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last updated 7.23.20

RESTART MODEL FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

The Restart Jeffco plan represents our best thinking to date on how we intend to open schools this fall. Our plan provides quality in-person and remote/online learning options while taking important steps to protect the health of our students, staff, and community.

These FAQs will be updated as new information becomes available.

If you still have questions after reading the plan and reviewing the FAQs, please email restartjeffco@jeffco.k12.co.us.

GENERAL new badge
updated 8.13.20

NEW: What about enrollment for new students?

Newly-enrolled students will have option for in-person or remote learning at their designated neighborhood school. If a student is an out of district resident or a newly choice-enrolled Jeffco student, capacity at their school needs to be evaluated before the learning model is confirmed.

Why have changes been made to the original restart plan?

On Monday, July 20th CDE and CDPHE released guidance for school reopening in Colorado. Based on these guidelines, feedback from our staff and community, and with a deep commitment to health, safety, and equity, we are announcing important changes to our Restart Plan. Read the updated plan shared on July 23rd.

When does school officially start for Jeffco students for the 2020-21 school year?

Jeffco Public Schools will open with 100% remote learning for a two-week period beginning August 24 through September 4. 

On September 8, we plan on opening elementary schools (PreK-5) with 100% in-person and 100% remote options for families. For secondary schools (grades 6-12), we plan on opening with a hybrid schedule providing alternating days (A/B groups) of in-person learning and a 100% remote option for families.

This decision will allow us to better plan and prepare for in-person experiences, and to review the new health and safety procedures with students and families. It will also allow us greater time to prepare for a quality remote learning experience for those families who choose that option for their students.

What is the schedule for the various learning models for the start of the school year?

August 24 - September 4: All students begin classes in a Remote Learning environment.

August 31 - September 4: Remote learning continues and all students who have selected in-person learning will attend an orientation at their school building on a schedule developed by each school. Remote-only learners will also have an orientation opportunity, to be developed and planned by each school. Families will hear from their student’s school by July 31 with additional start-of-school details specific to their school.

Tuesday, September 8: PK-5 begins 100% in-person learning (with an ongoing remote-only option). Grades 6-12 begin hybrid learning.

The opening of schools on September 8 with in-person and hybrid options for Jeffco Public Schools will be contingent on virus levels in our community. Depending on how COVID-19 is spreading in our community, we will move between remote learning, in-person or hybrid learning, and fully in-person learning depending on public health levels as determined by JCPH. 

What are the local public health levels as determined by Jefferson County Public Health? Do these levels determine the type of learning model?

restart models

As can be seen, Jeffco Public Schools will move between remote, hybrid, and full in-person models depending on local public health determinations.

Stay at Home: All students remote.
Safer at Home: Begin school year remote, shift to 100% in-person/remote options for PreK-5/6 and hybrid/remote options for middle school and high school.
Protect our Neighbors: Shift to 100% in-person/remote options for all students after consideration of the state virus threat level, community infection rates, and available protective factors (i.e. the presence of vaccine and the demonstration that our virus mitigation efforts for in-person learning are effective).

Our ability to reopen schools and restore in-person learning experiences is contingent on the people in Jefferson County, and in the state of Colorado, doing your part to keep the spread of the virus down in our state and communities. The conditions under which we reopen schools are all of our responsibility.

What can families do in the meantime to prepare for back to school?

The best way to prepare for the week of August 24 is to stay informed - read emails from the District and your student’s school, and regularly stop by RestartJeffco, our one-stop shop for information, news, and FAQs. We know you have many questions and will be looking for information. We will update you via our Community Update email newsletter, on our main and RestartJeffco websites, and on our social media channels - Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Families will hear from their student’s school by July 31, if you have not already, with additional start of school details and schedules specific to their school. Please check your inbox and check your school’s website.

What about August graduation ceremonies scheduled for May 2020 graduates?

The in-person graduation ceremonies scheduled for August are being held outdoors with strict limitations on the number of attendees, abundant available spacing for social distancing, temperature and symptom screenings, and required face coverings. Jefferson County Public Health has thoroughly vetted the procedures for this graduation and approved them. These graduations will go forward as planned.

