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Fall 2020-2021 Reopening Questions and Answers

Scio School District Fall 2020 Reopening Plans: Q & A

August 13, 2020

This page was last updated on August 13, 2020 (check back for periodic updates as they develop)

Q: What is your plan for reopening schools in the fall of 2020?

A:  Currently the Community COVID-19 Health Metrics, established by the Governor’s office and the Oregon Health Authority, determine which school reopening plans we have available to our district.  Based on these current metrics we are required to open the fall with distance learning for the majority of our students.  Pending School Board approval on August 12th at our monthly school board meeting, 1st grade through 12th will be in comprehensive distance learning for the first 6 to 9 weeks of the school year.  Kindergarten will have the choice to enroll in-person starting on the 14th of September.  The details of the in-person model for Centennial will be provided as we move closer to the start of the school year. Centennial staff will be in contact with Kindergarten parents soon to gather information and their choice of instructional model.  Any in-person or hybrid model of instruction must include the Safe Schools/Healthy Students guidance.  This includes the previously shared safety protocols including the social distancing, face coverings, cleaning procedures, cohorting, etc.  You can find your school’s Ready Schools, Safe Learners Blueprint at this location on our website.


Q: Who determines what our schooling model will look like?

A: Based on the parent and staff survey information and student needs, school administration developed a plan for fall that must be approved by the local school board, along with review from the Oregon Department of Education and the Oregon Health Authority.


Q: Will distance learning look like it did last spring?

A: Not really. It will look slightly different since we now have some experience with it and have developed ways to better use the system, while also creating more consistent usage across grade levels. We will be required to keep daily attendance, issue grades, include additional teaching led instructional activities, among other items.  With more time to plan than we had in the Spring, our distance learning model will be much more consistent from building to building to ensure better communication with our students and their families.


Q: Will in-person school look the same as it used to?

A: Not really.  Due to the requirements of the Ready Schools, Safe Learners guidance from ODE and the OHA, classrooms will look different.  Scio is dedicated to bringing students back to in-person education as soon as it is feasibly possible and safe to do so for everyone involved.  We know the importance of the in-person instructional model.  When we meet the Community COVID-19 metrics for our state and county and we know we can open safely for all involved we will do so.


Q: How many kids can you have in a classroom?

A: We must allow 35 square feet of space per person in a room. This varies upon the size of each room, so we take the overall size of the room and divide it by 35, which gives us a maximum occupancy (which includes all students and adults in that room at any one time). To accommodate this requirement we may need to use additional spaces in our buildings for in-person instruction once our metrics allow us to return safely.


Q: Will my child have to wear a face covering?

A: Yes if they return to in-person education. ODE and OHA updated guidance now requiring all students in grades K-12 to wear a face covering. There are some specific instances that a child may be exempt from this requirement.


Q: Will staff wear face coverings?

A: Yes. All staff must wear a face covering (mask or shield at this point in time).


Q: Will sports be offered next year?

A: Hopefully.  OSAA the organization for high school sports in Oregon has updated their plan for the 2020-2021 seasons.  Fall sports have been shifted to begin in March and most of the sports have been moved to form new 7 week seasons.  To see the most up to date information go here…OSAA ADOPTS NEW 2020-21 SCHOOL ACTIVITIES CALENDAR Association shifts Fall season, condenses all seasons, and waives out-of-season coaching policies


Q: Will there still be bus transportation?

A: Yes. Bus routes will continue, for Kindergarten students needing transportation currently and 1-12th grade when the time comes for their in-person education, but pickup and drop off times may change.  Any changes will be communicated.


Q: If there are COVID-19 cases, what will happen?

A: All confirmed cases from students or staff will be reported to our Local Health Authority. They will then guide the district decisions regarding quarantine, partial closures or a full school closure, and how long that needs to last. Until the time comes, it is unknown how each case will be handled. Parents should know that there will continue to be a possibility of closures or quarantine, but we cannot predict them at this time.


Q: Will lunches be served?

A: Yes. School lunch will be provided, but it may not be served as before. Students may eat in classrooms or they could eat on rotation schedules, to limit the number of students in a cafeteria at any one time. We are still working out details as to how to offer lunches for families that are engaged in the distance learning model.


Q: Can parents help with this new plan?

A: Yes! We need your support, patience and flexibility to make this happen as we move to a new model of education. For families who choose in-person learning, we really need your help in keeping sick students home until they are well again to limit the chance of exposure to others. Students with COVID-19 symptoms will be sent home, as required in the new guidance.