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Back to JC Schools Re-Entry Plan

 

BACK TO JC SCHOOLS 2020 FALL RE-ENTRY PLAN (VIEW HERE)

BACK TO JC SCHOOLS 2020 FALL RE-ENTRY PLAN FAQs (VIEW HERE)

JC SCHOOLS PROCEDURES FOR NOTICE OF COVID-19 INFECTIONS (VIEW HERE)

The COVID-19 pandemic has proven to be incredibly challenging educationally, for teachers, students, and families. Survey results from JC Schools staff and parents have shown that, overwhelmingly, many are eager to return to in-seat education this fall. We share in this desire, and have worked diligently to outline measures that will allow us to return to school while keeping our staff and students safe.  

As we return for the 2020-2021 school year, the Jefferson City School District will work to minimize the risk of exposure to COVID-19 for staff and students. Our full “Back to JC Schools Fall 2020 Re-entry Plan” can be viewed HERE and is built around the following foundational priorities:

  1. Increased Sanitation Efforts
  2. Social Distancing
  3. Staff & Student Screening Measures
  4. Personal Protective Equipment
  5. Limited Visitor Access to Buildings
  6. Virtual Education Options
  7. Procedures for COVID-19 Infections

VIEW BACK TO JC SCHOOLS PLAN w FULL DETAILS HERE

We must acknowledge that returning to in-seat education will introduce a greater risk of exposure, and that each of us has a vital role to play when it comes to following the re-entry guidelines. Our district has a responsibility to protect the health and safety of our staff and students, and we will continue to use information from local, state, and federal health officials along with public safety guidelines to drive future decision making or change our plan if necessary.

When the Jefferson City School District receives notification and confirmation of a student or staff member testing positive for COVID-19 the following steps will be taken: 

  • The district will begin the process to determine when the student/staff member became symptomatic and whether they were on school property while symptomatic; 
  • If it is determined the student/staff member was not on school property within 48 hours before becoming symptomatic and has had no close contact with other students/staff members, communication will not be sent; 
  • If it is determined the student/staff member was on school property while symptomatic or within 48 hours before becoming symptomatic, the district will begin our contact tracing process to determine whether any other students or staff members may be identified as having close contact with the individual. Contact tracing investigation will include assessment of individuals determined to be within six feet of the positive case for longer than 15 minutes.
  • After contact tracing has identified potential close contacts, a thorough investigation is conducted to determine which close contacts are considered at risk for transmission and should be quarantined. Variables include: 
    • Type and severity of symptoms exhibited by the positive case (such as cough/fever vs. headache or asymptomatic);
    • Positioning of people relative to the positive case (individuals facing one another vs. individuals who never face one another);
    • Any physical contact with the positive case (individuals who talk and frequently interact vs. individuals who never interact);
    • Layers of protection in place (masks worn properly, barriers such as plexiglass, etc).
  • After the investigation findings are reviewed and approved by the positive case’s local health department, the district notifies staff members or families of students identified as close contacts.
  • The number of new cases within the school environment will be updated daily and posted to the website, at a minimum. Should any concerning trends develop, such as a cluster or outbreak within a building, or a positive case in a building for the first time, notification will still be sent to staff and families of that building as soon as possible. This would include any activity that would warrant the temporary or extended closure of a classroom, grade, or building.

Positive COVID-19 cases which occur within the school environment (a student or staff member who is symptomatic while on school property or within 48-hours before becoming symptomatic) will be tracked HERE.

VIRTUAL EDUCATION OPTIONS --- enrollment in virtual education with Launch is now closed.

  • Families who do not feel comfortable sending their students to receive in-seat instruction may apply to participate in virtual education via Launch, an online education platform which was used by JC Schools for summer school this year.
  • Launch has a rigorous K-12 curriculum that is aligned with the Missouri Learning Standards, is currently used by over 270 districts across the State of Missouri, and is staffed by certified educators who live and work in partner districts. 
  • Students approved for virtual education must remain in the Launch program for the duration of the semester for which they were approved.
  • Students approved for virtual education will be issued a technology device by Launch.
  • Students approved for virtual education can participate in extracurricular activities as long as they meet MSHSAA requirements.
  • Middle and high school students approved for virtual education may choose a hybrid of online and in-seat courses if so desired. 
  • Upon approval for virtual education, additional scheduling logistics will be arranged directly with the student’s school staff.
  • Students approved for virtual education for the first semester of the 2020-2021 school year can return to in-seat enrollment for the second semester if so desired, or may remain virtual for the duration of the school year. 
  • If a student is not successful with Launch, they may not be approved for future semesters.

QUESTIONS?

  • Elementary: Sheila Weber via email (sheila.weber@jcschools.us) or phone (573-659-3015)
  • Middle School: Gabrielle Foster via email (gabrielle.foster@jcschools.us) or phone (573-659-3743)
  • High School: CCHS - Tim Ritter (tim.ritter@jcschools.us), JCHS - Carrie Welch (carrie.welch@jcschools.us

MORE ABOUT JC SCHOOLS VIRTUAL OPTION

In 2018, the Missouri Legislature developed new requirements for local school districts to access virtual education courses.  Any student in kindergarten through 12th grade enrolled in the Jefferson City School District who was also enrolled as a full-time student the previous semester can opt to take a course virtually through the District-preferred provider, Launch, or through the Missouri Course Access Program (MOCAP) organized through the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE).