When do we expect to go back to normal (meaning ALL students doing 100% in-person learning)?

Unfortunately, we cannot predict that outcome. Our ultimate goal is to have ALL students back to the traditional learning model of in-person learning. We will continue to consult with public health officials for guidance.

Is it possible to withdraw and/or home-school my students from Jefferson County Public Schools for one year and then re-enroll them to resume their education at that time without penalty?

If your student(s) is currently enrolled at their boundary school, they are guaranteed an enrollment spot at that school whenever you decide to re-enroll. If your student(s) is currently choice-enrolled at a school and you withdraw them for the 2020-21 school year, you would need to re-apply through the choice enrollment process to secure enrollment for the 2021-22 school year. Enrollment offers at each school would then be sent in accordance with the priority structure outlined in District Policy JFBA – District Choice Enrollment. The Round 1 choice enrollment window for 2021-22 will open around December 8, 2020 and will close January 15, 2021.

If you are looking for more information on schools or which school is your designated boundary school, please refer to School Finder. This does not apply if you are choosing Remote Learning through your current school for the 2020-21 school year, as you will remain enrolled at the school for remote learning.

REMOTE LEARNING 
updated 7.30.20

Will Pre-K families who choose 100% remote be provided devices from the central department since they are managing ongoing remote?

Preschool utilizes SeeSaw, which is available as an app for phones and tablets; laptops will not be provided. Families with access concerns can contact the Early Learning team at 303-982-1737 to determine available supports.

What does the Remote Learning model look like? What improvements have been made since the spring?

Our shift to remote learning last spring has provided us with much insight and we will have a robust remote learning experience for all our students this fall. As described in the Restart Plan, we have now had time, through the summer months, to prepare technology, customize curriculum, unify resources, and create professional development for staff to deliver academic content in ways that meet the needs of all our students.

Starting this fall, the following expectations will be put into place across our schools whether we are serving students in-person or remotely.  

•Common Learning Management Systems (LMS) will be used across our school district.  
- Seesaw (PK-2)
- Google Classroom (3-12)
-Schoology (6-12)
•Students will experience synchronous learning each day at an established time on a schedule to accommodate the courses they will need to complete.  
•Each week, students will interact with their teachers in a face-to-face (Zoom or Google) environment.
•District assessments will be delivered remotely.
Teachers will have student data to plan for remediation and extension.
•School-based staff will serve as community outreach liaisons to engage parents.
Each school will have an outreach plan for parents and community members.
•Teachers will develop and enhance tools for remote learning and in-person learning during the additional days for training (8/14-8/21) before the start of school.

How will students and families be supported with technology in a remote and/or hybrid learning environment?

Jeffco Public Schools is committed to working with our schools and various departments, community partners, businesses, and others to ensure students have devices and access to home internet for remote learning or hybrid learning.

The following processes will support students and families to ensure access:  

1. Assess the condition of your student’s device. If it was damaged over the summer, please call 303-982-3438 to arrange to drop it off to be repaired before the start of school. Call the same number if you are missing a part, like a charger. If you had multiple students sharing a device in the spring, let your school know.

2. Families of incoming 5th and 9th graders, look for communications regarding your devices. All 5th and 9th grade students will receive a new device at the beginning of the school year as part of the TechForEd program. Their old devices will be collected, cleaned, and likely reused in lower grade levels unless the purchase agreements for those devices stated the family owned them at the end of their educational use.

3. Make plans for home internet access. If you do not currently have internet access at your home, check to see if you are eligible and apply for the Comcast Internet Essentials program. Additional low cost internet options are listed on the public website as well. If you are unable to obtain internet service, please let your school know so we can work with you to find a solution for your student. 

4. Reach out to get support when you need it. Bookmark our device support page on the Jeffco website and remember to call 303-982-3438 during the school year if your student needs technical support for remote learning.

HYBRID LEARNING 
updated 7.30.20

What will the Hybrid Learning model look like for middle/high school students?

Learning continues both in-person and remotely. Visit this page to read more about what the Hybrid schedules will look like.

