Coronavirus and Schools: Reopening Guidance (Follow Up)
One of our district administrators has made the following request: I appreciated the appropriate and sound advice provided in response to the premature July 1 opening announcements today by PDE. I wondered if you could ask the firm to prepare a statement that districts could use to respond to families that support guidance of remaining virtual for the summer as we plan for a fall reopening. The requests and questions have already begun from staff and families. I also like the idea of us all remaining consistent and unified in our response, and this type of uniform statement would be nice.
We have attached a letter that you can use with all parents of ESY-eligible children if you plan to remain virtual with ESY programming this summer. The letter itself outlines the reasons why we believe—if our belief wasn’t evident in our opinion issued yesterday—that remaining virtual makes complete legal and programmatic sense. We do understand, however, the enormous pressure that many districts are already facing from desperate parents who learned almost immediately of the Department’s preliminary guidance. Many, of course, heard only that “schools can open effective July 1,” overlooking that much guidance about reopening from the Department and from health agencies such as the CDC has yet to materialize and that the Department is only suggesting small reopening “pilots” more or less as a trial for a broader reopening in the fall.