Update on PWCS Return to School Plan

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Provided by Prince William County Schools (PWCS)

Prince William County Public Schools (PWCS) continues to work on a return to new learning plan for the 2020-21 school year.

A Return to New Learning Task Force has been working to provide valuable input and develop draft plans that prioritize the health and safety of all students and staff while delivering equitable, high-quality new learning in the fall. The task force includes multiple work/focus groups The group’s 90 members represent principals, teachers, support staff, and central leadership. Parents are also represented. (e.g,. Instruction, Equity, Special Education, Safe Schools, Gifted Advisory Councils).

Surveys

Principals at every level were asked to conduct classroom-by-classroom assessments utilizing six feet of distancing measurements. This will determine furniture placement and the maximum number of students in every space while maintaining the social distancing. Similar health and safety assessments are occurring across the Division to include bus transportation safety assessments.

PWCS parent survey and school-based staff surveys have been distributed. These survey results, in addition to results from the survey conducted by the Prince William Education Association, will inform the creation of the plan. An additional survey for parents will be conducted in mid-July after the return to new learning plan is adopted. The Department for Human Resources will be gathering information from every employee to determine employee needs. Human Resources will work with employees who may be in high-risk health categories and/or require ADA accommodations.

Requirements

PWCS must consider the requirements from the following organizations:

  • Virginia Department of Education (VDOE),
  • Virginia Department of Health (VDH),
  • Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA),
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC),
  • Virginia High School League (VHSL), and
  • other organizations overseeing all school divisions’ plans for returning to learning.

PWCS leaders are also collaborating with the Prince William School Board to ensure this plan is comprehensive and thoughtful.

As the process progresses, the School Board will be receiving updates in preparation for a work session on July 8. The School Board is scheduled to vote on the return to new learning plan on July 15. The plan will be communicated to staff, students, families, and the community immediately thereafter.

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