with our NDPA Board of Directors and the Davis County Health Department today, 7-22-20, to allow them the opportunity to give feedback and approve the plan. Now that we have done all that, we are now ready.
A few other factors of which to be aware. Many of our decisions have been based on an attempt to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on our students and faculty. Additionally, we know that there are mental health concerns, emotional health needs, home safety issues, and economic factors that are all impacted by what local schools do with their schedules. And all of those concerns are valid and worth the time to try and address. Finding a plan that meets all of those requirements is impossible. So, we have done our best and will continue to adapt as our situation changes.
We feel we have a plan that meets the needs of as many of our families as possible. We know we will not be able to meet everyone’s needs. We know we cannot guarantee a sterile environment. Kids are kids, they will want to touch and play and talk to each other. That will happen to. Our plan tries to create a space where all of that will have as little an impact as possible as well as provide a framework for if/when the current environment changes, whether for the better or worse.
We have 4 pillars to our reopening plan.
- Personal Health and Hygiene.
- Personal Considerations and Physical Distancing
- Regular Cleaning and Sanitation
- School Procedures
Personal Health and Hygiene:
• Face masks for all students and faculty when indoors and when 6 feet distance cannot be maintained outdoors. Other PPE when requested or necessary.
• Regular hand washing breaks.
• Hand sanitizing stations.
• Symptom monitoring.
Regular Cleaning and Sanitation:
• We have contracted with our cleaning company for additional personnel.
• Our cleaning company has been trained and supplied with CDC approved cleaning materials and methods.
• Classroom cleaning supplies and procedures for regular, during the day, spot cleaning of high contact areas.
• Reallocation of support staff to help at recess, lunch and other times to wipe down and disinfect surfaces.
Personal Considerations and Physical Distancing:
• To reduce the numbers of students in the building and increase the ability to physically distance, we will implement a dual access model. NDPA has purchased the rights to an online K-9 curriculum and platform for those students who choose to participate 100% online. We are also hiring additional staff whose only responsibility will be to manage and facilitate the online program for those students.
• Additionally, those choosing to attend on-campus schooling will be placed in an A/B day schedule K-9. Dual Language Immersion students will attend Monday, Wednesday and every first and third Friday while students not enrolled in dual language immersion will attend Tuesday, Thursday and the second and fourth Fridays. Additional small group support will also occur on Friday’s as needed. Based on your feedback, we feel this meets the needs and concerns of most of the respondents. We anticipate that our class sizes will be around 11-15 students while maintaining our normal total enrollment. Not only does this reduce class sizes in the room, but also when out at recess or while eating lunch.
• We will implement a rotation recess schedule. As has been the case in the past. One grade at a time, with additional measures to ensure less contact while transitioning in and out of the building.
• When possible, lunch will be served and eaten in the lunchroom. If a group’s size prohibits safe physical distancing, then an option to eat in the classroom will also be offered to limit the number of students in the lunchroom.
• Visitors entering the school will need to wear a mask and have their temperature taken and logged.
• Drop off and pick up may be staggered to limit the numbers of students congregating outside the building.
• Parent volunteers will be limited and altered to enhance physical distancing.
• New lunch protocols to decrease contact points, line waiting and allow for better physical distance in.
This is not intended to be an all-inclusive list. Rather it highlights the main points as well as illustrates the mindset we have taken in our approach. Clearly there is more that will be done, probably not seen, but will enhance what I have shared here. Also, there is very little information presented here as to how teachers will provide instruction while your student is in class and support while they are at home. The details of those plans are being worked on by teachers and will be shared with you in the days to come. Our school vision remains. “North Davis Preparatory Academy students develop a love of learning, experience high academic achievement and enjoy bi-literate proficiency” Our teachers are confident that they can ensure this is the case under this plan. Yes, it looks very different. It allows us to meet educational needs, health and safety concerns, as well as pivot easily as this situation continues to evolve.
We feel a great sense of responsibility to make this year a positive experience. We know that our attitude toward this situation has far more to do with our success than the actual circumstances. A quote that has recently become a favorite of mine, “making the right decision isn’t as important as making a decision right” I know that working together with our great staff, and our great families this will be a memorable year for all the right reasons. Not just due to COVID-19.
Principal Ryan Robinson