TOWNSEND — Superintendent Brad Morgan reports that North Middlesex Regional School District will reopen this fall following a Hybrid model.
Students will begin classes on Monday, Sept. 14. Students will be sorted into three cohorts: Blue, Red and White. Cohort Blue will attend school in-person on Monday and Tuesday mornings and will learn remotely Wednesday through Friday. Students in Cohort Red will participate in remote learning Monday through Wednesday and will take part in in-person learning on Thursday and Friday mornings. Students in Cohort White will be comprised of those who opt to learn fully remotely.
In-person learning days will only last a half day, after which students will go home for lunch and to conduct the remainder of the school day remotely. Each Wednesday will serve as a full remote learning day.
The reopening plan was informed by various staff, student and parent surveys as well as remote community forums, “Superintendent Coffees,” and focus groups with parents and staff. The district additionally formed a Steering Committee which closely monitored factors including COVID-19 cases and trends, public health best practices, budgetary and fiscal constraints, state and federal requirements and guidelines, example plans from other states, technology, busing, developmental needs of students and special population needs.
“This school year will be new territory for each and every one of us, and from the start, I want to thank the entire North Middlesex Regional School District for your cooperation and patience during this constantly evolving, challenging time,” Superintendent Morgan said. “We’re excited to have the opportunity to return to school this fall, and at all times we will continue to make decisions regarding our learning plan that reflect our commitment to the health and wellbeing of all of our students, faculty and staff.”
Students will be held accountable for all remote work they are assigned, and unlike during remote learning in the spring, will be graded for those assignments. Attendance will also be taken daily for in-person and remote learning.
Policies and Expectations
Students in kindergarten through grade twelve are required to wear masks when riding a school bus and during the school day when taking part in in-person learning. Students in the district’s preschool program will be encouraged, but not required, to wear masks. One socially distanced mask break will be held during each half day of in-person learning.
All students and staff will also be required to maintain between three and six feet of distance from others.
The district will closely follow the Massachusetts Department of Public Health’s regulations regarding contact tracing in the event there is a positive COVID-19 case during the school day or possible exposure. In such a situation, the district will work closely with the Nashoba Associated Boards of Health to identify close contacts of COVID-19 positive individuals who have been in school.
Students and their families are urged to remain home when sick, and students or staff that develop COVID-19 symptoms at school will be separated from others in a designated “isolation area” and be assessed by the school nurse before being either sent home or to a healthcare facility if necessary. Areas where a student or staff member develops symptoms will be closed off until they are cleaned and disinfected.
Further information on the district’s response protocols for positive or possible COVID-19 cases can be found in the full reopening plan, linked here.
For the most up-to-date district news, visit its website here.