IN-PERSON LEARNING 
updated 7.23.20

What is meant by a cohort? How many students are in a cohort?

Cohorting refers to the practice of ensuring that student and staff groupings are as consistent as possible every day by having the same group of children stay with the same staff (all day for young children, and as much as possible for older children). Building principals should maintain structures that support students with individual needs while minimizing the intermingling of cohorts. The number of students who select in-person learning, together with other school-specific scheduling needs will determine cohort sizes on a school-by-school basis. This data is still being collected from families.

Teachers will work with cohorts of students at all levels as assigned by a school principal or other administrator in order to limit contact between student groups. 
PK - 5th Grade: Students will stay with the same cohort of students for the entire day.
6th-12th Grade: Students will be scheduled into much smaller student groupings than what is present in the typical middle and high school experience. Students will participate in a maximum of 4 classes during the school day. Additionally, given the hybrid learning model at the middle and high schools, students will maintain 6 feet of social distance.

What will a typical school day look like, especially when it comes to safety protocols (masks, social distancing, specials, etc.)?

At this time, we are working and planning for what a typical school day will look like. We will follow the guidelines set forth by public health officials. We will have more details about specifics over the next few weeks. Building administrators will develop a draft plan for pick up/drop off, building entry, transitions throughout the school day, bus loading, symptom screening, lunch/recess schedules, etc. before students arrive in August. Please view (link) our "A Day In The Life" videos of elementary, middle, and high school students at school to gain a better idea of what students can expect when they return to school. In the meantime, you can learn more from the plan in Section 9 about what classrooms will look like. 

Will there be specials and what will these classes look like (art, music, PE)?

Most of the protocols for specials will be ultimately decided at the school-level. Please contact your school for more details about these classes.

Plans are still in development on what these classes will look like. For example, rotating teachers (music, art, PE, etc.) will visit classrooms rather than cohorts of students moving. For middle school and high school students, elective courses will be offered each trimester/semester.

Guidelines to promote safe participation within all choice and elective programs including Visual Arts, Music, Choir, Band, Orchestra, PE, and Theater will be communicated before the start of school.

Will there be a teacher designated to in-person learning and another teacher designated to remote learning?

In early July, we asked employees for their preference of work environment by confirming an intention to return to an in-person assignment or request a remote work assignment. The District will review requests for remote work with consideration given to employees with underlying health conditions. The information collected will be used at the school level to build and manage school schedules and educator assignments. This same flexibility will be considered within all groups of employees, and the District will make every reasonable effort to meet the requests and needs of staff through schedule flexibility, work location flexibility, or leaves of absence. From school to school, teacher assignment may look different depending on the school’s capacity and other factors.

Will schools allow volunteers and visitors during the school day?

No volunteers, visitors, or non-employees should access the building during the school day. Drop-off spaces will be set up outside of the main doors for parents to place items to be delivered to students. Systems for checking students in and out of school during the day may need to be changed to meet public health guidelines.

What will lunch look like for students?

A single grade level cohort of students may eat lunch in their classroom and play together at recess. 

  • Students will wash their hands before and after eating.
  • Students will clean their own area after eating.
  • Cold lunch totes/bags/boxes should be stored in the child’s backpack or near their desk (not in a community tote).
  • All meals & snacks will be consumed in classrooms, outside, or in reorganized common spaces and monitored by staff. Students will go to the cafeteria to pick up “grab and go” hot lunch. 
  • Students will need to wash or sanitize their hands before coming back into the classroom.
  • High schools will have closed campuses for lunch and off block periods.
  • No outside delivery from restaurants (ex. Grub Hub, Seamless, etc.) to schools will be permitted.

What will recess look like?

Students will likely go to recess in staggered shifts to limited groupings outside at once.

  • Schools may stagger the use of the playground equipment and should disinfect it in between uses. Students will need to wash or sanitize their hands before going outside and before coming back inside.
  • Use of water fountains is not permitted. Students should bring water bottles from home or be provided water bottles to use at school.
  • Face coverings do not need to be worn outside.
SCHOOL LEARNING MODELS 
updated 7.28.20

Will families be able to select an in-person or remote learning model for their student? What if they change their mind once school starts?

