Chagrin Reopening Plan - Important Update

August 13, 2020
 
Dear Parents / Caregivers:
 
I want to thank you for your continued support and patience as we continue to move towards the reopening of our schools.  Last night we reviewed the Chagrin Falls Return to School Operational Guide with the Chagrin Falls Board of Education.  

The purpose of this document is to provide guidance to our staff and parents about the operations of our School District during a pandemic. We have been fortunate to work with teams of medical professionals from University Hospitals and the Cleveland Clinic who have provided valuable input and resources into many components of this plan. Both the Cuyahoga and Geauga County Health Departments have reviewed and provided input into this plan.  It was referred to by the Cuyahoga County representative as a “gold standard” for schools. 

This plan provides a District-wide overview of our operations during a pandemic; however, specific building and grade level details will also be provided from each school. This is also a fluid situation; therefore, if directives or guidance from health and/or government officials change, we will modify this plan and communicate these changes with our parents.   It is of critical importance to understand the information and requirements within this document.  We ask that you discuss these requirements as families and together make the Chagrin Falls Ready Pledge.

We have also evaluated our ability to provide an option for working Elementary parents offsetting when their child would be in school.  Unfortunately, there are limitations that prevent the district from providing such an option for parents.  These include staffing limitations based on the level of interest and lack of clarity on our ability to offer this due to statutory requirements including school aged daycare and other areas.  We evaluated this offering as a school sponsored program as well as an independent contractor and neither are feasible with our current time constraints.  

We all share a common goal in safely returning our staff and students to school. It is important that we do what this community does best, come together to work towards that goal.   The statement that, “we are only as strong as our weakest link” best describes our ability to not only successfully return but to stay in school moving forward.  This requires a commitment from us all to implementing the basic practices that have proven to reduce the spread of COVID-19. 

We look forward to welcoming back our staff next Monday as we continue to finalize planning.  Building communication regarding the soft opening of school for students will be sent next Wednesday, August 19.
 
Sincerely,

Robert W. Hunt, Ph.D.
Superintendent
Chagrin Falls Exempted Village Schools
440-247-3933 
 
 



August 6, 2020

Dear Parents / Caregivers:

I continue to be thankful and appreciative of the ongoing support of our staff and community.  At the end of last week, I shared with our community that Cuyahoga County Health Department issued a recommendation that schools open in a remote environment and cancel all extracurricular activities including sports.  I also explained that our District is split between Cuyahoga and Geauga Counties and we needed to take the time to conduct our due diligence around the recommendation specific to our plans for opening. 

Last night, I shared with our Board of Education my recommendation to continue to move forward in a hybrid model.  If you would like a full explanation of this decision, I would recommend watching the Board meeting at the following LINK.  This decision was made by evaluating feedback from both Geauga and Cuyahoga Counties as well as evaluating data locally.  

We continue to understand that this is a very personal decision for each family.  Therefore, if you have an interest in changing your decision regarding returning in a Hybrid or Remote model this can be done until Monday, August 10 at 8 a.m.  Please reenter Final Forms at this LINK and change your selection.  It is our intent to move forward with staffing and planning to support our students both in a Hybrid and Remote model.  The only factors that would impact this decision prior to opening are as follows:

   An order by the Governor to move to remote learning
   A significant outbreak of COVID-19 locally
   A change in the State of Ohio Advisory Model in Geauga and / or Cuyahoga Counties
   A recommendation from the Geauga County Health Department to open in remote learning.


It is important that we all realize we have a collective responsibility to protect each other during this public health crisis.  I encourage all of our families to implement and encourage the basic principles of mask wearing, social distancing and hand washing.  These very simple measures implemented pervasively throughout our community can make a difference and will likely be the most significant factor in our ability to educate students in person. 

Thank you for your continued support.
Sincerely,

Robert W. Hunt, Ph.D.
Superintendent
Chagrin Falls Exempted Village Schools
440-247-3933 
 
 
The arrival of COVID-19 in March has significantly impacted all of our lives. We are all continuing to adjust to our new normal as this situation evolves in our community, state and nation. However, what has not been impacted is at the foundation of what makes this community and School District special. When a crisis arrives, we come together to support each other and that is exactly what I have witnessed from our students, staff and parents as we have engaged in conversation about the reopening of schools. This will have to continue as we move forward into the school year.
 
The "At a Glance" document, linked here, provides you with a general overview of the Chagrin Falls Schools' learning models that are in place for next year as well as directions on how to register your student(s) by July 31st, 2020. There is a chance we could be operating in all three of these models at some point during the 2020-21 school year. This introduction is intended to provide enough information for families to make an initial selection of a learning model that fits their circumstances and begin planning. A more comprehensive document, entitled Chagrin Falls Back to School Guide, will be shared in August with parents and staff.

As of today, our intention is to open school with two options for our students, a hybrid half-day model OR Chagrin Falls Virtual Academy. We are asking our parents to commit to one of these options for the first semester (grades 7-12) or first trimester (grades K-6). We understand the disruption this causes for families and we will be evaluating the possibility of offering a Learning Lab for parents that are significantly impacted by the half day model due to work commitments. This decision can only be made after we understand model selections by families.  

This decision to open in a hybrid model has been made after reviewing research, consulting with experts, evaluating survey data and working internally with educators on what would be best for our students. We believe this provides us with the ability to safely reintegrate students and staff. We also believe this provides the opportunity to best mitigate the risk factors associated with the spread of COVID-19 to hopefully remain in school.  It is our goal to get all students and staff back this school year. We believe this reentry is an important step in that direction. The Chagrin Falls Back to School Guide will provide guidance on the matrix we will be utilizing to evaluate if our delivery model will be changing and the potential timelines if a transition were to occur. We appreciate your continued support and efforts.  

All families must complete this registration form by July 31, 2020.
 
 

Thank you for your continued support. 

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