Coronavirus-19

Schools Closed but Learning Continues
Posted on 04/06/2020
Novel Coronavirus Info and Resources

April 6, 2020

Dear South Kitsap families,

Governor Inslee and State Superintendent Chris Reykdal just announced the news we were hoping not to receive. Students will not return to our classrooms this school year. We share your emotions in hearing this gut wrenching news. We will miss seeing our students and witnessing their growth in person. While we won't be able to share the same classroom space, we are committed to continuing our support of students. Students have completed 130 days of this school year. There is learning left to be done and we are ready. 

We will continue student instruction using our remote learning program. This is new territory for our staff, students, and families. Staff are reinventing what education looks like in South Kitsap and there are a few key things to remember.

  • Teachers are connecting with students and families. These relationships and communication are critical.
  • While it looks new, these are not new classes. It is just a new way of delivering instruction.
  • Teachers have prioritized the most important concepts they would like students to learn and they have come up with creative ways to guide and provide feedback on new learning as we move forward. 

Here are some questions we are hearing. 
Q:  How long should students spend learning each day?
A:  Our recommended guidelines for maximum time students should spend on daily learning are as follows: 45 minutes for grades K-1 in 5-10 minute spans, 60 minutes for grades 2-3 in 10-15 minute spans, 90 minutes for grades 4-5 in 20-minute spans,  3 hours for grades 6-12 or 30 minutes per teacher. 

Keep in mind that this is total daily learning time and can include reading, online activities, live format, recorded format, and printed formats. Parents can choose to extend learning time; however, teachers will strive to stay within the maximum minutes to allow families to balance workload. Parents can extend learning with outdoor play, reading to self or family members, art, PE, music, etc. Everyone is adjusting and many have multiple roles at home. We appreciate your patience as we adjust to this new form of instruction. 

We've identified the technology needs of our families and loaned out devices for those families that need support. We hope you have found a quiet place in your household for your student(s) to work. Please contact your student's school directly if you still need a device.

Q:  Is it safe for students to use Zoom?
A:  Teachers are using precautions like password protection and private invitations solely for their students.   

Q:  What if my internet coverage is spotty or we don't have access at all?
A:  There are areas with free WiFi around downtown Port Orchard and near the Kitsap Regional Library in Manchester and Port Orchard. There is also WiFi available in some school parking lots. Wave Cable just announced a program called Internet first that offers low cost internet access https://www.internetfirst.com  

Q:  Will meal service and child care continue? 
A:  Yes, YMCA and Champion child care will continue at Manchester, EPO, and Sidney Glen. Grab & Go meal service is offered Mondays and Wednesdays. View the meal service and child care flyers in the right column.

We know you will have many other questions and we will do our best to keep you informed. Many things are on our radar that we don't have answers for at this point including end of year events. Specific questions about classwork should be directed to your student's teachers. We will compile frequently asked questions and add them to our website. Please continue to follow the "Stay at Home" order and practice social distancing.  
 Thank you for your partnership and patience as we work together to support our students. We will get through this together.

Stay well,

Tim Winter

 



March 25, 2020

 

Dear South Kitsap families,

We are excited at the opportunity for South Kitsap students to get back to the business of learning. This will look different than students and staff are used to and will require flexibility, creativity, and patience from all of us. Following the guidance from OSPI and the US Department of Education, we will provide ongoing remote learning for students during the school closure and “Stay at Home” order. This is a shift from supplemental and enrichment only learning. Our remote learning model will pick up from where instruction ended on March 13 and is planned to begin on April 6.

To the best of our ability, we are ramping up robust learning solutions for all students. Our first step is to better understand what resources our families have or need to access remote learning opportunities. Please help by answering the short three question phone survey about your household’s technology capabilities that will come out on Thursday, March 26.

Remote learning in South Kitsap will consider the following for all students:

  • Access to devices and internet connectivity;
  • Instructional content that can be adapted to meet student needs and how to deliver content;
  • Monitoring Progress including goals and timelines.

