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School Year 2020-2021: FAQs

FAQ School Year 2020-2021: Frequently Asked Questions


As you may be aware, our  2020-2021 school year is scheduled to begin on
August 20 for grades K-8 and August 21 for presschooler. Student and staff safety is always our top priority, and like all Illinois school districts, District 63 is relying on Governor Pritzker’s Restore Illinois Plan
, as well as recommendations from the Illinois Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control, to guide its decisions. 

We are committed to opening in a manner that will ensure all students and staff members - as well as their families - remain healthy and well. To that end, we have established a District Steering Committee comprising administrators, Board members, parents, and teachers to prepare multiple scenarios that may come into play next August. On June 23, the Illinois State Board of Education released guidance for Districts regarding opening schools for the 2020-2021 school year, and the Steering Committee will be using these guidelines to complete its work. 

Given the rapidly changing environment we are all facing,  these scenarios may shift and blend over the summer. On this page, we'll compile responses to frequently asked questions as we receive them - and we encourage you to submit questions you may have to district411@emsd63.org. 


Communication with parents:
Letter sent on June 10, 2020 (English and Spanish)
Letter sent on June 25, 2020 (English and Spanish)
Letter sent on July 9, 2020 (English and Spanish)

 

FAQs: Check Back Over Time For More! 

Q: Many parents will return to work in the fall. If the school re-opens with a hybrid scenario (different grades or students coming to school at differnt time or on different days) how will these families manage? Will there be any after- or before-school care?

A: If D63 does reopen using a hybrid model, elementary students from the same family would be kept on the same schedule. However, this may be more difficult if families have children at both elementary schools and Gemini). And in this scenario, our Expanded Learning before- and after-school care programs would be available with safety measures and social distancing in place. 

 

Q: If there is a hybrid scenario, may parents choose which days/hours their children attend school? 

A:The District is aware that many of our parents have challenges with work schedules or their own school commitments. Every effort would be made to honor parent needs and preferences - but this could be quite difficult if we have a large number of requests that would result in "unbalanced" attendance. Ultimately, the District must balance attendance appropriately and safely at schools and in classrooms.

 

Q: Under a hybrid scenario, how will the District coordinate special education services (for example, siblings at different schools, small programs such as BASE, or timing on such services as speech therapy)?

A: All such considerations are under review by the District's Task Force; check back later in the summer for an update - and if your student is receiving special education services, look for communication from our Special Services Department closer to the start of the school year.