Marshfield Board of Education releases statement following vote on reopening plan
By the School District of Marshfield Board of Education
The School District of Marshfield has a lot to be thankful for – our amazing students and families, a supportive community, strong administrative guidance, and outstanding teachers and staff – all working together to provide an excellent education for our students.
As the COVID-19 pandemic turned life upside down, our gratitude for teachers and staff grew as they adapted, persevered and were flexible in learning new ways to reach our students. Our student families were impacted in a myriad of ways with lost jobs and income, new childcare challenges, separation, from extended family and friends, canceled travel and much more. Some dealt with illness from COVID-19 or other health issues, as well as disrupted healthcare. Some dealt with loss. Everyone has dealt with stress and frustration because of changes to everyday life.
We believe that the vast majority of students thrive by being back in school. We are also a community of working parents. Everyone from farmers to nurses to small business owners rely on classrooms as the safest place for kids to be during the day.
There is no future without education. But planning for the future is hard when the present is so uncertain. In an infectious disease outbreak, many actions affect the health of others, so plans for the Fall must take a large number of variables into account. Our school board knows there are health and welfare risks associated with not going back to school, as well as with going back to school. The decision of how to reopen schools is not made lightly. It will only be made with lots of expert advice on how to best mitigate these risks. Plans must allow for some individual student needs and contain contingencies for changed circumstances. We are facing a fluid situation, and may need to adapt to that as we move forward.
The school board would like to thank teachers and administrators for the many summer hours they are putting in so that student learning can take place no matter how the public health situation unfolds. We are also grateful to all our district employees who are adapting to get our students back to school.
We appreciate our school families and the communities we serve. We need to work with you to keep our schools open. If a student has a fever, respiratory or other symptoms, or lives with someone who has COVID-19, that student should not come to school until medically cleared or recovery is complete.
Every community member should do their part to control the spread of this virus with the simple proven habits of hand washing, social distancing and wearing a mask when there is indoor or close contact with those outside of your household. Some weeks remain before the 2020-21 school year begins. This can be a time to reinforce these habits for adults and children. Let’s work together to give our kids the best possible chance to attend school in-person. Thank you for working to make this happen for the kids and our school district communities.
The Tiger Return to Learn plan
At this time, school officials are forecasting that 2020-21 classes will begin Sept. 1 in the district, with grades 4K-6 attending a traditional five-day school week. Marshfield Middle School students will attend an A/B blended cohort model, mixing in-person learning with virtual education. Marshfield High School students will attend in-person classes one out of every four days under the current plans.
The district will also offer a 100 percent virtual option for families preferring to keep their students at home.
See the full Tiger Return to Learn plan here:
Read the full story in the Aug. 5 print edition of the Hub City Times.