Families that have elementary-aged students can choose the learning model that will work best for them by completing the Learning Preference Form that's been available since July 8 as soon as possible.

For families that have middle and high school students, there will be a new learning preference form that will be sent out to families on Monday, August 3 from your student's school. This new form is based on our revised Restart Plan, where you can choose the designated hybrid option or remote-only option. Once you receive the form from your school, please complete this form by Friday, August 7 to support school planning. Please reach out to your school if you feel unprepared to complete the form.

Likewise, families/students will be able to change from remote to in-person or vice versa at certain intervals after the start of school.

What are the potential Learning Models for the upcoming school year?

The learning models include:

1. In-Person Learning - 100% in-person learning, five days a week, grades PreK - 5 provided health guidelines and restrictions are followed.  In-person learning includes: masks required & limited cohort groupings of students; additional wellness screenings and health measures.

2. Remote Learning - 100% Remote/online learning offered to students in grades PreK - 12. Must be available for all students. Students engage in their education using technology and online tools.

3. Hybrid Learning -  Learning continues both in-person and remotely. Face-to-face settings follow protocols set forth by state and county directives, as well as Jeffco Public Schools safety standards. In-person learning includes: masks required & 6-feet of social distancing, smaller groups of students attend school for in-person learning, and additional wellness screenings and health measures are implemented. Students engage remotely when not in-person. This will be offered to middle and high school students only (50% In-Person & 50% Remote) with a hybrid schedule providing alternating days (A/B groups) of in-person learning.

HEALTH & SAFETY GUIDELINES new badge
updated 8.13.20

NEW: What will the daily health screenings look like for staff and students?

Daily health checks and screenings (temperature and screening questions) will be conducted by trained staff at time of entry to the building. Any individual who does not successfully pass symptom screening will be moved to a medical safe room where they will be re-screened and supported until able to return home. 

Trained district staff wearing the appropriate district-provided protective equipment will conduct temperature screening protocols and monitor students and staff entering buildings. Specifically, health aides, paraprofessionals, campus supervisors, office staff, and administrators will conduct screenings. Other staff may volunteer to provide these vital services and they will also be specially trained on proper procedures and provided the necessary protective equipment.

Will there be COVID-19 testing available for staff and students?

The District will provide for rapid availability testing for symptomatic staff and students or those who believe they were exposed to the virus. We will quickly (rapidly) get them to testing sites when they are symptomatic. We will provide staff and families with the testing site locations so they can get tested quickly when they present with symptoms. The District will also reimburse employees for out-of-pocket expenses they incur for private testing.

What are the expectations around masks in schools relating to the most recent Jefferson County Public Health Order?

According to Jefferson County’s newest Public Health Order regarding indoor and outdoor mask requirements, Jeffco Public Schools states the following:

Grades Pk-5th 

  • Required to be worn at all times: entry/exit to school buildings, hallways, classrooms, and common areas.
  • Masks may be off when outside, while also in cohorts and practicing 6 feet of social distancing.
    Masks may be removed for small 5 minute breaks for snack and drinks of water and during lunch time.

Grades 6th-12th

  • Required to be worn at all times: entry/exit to school buildings, hallways, classrooms, and common areas.
  • Masks may be off when outside and practicing 6 feet of social distancing.
    Masks may be off when eating or drinking during lunch time.
In athletics/activities: 
  • Masks required to be worn when entering/exiting the fields/courts and during symptom screening.
  • Masks required to be worn at all times during indoor work-outs/practices.
  • Masks may be removed when outside and physical exertion makes it difficult to breathe

In addition, personal protection equipment (PPE) will be provided to staff including masks (in some cases medical grade, depending on the role), face shields, gloves, and sanitizer. Supplies will be provided to students who need them. Students (or parents) who refuse to wear a mask and who do not have a valid and approved exception, will not be able to attend in-person classes. Read Mask/Face Coverings Do's and Don'ts for more information.

Are there more details about mitigation efforts to ensure our staff and students are safe during in-person learning?

