Revised Guidelines for School Reopening
Revised Guidelines for School Reopening
Inola Public Schools
Thursday, August 13, 2020

Inola Schools COVID-19 Guidelines for 2020-2021

As you are aware, the guidelines for dealing with COVID-19 have changed frequently (sometimes daily!).  Because of this, we assume there will be times we have to adjust our guidelines to adequately address these changes.  When we do, we will update the information below.  

Inola Public Schools will follow the Oklahoma Department of Health (ODH) Guidelines and Return to Learn Oklahoma Framework provided by the Oklahoma State Department of Education in planning for reopening in the fall.  We hope the following information helps answer many of the questions you may have about our reopening.

Our goal will be to provide as safe as possible experience while will include a rich educational experience, with opportunities for social interaction and extracurricular while adhering to guidelines provided by the Oklahoma Department of Health.  

What is the first day of school for students?

School will begin on August 13, 2020 as originally planned.  This date will only change if ODH sends updated guidance on the reopening, but this is not anticipated.

Who will be required to wear face coverings?

Currently, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the Oklahoma Department of Health (ODH) is recommending all individuals 10 years old and over wear a face covering.  Students in grades 5-12 will be required to wear a face mask when social distancing is not possible (hallways, buses, etc.).  Social distancing as defined by the ODH is not being closer than 6 feet to someone else for more than 15 minutes.  Students under 10 years of age and those with health issues and special needs will not be asked to wear face coverings.  Parents and guests will be required to wear a mask upon entering the building.  Masks will not be provided for parents and guests.

Will bus transportation be provided?

Yes, the district will provide bus transportation for all students.  Based on current ODH guidelines, we asking all students to wear face coverings when riding the bus.  Due to the requirement to keep the bus numbers as low as possible, student’s will only be dropped off at one location this year (this location will be the address provided upon enrollment).  If your child needs to get to any alternate location, you will need to provide transportation (for example, attending a friend’s birthday party after school).  The exception is that we will still provide transportation to the Daycares and Wednesday Church programs.  

How normal will the school day be for a student?

Our goal is for your student(s) to have as normal of a school day as possible while we also provide as much safety as possible.  When students arrive at school, either by bus or parent, they will have a temperature screening before entering public spaces such as the cafeteria or gymnasium.  Upon completing the screening, students will proceed to their designated area.  Students will be screened daily.  Students will not remain in the same classroom all day but will be able to transition from one class to another, following social distancing as much as possible.

Will students at Inola still have extra classes like athletics, art, music, guidance and library?

Yes, students will continue to participate in activity classes, check out library books, and receive guidance and gifted instruction.  Sporting events will be held according to OSSAA and ODH recommendations.

Will social distancing guidelines be observed?

Social distancing will be observed as much as possible but at times students will be closer than the recommended 6 ft. apart.  When social distancing requirements cannot be maintained such as class exchange time, etc., students will wear face coverings.  We will redesign classrooms and cafeteria spaces to increase the space between students but cannot always guarantee it will be 6 ft.  We strongly encourage even elementary students to wear a mask and to not touch or breathe on one another.

Will students be arranged differently to protect students?

In every space possible, classrooms will be arranged to provide more space between students.  That might mean all desks are arranged in rows facing in a single direction.  It might result in reading areas with bean bags, couches or comfy chairs being removed.  It might include dividers between students who are seated at a table.  We will make every effort to provide distance but not limit students’ ability to interact and communicate with others in their classroom.  Additionally, supplies and materials will not be shared by students.  Students will be allowed and are encouraged to bring their own laptop, tablet, phone or other personal resource available to them for virtual learning.

What will happen if an individual tests positive for Covid-19?

In the event an individual tests positive, we will follow the latest guidance from the ODH.  This could result in individual students being quarantined or even a brief closure of a single school within the district to provide time for additional cleaning and sanitation.

Will students be screened daily?

Students will receive a temperature check and screening upon arrival.  

What are my options, if I do not want my child to return to the traditional classroom?