One thing you can expect is that student learning will be moving forward towards standards for each grade level. While nothing takes the place of face to face instruction, we will work very hard to provide our students the next best thing.

Communication will continue to be essential during the school closure and “Stay at Home” order. We will keep our families and staff connected with what we are hearing from the state and national level. In the meantime, families should use learning resources previously provided to students. Schools and teachers will be connecting with your family in the days to come. There is additional information posted on the district website at:  https://www.skschools.org/news/what_s_new/coronavirus-19. Thank you for your partnership as we adapt to support the needs of South Kitsap students. We will get through this together.

Stay well,

Tim Winter
Superintendent



March 23, 2020

Dear South Kitsap families and staff,

This evening, Governor Jay Inslee instructed Washington State residents to “STAY HOME and STAY HEALTHY”. This order will begin March 25 and will be in place for at least two weeks. South Kitsap School District will follow this guidance and urges our families and staff minimize to social interaction and slow the spread of COVID-19.

Governor Inslee emphasized that school districts should continue essential services to support families of emergency service and health care providers. This includes child care and emergency meals.

Please visit our district web page for the latest information and resources: https://www.skschools.org/news/what_s_new/coronavirus-19

Child Care

Our child care partners will continue to offer support to emergency and health care services. YMCA is operating at Manchester and East Port Orchard Elementary. Champion is operating at Sidney Glen Elementary. View the flyer here

Emergency Meal Service

Grab & Go meal service will continue Monday – Friday including the previously scheduled Spring Break next week. Here is the schedule:
11:00 AM -11:20 AM at Manchester, Marcus Whitman, Cedar Heights, and Hidden Creek
11:45 AM - 12:05 PM at South Colby, Orchard Heights, Sidney Glen and Mullenix Ridge
12:30 PM - 12:50 PM at John Sedgwick, East Port Orchard, Sunnyslope & Burley Glenwood
1:15 PM - 1:35 PM at Olalla

Learning Resources
We will continue to support student learning throughout the school closure.

Staff Work

Staff should continue to work remotely. Some departments may be requested to report to work to conduct essential services. All other employees should not access South Kitsap School District buildings.  

How to Cope

Social distancing can make you feel overwhelmed or isolated. Find other ways to connect with others. Try using Skype, Facetime, Zoom or just a simple phone call. Take care of yourself with nourishing food, lots of sleep, relaxing breathing, and exercise. Try to limit time on social media. Focus on anything else by occupying yourself with another task. Cooking, cleaning, playing games, reading or writing can be helpful.
We know our families and staff are used to routine and staying home is difficult. It is critically important that we all do our part to slow the spread of COVID-19. We will continue our frequent messages in an effort to stay connected with you. Please stay home and stay healthy. We will get through this together!
Stay well,

Tim Winter
Superintendent



March 18, 2020

 

Hello South Kitsap families,

“When I was a child and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping'.”

This famous quote from Mr. Rogers suits the South Kitsap community. When times are tough, we come together. We support each other and we look for ways to get involved and help. We are committed to standing shoulder to shoulder with you during this difficult time. While there is much that is unknown and outside of our control, we can control how we treat each other.

It was wonderful to see so many of our families come out to pick up Grab & Go meals today. We miss our students and it was heartwarming to see their smiles and friendly greetings. We look forward to seeing you again in the days to come.

Along with our emergency meal service, there are other resources available in our community to support basic needs.

Kitsap County 211 – wa211.org

South Kitsap Grab & Go Meal Service

Community Meal Resources

Talking with Your Kids about School Closure and COVID19

Remember to look for the helpers and look for ways to be a helper. We will get through this together.

Tim Winter
Superintendent
South Kitsap School District

 


March 16, 2020

Dear South Kitsap Families and staff,

These are challenging times and we are working to coordinate services to support families during the extended closure. 

