It is a delicate time for logistics and planning among school districts this year. In a time when "back to school" normally means getting new school clothes and backpacks for families, this year the conversation is more about huddling around the television set as if waiting to see if we are going to get another "snow day."
At this point, we know that the concept of more "snow days" is wearing thin and all of us want to get back to normal. With this announcement today at noon, Encore may be faced with updating the back to school plans that were approved by Encore's School Board just last Monday night. Encore is waiting for the noon meeting, just like every other District and family with students in the entire state of California.
Encore is confident with the current plan implementation of the "Family Choice Model" that has been decided on for the September 14th opening, but we are ready to comply with whatever plans are dealt to the Encore family. We want to make sure that we are doing our part to help during this unprecedented time. Tomorrow's blog will discuss how announcements made at today's meeting will affect Encore's opening this fall.
The whole world is frustrated by the choices that all of us have to make right now. There is not a clear cut right answer to any of this, so it is important that Encore's family helps with compliance of these very difficult conversations that have to happen right now.
Encore wants to go back to school. We want to be back to normal and we want to continue not only with the academic growth, but the artistic, social, and emotional growth that happens on campus. We understand where everyone is coming from.
Encore's current "Family Plan Model" calls for families to choose from four different ways to get instruction this fall. The staff of Encore started calling families yesterday to confirm their choice of how to return to school. Encore's current plan was in compliance of the 62 page document released by the California Department of Education last month regarding reopening schools.
COVID Program - Students will get a schedule of classes and will attend school in real time at home until the family is ready to return to school in real time.
Hybrid Program - Students will get a schedule that will have them on campus 2 - 3 days per week and home 2 - 3 days per week for school.
Traditional Program - Students will come to school 5 days per week and attend school traditionally.
Independent Study Program - Students will plan on coming to campus one day per week for 3 hours (or do this remotely) for the entire school year.
Ahead of Governor Newsom's briefing at noon today, Encore will continue with the phone calls relating to the Family Plan. Personal phone calls will continue over the next three weeks regarding "Family Choice." Should the briefing today change how the state will dictate the reopening of schools and if that affects Encore's current plans, we will notify you in tomorrow's blog.
Encore has created four separate reopening plans to help us move forward this fall. Each model of the plan uses the initial "Family Choice" to help frame how students will have their instruction delivered to them this fall. https://www.encoreedcorp.com/covid-19 One change that has been made that affects services is that Encore has suspended their high desert busing until November 1 due to the current regulations on school buses. We are suggesting all high desert bus students to start the year on the COVID Program until busing tentatively resumes in November.
Encore's 26 page COVID plan that was approved on Monday night by Encore's School Board includes sanitation, ventilation, hygiene, and instructional plans based off of the guidance from the CDE. Encore's Risk Manager along with his department are working to make sure that everything at Encore can be sanitized appropriately throughout the day once school resumes.
One thing to remember as things unfold with this pandemic is that we have the ability to shape how our children learn how to deal with change. This is frustrating and everyone has a strong opinion about how things should go into place. At the end of the day, we have a responsibility and an opportunity to show our students how to be flexibile. This is a very important soft skill that a person can learn. Leaders of our country, state, schools, and businesses have to make very tough decisions right now and there is no such thing as "one size fits all." As the decisions are made, let's take this opportunity to teach our students flexibility and the ability to see the world from many viewpoints. We can turn this neverending "snow day" into an opportunity to learn a very important life skill...patience.
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Denise Griffin, CEO is the author of this blog for Encore Education Corporation. Part of Encore Education Corporation is Encore High School, a free public performing arts regional high school in Southern California grades 7 - 12. Encore's program is currently taking applications for the fall 2020 enrollment. Encore offers full time, hybrid time, and independent study programs. Encore offers transporation from the Inland Empire and the high desert. www.encorehighschool.com. Where arts and academics grow together. WASC Accredited. Copyright 2020.