Return to In-Person Learning Dates Set for Grades 1-5

Return to In-Person Learning Dates Set for Grades 1-5

After the school board unanimously voted last night to approve the agreement between the Monroe School District (MSD) and the Monroe Education Association (MEA) to return to in-person learning for grades 1-5, they set the official dates for these students to return to school. In-person learning will begin for students in grades 1-2 on Monday, March 1 and for grades 3-5 on Monday, March 15. Families who chose remote instruction through our Monroe Virtual Learning Academy (MVLA) will remain under the current remote schedule. MSD and the MEA will continue to work towards an agreement for returning middle and high school students for in-person learning.

As agreed upon by MSD and MEA, students in grades 1-5 will attend half days in-person Monday through Thursday and will continue to participate in distance learning on Fridays. Both parties mutually agreed on the importance of having elementary students on campus daily; however, to maintain physical distancing, our elementary schools can only hold half of the student body on campus at one time, which is why half days were selected. Half of the students will attend in-person in the mornings from 8:55 a.m. to 11:25 a.m. (A cohort) and the other half (B cohort) will attend in the afternoons from 12:55 p.m. to 3:25 p.m. Kindergarten students will continue to attend in the mornings and their in-person learning time will shift to align with the Cohort A schedule below. Preschool students will continue to attend in the morning and afternoons and their schedule will also shift to align with the times below.

Monday-Thursday Learning Schedule for Students in Preschool Through 5th Grade

Time

Cohort A Students

Time

Cohort B Students

8:55-11:25

In-person instruction

8:55-11:55

Asynchronous Learning &

Specialist Time (Music, Digital Learning, PE)

11:25-12:25

Travel home & lunch


Recess on your own

11:55-12:55

Lunch & recess on your own


Travel to school

12:25-3:25

Asynchronous Learning &

Specialist Time (Music, Digital Learning, PE)

12:55-3:25

In-person instruction

In the coming days, each of our elementary schools will be communicating with their 1st and 2nd grade families to remind them which cohort their child is in, what to do if they must change cohorts, and to share their school-specific safety plans and procedures. Communication to families in grades 3-5 will follow in the weeks shortly thereafter.

As always, the safety of our staff and students is our top priority and as such, we have worked extremely hard with our staff to develop thorough safety plans and procedures at each of our elementary schools in alignment with the guidance from the Washington Department of Health and the Snohomish Health District. While our schools will be sharing their school-specific safety plans with their families in the coming days, our updated district-wide safety plan can be found here. In addition, we are working to produce videos to share that showcase the safety precautions and procedures we have in place. The first video we'd like to share is an introductory video about our general safety preparedness.

We are confident that our safety plans will help to mitigate the transmission of COVID-19 in our schools; however, we understand that some families may have changed their minds and may not feel comfortable sending their children to school for in-person learning. These families are invited to transfer to our Monroe Virtual Learning Academy (MVLA), by submitting transfer paperwork as soon as possible. The Monroe Virtual Learning Academy is our fully online program and classes are led by our own Monroe School District educators and support staff. We remain committed to educate all students whether they be at home or in our school classrooms. It is important to note that in alignment with OSPI's attendance requirements, preschool through 5th grade students who do not attend in-person or do not attend classes through MVLA, will be marked as absent.

We are extremely thankful to have been able to successfully serve over 400 preschool, kindergarten and special education students on campus for in-person learning since the fall and we are very excited about welcoming many more students back into our schools. We acknowledge, however, that this is only one step forward and we are committed to continuing to work toward the return of all of our students to our schools and classrooms. Thank you for your partnership and continued support of our Monroe School District students.

Sincerely,

Dr. Justin Blasko
Superintendent