The faculty and staff at Sheridan School District are doing everything we can to ensure all students continue to have a safe and rigorous educational environment.
We are closely monitoring guidance from the Arkansas Department of Health and the Arkansas Department of Education. There is much uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, but we are excited to reopen our schools for our students. Below you will find detailed information about how we will operate during the 2020-21 school year.
TWO LEARNING OPTIONS
The Sheridan School District two learning options for families. Families may choose our Virtual or Blended learning environment based on the ADE READY FOR LEARNING report.
The SSD Virtual Academy is a K-12 online school option where students can learn remotely full time while also having access to our curriculum, teachers, intervention, and support. Students will receive the same level of education they would receive on campus and will also have the opportunity to be involved in Yellowjacket extracurricular activities and events.
The new virtual academy will be an improved version of the digital learning provided in the Spring of 2020 during the extended school closure. Families can expect a more rigorous curriculum that will be organized and monitored through the new Canvas Learning Management System. This system will make it easier for students and parents to navigate through the curriculum and instruction and will allow parents the ability to track their child’s engagement and progress throughout the school year. A device will be provided to each student enrolled in the virtual academy if needed.
Students returning to the classroom in the fall will have a Blended learning environment. Students will report to campus to learn, but both teachers and students will be prepared for remote learning if needed due to illness or inclement weather. Blended learning allows the student to continue learning grade-level content standards through an educational plan that leverages both technology-based and face-to-face instruction. The curriculum will be aligned with the content provided through the SSD Virtual Academy so that students and teachers can easily pivot from onsite to online instruction as needed.
Click on the image below to see a detailed side-by-side comparison of the two learning options.
Virtual Fridays (Beginning Oct. 23, 2020)
The changes brought about from the COVID-19 pandemic have significantly impacted how our schools operate. We all have struggled adjusting to our new school environment, and we have carefully considered the feedback we have received from our staff and families. We have worked hard to make adjustments so far this school year with minimal impact to families.
However, based on feedback and surveys from our staff, our current instructional model is still not sustainable. As a result, our campus principals have developed a plan to support our classroom teachers so they may continue to give their best to all students, whether these students are onsite, virtual, or temporarily virtual due to Covid-related issues.
Beginning Friday (Oct. 23), the Sheridan School District will offer Virtual Fridays for K-12 students every week through the remainder of the fall semester. We understand that some families may need to send their children to school due to having no Internet at home or other reasons, so we will keep our campuses open from 8 a.m. - 12 p.m. Buses will run according to their regular schedule in the morning but will dismiss at 12 p.m.
Instruction on Virtual Fridays will be 100 percent virtual through Canvas for students whether they stay home or go to school. There will be no new content taught or major assessments given. Students who choose to learn from home on Fridays will NOT be counted absent.
This time on Fridays will allow teachers to better prepare for both onsite and virtual students, including:
- Creating educational videos
- Uploading new assignments and resources to Canvas
- Preparing for the upcoming week
- Providing feedback to students
- Curriculum planning
For more information about the implementation of Virtual Fridays, please click HERE.
Safety Precautions for Blended (Onsite) Instruction
While students are on campus, we will follow the safety precautions recommended by ADH to limit the spread of COVID-19. Based on current guidelines, we will be taking the following precautions.
- Requirements for physical distancing may not be feasible in all situations in every school facility or on school buses, but all efforts possible will be made to observe physical distancing. Face coverings will be required when staff and students return to school. Where physical distancing measures can be implemented, face coverings may be removed.
- All students and staff will wear a face covering when riding a school bus or district transportation. Face coverings are recommended for students under grade four since physical distancing will not be feasible.
- All students and staff will wear face masks when physical distancing of six feet is not possible (school entry, exit, classroom, hall passing, bathroom).
- If students maintain physical distancing on the playground, face coverings will not be required.
- Students and staff may remove the face covering while eating meals or snacks.
- Staff and presenters may remove face coverings while teaching if 12 feet distancing is maintained.
- Face coverings should not be used on anyone who has trouble breathing or is unconscious; or anyone who is incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the cloth face covering without assistance.
