Approve half-time in-person Return to Learn schedule for WDMCS

Approve half-time in-person Return to Learn schedule for WDMCS

0 have signed. Let’s get to 1,500!
At 1,500 signatures, this petition is more likely to get picked up by local news!
Lisa Griffore started this petition to Lisa Remy, West Des Moines Community Schools School Board

Without local control to decide when to move from in-person to online teaching, our current hybrid plan does not offer enough mitigation through social distancing to avoid uncontrolled viral spread amongst our students, staff, and their families. We need to shift to a half-time in-person schedule to slow contagion to a reasonable rate and keep our students and staff from unnecessary harm.

In early-July, when the WDMCS Superintendent Lisa Remy surveyed parents and proposed the current plan of Hybrid Option 2, it was with the knowledge that our own school board had control of when a single school or multiple schools would switch to online teaching in response to viral spread in the district. That local power was a reassurance to staff and parents that when an outbreak occurred, our district would have the power to quickly respond to protect from further contagion. Governor Kim Reynolds' proclamations on July 17 and 30 have taken that power from our school board, and now our approved plan leaves our district far too vulnerable.

While the requirement of face coverings and the other mitigation measures the district has put in place are laudable, our current plan lacks the ability to meet the 6 ft. with masks recommendation by the CDC for moderate risk. Currently, 25% of students are registered for online-only teaching, but the district intends to place those students in separate sections whenever possible. Because of this, in-person classrooms will remain at near full capacity of 26-31 students. With the teacher and other adult aides, the distance between people will be only 2-3 ft. That simply is not enough, even with face coverings. We need to get that space as close to 6 ft. as possible to mitigate spread within our schools so that we are not reacting too late to go online. Only by splitting classes in half and each coming every other day can we meet those distancing guidelines to effectively protect our children, educators, and community.

We petition the district and school board to hold a special meeting to revisit our Return to Learn plan and switch to a half-time model where students would meet in-person 50% of the time, meeting the governor’s requirements, while still offering an online-only option for students and families with special vulnerabilities to the severe effects of COVID-19. This model would put classrooms at half capacity, or about 13-15, effectively meeting the CDC recommendations and putting our district in a position to more sustainably contain contagion so that in-person learning can continue throughout the fall without unnecessary interruption or harm.

0 have signed. Let’s get to 1,500!
At 1,500 signatures, this petition is more likely to get picked up by local news!