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April 2, 2021

Safe Start Update

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Updated on April 2, 2021

Full-Time, In-Person Learning Start Date Set for Wednesday, April 21

The date for returning all K-12 students to full-time (five days per week) in-person learning is tentatively set for Wednesday, April 21.

  • April 12-16 will be hybrid learning, with expanded full-day hybrid schedules at middle and high schools and regular full-day hybrid schedules at elementary schools.
  • Monday, April 19 and Tuesday, April 20 are planned to be asynchronous learning days for all students to allow staff to make final preparations for full-time (five days per week), in-person learning.

The established dates are contingent on all of the plans being finalized. The district is actively working through the logistics to ensure three-foot distancing in classrooms and six-foot distancing at lunch in order to implement full-time (five days per week), in-person learning. In addition, the plan is contingent on finalizing the memorandum of understanding (MOU) for full-time (five days per week), in-person learning district with the Kennewick Education Association (KEA), the employee bargaining group that represents our teachers and other certificated staff members.

The planning process is moving forward in a positive, productive manner and we are confident that we will be ready for the April 21 start date. We look forward to starting full-time, in-person learning for all K-12 students.

We hope all of our students, staff and families enjoy a wonderful spring break.


Tri-Tech Skills Center Update:

  • Schedule for Week of April 12-16 Only: Students will stay in the assigned A or B group for this week. Wednesday will be an asynchronous instruction day.

  • Starting the week of April 19: All sending school districts and students will have a five or six-period day. Tri-Tech will move to the traditional AM (8 to 10:30 a.m.) and PM (11:30 a.m.-2 p.m.) schedule Monday through Friday with in-person instruction five days a week for all students.  Even though KSD may still be in an “A” or “B” group KSD students will attend Monday through Friday.


Updated on April 1, 2021

Return to Full-Time, In-Person Learning

The exact mid-April date for beginning full-time, in-person learning for all students will be finalized and communicated to staff and families as soon as possible. 

Last week, the KSD Board of Directors unanimously authorized a return to full-time, in-person learning for all students. The implementation timeline was set for no earlier than mid-April, to allow for appropriate planning, communication and transition for staff and families.

The district is actively working through the logistics to ensure three-foot distancing in classrooms and six-foot distancing at lunch in order to implement full-time, in-person learning. In addition, the district and the Kennewick Education Association (KEA), the employee bargaining group that represents our teachers and other certificated staff members, are actively meeting to update the current memorandum of understanding (MOU) for full-time, in-person learning.

Next week, April 5-9, is spring break. Beginning April 12, expanded full-day hybrid schedules will be implemented at middle and high schools. Regular hybrid schedules will continue at elementary schools.

Again, the exact mid-April date for beginning full-time, in-person learning for all students will be finalized and communicated to staff and families as soon as possible.

Tri-Tech Skills Center Update
Schedule for Week of April 12-16 Only: Students will stay in the assigned A or B group for this week. Wednesday will be an asynchronous instruction day.

Starting the week of April 19: All sending school districts and students will have a five or six-period day. Tri-Tech will move to the traditional AM (8 to 10:30 a.m.) and PM (11:30 a.m.-2 p.m.) schedule Monday through Friday with in-person instruction five days a week for all students.  Even though KSD may still be in an “A” or “B” group KSD students will attend Monday through Friday.


Updated on March 31, 2021

Expanded Middle and High School Hybrid Schedules Take Effect April 12

As we continue to plan the return to full-time, in-person learning for all of our Kennewick School District students, we want to share an important and timely update about middle and high school hybrid learning.

Beginning on April 12, we are expanding hybrid learning for middle and high school students. This means that middle and high school students will attend a full day on their “A” or “B” hybrid days.

As part of the expansion, middle and high school students will:

  • Attend all of their classes on their in-person days.

  • Receive free breakfast and lunch on campus. High school students may go off campus for lunch, per school policies.

  • No longer have afternoon Zoom check-in sessions.

Families will receive more detailed information from their child's school. Please note that we are making plans to support “remote only” students.

Tri-Tech Skills Center Update
Schedule for Week of April 12-16 Only: Students will stay in the assigned A or B group for this week. Wednesday will be an asynchronous instruction day.

Starting the week of April 19: All sending school districts and students will have a five or six-period day. Tri-Tech will move to the traditional AM (8 to 10:30 a.m.) and PM (11:30 a.m.-2 p.m.) schedule Monday through Friday with in-person instruction five days a week for all students.  Even though KSD may still be in an “A” or “B” group KSD students will attend Monday through Friday.

Full-Time, In-Person Learning for All Students
We also are working on plans to return to full-time, in-person learning for all students.

On Wednesday, our KSD Board of Directors unanimously authorized a return to full-time, in-person learning for students in anticipation of the state adopting the updated physical distancing recommendations for K-12 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

On Thursday, Gov. Inslee announced that, effective immediately, our state’s physical distancing requirements for K-12 schools have been updated to align with CDC guidance. In addition, the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) updated their guidance for K-12 schools.

