Message from Superintendent Doug Johnson Monday March 16, 2020
Dear Dayton School District Staff and Families:
Dayton schools will be open all day Monday, March 16, then closed Tuesday, March 17 through Friday, April 24, including athletics, activities, and clubs. We understand the disruption this may cause for families and employees. We will do our best to provide what we can including up to date information in an ever-changing environment. Most of the information we provide and the decisions we make will be the direct result of information given to us by the Washington Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) and or other state agencies including the Governor’s office. We know this mandated closure may create hardships for many families, and we plan to do our best to serve you during these challenging times.
The hope is of course that closing the schools will play a significant role in helping stop the spread of COVID 19. We are collaborating with local, regional and statewide health agencies, our local hospital and clinics, to do what we can to better the lives of others in our state.
Please continue to visit our website for the most current information from our district. We will use our messaging apps and other tools to deliver important announcements and information to you and your children. Details for Dayton School District Closure as of Monday morning March 16 5:00 a.m.:
School Offices will be open at least through Wednesday, March 18 during regular school hours so students/families can pick up personal items including medication currently in the office, personal items, and books from their lockers, including their gym lockers
Our District Office will be open to serve staff and families for normal operations Monday through Friday March 16-20. A decision will be made at a later time regarding business hours after this week
Parent conferences for all grades will likely take place remotely via phone, by email or perhaps computer video conferencing tool called ZOOM. Details later this week. It is likely conferences will take place during the next couple of weeks and not just on Wednesday the 18.
The state assessment program has been cancelled for this year
The school year is likely to be extended until June 19 but the most current information tells us that other attendance requirements will be waived and no other days will need to be “made up”.
Students attending Running Start or alternative classes on the WWCC campus should receive email instructions from the college regarding their classes.
Students enrolled in College in the High School classes through Dayton High School will be given instructions by their Dayton teacher regarding those classes
As April 27 draws closer there may be information regarding start up process for athletics and or activities such as FBLA, FFA and Youth and Government
The District will continue to clean and sanitize our facilities and school buses on a regular basis. We will use this opportunity to complete some deep cleaning in classrooms and public areas in our buildings.
Use of any school facility by anyone is prohibited until school reopens on April 27. This includes the HS gym and the Elementary Multi-purpose room.
As required by law, our school board will continue to meet, but we ask that those in attendance practice social distancing
For employees more information regarding work schedules and responsibilities will be addressed via meetings on Tuesday and Wednesday March 17-18.
Meals for Students
Our food service team is currently planning to make available breakfast and lunch meals for students. We continue to work with State Food Service agencies on details. At this time we are looking to do some deliveries using bus stop locations as well as possible pick up at the school. This service should begin no later than Monday March 23, possible later this week. No forms are necessary for pick up but the child must be present when the meal is distributed. Breakfast and lunch may be distributed at the same time. Some food items may need to be heated using a microwave or oven. We encourage students to eat at home to encourage social distancing. Instructional Support This week, teachers and administration will learn more about the expectations around student learning by the state and how Dayton can support the state and the needs of our students. It is possible some teachers will send home some assignments or activities on Monday. However, due to the length of the closure other educational activities and opportunities will need to be planned, developed and delivered later in March and or April. We are aware that many families and students do not have internet access and computers at home to meet the needs of their child(ren). We are currently taking a look at how we can assist those that may need a computer and or an internet connection. Some paper and pencil activities are likely to be a part of the solution. At this time, the best guidance we can provide is to have children of all ages engaged in reading and writing activities appropriate to their age. Writing letters to relatives, reading the newspaper, or books are excellent opportunities to extend their learning. Whenever possible have the child share with a parent or sibling what they have read about and discuss any questions they might have.
We have been told through written information that students are not to be brought on campus for any instructional activity. This would include using our computer labs, shops, or meeting with teachers.
We have been told by OSPI that graduation dates for seniors will be honored, as they have been set. In Dayton, that is June 6. It will be important for seniors to hit the ground running when we return to school and make sure they keep up with the studies from April 27 until graduation. Credits will be earned based on the work done thus far and pick up again April 27.
Support for families of health care workers and for first responders
We plan to support the needs of those in our community serving as health care workers and first responders by providing child-care for school age children during normal school hours. We are working with Columbia County Health System, the Fire and Sheriff Department to determine the needs of their employees. If you work for one of these entities and need assistance please speak to your Human Resources Department and they will contact us.
These decisions and plans are designed to protect the health of our students, staff, and community. The District will continue to communicate with our local partners and state agencies to determine any future steps to be taken. Thank you for your patience and understanding we are proud to be working with you.