Important Family Information
We are excited to welcome your family back to another school year with Oak Harbor Public Schools. After enduring one of the most difficult years in our district’s history, we are proud to have served over 2,200 students during the summer with our athletic camps, community programs, and school enrichment camps. We hope your family was able to enjoy one of our many free summer opportunities.
As we prepare for the upcoming school year, there are some important items families need to know before the first day of school. In addition to this email, our schools will provide specific communication in the coming days and weeks. Please feel free to let us know if you have any questions.
FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL
Back by popular demand, we are hosting Family Connection days to kick off the school year. Family Connection or Student Orientation days will begin on Tuesday, Sept. 7, and all students will be at their school sites for regular length school days starting Thursday, Sept. 9. However, the first couple of school days (Sept. 7 & 8) will look more like an orientation than a regular school day. The structure of these programs will be different based on your child’s grade level. Over the coming days and weeks, schools will directly communicate information about the start of the school year to parents.
Transportation services will begin on Tuesday, Sept. 9. Since the first two days of the school year are Family Connection Days or Student Orientations, no transportation will be provided (Sept. 7 & 8).
All families needing transportation to or from school are required to fill out the following transportation request form. Even if your child received transportation services in previous years, families still need to fill out the transportation form. No action is required of families who don’t need our school bus services. As a reminder, only students residing outside the one-mile walking area are eligible for transportation. For elementary students, they must live outside the one-mile walking area and be attending their school of residence. Don't hesitate to get in touch with our transportation team if you have any questions.
Any students participating in our SPED programs with an IEP for transportation will automatically enroll in our program. Those families are not required to fill out the transportation form.
Last week, Governor Inslee held a press conference requiring students and staff to wear masks indoors on school property regardless of whether they’ve been vaccinated or not. This aligns with guidance from the Washington Department of Health, the Island County Department of Health, and the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI). At this time, the mitigation policies we used in the spring will continue into the fall unless further guidance from the Department of Health or the Governor’s office is given. Per the Department of Health’s latest guidance, families are not required to wear face coverings when picking up or dropping off their children as long as they remain outdoors.
We know for many families, the mask mandate may be a cause for concern. For those wishing to voice their opinions, please directly contact the Governor’s Office by using this online form.
LATE START WEDNESDAYS
One additional change occurring this school year is a shift to late start Wednesdays. This will replace our early release Mondays from previous years. The reason for Late Start Wednesdays is to provide an extra hour of sleep for students mid-week, improve alignment with after-school sports and activities, and allow staff to engage in professional development training in the morning.
On Wednesdays, all schedules will start one hour later. Your child’s school will be sending communication with specific start times and bell schedules.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has extended the FREE meals program through the 2021-22 school year. This is great news for our families. However, even though FREE meals are provided to all students, we strongly encourage all parents to submit a free or reduced meal application for their household. Filling out a meal application may help provide many resources for your student and their school. In addition, eligible families who fill out the form before August 31 may qualify for P-EBT benefits. You may pick up an application at any school or the district office. Electronic forms are available on our website or by accessing the Food Service tab in Skyward Family Access.
We look forward to welcoming your child back to our schools. We will have more information to share in the coming days and weeks, so you must review our communications carefully and thoroughly. Thank you for your continued partnership as we work together to provide your child one of the best educations in the state and country.