Dear TFSD Parents, Students, Patrons, and Staff
At the Wednesday, September 23 School Board meeting, the Board considered and approved a change to the Monday schedule during Yellow Protocols. As mentioned in a previous email the TFSD has been exploring options to help provide teachers with more time to plan and provide learning resources for the students who are out of school for extended periods of time due to COVID, COVID concerns, or quarantine.
Currently, in the Yellow Protocol Schedule, secondary teachers are being asked to keep online classes up to date as well as provide robust instruction in their face-to-face classroom. Due to the number of students out of school on any given day, and the fact the yellow schedule has all students in class, teachers are struggling to provide consistent, high-quality instruction in both face-to-face and distance formats. The goal is for students to easily transition between face-to-face and digital.
At the elementary level, teachers are not consistently required to deliver their class between both digital and face-to-face; however, absenteeism requires teachers to provide more of their curriculum to be completed at home.
To help inform this difficult decision, the District distributed a survey to staff members and parents. At the secondary level, both staff members and parents preferred an all online Monday. The staff members selected this option at 70 percent while parents were more closely split with 51 percent preferring all online as opposed to 49 percent preferring a ½ day in person on Monday.
At the elementary level, the option of continuing the schedule as is was the parent preference with 48 percent indicating that option. Moving to a ½ day was highest ranking option among staff members with 38 percent of staff members selecting this option. The second most popular options were also different between parents and staff members. Parents preferred a completely online day as the second most popular option while staff members indicated continuing the current schedule as their second most popular option.
With this information in hand, the School Board discussed and evaluated the options. The Board’s priority was to support the teachers’ efforts to provide a quality education to all students and to balance the preferences of parents throughout the community. The Board ultimately decided to designate the four Mondays in October as online days for secondary. Elementary schools will continue with the current practice of an early release Monday. The School Board will evaluate this change at its second Board meeting in October.
This change will go into effect on Monday, October 5. It is critical that as a district we continue to be nimble and adapt as the circumstances surrounding COVID-19 change.