Andrew Withers: The Grass Valley School District is increasing on-campus instruction |

Andrew Withers: The Grass Valley School District is increasing on-campus instruction

Over the past few weeks public schools across Nevada County have received great news which helps us expand in-person learning offerings. In mid-March the California Department of Public Health updated the student spacing guidelines with evidence that 3 feet of classroom spacing for students is safe and on March 24 Nevada County was moved to the less restrictive Red Tier. As a Grass Valley school district team we are continuing to adapt our programs based upon the major shifts in COVID-19 restrictions and policies. We are very excited to announce that we are expanding our in person learning offerings for all students at all campuses through the end of the school year.

Andrew Withers

Beginning on April 8, our Bell Hill Academy, Margaret G. Scotten, and Lyman Gilmore students and families will transition from a two-day to a four-day on-campus program. Also, starting on April 19, our Grass Valley Charter students and families will transition from a shortened four-day AM/PM schedule to a longer four-day on-campus program. Input from families districtwide has guided us to provide the choice of a four-day on-campus program or a fully online at-home program. After reviewing all instructional options as a team, we decided that we needed to keep one school day each week on the DL schedule to ensure we could outreach and support all students with an emphasis on distance learners this day. While we acknowledge that some of the surrounding school districts are considering other instructional schedules, we are doing what we believe is best with the resources we have as a district.

We have been working on feasibility studies districtwide and the results show that roughly 80%+ of students will be returning to campus. Below are the new in-person learning schedules:

Bell Hill Academy, Margaret G. Scotten, and Lyman Gilmore (April 8 through the end of school year):

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday on-campus learning 9 a.m. to 12:45 p.m.

Wednesday DL schedule

Grass Valley Charter School (April 29 to end of school year):

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, on-campus learning 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Friday DL schedule

Please note that moving into the 2021-22 school year all of our staff and school campuses will be ready for the traditional five full-days of on campus learning. While we anticipate that some families may still want to remain on distance learning for the 2021-22 school year, we will be developing a separate program with dedicated staff for this. The School Board, staff and I cannot thank our families enough for the continued partnership and support. We know that this school year has provided lots of challenges and changes however we are getting through them by working together! (#GVSDBetterTogether)

Andrew Withers is the Grass Valley School District Superintendent.

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