We have set an implementation timeline of no earlier than mid-April, to allow for appropriate planning, communication, and transition for staff and families. We will provide updates to families and the community on the finalized plan and timeline for implementation of a full-time, in-person learning model as soon as plans are finalized.

We will continue to offer a "remote only" option.


Updated on March 24, 2021

Kennewick School Board Authorizes Implementation of Full-Time, In-Person Learning Model

At tonight’s Board of Directors meeting, the Kennewick School Board authorized the District to implement a full-time, in-person learning model, when the state updates their guidance for schools. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revised their physical distancing recommendations for K-12 schools on March 19 “to reflect at least 3 feet between students in classrooms and provide clearer guidance when a greater distance (such as 6 feet) is recommended.” The CDC issues guidance from the federal level, and each state then determines how the guidance will affect state rules. Public schools in Washington State are required to follow state-level rules. 

The District does not yet have updated information or guidance from the Governor, the Department of Health, Labor & Industries, or from Benton-Franklin Health District. However, there is a possibility that the Governor may make an announcement sometime this week.

In anticipation of potential updated state and local guidance, the district is proactively planning with principals and working with local employee bargaining units to negotiate updated agreements. Authorization from the Board is required to implement a full-time, in-person learning model. At tonight’s meeting, the Board authorized implementation of a full-time, in-person learning model when the Washington State Department of Health and the Benton-Franklin Health District allow for reduction of the 6-foot distancing rule to 3 feet. 

District implementation of a full-time, in-person learning model is contingent upon the following:

  • District adherence to the state and local health district rules

  • Successful negotiations with bargaining groups to update Memos of Understanding (MOUs)

  • A timeline of no earlier than mid-April, to allow for appropriate planning, communication, and transition for staff and families 

The District and Kennewick Education Association (KEA) are proactively and productively working together toward this goal and awaiting updated information from the state to finalize plans and agreements.

Updated Middle and High School Hybrid Schedules 

In addition to active planning for implementation of a full-time, in-person learning model, the District and KEA have discussed and developed new full-day middle and high school hybrid learning schedules. Students would attend a full day on their designated “A” or “B” in-person days and lunch would be served on campus. These new hybrid learning model schedules would be implemented on April 12, immediately following spring break. KEA members are voting on the schedules this week, and we anticipate communicating final, specific information regarding hybrid schedules to families on Monday, March 29. 

The District will provide updates to families and the community on the finalized plan and timeline for implementation of a full-time, in-person learning model as new information becomes available from the state and plans are finalized. 


Hybrid Learning* 

Updated on Jan. 14, 2021

ABOUT HYBRID LEARNING

ABOUT COVID-19 SAFETY

SAFE START PHASED REOPENING PLAN


Updated on Jan. 14, 2021

Middle and High School Hybrid Learning Update

The KSD Board of Directors met last night to consider the new recommendation from Benton-Franklin Health District (BFHD). On Jan. 12, BFHD updated their recommendation to state, “For those districts who currently have returned elementary aged children to the classroom, phased transition of secondary students can begin as early as Jan. 25, 2021.”

The Board voted to update the planned start day for middle and high students. Middle school students will now begin hybrid learning on Jan. 25 and high school students will begin hybrid learning on Feb. 2. 

We are excited to safely welcome our students back to schools for in-person, hybrid learning. Additional details about the middle and high school hybrid models are below, and more details about your student’s specific schedule will be communicated by individual schools. 

Middle and High School Hybrid Schedules 

Middle and high schools will follow a hybrid “AA/BB” schedule. Students are assigned to either the A or B schedule. Student schedules may be found by signing into PowerSchool and looking on the right side of the Grades and Attendance page where it states, "Hybrid Schedule."

All students will have teacher contact time either in-person or through Zoom four days per week. 

Additional information about hybrid learning schedules:

Middle and High School Hybrid Learning Schedules

Remote Learning

We realize that there are some families who prefer to keep their child at home and continue remote learning and this will continue to be an option for families for the remainder of the 2020-21 school year. Students may remain enrolled in their current classes with their current teachers, but it will be asynchronous instruction (no live Zoom classes). Students in remote learning will have the opportunity for teacher contact through 15-20 minute Zoom check-ins with teachers in the afternoons four days per week.

If your child will be staying in remote learning, please notify your school principal.

KSD Online Learning Academy

Students may enroll in the KSD Online Learning Academy, a fully web-based education program for students in grades K-12.

The KSD Online Learning Academy is centered around computer-based instruction and individual learning rather than the classroom-based instruction of remote learning.  It differs from remote learning in that the instruction is independent rather than teacher-provided and there are not regularly scheduled remote classes led by a teacher.

