July 23, 2020
Dear Skykomish Families,
Since the very beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic it has always been my hope that our students would return to school. We know undoubtedly that there is no substitute for in-person learning. In-person learning provides essential connections for our students with both the educators who know them well and their classmates. Our Board of Directors and District personnel have been planning for a safe return to school as we monitored public health data, gathered information and input from our staff and families, and weighed all of the risks and competing interests. It has not been an easy task!
On Tuesday, July 21st, I along with other superintendents in our educational service district region met with officials from King County Public Health. During our meeting, the health officials clearly stated that, based on the steady increase of COVID-19 infections in King County over the last several weeks, they cannot imagine a way to have on-campus learning in the fall without the risk of significant transmission of the virus to students, educators, staff, and the general public.
Our Board of Directors, and I as your Superintendent, ultimately bear full responsibility for the health and safety of our students, educators, and staff in our school. We cannot in good conscience open our school to our students this fall based on this clear guidance from public health officials (Guidance from Seattle King County Public Health) and Governor Inslee reducing the number of congregants even in Phase 3.
It is with this knowledge and concern that I announce that Skykomish School District will begin school this fall with full remote learning for all families. Our plan is to evaluate the remote start for all students after the first semester on January 27, 2021. However, the District will reevaluate at any point in time returning to Face-To-Face instruction if King County Public Health Officials deem it safe to return to school, or if the Governor or the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) directs the District to reopen.
Our remote learning for the fall will be much more structured and comprehensive than what you experienced this past Spring. This will include virtual instruction, daily engagement, independent work, student daily/weekly schedules, and a daily attendance requirement.
We understand this may be a hardship to some families, but our District upholds the safety of all our staff and students as a high priority. I know this is not how we all hoped the 2020-2021 school year would start.
Further details about our remote learning plan will be released in the upcoming weeks on our District website and social media via our Facebook page.
We recognize there are many unknowns as we navigate this historic pandemic. Our commitment will always be to communicate information to you as soon as it is available. Please send any questions, insights, suggestions, and feedback you may have to us so that I can share them with our Reopening Committee and our Board of Directors.
Skykomish School District No. 404
Phone: (360) 677-2623 x 101