Inola Public School will provide a digital option for HS Students.  This would provide a total online educational program for students who did not feel comfortable returning to onsite instruction.  HS Students may also choose a blended program that offers some online and some traditional classes.  Parents will be asked to sign up for the virtual education program and commit to a minimum of a semester.  The fall semester is August 13, 2020 to December 18, 2020.  Parents and students will be required to commit to the Virtual Education option no later than July 31st, 2020.  There is another page on the HS Website that better illustrates these options.  

If students choose to do full-time virtual, will they be able to participate in extra-curricular activities?

Yes, students participating in full-time virtual learning will be able to participate in extra-curricular activities but will have to adhere to OSSAA guidelines.  Online classes are not NCAA compliant.  

Enrollment

Enrollment will be held online where students can choose their classes for the new year.

HS students have been emailed their enrollment information. Any questions about HS enrollment can be directed to Dr. Harris at sharris@inola.k12.ok.us .

Will we have an open house?

Yes, we will hold a modified open house.  This will be held on Tuesday, August 11th from 4:00 PM to 7:00 PM.  This will only be for new students, 5th Grade Students, and our incoming Freshmen.  We are asking that only the student and one parent/guardian attend this event to be able to adhere to ODH guidelines.  All other students will be able to access their schedules from their gradebook portal or will receive their schedule on the first day of school.  Masks are recommended.

Will students be able to participate in extracurricular activities and sports in the fall?

Yes, IHS athletes returned to campus on June 2nd.  We anticipate sports activities in the fall with possible modifications as required by the OSSAA.  All uniforms and practice equipment will be washed and sanitized after each use.  At this time, we are still awaiting guidance on both band and choir.

What special precautions will be implemented in regard to cleaning and sanitizing?

Sanitation and cleanliness will be a high priority for our district as we return in the fall.  Using CARES Stimulus Grant money, we made a large purchase of electrostatic disinfecting sprayers for each building and will be using them as needed.  We will be encouraging staff to frequently disinfect frequently touched surfaces (door knobs, light switches, etc.) on a continuous basis throughout the day.  Students will be encouraged to sanitize and wash their hands each time they leave and enter a new space.

What will happen if a student comes to school sick?

Parents need to take their child’s temperature every morning before sending them to school.  If they have a temperature of 100, do not send them to school.  If a student comes to school and feels bad, the office will screen the student and check their temperature.  If their temperature is over the ODH guidance of 100 or they show other symptoms such as coughing or difficulty breathing, the student will be sent home and will need to be fever free for 48 hours without medication before returning to school.  The student will be isolated in a designated area until the parent or guardian gets there to pick them up.  When the child returns to school they will check in with the school office/monitor and be screened for temperature before attending class or going to any public areas with a note stating that they are no longer sick or showing symptoms associated with the COVID virus.  On our website we have posted the SDE guidelines we will follow when there are concerns that a student has been exposed.  These pages are titled, “What Do My Test Results Mean” and “When Can I Be Around Others”.  

How will you help fill any gaps my student has from the previous year?

Students will be assessed to determine individual strengths and weaknesses using programs we currently have and some being provided by the State Department of Ed.  These assessments may determine if students need additional support.  Tutoring will be available to students throughout the year who need it.

What happens if we have school closures again?

If schools close again, a plan for at-home digital learning has been developed.  Teachers and students will utilize Edmentum, Edgenuity, and Google Classroom to deliver virtual and online lessons.  Students will learn how to use these Learning Systems by participating in lessons throughout the week while at school.  Blended learning that includes both on-site traditional instruction and digital instruction will become the norm.  This approach will allow students who might be ill or quarantined for a limited amount of time to continue their education even if they are not physically present in the classroom.

In the event of a temporary school closure, or the determination of the virtual program, how will the district serve students with special needs?  

Parents of children with disabilities on a Section 504 Accommodation Plan or on an Individualized Education Program (IEP) will want to meet with their team to determine which program is best suited for their child.  Inola Public Schools will provide services to meet the needs of the child according to their individual plan.  A variety of methods will be used to meet these needs.  Each family will be contacted to determine the best plan to meet their student's needs.  For additional assistance, please contact Tracy Mootry at 918-543-3104.