Child Care Resources – starting Tuesday, March 17 (see attached flyer)

YMCA will offer child care 6 AM – 6 PM at East Port Orchard and Manchester Elementary for kids age 5 - 12. YMCA provides snacks, meals, STEM and physical activities, and more. Please note there is a cost associated with your child’s participation. For more information on accessing YMCA child care service please call 360-813-1813.

Champions Child Care will offer services 8 AM – 4 PM at Sidney Glen Elementary for kids age 5 - 12. Champions Learning program has partnered with SKSD to provide care for families in need. The program has fun activities and support for reading and other learning. SK Food Services will deliver meals to the site. Please note there is a cost associated with your child’s participation. Visit this link to register or call 800-246-2154.

Meal Service – starting Wednesday, March 18 (see attached flyer)

South Kitsap School District staff will hand out Grab & Go meals to students following the schedule below.

  • Starting March 18. Monday – Friday
  • FREE to all children under the age of 18
  • Child(ren) must be present to pick up meals
  • No forms or registration required
  • Drive-thru style distribution
  • Please note the limited time window at each site

Meal Service Schedule
11:00 AM -11:20 AM at Manchester, Marcus Whitman, Cedar Heights, and Hidden Creek
11:45 AM - 12:05 PM at South Colby, Orchard Heights, Sidney Glen, and Mullenix Ridge
12:30 PM - 12:50 PM at John Sedgwick, East Port Orchard, Sunnyslope & Burley Glenwood
1:15 PM - 1:35 PM at Olalla

Student Learning

Students were sent home with some practice learning packets to keep them thinking about school. There are also resources available on our website: https://www.skschools.org/news/what_s_new/coronavirus-19

Please note that previously scheduled IEP meetings or phone conferences have been canceled.

We will continue to send updates as new information is available. Thank you to all our families and staff for your patience during this difficult time. Stay healthy.

Sincerely,

Tim Winter
Superintendent




Spanish Translated Message

South Kitsap School District will be closed March 16, 2020 – April 24, 2020

March 13, 2020

Dear South Kitsap School District families and staff,

 

As all our families and staff are aware, we are in the midst of an unprecedented health and safety event. We know the community is concerned about COVID-19, and we absolutely share your concerns. Conditions and responses are evolving rapidly, and districts have announced school closures following state and health agency recommendations. South Kitsap School District has proactively decided to close schools effective Monday, March 16, 2020.

To support social distancing and do our part in slowing the spread of COVID-19, South Kitsap schools will be closed starting Monday, March 16, 2020. The closure will remain in effect until April 24. South Kitsap School District Administration Offices will remain open during the closure. School offices will be open through March 20 to allow for families to pick up medication and personal items.

This is not an easy decision. We recognize that schools provide vital support to our community beyond education and know that closure will have a major impact on our families. We will continue to monitor developments and provide updates during the closure.

Meals for Students 

During the school closure, boxed meals will be provided by South Kitsap Food & Nutrition Services at no charge and will include breakfast and lunch items. The meals will be available starting March 18 to ALL students under the age of 18. No forms or registration are required.

*We will share pick up locations and timing as soon as planning is completed.

Learning Support

Our teachers have developed learning packets and we will provide paper copies to students. These are not meant to be a substitute for classroom instruction but will help students practice their skills and learn independently during the closure.

Our teachers and administrative team are also working on support for our 12th-grade students to ensure they complete graduation requirements. 

Child Care

We know any school closure is difficult for families to manage and recognize that extended closure will be even more challenging. We are in contact with Champions, Boys & Girls Club and YMCA Child Watch to coordinate options for our families.

*We will share information on child care options as soon as planning is complete

Next Steps

We will send frequent updates with information and resources via email and text messages. We will also update the district website and social media channels. We have started a phone hotline for community information 360-874-6499.

We are so grateful for your patience and understanding as we continue to work through these difficult times. Thank you for your partnership and support.

Sincerely,

Tim Winter
Superintendent