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Chatbox Responses from Board Meeting
Chatbox Responses from Board Meeting
Pam Doyen
Monday, August 10, 2020

Please find below the chatbox questions from last Thursday's board meeting. The responses to the chatbox questions are in bold. I, again, apologize that I was unable to keep up with the chatbox questions in live time. 


 From 93938122888 : where would kids be put into the yellow zone if they live in a different town than what was mentioned  Please connect with your child’s principal as this would be determined by numbers in each section. 

From 93938122888 : if a kid did refuse to wear a mask and shield because they don't want to would u send them to home learning We would work with the student, especially if the student had medical issues or an IEP/504. We intend to provide social stories and modeling. We can also use preferred activities to reinforce mask usage. It would be helpful if parents start the process prior to the start of school. We can post some ideas on our social media pages. 

I think we have to be clear with parents that if they refuse to wear it and we have tried to resolve it, the student will have to go to remote learning.  I don’t think we can ignore the fact that masks are baseline in terms of our expectations.  

 From Mark Ricci : Is the plan available somewhere to be viewed by the public? The plan remained confidential until after the vote. It is now on the social media pages as well as at www.rsu56.org

 From Mark Ricci : Sorry I missed what you said, when will the plan be posted if approved? I just wondered if the draft was available for us to comment on or ask questions about Putting a draft out in advance would have, potentially, caused confusion so it was decided to keep it confidential until approved. 

1From Jamie Glover : Are the kids going to be wearing masks during PE? That seems like it would be difficult If possible, PE would be outdoors and more than 6’ apart - meaning masks could be removed. If inside, we have to follow guidance. I would expect that the PE lesson would be adjusted to account for masks. 

 From Sarah Fields : If there would be mask breaks for 10 minutes per hour at the elementary school level, then how will the kids be protected, if they are wearing masks 50 minutes but then remove their masks for 10 minutes? Our design would include taking the students outside, weather permitting, for mask breaks. If in class, the students would be arranged 6’ apart. Current guidance suggests exposure has to be more than 15 minutes so we would remain well under that exposure time. 

From Christina Arsenault-Bouchard : what happens to the children you are physically not  able to wear a mask and face shield who also did not do well with remote learning This would be a small minority of students. We would work with the parents/guardians to develop an appropriate plan. 

From Sara Searles : Are the students going to be staying with the same group all day or will they still be switching throughout the day in the Middle school? Students will be placed into grade level pods and remain with that pod throughout the day. Each pod has multiple classrooms, so students will move classrooms throughout the day but do so primarily within their “pod” or wing of the school building.

This is not the same at the elementary school.  Most likely students will remain in their classrooms and probably even specials will be held in those classrooms to eliminate as much hall traffic as possible.  

 From Jessica Swan : I think expectations are super important.  Is there a plan to make sure parents and students understand school this way will be VERY different from “normal?” The entire plan will be posted for parents/guardians/students to view. A letter will be sent out directing parents/guardians to the information and Registration form. Additionally, we will use alert calls to communicate the need for parents/guardians to be aware of the changes/plan. 

 From kellyporter : What about our staff? How are we protecting them? We will be providing PPE as outlined by the DOE. 

From Mrs.Towle : Is someone supposed to be answering the questions that are typed here? Several have not been answered. I was doing the best I could do… sorry. 

 From Pamela Doyen : Once approved, the plan will be posted on all RSU 56 social media.

 From Kimberly Bernard to Pamela Doyen (Privately) : okay what’s the preliminary thoughts?

The plan can be found on our social media pages and on www.rsu56.org

 From Jessica Swan : Kim, 2 options if “Green”-meet CDC guidelines  1.  Attend school in person w/ mask, 5 days/ week.  2.  Or, elect to stay home and learn virtually.

From charitywebster : Kim school would be 9am-2p

 From Jessica Swan : Kim, if case of COVID, every goes to Remote for 48 hrs. 

The plan states 72 hours for a single case to allow for contact tracing.

From Christina Arsenault-Bouchard : realistically children for the most part won't stay 6 feet apart. especially ones that have behavioral issues If parents/guardians and school personnel work together, I believe this can be successful for the majority. For those students who struggle, we will continue to work with them and their families on plans, as we would with any IEP/504 issue. 

From Mary Kaubris : Is there a guarantee of having a nurse in-house at all schools? A nurse position has been posted. We intend to have a nurse in all three buildings, if we are able to hire one. 

 From Sarah Fields : True Christina, especially running around a field at recess.

 From Jessica Swan : We only have 2 school nurses…3 schools.

From Mary Kaubris : Will students have their temperature taken prior to entering the school buildings? This is the responsibility of the parents/guardians as part of the daily checklist. 

 From Mark Ricci : Please do not delay any further. The plan can be tweaked. Parents need answers, especially ones who share children between families who need to establish plans.

I agree that parents need to know the plan so they can choose accordingly for their children. Parents know their children best. 

From Woods : Can there be an option for students to do the hybrid? As a student it would be very helpful! Please connect with the building principal to see if this might be an option. 

At the elementary school we are going to establish the remote learning and in person learning first and then do our best to work with any parents regarding hybrid models.  Our ability to do this will depend on the numbers.  

 From Mary Kaubris : Will teachers have the option of dismissing a student from the classroom if they choose not to wear a mask (for non-medical reasons)? Absolutely. 

 From Brandy Bordeau : I would like the board to consider a third choice.

 From Brian Keene : Mary - There currently is a job posting for a nurse for DHS until Dec 30

 From Beth MacFarlane : How will rooms be cleaned between classes that switch around such as at the high school? This is outlined in the plan. We are going to follow MDOE/CDC guidance on cleaning. 