- Breakfast will be served in the classroom. Lunch will be served in the cafeteria at reduced capacity. For this reason, visitors will not be allowed to have meals with students. Physical spacing will be organized with proper markings to show where to line up and sit.
- Proper sanitation of all areas will be completed after each meal.
- Procedures will not allow students to pick up utensils, self-serve, or share food. Parents are encouraged to open an online payment account for student meals HERE so that cash is not exchanged.
- Please send a water bottle with your child as water fountains will not be available. However, filling stations will be available.
Health Screening Protocols:
- Parents will be expected to screen their children using the ADH STOP THE SPREAD TOOL prior to entering any school bus or building.
- All staff and visitors entering the building will be screened prior to entering the facility/bus. Entry to the building will be limited to admit only for essential business.
What Happens if we have a positive or suspected positive case
Click on the image below for a flow chart that describes the guidelines we will follow if we have a positive COVID-19 case or a suspected positive case. This flow chart is based on the guidelines and recommendations of the Arkansas Department of Health. We will modify our operations in our school buildings based on the number of active cases in our community and schools. We will follow guidance detailed in the Arkansas Department of Education's Response Levels documents located HERE.
Notice to SSD Families:
In an effort to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus within our district we are asking all parents/guardians, of students who will be in attendance onsite, and all employees to notify our designated Points of Contact immediately when the following occurs:
• Someone in the household has tested positive for COVID-19.
• Someone in the household has been identified as a Close Contact to a positive case of COVID-19 and is requiring quarantine and/or recommended to be tested for COVID-19.
• Student attending onsite and employees who are being tested for COVID-19. If symptomatic, student/staff should remain in quarantine pending results of the COVID-19 test.
The Points of Contact and their contact information are listed below. Thank you in advance for your cooperation. Together we can help keep our Sheridan School District family safe, healthy and ready to learn during this school year.
***If sending information by email, it is important that you only send to these COVID email addresses for tracking purposes. Should one of our Points of Contact be out of the office, we will assign back up staff to monitor these emails.
One thing we’ve learned throughout this COVID-19 pandemic is guidance is subject to change. We will continue to send you updates throughout the summer as more information becomes available. You can also view our FAQ document, which will be updated regularly as new information becomes available.
Click on the image below to access the FAQ document.
Canvas Learning Management System
Students will access their online work through the Canvas LMS. For Virtual (online) students, all of their announcements, assignments, teacher communications, etc. will happen through this platform. For Blended (onsite) students, teachers will provide face-to-face instruction and activities, as well as online assignments and communications through Canvas. Students can access Canvas at http://sheridanschools.instructure.com/login/saml and log in with their school Google account username and password from the 2019-20 school year.
Virtual Students: If your virtual student is new to the district or you don't know your Google username and password, please contact your school office.
Blended Students: If your student is new to the district or you don't know your Google username and password, your student will get this information at school.
For helpful Canvas tutorial videos, go to https://bit.ly/32h9ooX.
school Meals for virtual students
The Sheridan School District is pleased to provide school meals for our virtual students. Participating families will pick up all meals for the week each Monday from 10 - 10:30 a.m. at Sheridan High School or East End Middle School. We hope that by providing all meals for the week on one day, picking up meals will be more convenient for families rather than having to pick up a meal each day of the week. Perishable food will be frozen so that you can heat and prepare the food at your convenience.
You can view the planned menus at the link below but please be aware that menu items are subject to change.
For menu items -> https://sheridanschools.nutrislice.com/
Reopening Schools Task Force
This is an unprecedented time globally and here in our community. The Sheridan School District, like other school districts from around the world, are faced with many challenges and will need to make extremely difficult decisions. We created the Sheridan School District Reopening Schools Task Force to help us ensure we return to school as carefully as we can. The task force consists of local medical providers, business leaders, administrators, teachers/staff, parents, and students.
View the list of task force members HERE.
You can submit questions for the task force HERE.
View notes from Task Force Meetings HERE.
View the Ready for Learning District Support Plan HERE.