We are just a few weeks out from the start of 2020/21 School Year. There are lots of moving parts and pieces and I wanted to update you on a few important ones that are pertinent to your planning.
Bussing: Yesterday, Manchester Transit Authority (MTA) held a meeting to discuss the bussing situation for charter schools and private schools. MTA explained the challenges with managing social distancing on busses, as well as with designing bus routes that are manageable and financially feasible. The solution they came up with, while not perfect, is an attempt to balance the limits of their system with the needs and safety of students and families. While the final details of that meeting are still being ironed out by MTA, the basics of the plan are as follows:
The City of Manchester will be divided into four quadrants. Each quadrant will have a "Hub" where students will be picked up/dropped off in the morning/afternoon and brought to and from their respective schools. Manchester has not identified Quadrants and Hubs as of yet, but we expect that to occur in the next few days. The use of Hubs makes the student transportation process more time efficient and allows for social distancing of passengers as busloads will be cut by approximately two-thirds.
What this means for our families that utilize bus services is that MTA will no longer be sending busses to individual student houses. Students will either need to walk to and from the Hub (if it is close enough) or students will need to be dropped off by parents at the Hub in the mornings and picked up in the afternoons. Another option that is available to families is riding the city buses "free of charge" to and from school. This may not be a feasible option for our youngest students, but it is a viable alternative for our older students and their siblings.
Once we have final details from MTA in the next few days, we will get this information out to you.
Instruction Delivery Surveys: Surveys were sent out last week for students to choose between the Hybrid and All Remote instructional models. We still have about 30 surveys outstanding. If you have not completed a survey, please do so by Thursday afternoon. If you misplaced the link, please email Lisa Cohen at firstname.lastname@example.org. Completed surveys are needed to build cohorts, class rosters and schedules. Students missing surveys will be automatically placed in the Hybrid Model of instruction on Thursday afternoon so that we may begin the schedule building process.
Schedules: We anticipate learning cohorts to be completed by Friday, 8/21 and sending out information to families no later than Monday, 8/24.
Return to School Plan: We anticipate also releasing our full Return to School Plan this coming Monday. There have been some recent guideline changes/interpretations from the State we needed to include as well as an overall vetting of our document.
Enrollment: Due to some recent changes, we now have some open enrollment slots. If you know of any family, neighbor or friend considering options for middle or high school, please pass on our contact information. Our best advertising has always been "word of mouth" from our families. We need to fill our open slots, so please help us spread the word.
In closing, we appreciate all of our your patience as we work through all the details in creating the safest learning environment possible for our students, staff and families. If you have any questions please feel free to contact me.
Tal Bayer, Head of School
phone: 603 232-7974 ext 103