Dear Bulldog Families,
As we are all aware, last Monday, April 20, Governor DeWine extended the closure of all Ohio schools through the end of the school year. We share in the frustration and sadness this news brings and recognize that it is not what any of us had hoped would happen. While our current situation is not ideal, we continue to be so proud and appreciative of the way our students, families and staff have stepped up to meet this challenge. I am emailing today to provide you with an update about several items that I know are questions and concerns for many of our students, parents and guardians. I appreciate you taking the time to read through this important information.
Over the past week, our teams have been working hard on a number of logistical issues relating to the extended closure. We will continue to use the latest orders from Governor DeWine as we plan for the weeks ahead.
As you are already aware, we launched our enhanced distance learning plan on April 6th, and released the district’s Distance Learning Grading Plan last week. This has laid a strong foundation and will allow us to continue on the path ahead through the end of the school year. It is not perfect, but everyone is making the very best of a situation under difficult circumstances.
For your information, following are several of the items we are currently working to address:
We are currently working to provide a safe and secure structure for closing out our school buildings at the end of the year. Plans regarding a process to allow for parents/students to pick up any belongings that may still remain in the buildings will be shared in the weeks ahead. This opportunity for pick-up of belongings will take place subject to the following conditions: The Governor’s Stay-at-Home order has been lifted and we are able to maintain proper social distancing based on any guidelines provided. Please be on the lookout for additional information and details about this in the coming weeks from your child’s building principal.
Financial Matters (Fees & Lunch Accounts)
The Treasurer's Office is working closely with our building principals to address crediting student accounts for field trip fees paid but not used for planned spring trips. Families of students impacted for the specific grade levels will be receiving a more detailed communication later this week. Additionally, separate information updates will be shared this week regarding tuition status for preschool families as well as trip refund status for 8th grade Washington DC trip and 5th grade Columbus trip. We appreciate your continued patience as we work through the process of addressing these various financial matters.
For families who would like to request a refund on their student’s EZPay lunch account, please contact Julie Bartell in the Food Services Department at email@example.com. Please note that all amounts left on a student’s EZPay account will automatically roll over to the next school year. For graduating seniors, account balances may be transferred to a sibling in a younger grade level if that is desired. Otherwise, a refund of balance can be issued.
District Chromebook Devices
We will NOT be collecting district issued Chromebooks until we return to school in the fall. With the exception of graduating seniors, all students with a district issued Chromebook device will be keeping their devices through the summer. This includes all students in grades 6 through 9 who are part of the district’s 1:1 device program, as well as students in grades K-5 and grades 10 and 11 who have checked out a district Chromebook device on loan for use during the extended closure. Note: It is expected that those devices will be stored safely by the student over the summer and will return with the student for next school year. Please watch for additional details regarding proper device storage over the summer and important information on device software updates and repairs. Graduating seniors who have devices on loan will need to return them at the end of the year and details as to how and when will be provided in the near future.
Students with IEPs will continue to have opportunities to engage through the support of teachers, related-services staff, and families. Special education teachers will continue to engage parents in IEP meetings, parent meetings and otherwise support students in remote learning. Accommodations, modifications, and services will be provided to the greatest extent possible throughout the remote learning.
If your child’s IEP team determines that your child qualifies for Extended School Year (ESY), the District will provide ESY following the Ohio Department of Health’s guidance to maintain the safety and health of students and staff. The child’s intervention specialist will contact you when we have more details for your child.
Celebrating the Class of 2020
Thank you for your patience as we explore a variety of options and ideas for celebrating the Class of 2020, while following the latest guidelines and recommendations. It is important to us to give these outstanding Bulldog students the best send-off possible given these unprecedented circumstances. OFHS Principal Mr. Leo Spagnola has been busy seeking and collecting feedback and ideas from students, staff and families. Our goal is to honor our seniors in a safe and responsible way, prioritizing the health needs of students, their families and the community. Mr. Spagnola and I will have more information regarding decisions surrounding Prom and Commencement communicated to families and students next week.
Other Grade Level Celebrations/Events
We are aware that parents are concerned about a number of end of the year events that students across other grade levels are missing out on as well. We are all working collaboratively between buildings and with our PTAs to explore ways to celebrate our kindergarten, 3rd, 5th and 8th graders transitioning to new buildings in the fall. Questions pertaining to these specific building level celebrations should be directed to the principal.
Kindergarten Registration for 2020-2021
It is that time of year where we want to encourage parents/guardians to register their kindergartner for the 2020-21 school year. Please visit our website for information regarding registering your child for kindergarten and reach out to Olmsted Falls Early Childhood Principal Mrs. Dora Bechtel at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions you may have. It is important that we have all incoming kindergarten students in the system so that we can keep you informed as to adjustments in the traditional kindergarten process due to the current closure.
Meals for Students
The Free Student Breakfast/Lunch Program will continue on weekdays for the duration of the school year, ending on June 9th. Any families needing to add their student(s) to the free breakfast/lunch program are encouraged to click HERE for additional information regarding how to sign up for meal deliveries at any time. We understand that many families are experiencing changes in their financial situations and want to make sure all Bulldog families are aware that this program can be joined at any time.
More to Come…
As we wait on further guidance from the Governor, we will be able to address additional questions and concerns surrounding Extended School Year instruction, summer school, Safety Town, summer athletics for the community and more.
Finally, today is Election Day in Ohio. We will be monitoring the unofficial results that we expect to be reported later this evening, and will plan to provide families and our community with an update on the status of the results on the district’s operating levy, Issue 29, tomorrow morning.
In closing, we look forward to the day that we are able to welcome students back into our buildings. We sincerely appreciate your continued support and patience during these challenging times.
Jim Lloyd, Ed.D.
Olmsted Falls City School District
26937 Bagley Rd.
Olmsted Township, OH 44138