Yes. There are more details around masks, social distancing, ventilation, etc. Please see pages 3 & 4 of the updated restart plan.

What if a school or the district receives word of a positive COVID-19 case or outbreak?

Decisions relating to quarantining or building closures will be made in collaboration with JCPH based on the facts and the individual circumstances. Minimally, if a student or staff member tests positive, the other students in their cohort, or any they may have had contact with, will be quarantined for a period of 14 days and transition to remote learning for that time.

What is the plan for cleaning schools during the school week?

School classrooms and common areas will be cleaned regularly, and sanitized as needed, according to protocols developed by the Custodial Services Department, JCPH, and CDPHE. Cleaning will be completed primarily by custodial staff, with light spray/maintenance completed by Jeffco Public Schools staff during the school day. Cleaning and sanitizing classroom spaces will be everyone’s job and responsibility and sufficient cleaning materials and supplies have already been purchased.

What is Jeffco doing about ventilation in district buildings?

Ventilation system improvements and modifications have been made to reduce virus spread. Jeffco Public Schools buildings have ventilation systems that are centrally monitored and controlled. Metro area schools are all air conditioned. Mountain area schools have operable windows to open. All schools, regardless of location, have ventilation systems designed to bring in fresh air. The amount of outdoor air in all systems has been increased by 50-100% over prior levels. While occupied, the ventilation systems operate continuously. The volume of air in classrooms and other spaces is renewed, refreshed, and filtered 7.5 to 10 times per hour. Ventilation systems use specifically designed air filters to provide the maximum amount of filtration while not impacting air changes to rooms. They are inspected and changed on a regular basis. Temperatures will be closely monitored for comfort and to facilitate mask wearing. A number of our facilities are receiving upgrades to ventilation systems as part of the Capital Improvement Plan funded by the passage of 5B in 2018. These improvements will significantly improve comfort and air quality and contribute to mitigating the spread of disease.

What steps are being taken to ensure a healthy school environment for staff and students?

The Restart Plan is based on the following assumptions (subject to change):

Public Health:

  • Utilize 6 feet of social distancing where possible:
    • Individual space should be 6 feet apart from others in the classroom when possible.
    • Individuals should be facing in the same direction.
    • Movement in hallways should maintain the 6 feet distancing when feasible. 
  • Use of common spaces:
    • Cafeterias, gymnasiums, auditoriums, are prohibited for large group gatherings or mixing cohort groups.
  • Staff and student face coverings are required when social distancing cannot be maintained.
    • Face coverings do not need to be worn outside. 
  • Symptom screening expectations will be implemented.
    • All staff and students must participate in symptom screening once a day upon entry.
  • Hand washing and hygiene protocols must be followed.
  • Student classroom cohort groupings are consistent and limited to the same classmates to the extent possible.
    • Elementary students will be with their same cohort group of classmates during the day.
    • Secondary students will be limited to four in-person classes during the day. 
SCHOOL PROGRAMS new badge
updated 8.07.20

NEW: Will School Age Enrichment programs (SAE) be offered to families this year? What are the expectations?

UPDATE: Families currently enrolled for SAE/child care for the 2020-2021 school year at one of the 27 schools where they have programs may choose to attend the 2-week period of Aug. 24 - Sept. 4 at one of the six schools listed below. Space is limited; they are only accepting 30 students at each site to be able to maintain safe distancing practices and stable cohorts. The families who qualify to attend have been emailed.

Care will be provided at the following schools during that time:

  • Campbell Elementary
  • Kyffin Elementary 
  • Lukas Elementary
  • Mortensen Elementary 
  • Prospect Valley Elementary
  • Westgate Elementary

Hours of operation will be 7:30am - 4:30pm with a 30 minute overlap on each end so staff can prepare for the day, as well as clean/disinfect. 

Be sure to read the updated SAE protocols to learn more about what families should expect this school year. 

NEW: Will Outdoor Lab take place this school year for 6th graders?