Requirements:

  1. The student resides in and is enrolled in the district on a full-time basis; 
  2. The student has attended a public school or charter school for at least one semester immediately prior to enrolling in a MOCAP course; and
  3. The enrollment is approved by the principal or designee.

Preferred Vendor and Course Information

Launch courses are built in a Learning Management System called Canvas. All courses have dynamic content that include both individual and collaborative work. Students participate in discussion boards, create culminating projects, record themselves explaining concepts, take assessments and more, all from their Launch-issued device.

Each Launch course has a teacher assigned to support students; however, students won’t always see teachers face-to-face in real time. Video announcements and messaging will connect teachers and students.

Parents are given an observer account to view course progress and communicate with the instructor. 

  • For more information, visit the Launch Website.
  • To review a list of Launch’s course offerings, visit the Launch Course Catalog. NOTE:  Virtual options are not available for Career Technical Education (CTE) courses. In-seat instruction is required.

Getting Started:

After completing the Virtual Course Enrollment Form, a staff member will be in touch to schedule an appointment to discuss best educational interest, course offerings, prerequisites, course recommendations, and the tools needed to be successful in a virtual environment. 

For grades 8 and above, school staff will work with the family to develop an Individual Career and Academic Plan (ICAP). If the student already has an ICAP, the plan will be reviewed and modified as necessary.

If the student has an active IEP, the IEP team must be a part of the best educational interest discussions. Additionally, the IEP team must determine what special education services will be needed to support and/or supplement the virtual instruction.

The Jefferson City School District will pay for the cost of virtual courses only if the district has first approved the student’s enrollment in the course as outlined by policy (Board Policy IGCD).

Athletics and Activities Information

If the student wishes to participate in athletics and/or activities, certain courses must be approved by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and Missouri State High School Activities Association (MSHSAA).  Not all courses and/or vendors are approved by the NCAA. The Launch Course Catalog shows which high school courses are NCAA approved.

Enrollment Period:

Please enroll as soon as possible to help us secure student materials and plan for a successful student-experience. In subsequent enrollment periods, requests will be considered within the first two weeks of each semester. NOTE: The fall 2020 enrollment period takes place before many JC Schools staff are back on contract. Because of this, parents may not hear from their school staff until sometime the week of August 10.

Appeal:

If it is determined that it is not in the student’s best education interest to take a virtual course, the student, and the parents/guardians will be notified in writing, provided an explanation for the decision and informed that the student or parents/guardians may appeal the decision to the Board of Education. However, if the student is receiving special education services, the student's IEP team will make the final decision regarding student enrollment in a virtual course in accordance with federal law, and the decision must be appealed through the special education process rather than through the Board.

Additional Information and Considerations:

How does Launch virtual instruction work?

Students approved for virtual education will be issued a technology device by Launch. Students must have reliable internet access to participate virtually.

Launch courses are built in a Learning Management System called Canvas. All courses have dynamic content that include both individual and collaborative work. Students participate in discussion boards, create culminating projects, record themselves explaining concepts, take assessments and more, all from their Launch-issued device.

Each Launch course has a teacher assigned to support students; however, students won’t always see teachers face-to-face in real time. Video announcements and messaging will connect teachers and students.

Grades will be transcripted from the virtual course provider to JC Schools. Grades earned will be on the official transcript.

What do students need to know and do to be successful?

The most successful Launch students watch for announcement videos, check their Canvas Inbox for messages, read their teachers feedback, stay on top of due dates and reach out when they need help.

Students need to be able to manage their time and form good study habits. It is important for students to establish a routine which includes daily checking their Canvas Inbox and calendar for due dates, regularly checking for new announcements and feedback from teachers, studying and working on coursework.

Students need basic technology skills and a willingness to learn new ones. Launch utilizes an online platform called Canvas. Students will get a weekly announcement, feedback, messages and grades via Canvas. Additionally, students can access To-Do lists, a calendar, instructor information, the syllabus for the course and use modules pages to navigate between units and assignments. Google for Education products are also utilized. Some courses require additional resources. For example, for physical education, a fitness tracker is provided. The student will need to be able to sync the fitness tracker with an online account. Technical support is provided by Launch but students must demonstrate a willingness to learn new technology and technical skills.

How much time can a student expect to spend on coursework?

High school students should plan to work approximately 60 hours per semester for each .5 credit course.

Middle school students should expect to spend the equivalent of an inseat class period on each course daily.

Elementary school students should expect to be engaged in learning for the school day, with breaks. At elementary, there is more time spent with the teacher during the day for the fall and spring terms.

What if my student is struggling with online work?

Students are encouraged to reach out to their Launch teacher with any questions or concerns. If a student is struggling with the technological aspects of Launch, there is a technical support team available seven days a week. Launch technical support staff are available to answer email from 7:30 AM - 8:00 PM on weekdays and from 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM on weekends. Students can typically expect a response within half an hour.

Parents are given an observer account to view course progress and communicate with the instructor. 

If the working with the teacher and other Launch staff still proves to be unsuccessful, students may drop a class as many as 20 days from the start date of the course. However, JC Schools policy is if the student drops within the first 14 CALENDAR days, they will not receive a grade from Launch and can transfer back to the district with no penalty.

If a student is not successful with virtual education, they may not be approved for future semesters.