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2020-21 Reopening Plan

Reopening Plan - Click here to view

FAQ: General

Yes, the Board of Education will consider approving the plan in its current form or with potential changes at the August 17 Board meeting.

The district will utilize School Messenger to send texts and emails. Updates will also be posted to the district’s Facebook page and website.

FAQ: Instructional Programming

As of today, we are planning to return to school in-person, five days per week, with specific risk mitigation procedures in place.

Parents can choose between in person instruction or remote learning.  For the remote learning option, we are asking for a trimester commitment.

Instructional models could change by classroom, building, grade level, or district.  These decisions will be made in conjunction with our local health department.  In the event that individual classrooms, grade levels, schools, or the entire district are ordered to quarantine or close by the De Pere Health Department, daily instruction will temporarily shift to a remote learning structure led by your child’s teachers.

As the district engaged in planning for the return to school, all scheduling scenarios in the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction’s Education Forward document were considered.

No, a medical excuse or documented underlying health condition is not needed in order for a family to consider the remote learning option. For the remote learning option, we are asking for a trimester commitment.

Standard grading practices will be used.

FAQ: Risk Mitigation Practices

Yes, they will be required for all staff and for all students grades 4K - 12.  Cloth face coverings are most essential in times when physical and social distancing is difficult and can assist with minimizing the risk of transmission to both students and staff.  Therefore, the use of cloth face coverings will be one of WDPSD’s most critical prevention measures which allows our schools to start safely and stay open.  

"Face covering'' means a piece of cloth or other material that is worn to cover the nose and mouth completely. A face covering includes but is not limited to a cloth face mask, a bandana, a disposable or paper mask, or a neck gaiter.  A face covering does not include face shields, mesh masks, or masks with holes or openings.

There may be face covering breaks when social distancing can be maintained and during vigorous physical exercise. There will be face covering breaks while outside and while eating.  

Information regarding the proper use, removal, and washing of face coverings will be provided to parents and reinforced with students at school. 

Face coverings will be provided for students who come to school without one.

If there is a medical reason that prohibits a student or staff member from wearing a face covering, medical documentation will be required and must be submitted to the district nurse. 

Should a student with a disability require exceptional circumstances, we will work with the students and families to develop the skill and problem solve around the challenges of wearing a mask.

The placement of student desks and tables will be evaluated by classroom teachers in order to maintain physical distance among students to the greatest extent possible. 

All areas within the school will be disinfected daily following their final use for the day.  This includes desks, tables, bookcases, and other hard surfaces within the classroom.  This also ensures that all learning areas will be ready for school in the morning.

During the course of the school day, custodial staff will focus on disinfecting high touch areas throughout the building.  This will include door knobs, handrails, light switches, and other locations determined by the custodian and building staff.  All classrooms will also be equipped with a spray bottle of disinfectant and microfiber cloths that can be used throughout the day as deemed necessary by the classroom teacher. 

Whenever possible, each student will have his/her own materials/supplies to use.  However, when it is necessary to share materials and supplies, they will be disinfected throughout the day. 

Other mitigation strategies that may be used include, but are not limited to:

  • Floor markings in high traffic area
  • Plexiglass shields in office and in food service areas
  • Teaching of hand washing routines and coughing/sneezing etiquette
  • Signage reminders throughout the buildings
  • Backpacks allowed in classrooms to minimize hallway congestion with lockers
  • Water bottles allowed (no drinking fountains)
  • Assigned lunch room seating
  • Pre-packaged grab and go meals with no self service options
  • Altered passing times (secondary)
  • Cohorting classrooms (elementary)
  • Swiping ID badges for lunch room check out rather than using the keypad
  • Sanitation stations in key locations in buildings
  • Spreading out and/or staggering lunchroom and recess procedures
  • Altered arrival and dismissal procedures to be defined by each building

Sanitation stations include hand sanitizer, gloves, and surgical masks. 

No. The use of volunteers in our buildings is suspended until further notice, unless it is related directly to curricular needs.  Those volunteers will be screened prior to entry. There will be opportunities for parents to volunteer virtually or from home.

All meetings, including open house, parent/teacher conferences, and IEP meetings will be held virtually using Google Meet.

FAQ: Student/Staff Health

Parents/guardians will be notified by the De Pere Health Department if their child has been in close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID 19.  (Close contact is defined by the De Pere Health Department as having been within 6 feet or closer for fifteen or more cumulative minutes during the time that the person who tested positive would have been contagious.)  This notification will include guidance and information regarding the need to quarantine. 

