It’s been a herculean effort from our team to make sure families have a voice in selecting their student’s education.
We are encouraged by the two-week average number of confirmed cases per 100k in Island County, which is now down to around 11. This data is monitored regularly with Island County Public Health to make sure our schools are ready to open in Phase 2 of our six-phase plan.
We still have many projects going on behind the scenes. However, we feel it is important to share as many of the finalized details as possible to keep you informed. You can expect continued updates and communications as we approach the start of the school year.
“SOFT START” FOR SCHOOL ON SEPTEMBER 14-15
Our first two scheduled days of school is what we’re calling a “soft start” and will be more like orientation and conference days. This is a chance for teachers, support staff, and advisors to meet families in person or virtually. These will be scheduled through Skyward and conducted in-person for PK-4 students attending in the hybrid rotation model. Hybrid activities include meeting the teacher, picking up materials, and an orientation about the new safety guidelines and procedures.
Schools serving grades 5-12 will pass out equipment, supplies, and books during the week of Sept. 8 and then connect individually with students (mostly virtually/distance unless they will be receiving on-site services such as SPED) during the soft start. More details to come.
SCHEDULES AND GROUP PLACEMENTS
Our schools are finishing contacting each family in the district to determine their preferred instructional model for the 2020-21 school year. Next week, we will begin placing students in their preferred instructional model. For elementary students, this means placing them in either the hybrid rotation model or distance learning.
For the hybrid rotation students, we will also determine their group placement to identify which days they will receive in-person instruction and which days are designated for distance learning. We will need to balance students evenly between the “A” and “B” schedule, so not all requests can be honored. However, we will keep families with multiple children on the same schedule or opposite schedules as indicated on the intent form.
For grades 5-12, we are creating schedules based on whether families expect to return to campus if community conditions continue to improve.
We hope to notify families in early September of their teachers and schedules. In an effort to reduce the crowding of our schools, we will not post-elementary teacher lists on school windows. Instead, this information can be found on Skyward Family Access. When it becomes available, we will provide detailed instructions for families. In addition, families will also be asked to update their family information and verify their account is accurate (addresses, phone numbers, emails, etc).
Families who completed an in-district transfer form should receive a phone call from their school in the first week of September.
SPECIAL EDUCATION SERVICES
Students on IEPs will be hearing from their case managers shortly. Now that we have a better understanding of how many students we expect in our schools, our Special Education Department can finalize its plan for offering services and meeting the needs of IEPs under our instructional models. Please be patient as we work through this process.
STUDENT EMAILS ARE CHANGING
We have always prided ourselves on protecting student privacy, whether that’s in our schools or virtually. In an effort to automate student account creations, standardize student email accounts, and protect student data, we are changing student logins and email addresses on Tuesday, September 1.
The new format for student Google accounts will be:
- First five letters of the student’s last name, first three letters of the student’s first name and three digits starting with 000. (The digits increase by one to prevent duplication).
- The initial password for all student accounts will still be oak(lunch number).
For example - John Smith
As of September 1, students’ current OHPS Google logins will no longer work. To log in, they will need to use their new login and password. No prior Google Drive files or emails will be lost in this process.
If you have any difficulties logging in after September 1, please contact the Oak Harbor Public Schools Information Services Help Desk at 360-279-5589.
CHROMEBOOKS AND SCHOOL SUPPLIES
We are excited to be providing all required school supplies for students this year. That’s right. No school supply list this year. We know this pandemic has been hard on many of our families, and we are hoping to lessen the burden of costs associated with the start of the school year. We also know that shopping at this time can be a challenge. We are grateful to our generous community for supporting our local levy that allows us to offer this service.
We are also issuing Chromebooks to each student this year. Your student will keep this device for the entire year and will need to bring it to school for any in-person learning. Whether your child is doing in-person learning, Distance Plus, the Oak Harbor Virtual Academy, or HomeConnection, we will make sure they have the electronic device to receive a quality education.
To make sure each student receives a Chromebook, any families who still have their Chromebooks from the spring should return them to Oak Harbor High School any time between 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Monday-Thursday. Our last day for Chromebook drop-offs is Thursday, August 28. If you can’t make those times, please contact our district office and we will coordinate a time that works for you.
Chromebooks need to be returned to make sure they are cleaned and updated to reissue to students this fall. Older Chromebooks are also being retired and replaced with new ones.
FREE & REDUCED LUNCH APPLICATIONS
Each year, families who qualify for free and reduced lunch must fill out a new application. Even if your student didn’t qualify for services last year, we strongly encourage all of our families to fill out an application. We know many families have been impacted by the pandemic, which may have changed their income. The application process is available online and takes minutes. Please review the following resources:
We are so thankful for this wonderful community that has supported its schools during this global pandemic. We have a lot of work ahead of us and will continue to keep you informed every step of the way. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out to your student’s school.