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Wichita students to go full-remote schooling starting Dec. 2

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WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The Wichita Public Schools Board of Education voted Monday evening to go full remote starting Dec. 2.

“The numbers have gone up dramatically,” said Board President Sheril Logan. “We just can’t continue on this way and keep schools rolling so we need our community to help us and step up.”

In a series of tweets Monday, USD 259 stated, “A motion has been made for the district to transition to remote learning at all grade levels effective Dec. 2 with targeted exceptions, as recommended by the Sedgwick County Medical Officer. As part of this motion, IEP (Individualized Educational Program) services will continue as directed by a student’s IEP team, as well as direct service at high schools for dual and concurrent credit, and specialized labs based on academic requirements.”

On Monday evening, USD 259 BOE released the following statement:

“The Wichita Board of Education voted to transition to remote learning for all grade levels effective December 2, as recommended by the Sedgwick County Medical Officer. This directly affects elementary students who are currently learning onsite. It does not change the learning model for elementary students currently learning through MySchool Remote, middle and high school students, and Education Imagine Academy students.

Students will remain in full remote learning until further notice, with the learning model status being evaluated at the January 11, 2021 BOE meeting.  

The United Teachers of Wichita said this is the decision it was waiting for.

“It brings relief, with our numbers are so high in the community, we really needed to go remote Pre-K through 12, so there’s relief with that and there’s also relief that our staff will be able to work from home for the most part,” said UTW president Kimberly Howard

Howard said it will be a challenge for some teachers to switch learning models, but it will also be a challenge for parents.

“It’s very hard for my family because I don’t know what I am going to do, I have nobody here, I have to work,” said single mother Andrea Black.

Students who receive IEP services will continue as directed by the student’s IEP team, as well as direct service at high schools for dual and concurrent credit, and specialized labs based on academic requirements.

Additional information will be shared with elementary families on Tuesday, December 1 pertaining to learning plans, technology support, food service and other school-specific information.

The district will follow KSHSAA’s guidelines approved on November 24 allowing winter sports to continue, but no spectators at competitions, and suspending practices December 23 – January 3. 

Click here to read the BOE presentation.

The BOE also approved an agreement with Wichita State for COVID-19 tests. WSU will provide testing kits to the district, and WSU’s Molecular Diagnostic Lab will process the kits. This will provide an opportunity for asymptomatic employees to get tested. This is in addition to COVID-19 testing offered to symptomatic staff through a statewide pilot through the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.”

USD 259 released the following information Monday morning regarding current COVID-19 cases in the school district.

Image courtesy of USD 259

For more information on Wichita public schools, click here.

For the latest updates on COVID-19 cases in Kansas, click here

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