UPDATED: Re-Opening Goals: 10 Core Principles By The Framingham School Committee

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FRAMINGHAM – The Framingham School Committee policy’ subcommittee discussed 10 core principles to re-open schools in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Our district is committed to creating a safe and supportive school and district culture for students and adults. Our district is committed to teaching all students, regardless of the instructional setting. This will require careful planning and consideration to ensure we equitably plan for addressing the needs of English learners, students with disabilities, and students from low-income households,” states the report from the policy subcommittee, which was referred to Framingham Superintendent of Schools Bob Tremblay.

District 4 School Committee member Adam Freudberg produced the guiding principals. The School Committee voted to refer it to the policy subcommittee for reviews.

The Policy Subcommittee reviewed it and voted to recommend to the School Committee send the document to Superintendent Tremblay. The School Committee agreed to that.

Below are the 10 principles:

  1. Health and Wellness of Students, Staff, and Their Families are the Top Priority
    ● FPS coordination with the Department of Public Health and Board of Health
    ● Development of multi-tiered system of supports:
    ○ COVID-19 prevention measures
    ○ Addressing social emotional and mental health needs
    ○ Focusing on relationships and transitions
    ○ Preparing for increased potential for trauma
    ○ Physical and psychological safety implications and preparation
    ○ Continuing the curriculum, while seeking more time for recess and
    outdoor time, especially in the first quarter of the school year
    ○ Extra curricular and athletic activities are a vital component of addressing
    the social and emotional needs of our students
  2. Equity, Flexibility, Understanding, Health, and Human Decency are the Core
    Principles Behind All Decisions

    ● Strive to not create a divide or stigma for a cohort physically in school learning,
    and a cohort at home due to family/student health or other reasons
    ● Additional focus needed around the needs of English learners, students with
    disabilities, and students from low-income households
    ● Commit to bargain in good faith with employee unions, focus on professional
    development opportunities, and employee health and wellbeing. We understand
    we are all in this together from a place of positive intent
  3. Infrastructure Upgrades Need to Be Addressed
    ● HVAC and Ventilation Systems Upgrades/Air Filters
    ● Windows need the ability to safely open
    ● Explore tents and furniture for outdoor classes
  4. Public Health Protocols Must Be Understood and Respected
    ● Seek for COVID-19 Compliance and Safety Directors to be assigned for every
    school
    ● Cleaning and sanitation procedures outlined in writing and video for public
    ● Better understanding needed on DESE three feet physical distancing language,
    movements around rooms, and best teaching practices
    ● EEE prevention measures (work with staff and families to authorize bug spray
    usage at schools, support state legislation to allow schools to be part of outdoor
    spraying prevention measures)
    ● Compliance with state-mandated immunizations, and collaborations with the
    Board of Health on providing flu vaccine resources to the school community
    ● COVID-19 Testing
    ○ Where to go, what to do, what information school communities must be
    told, and what they can tell to balance personal privacy and transparency
    must be clearly known to all families
  5. Transportation Must Be Adequate and Viable
    ● School bus transportation is a right for students under current policy with criteria,
    and that policy remains a goal pending the availability of new funding for the
    forthcoming DESE COVID-19 bus rules
    ● Drivers start dates to be moved up and they will be paid to practice new routes
    for multiple days before school begins
    ● Bus tracking app to be made available
  6. Observance of Safe Practices and Preventative Measures is Critical to Staying
    Open

    ● Roll out a short and simple new FPS list of core return to school norms to stress
    public health and other key behaviors needed by all
  7. We Must Take Our Time to Do This Right
    ● Don’t rush back to school planning decisions. Wait for community and staff
    inputs, webinars, individual school community discussions, individual student
    case management, etc. Then issue a plan for families to respond to.
  8. We Must Be Fiscally Responsible
    ● We value our system of education, so we invest where we must to concurrently
    keep the community safe, and our students educated
    ● Strategically utilize new federal and state funding, and apply for COVID-19
    government impact grants from DESE and others as often as possible
  9. We Believe in Keeping Your Current School
    ● Any student whose family chooses remote learning versus in person learning
    shall have their spot in their current school held for the start of the 2021-22
    school year
  10. Customer Service Needs to Be Respectful and Responsive
    ● There will be a lot of questions. Beyond the website FAQ, each school and the
    Central Office must have a coordinated approach to answer any and all inquiries
    and ensure there is follow up

editor

email: editor@FraminghamSource.com call or text at 508-315-7176

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