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July 6, 2020
As we indicated in last week’s communication, we are asking each family to complete a survey about their plans for their child’s return to school for the 2020-2021 school year. The link to the survey is below. The survey questions are based on our ability to fully reopen our schools for face-to-face learning. The Return to Learn Plan we sent out last week included the details of what your kids can expect school to look like and what we will to do make our facilities and buses COVID-19-aware, rather than COVID-19-free. 

There are a couple additional things we want you to know prior to completing the survey. First, choosing the distance learning option for your children is temporary, and is based on a COVID-19 related health concerns you have in your household. (If you have multiple students enrolled in our district, you can choose a different format for each child.) The answers you provide on the survey now, do not lock you in to a decision for August 13th since many things could change before school starts. The information we learn from the survey will help us in planning for face-to-face learning. Parents will be asked to make a final decision about possible distance learning at a later date. 

Second, the experience students have when learning in the distance format will be significantly different than what students experience in a face-to-face setting. Students will be provided with essential content in each core subject area if they are learning from home, but some courses won’t be experienced in the same way. Also, not all courses that are available at school will be available in the distance learning format. Some elective courses simply cannot be properly taught off school grounds. We are working on a list of the courses that won’t be available to distance learning students and we will share that information with you when it is available. 

The distance learning structure is meant to be temporary. Our goal with all students in the remote learning format, is that they return to school as soon as they are able. The distance learning format is not something that students can move in and out of on a daily basis. Once this option is selected, the student will remain in this format until a plan to return to school can be made with the building principal and the student’s teacher(s). If your child is a high school student and they will be learning remotely, they will be required to stay in this format for the entire trimester because the course content and pacing will be different than a course being taught in person. 

Please remember that our plan to return to face-to-face instruction in August is subject to change. Based on the guidance we receive from the governor, the Iowa Department of Education, and the Dubuque County Public Health Department, there may be a need to alter the plan to align with current health trends. As we update and change the plan, we will communicate these changes to you.

Please take a few minutes to click on the link below to complete the survey. The survey is due on Monday, July 13th. This information is very important for us as we prepare for our first day of school on August 13th. Once we have compiled the data, we will share any updates and changes with you.

Take care of yourself and your family.

Survey Link:

Rick Colpitts, Superintendent
Western Dubuque Community School District