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District to Hold School Reopening Feedback Panels with Parents, Teachers, and Scholars

Jackson Public Schools

Dear JPS Community,

SCHOOL REOPENING PANELS

School reopening panels were held in June with JPS parents, teachers, and scholars. Click a link below to listen:

I hope this letter finds you and your loved ones doing relatively well in the midst of all that we’re facing.  I’m grateful for your support, understanding, and patience as we’ve weathered the many facets of the COVID-19 pandemic. As you know, educators all across the country are grappling with how to reopen schools.  While education systems are inherently designed to promote and facilitate social interaction, the health and safety of our scholars and staff remain our highest priorities and at the center of our decision-making. Although we are likely to bring most of our scholars back together in the fall, we’re also developing extensive safety protocols and virtual/hybrid program options.

To engage multiple voices and perspectives in our planning process, we established the School Reopening Advisory Committee (SRAC) to identify community concerns and needs and to make realistic recommendations for reopening. The SRAC is comprised of representative parents, scholars, community partners, teachers, health professionals, and administrators.

Based on the recommendation of the SRAC and to ensure that our planning is well-informed, we have developed two ways in which our JPS stakeholders can share their feedback. First, we will host separate panel discussions with parents, staff members, and scholars. These recorded discussions will then be shared on the JPS Facebook page and on our YouTube channel on June 24 (parent discussion), June 25 (staff discussion), and June 29 (scholar discussion).

In addition to the panel discussions, parents/guardians and staff members will have the opportunity to share their individual feedback on a brief survey that will be administered June 23rd–26th. We thank you in advance for sharing your insights and helping to improve our plans.

To guide our reopening planning, the SRAC established a clear set of non-negotiables that include:

  • Providing the option of a robust and equitable virtual learning program; 
  • Providing personal protective equipment for scholars and staff;
  • Incorporating a protocol for temperature checks upon entrance into schools;
  • Developing guidelines for and limiting school visitors;
  • Providing the necessary training for staff members and parents/guardians; and
  • Adhering to CDC guidelines regarding distancing (to the extent feasible).

With these non-negotiables in mind, our team has already begun developing specific plans for disinfecting high-traffic spaces in our schools and on buses; purchasing individual devices to support each scholar’s learning; and preparing for summer professional development that is focused on teaching and leading from a distance. We’re preparing to take several precautions to reduce the inherent safety risks as we come together in schools. For those scholars with pre-existing health challenges and for those parents/guardians choosing not to have their scholars attend school in person, please consider the option of virtual learning and transporting them to and from school. 

To ensure that you have the latest and most accurate information, please visit our webpage frequently and follow our Twitter and Facebook pages. Our final School Reopening Plan will be released on or before Friday, July 17, 2020.

Thank you,

Errick L. Greene, Ed.D.
Superintendent

Download the Letter to the Community Regarding School Reopening Feedback Panels (PDF).