From Mary Kaubris : Are the two options presented the only ones available? Parents/families can also choose “other” - and speak with the building principal. Homeschooling is also an option, this would require filling out the necessary state paperwork. What about delaying start of school for later than September 8? It’s important for our students to get the full 175 days of school if at all possible. Delaying school would make that challenging. As long as we can follow all MDOE guidance, the start of school for students seems reasonable. 

From Woods : I would also like the hybrid option to be a third option.

 From Mark Ricci : There is no hybrid option? Parents/families can also choose “other” - and speak with the building principal. Homeschooling is also an option, this would require filling out the necessary state paperwork. 

From Patricia’s iPhone : I also would like a hybrid option as a third option Parents/families can also choose “other” - and speak with the building principal. Homeschooling is also an option, this would require filling out the necessary state paperwork. 

 From Jessica Swan : Mary, students,, parents, staff “must conduct self-checks for symptoms before boarding busses or entering buildings."

 From Krystal Smith : I would also like a third option as Brandy mentioned. Parents/families can also choose “other” - and speak with the building principal. Homeschooling is also an option, this would require filling out the necessary state paperwork. 

 From Patricia’s iPhone : I agree too! Parents/families can also choose “other” - and speak with the building principal. Homeschooling is also an option, this would require filling out the necessary state paperwork. 

19:29:01 From Woods : As a student at the high school, I would also like the hybrid option. Parents/families can also choose “other” - and speak with the building principal. Homeschooling is also an option, this would require filling out the necessary state paperwork. 

 From Patricia’s iPhone : I get it is a board meeting, however these are our kids and I want all the information All the information is now public on the social media pages as well as at www.rsu56.org

From Mary Kaubris : Where and when will the board be welcoming public comments? Public comments are always welcome at board meetings. There is a standard agenda item for public comments. Additionally, anyone can contact board members and/or administrators at any time. 

 From Jason : Jason (TWKDMS principal) here, I am open to discussing concerns and explore creative alternatives within the framework. I have done this at TWKDMS with home school parents before.

 From Mark Ricci : It is difficult to ask questions without a plan in front of us, as it normally would be in a public meeting. Putting a draft out in advance would have, potentially, caused confusion so it was decided to keep it confidential until approved. We did not want parents to feel it was approved when it was just a draft. 

 From Sarah Fields : Brad, you may not realize that many parents cannot afford to send kids to private school.   I wish the state would get k12 online public school available for all students.

From Ricki : I understand the difficulty and logistics, but I also support a hybrid model as a third option.  Parents/families can also choose “other” - and speak with the building principal. Homeschooling is also an option, this would require filling out the necessary state paperwork. 

 From Jason : Again - I think I can work with a third option within the framework

From Patricia’s iPhone : thank you!

 From Woods : Could this also be done in the high school? If the students need help with work it would be great!  Parents/families can also choose “other” - and speak with the building principal. Homeschooling is also an option, this would require filling out the necessary state paperwork. 

From Tara : every thing that Brad has to say is a huge concern to alot of parents listening. we need to know what else we need to consider to educate and keep our children safe! 

 From kellyporter : They need to know their children are going to be safe first!!

From Christina Arsenault-Bouchard : will the teachers be better equipped to do remote We have added time for Professional Development and planning so that teachers can continue to work on their craft pertaining to remote learning. 

From Sarah Fields : we don't even know who their teachers are supposed to be At DES, Mr. Swan will be providing that information once parents fill out the survey and we can safely assign students into groups. We need to ensure a safe 3’ distance between desks and that limits the number of students in our classrooms. Please know that we understand your desire to know but we have to put safety first. 

 From Tara : agreed sarah

From Mary Kaubris : What do you recommend for more comments/suggestions?? Best to contact superintendent or board members? Or both? Contacting the building principal and/or the superintendent would be best. 

From Kurt Rowley : It’s difficult to for the public to comment at the beginning of meeting, before they have any information.

] From barbarachow : Contact pam and principal

 From Erin Wainwright : would the board consider the hybrid option so we can make sure we are providing education safely? Parents/families can also choose “other” - and speak with the building principal. Homeschooling is also an option, this would require filling out the necessary state paperwork. 

From Patricia’s iPhone : Tricia Fletcher here! As a school we cannot make concrete plans until we have some sort of framework to work from.

From 93938122888 : I love what they have done for summer school so I know they are doing an awesome job with everything that is going on I am glad u are looking at everything to make sure our kids are safe

 From Jessica Swan : As a parent, although I want my kids in school full time (and, it would be easier as one who works in the schools), but I think a Hybrid schedule would be safer Parents/families can also choose “other” - and speak with the building principal. Homeschooling is also an option, this would require filling out the necessary state paperwork. 

 From Erin Wainwright : I agree, Jessica

From Jason : This is Jason Long (TWKDMS principal) jlong@rsu56.org

From Woods : As a student in the high school, a hybrid model would be a great addition. Parents/families can also choose “other” - and speak with the building principal. Homeschooling is also an option, this would require filling out the necessary state paperwork. 

 From Patricia’s iPhone : I am surprised that a hybrid plan isn’t the first one considered. Tricia Fletcher Parents/families can also choose “other” - and speak with the building principal. Homeschooling is also an option, this would require filling out the necessary state paperwork. 

From Jessica Swan : Jason, when is your meeting? The TWKDMS meeting is via Zoom at 4:00 pm on Monday, August 10. The Zoom link is available on the TWKDMS Facebook page (which is a place the school uses to share information, so it is worth following for parents).

 From Jason : Hi Jess, Monday August 10. 

 From Jason : I will post the time and link to the TWKDMS Facebook page and email all student email accounts

 From Jessica Swan : I am very concerned about what young students are capable of and how they would respond to a 5 hour + day with all the guidelines.

From Jessica Swan : Thank you, Jason