If parents would like to enroll in KSD Online Learning Academy, register online by Jan. 25 in order to begin the semester by Feb. 2.

If your child has an Individual Educational Program (IEP) and you intend to enroll in the online academy, please contact your child’s case manager to schedule an IEP meeting to discuss this option. 

Watch an informational video and register: bit.ly/39BTeKA

Free School Meals

All students will be provided a free breakfast when they arrive at school and a free lunch to take home. Meals will be served as “grab and go” style.

Cleaning and Sanitizing

In-room cleaning and sanitizing will occur between classes each day. On Wednesdays, an asynchronous learning day for all students, a deep cleaning will occur between “A” and “B” student cohorts. 

Remote Learning Assistance 

In-person Remote Learning Assistance will no longer be offered in middle and high schools once hybrid learning begins. 

Special Education Students

If your child is currently attending a special education program four days per week, you will continue with your current schedule.

Health & Safety Requirements

Parents/guardians must complete a Monthly Verification/Agreement to Conduct Health Screenings/Attestations. Daily COVID-19 health screenings/attestations will be required for all students returning for in-person learning. Wearing face coverings and 6-foot distancing is also a requirement. Read KSD’s Health & Safety Requirements for more information.

All middle and high schools students returning for in-person learning must have current immunizations on record with the school. Any students with life-threatening or other medical conditions must complete the required Health Plan and Medication Forms before starting in-person learning. Please check with your school nurse if you have questions.

Transportation

Head to our Transportation Department page for information on bus routes.


Updated on Dec. 18, 2020

School Health and Safety Update

As requested by the school board, a third-party safety assessment of elementary schools was recently conducted by NV5 Dade Moeller to ensure that COVID-19 safety recommendations and guidelines for the safe operations of schools from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Washington State Department of Health (WDOH) and the Benton-Franklin Health District (BFHD) are fully implemented. 

The assessment found that Kennewick School District cleaning, training and other operational protocols are consistent with the health department guidance. 

NV5 Dade Moeller’s review indicates, “the Kennewick School District has implemented the health agency guidance and has adequately implemented the controls and protocols to continue in-person learning in a safe and healthy environment. We were impressed by the ownership of the principals and their staff.”

Through the process of visiting each elementary in the district to assess implementation of safety protocols, NV5 Dade Moeller made observations and provided additional recommendations to increase the safety of students and staff, including: 

  • Classroom Set-Up. All desks should face the same direction.

  • Small Group Instruction. When 6-foot distancing is not possible, additional PPE such as face shields with drapes, and plexiglass shields will be used where possible.

  • Student Arrival and Release. Schools will continue to remind parents to wear masks and stand 6 feet apart from each other while dropping off and picking up their children on school and district property.

  • Recess. Masks should be worn during recess unless students are playing independently away from other students. This will allow the students to be active and still maintain a level of protection.

  • Staff Areas. Only individually wrapped treats will be made available in staff rooms/lounges.

These recommendations have been shared with school principals and will be implemented when we resume school in January. The safety of students and staff will continue to be our highest priority and we will continue to seek ways to increase safety wherever possible.


Updated on Dec. 11, 2020

Inclement Weather Information

We want to update families on our plans for school in the event of inclement weather this winter.

Two-Hour Late Start 

If it is necessary to call a late start day due to weather, all elementary, middle and high school (including Tri-Tech Skills Center and KSD Online Learning Academy) students will follow the late start schedule for that day. 

  • Morning preschool and ECEAP will be cancelled.

  • Buses transporting elementary students who are attending classes on-site as part of hybrid learning that day will run two hours late.

  • Buses transporting students in grades 6-12 attending in-person for remote learning support will run two hours late.

  • Buses transporting special education students in grades 6-12 will run two hours late.

  • Students in grades 6-12 in remote learning will follow a two-hour late start schedule. This will allow students receiving on-site service to arrive safety to school before classes begin. 

  • School breakfast is cancelled. School lunch and Wednesday pre-order meal kit pick-up times are unchanged.

  • Delta High School students follow any changes made by Pasco School District.

No School Day

If it is necessary to cancel school due to weather, there will be no school for all preschool, elementary, middle and high school (including Tri-Tech Skills Center and KSD Online Academy) students. On-site and remote learning will be cancelled for all students. 

Pre-order meal kit pick-up will be cancelled if the school closure happens on a Wednesday.

Weather delay and closure decisions are typically made with a few hours’ notice. Given operational logistics and contractual considerations, it is not feasible to have a school day count toward our required 180 days for middle and high school students and not elementary students. Shifting to remote learning for elementary students on short notice is also not feasible, as staff do not have time to adequately prepare for a remote learning day.

The current school calendar has two snow make-up days included if needed. If the district exceeds those two days, up to two additional days could be added to the end of the school year without affecting the current graduation date. 

Thank you for your understanding and flexibility as we work through these unique scenarios and circumstances.