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Eagle County Schools to hold meeting on possible delay of 2020-21 school year

July 20, 2020, 12:08 pm

Eagle County Schools Superintendent Philip Qualman on Monday issued the following letter regarding a July 22 meeting to discuss delaying the 2020-21 school year by one week and to offer more details on what he says will be “an unusual school year” due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic in Eagle County, where there have been 143 new cases in the last two weeks.

Dear families and staff of Eagle County Schools,

Phil Qualman

Eagle County School District has announced a special Board of Education meeting scheduled for Wednesday, July 22, 2020 to discuss the possibility of delaying the start of the SY2020-21 by one-week, and to review details about restarting school in August. This calendar change would move the first day of school from August 18, 2020 to August 25, 2020. The extra time is needed for teacher training, student evaluation, retooling lesson plans, and parent meetings to prepare for an unusual school year.  

The public is invited to attend the Board of Education meeting virtually, with meeting access information available at eagleschools.net.

Remote Learning
An option for families will be to keep students enrolled in neighborhood schools while utilizing remote learning. Remote learning moves traditional in-person instruction to an online method of delivery. Teachers still lead instruction, interact with students, and communicate regularly with students and parents. In a remote model schools maintain class schedules as much as possible, take regular attendance, maintain regular grading practices and assignments of regular school. Remote learning will be the primary method of instruction in the event of temporary school closures due to COVID-19, but parents may opt in/out of this model when needed. 

ECS will accommodate remote learning in all schools for families who want to maintain connection with neighborhood schools and value the relationships with teachers and peers. Students can follow along with their traditional classroom activities via internet connected devices so they can make a smooth transition back into the classroom when conditions permit. 

Online Learning & World Academy
ECS also offers a complete online mode of instruction delivered through the World Academy online school. World Academy is largely self-directed, self-paced, and features minimal teacher interaction. Parents considering homeschooling should use World Academy to access a proven curriculum aligned to district standards. Many students in middle and high schools also use World Academy for enrichment and credit recovery while remaining enrolled in their neighborhood school.

Students enrolled in World Academy, or through remote learning in their neighborhood schools, can maintain involvement in school sports and activities. 

ECS will hold two information sessions this week on Thursday, July 23, 2020. Meeting details can be found below and on our website. Please submit your questions specific to World Academy ahead of time using this Google Form.

World Academy Information Session – English / 5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.
   • meet.google.com/ahg-opzx-jsi
   • +1 (219) 281-4837, PIN: 429 386 984#

World Academy Information Session – Spanish / 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
   • meet.google.com/ict-sqqm-kwp
   • +1 (401) 379-3947, PIN: ‪608 438 826#

Back-to-School Update
The district has received significant input from all stakeholders in the community and is in the process of refining and updating its back-to-school plans. Several details are still being finalized in partnership with Eagle County Public Health and the Eagle County Education Association. Once these specifics have been resolved, the district will release its reopening plan to parents, staff, and the community. The situation changes daily as epidemiological data and advice from CDE and Public Health evolve. Eagle County Schools hopes all outstanding issues will be addressed by this Wednesday’s Board of Education meeting on July 22, 2020.

Thank you for your patience and continued support,

Philip Qualman

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