MOORE — Moore Public Schools issued its “Return to Learn” plan for the upcoming school year Friday, which includes a mask mandate for students in grades 7-12.
The plan includes a comprehensive outline for how the district will handle day-to-day operations during the school year amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and includes more information on the district’s three-option learning plan for students.
The plan is continually being monitored, and can be updated if the COVID-19 pandemic evolves, the plan reads.
“We ask that our MPS Community continue to be flexible, understanding that changes will be to additionally safeguard our students and staff,” the plan reads. “If anything changes, our learning community will be made aware immediately.”
The following details reflect the current plan from the district:
The district announced its three-option plan last month, and Friday’s plan reiterates its approach to the school year. Students will choose one of the following three options for its educational experience:
Traditional classroom setting (option 1): This option allows students to return to their school campus for classes and extracurricular activities five days a week. Students in this option will also have access to Canvas, the district’s online learning management system, which gives students 24/7 online access to submitted and graded assignments. All students are automatically enrolled in this option.
Distance learning (option 2): This is a blended option that will utilize Canvas to allow students to transition between a traditional classroom setting and an online setting if a student has “intermittent health concerns” lasting approximately two to four weeks.
Virtual/online education (option 3): This all-online option allows students to access and complete their schoolwork from home or other remote location. This option is supervised by MPS certified teachers, and a virtual teacher will provide regular updates to students and parents. Secondary students (grades 7-12) enrolled in this option may participate in school-sponsored athletic programs as long as the student is enrolled in one hour during regularly scheduled school days and physically present on campus during that class period. To enroll in this option, parents or guardians must contact the MPS Virtual Education department by Friday, July 31.
Junior high students will be assigned a Chromebook and high school students will be assigned a laptop to use at school and at home, according to the plan.
Parents and guardians are encouraged to call the district regarding further information on each plan. Summer enrollment is available through Friday, July. 24.
According to the plan, students and staff in grades 7-12 will be required to wear a mask while on campus due to “larger classes and greater student mobility during passing periods and lunches.” Students and staff in sixth grade and below are recommended but not required to wear masks.
Masks are required for students at all levels who ride the bus, due to close proximity between students, according to the plan. Windows will be down on buses when possible for air circulation.
If a student has a medical condition that can be worsened by a mask or face covering, their parent or guardian must contact the student’s school nurse to receive an exemption, according to the plan.
Monitoring COVID-19 symptoms
MPS students and staff are asked to take their temperature on a daily basis prior to arriving at a school campus, according to the plan. No student or staff with a fever of 100.0 degrees or higher may enter any MPS facility, and no fever-reducing medication may be taken to reduce fever.
The plan also outlines protocol in the event that a student or staff member tests positive for COVID-19:
If a student or staff member exhibits a fever of 100.0 degrees or greater while at school, they must immediately be picked up from school or leave if they are a driver. They cannot return to school until they are fever free for 24 hours without fever-reducing medication.
If a student or staff member tests positive, they cannot return to MPS facilities until they are symptom free, receive a negative test result and have been approved by a doctor to return. MPS nurses will notify all applicable school staff and students who have been potentially exposed. During recovery, the student will transition to distance learning and their teachers will work with him or her to complete missed assignments.
Students and staff may not enter MPS facilities or events if an in-house family member tests positive for COVID-19.
The district noted it will monitor State Department of Education guidelines regarding exposure and quarantine guidelines and that it will update parents, students and staff on its policy soon.
The district is implementing new health and safety protocols for the new school year, the plan reads.
Classroom desks and common seating areas will be arranged to maximize space between students and will be sanitized frequently, according to the plan. For breakfast and lunch, each school principal is developing a meal distribution plan for “healthy eating environments”.
All secondary schools will utilize three lunch periods to minimize the number of students in cafeteria areas, according to the plan. Students in grades 10-12 will be permitted to leave campus at lunch.
Visitors will not be allowed to eat lunch with students in school facilities, according to the plan.
Bathrooms will be sanitized frequently, and hand sanitizer will be easily accessible at all schools. Frequent hand washing and hygiene procedures will be encouraged, and hygiene lessons will be taught to all elementary students, according to the plan.
The district will also have a licensed nurse at all school sites. The district’s mental health professional team is available to assist the “social, emotional, and mental wellness of our students and staff.”
The district has also begun installing ionization systems at all school sites, which will help kill bacteria, viruses and mold in the air, including COVID-19. The plan is to have district wide installation completed this fall, according to the plan.
According to the plan, students who have a health reason that is verified by a parent/guardian or medical professional will receive an excused absence. However, the district is emphasizing the need for students to be engaged in online learning while at home.
The plan does not contain any more details regarding attendance policy, but MPS spokesperson Dawn Jones said they will give more information soon.
Arrival, class and dismissal procedures
Arrival and dismissal procedures have been updated to limit outside exposure and promote social distancing.
Students will be immediately directed to their classroom upon arriving at school, and will be prohibited from gathering in front of school buildings before the doors are opened, according to the plan. Students that eat breakfast at school will be allowed to enter the front doors 30 minutes before school starts, and students who don’t may enter 15 minutes before school starts.
For dismissal, students will remain in their classrooms until their parent or guardian arrives, or until their bus number, walking group or daycare is announced.
Between classes, students will “adhere to procedures in the hallways and passing times to minimize direct contact or possible exposure.” Schools will establish clear traffic patterns to enforce social distancing, according to the plan. Lockers will not be used unless a student requests one.
Students will need to bring their own school supplies, like pencils and markers, and cannot share supplies, according to the plan.