What is the school going to do if we have medically fragile students, or I do not want my child to attend school in person?
If a family has a medically fragile child, or if a parent does not want their child to attend school in person, that family may choose virtual learning at this time. As stated earlier, we have planned for such a situation and are currently waiting for new equipment to arrive in order to more fully implement virtual learning for those students who must take advantage of it.
If we choose to keep our student(s) at home, will they have to follow the same schedule in terms of class times?
As long as we have in-person classes for some or all of our students, all at-home students will have to follow their regularly scheduled classes by class period. At-home students will be expected to be signed in and present virtually at the start of each class no different than students in-person are expected to be present by the tardy bell each class period.
Will there be consistent expectations of what digital teaching looks like and how much time students will be engaged on a daily basis?
Given the unprecedented task thrust on educators in the spring to totally reinvent the delivery system of American education, I was proud of our teachers and their ability to continue to maintain our high standards. Was it perfect? No, but we have learned much and worked over the summer to design staff development opportunities focused on augmenting their teaching toolbox, both digitally and in-person. We believe we are in a far better position today to provide our students a quality education in either format.
Can you provide a clear example of what the digital platform will look like should it have to be utilized? Will it be the same as spring?
Our learning management system, PowerSchool Learning, will continue to be the hub for digital learning. Applying the lessons we learned from the spring and the staff development opportunities offered this summer along with some targeted pre-planning sessions for the faculty, teachers will be asked to provide more live (synchronous) instruction in addition to written and recorded (asynchronous) lessons. This means the students will be required to participate regularly in digital instruction on a specific schedule with their teachers (synchronous learning) and also complete activities and assignments on their own time to meet deadlines (asynchronous learning). We have asked teachers to deliver more live learning opportunities using video conferencing platforms such as ZOOM and Google Meet.
Are there any courses that will not be offered (chorus, PE etc) due to current mandates?
At this time, we do not know of any courses that we will not offer.
What about athletics?
Athletic decisions will be made in conjunction with the Archdiocese and the Georgia High School Association (GHSA). We are in constant contact with and monitor their decisions with keen interest. At this time, all activities will proceed as normal.
What will become of after school activities such as sports and clubs?
As mentioned above, Athletic decisions will be made in conjunction with the Archdiocese and the Georgia High School Association (GHSA). All other activities, including clubs, will proceed as normal at the present time.
Will the recent survey sent from Principal Simpson, dated July 15, change any of the current plans?
No, that survey was distributed to gather basic information about the thoughts of parents at that point in time about returning to school, to gauge those with concerns about medical fragility, or those simply considering keeping their students at home out of an abundance of caution with the Coronavirus. As we worked on developing multiple contingencies, especially hybrid schedules, we needed to determine the best way to divide the school into groups. This data helped us determine the numerical division of the school into two groups: A and B.
Is Pius still considering the B and C plans presented in the one-page fact sheet sent on June 26, 2020?
Yes, hopefully, this was answered previously in this correspondence.
If a teacher shows signs of COVID-19 and has to be quarantined for a minimum of 14 days, will there be a qualified substitute available?
This is a question that every school in the state is dealing with. We have contacted our most consistent and capable substitutes and most have expressed a desire to return. We hope we will not need to call in substitutes. This is a great example of why we are trying our best to maintain a safe and healthy environment with the wearing of masks and the frequent sanitization of the building and the many other precautions we are taking
If a student shows signs of COVID-19 and has to be quarantined for a minimum of 14 days, will they be able to access their classes online so as to not fall behind?
Yes, the new virtual technology equipment will allow us to continue to serve students who become ill and must learn from home. This is a perfect example as to why we spent an inordinate amount of money on new technology equipment so that both students and teachers could stay current with academic instruction.
How would social distancing be handled in the hallways during class changes?
Most high schools are struggling with this, as students have to change classes multiple times throughout the day. Our current position is that we will have social distancing floor decals throughout the hallways to remind students to keep spread out and to always walk on the "right" side of the hallways in order to stay separated from those walking in the other direction. Of course, throughout the entire day, everyone will be required to wear a mask.
Will taking the temperature of 1100+ students daily mean starting school earlier or later to accommodate this procedure?
No, we have ordered enough fast reading temperature devices and with numerous teachers assigned to designated doors around the campus, we should be able to move the students into the building fairly quickly. We will continually review these procedures to ensure this system is working properly.
Will I be informed if my student comes in contact with another individual at school that subsequently tests positive?
Health Department guidance requires that all close contacts be notified of a positive case. This means that those within a class will be automatically notified. In notifying, the school will protect the identity of the individual who tested positive, following all FERPA and HIPAA regulations.
Will buildings be closed down for deep cleaning whenever there's a positive case?
The school will follow Health Department guidelines for cleaning and sanitizing the appropriate areas of the school in the event of a COVID-19 positive test.
How will you handle students who become sick during school?
The school clinic will continue to serve students who feel ill at school. We will utilize a separate area for students who exhibit possible COVID-19 symptoms. Students will be socially distanced and monitored in that area while parents are contacted to pick them up. Parents must pick their child up within one hour of receiving a call from the school regardless of symptoms in order to maintain the safest environment possible.
This question emphasizes the need to correctly answer the screening questions in your homes prior to leaving for school. If a child is sick, or exhibiting any of the symptoms listed, please keep them at home.
If the number of COVID cases continues to rise, would St. Pius X revert back to an all virtual format?
Yes, if conditions continue to rise and the governor, health agencies, and local jurisdictions call for school closures, we would more than likely have to return to an all virtual environment.