Outdoor Lab is currently planning to serve students and schools according to its published calendar, beginning with Evergreen Middle School on August 31. However, like everything else this year, protocols will be different in order to meet all health and safety guidelines related to COVID-19.

Here are some basics:

  • The traditional five day and four night experience will be compartmentalized into a two day experience with no overnights.
  • 25 students per bus will ride up to Mount Evans OELS and Windy Peak OELS daily for a total of 50 students per site, per day. 
  • Students will be divided into groups that either attend on Monday and Tuesday or Wednesday and Thursday.  
  • While at the OELS, they will remain in cohorts of students as required by health and safety guidelines.
  • The OELS experience will include the best of the Outdoor Lab activities and experiences so that it can continue to be a memory that is shared by every Jeffco 6th Grader.

Will Grab and Go Meals still be available during the school week no matter the learning environment?

Jeffco Public Schools will continue to provide meal service to students to the extent possible for in-person and remote/online learners. Therefore, the meal service program may be a combination of in-school serving and a “grab & go” program similar to the one implemented in the spring of 2020. While Food and Nutrition Services awaits guidance from governmental agencies, specifics regarding meal distribution and student identification will be communicated as they become available. 
Please visit the Grab and Go Meals Info page for more information.

Will charter schools be implementing this schedule as well?

Charter schools will be following JCPH guidelines but their schedule may look different. Please contact your charter school for more information.

student services

How will schools be serving students when it comes to mental health in the new school year?

Mental health support will continue and will be more important now than ever. We realize due to COVID and remote learning this spring, students may have additional needs. Our schools will continue to provide services so every child will be set up for success. If you have specific needs you'd like to address about your child, please be sure to contact your individual school in August.

How will my child be supported if they require additional support for unique learning needs?

Special education providers will continue to support students with unique needs by working with students and their families so they can be successful whether students are remote or in-person. 

Families and staff will discuss and agree to a set of prioritized services to be delivered in person, when possible. Other services will continue remotely as specified in the Remote IEP Services Plan. For more specific questions about special education, visit the SPED FAQs for families.

Each school’s Gifted and Talented Resource Teacher (RT) will be available to support families, staff and students, in both hybrid and remote environments. We will continue to support GT students through ALP goal setting and progress monitoring throughout the year.
ATHLETICS & ACTIVITIES 
updated 8.05.20

What about athletics/activities for the upcoming school year?

For Colorado High School Activities Association (CHSAA) sanctioned athletics and activities, we will follow the guidance and directives being provided to the rest of the state. For non-CHSAA activities, those will move forward in the district using the same virus mitigation strategies and protocols described for in-school operations.

Currently, softball, cross-country, boys tennis and boys golf have been given approval to begin play this fall. Learn the latest here.

In addition, the remainder of the CHSAA 2020-21 activities calendar was released on August 4. View updates here. Please keep in mind that activities and athletics are subject to change based upon any changes to national, state or local guidelines related to COVID-19.

When will athletic practices and activities begin after school?

If a specific sport is set to be played this fall, practices will start at 3PM. Variances on this time need to be approved by principals, coaches, and ADs at the school level.

Will students go on field trips?

All field trips and activities away from school are cancelled for the time being.

This decision will be revisited at the end of the first quarter of the school year on Friday, October 16.

Can students who are choosing the remote learning option still participate in athletics and activities?

Yes. Students who choose the remote learning option will be able to participate in athletics and activities, if they are offered this fall through CHSAA.
TRANSPORTATION
updated 7.16.20

What will bus service look like this school year?

In accordance with the CDC and JCPH guidelines, bus capacity will be restricted to 22-24 passengers or less depending on the school bus size. Below are additional expectations for student riders who are eligible:

  • All students will be required to wear face coverings.
    Parents will be expected to take their child’s temperature before leaving the house and to withhold an ill student from riding the bus. 
  • Bused students will be symptom screened upon arrival at school.
  • Students must sit one per seat on the school bus starting from the second row of the school bus.
  • If students live in the same residence, those students will be required to sit together in the same seat to increase rider capacity.
  • Students will load the bus from the rear and unload from the front.
  • Students will not be allowed to change seats while riding on the bus. 
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