The De Pere Health Department, together with school and district administration, will make classroom/school quarantine and closing decisions on a case by case basis. 

Parents will be responsible for daily home screening of their students.  This includes reviewing health screening questions each morning prior to sending their child(ren) to school.  These questions include:

  • Has my child had any signs or symptoms of a fever in the past 24 hours, such as chills or sweats, or had a temperature that is elevated or greater than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit?
  • Does my child have any of the following symptoms:  cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, nasal congestion/runny nose, body aches, loss of taste and/or smell, diarrhea, nausea, or vomiting?

Please keep your child home if he/she is not well.  Do not medicate your child to temporarily curb symptoms.  If a child tests positive, the parent or guardian should contact the district nurse and the De Pere Health Department as soon as possible.

We recognize our increased emphasis on having students stay home if they are feeling ill will probably cause more students than usual to miss school.  Individual circumstances will be taken into consideration.

No, instruction will be provided for students during quarantine.  This may happen in a variety of formats, depending on the grade level and the length and type of quarantine.

Students who present with symptoms of COVID 19 during the school day will safely rest in each school’s identified isolated satellite health room while waiting for the arrival of a parent or guardian.  The school will contact the student’s parent or guardian to pick up the student as soon as possible.  A pre-identified staff person will stay with the student while awaiting the parent or guardian’s arrival.

An isolation room is an extra health room in each school that is not located near the school office.  It will be staffed by a trained health aide at each building.   It will be equipped with appropriate PPE and will provide a place for students to rest comfortably while they are waiting to be picked  up if they are exhibiting symptoms of COVID 19.

FAQ: Transportation

Bus ridership will determine routes. To maximize student safety on the bus, the following safety procedures will be in place:

  • Masks will be required of drivers and riders.
  • The bus will be filled from the back to the front.
  • As much as possible, one child to a seat, with the exception of family members who will sit together in the same seat.
  • Seats will be assigned.
  • High touch areas of each bus will be disinfected between each route.
  • Windows will be cracked open for ventilation purposes when weather allows.

As with all other potential exposure situations, if your child has been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID 19, the De Pere Health Department will provide notification regarding the need to quarantine and the duration of that quarantine.

FAQ: Special Education/Section 504 Plans

Schools will follow established procedures and services for students in special education based on each student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP). It may not be feasible, depending on the needs of the individual student, to adhere both to distancing guidelines and the criteria outlined in the IEP. In these situations IEP teams may collaborate to seek creative solutions and/or revise the student’s IEP.

Special education supports and services will be available for all delivery models and will be provided based upon the student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP). Services will be determined individually in collaboration with parents. Case managers will be reaching out and communicating with parents in late August upon their return to the work setting.

There may not be a need to meet to update an IEP or 504 as long as services are provided in a manner that matches the student’s individual plan.  If changes are needed or other issues need to be discussed, please reach out to your child’s case manager. If you have selected the virtual instructional format, the special education case manager will be reaching out. 

The answer is yes and yes.  We will be working to reach out to you early in the year as each special education case manager will be connecting with students on their caseload and their guardians.  We have roughly 400 students receiving special education students, so this may happen before school or in the early days of school being back in session.  Counselors will be reaching out related to 504s as the school year begins and as they communicate those plans with teachers.  If you have concerns, questions, or would like to speak with us please do not hesitate to reach out to your case manager or school counselor in late August.  You may also reach out to our Director of Student Services, Amy Schuh. We always value and want to encourage parent involvement and communication.  Please do not hesitate to reach out to us!

The district has ordered special masks that allow the therapist’s mouth to be visible for speech and language therapy sessions.  This will allow them to demonstrate proper techniques to the students they serve.  Some additional disposable masks have been ordered when students have the limited need for these masks in therapy. 

The Department of Public Instruction released guidance for consideration of “additional services” just before the end of the last school year.  Our district focussed on addressing this need with our graduating seniors in the final days of last school year.  The guidance will be shared with staff in August and a district letter will be sent to all guardians of students in special education in early September.  The guidance and information will assist the IEP teams in working collaboratively to examine this on an individual basis over the first six months of the 2020-21 school year. 

COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Resources

The following resources for our parents and community provide factual information about COVID-19 and will be updated as new information becomes availble.

The following list is comprised of communications sent out by the School District of West De Pere regarding the COVID-19 Virus.