8/17/20 Community Update

Dear Hatboro-Horsham School District Families:

I hope this finds you healthy and well.  As we continue our planning for the 2020-21 school year, we have several updates. We are committed to keeping you informed about relevant information to support a successful school year.

Principal Communication: All families will receive communication from their principals no later than Tuesday 8/25. This will include class and teacher assignments and schedules. Each building will share details about opportunities for students to connect with their teachers, as well as additional supports for students transitioning to a new building (whether that be natural transitions in grades 6 and 9 or with students new to the school). Schedules will include a common lunch time for all students across the district, will balance whole group and small group learning as well as synchronous and asynchronous instruction, and will have dedicated times for teacher office hours to connect with parents and families. Expectations for students will also be detailed.

Supply Lists: Supply lists will be shared and posted on the website by Wednesday 8/19. We will also be providing some learn-at-home tools and supplies for some students. These details will be included in the communication from principals.

Technology: Device distribution to all students, K-12, is underway. As of Saturday, over 1600 devices have been distributed to students. Distribution continues this week. We plan for all students to receive their devices in August, prior to the start of school. Information about how to pick up a device can be found here. Also, a dedicated helpdesk line has been established for families that need technical assistance.

Teacher Preparation: Teachers have been actively involved in professional learning opportunities to improve their skills with remote learning. This marks our third week of multiple sessions for teachers on a range of topics including engaging learners in synchronous and asynchronous learning, using technology tools effectively, maximizing platforms such as Canvas, SeeSaw, Microsoft Teams, and strengthening assessment and collaboration skills. Over the past two weeks, we have offered 17 training sessions that have hosted over 1,280 HHSD teacher attendees. We are offering 27 additional training opportunities over the next three weeks. I have been very pleased with the teacher commitment to continuous growth.

Athletics: The PIAA and Suburban One League have delayed the opening of Fall sports. In the meantime, voluntary workouts that adhere to the approved Health and Safety plans may continue. The PIAA Board of Directors is reconvening on 8/21.

Reopening Guidance: Last week, the Pennsylvania Departments of Health and Education released some joint recommendations to Pre-K to 12 schools for making decisions related to the instructional models used during the 2020-21 school year, which can be found here. They also released recommendations for school response following a Covid-19 case, which can be found hereWe continue to monitor relevant health and safety data as we assess a timeline to reopen. This data includes, but is not limited to, the number of new cases in Montgomery County, Horsham Township, and the Borough of Hatboro, percent positivity rates, and projected cases. We continue to consult with medical professionals who are advising local school districts on the interpretation of this data. We seek a consistent trend of improvement in this data.

We appreciate the many questions that have been shared via reopening@Hatboro-Horsham.org as we seek to provide clarity for you. Responses to frequently asked questions will be posted on the website this week. Updates will also be shared via social media.

Thank you for your partnership in working toward a successful school year. Please stay safe and healthy.

Sincerely,

Scott Eveslage, Ed.D.

Superintendent of Schools