Reopening Plan

August 13, 2020

Dear Union Families.

Thank you for a great start to our school year. We have enjoyed getting to know your children and appreciate your patience and cooperation at navigating our new learning models. Our teachers were thrilled to engage with your children and there were smiles and happy faces all week!

The information below is provided in accordance with Governor Ducey’s Executive Order 2020-51 issued on July 23, 2020. Please carefully read the following information below regarding the 2020-21 School Year.

Union Elementary School District has prepared two learning models for the upcoming year: On-line and In-Person. Two documents will help ensure we effectively implement these models during the 2020-2021 school year. 1) Our Distance Learning Plan, and 2) Our Mitigation Plan.

Distance Learning Plan: Our Arizona Department of Education approved Distance Learning Plan can be at www.unionesd.org/distancelearningplan (PDF).

Mitigation Plan: Our mitigation plan called The Union Elementary School District “Back to School Plan” describes our measures to combat the spread of COVID-19 and can be found at www.unionesd.org/backtoschoolplan (PDF).

School Calendar

Our school year began on August 3, 2020, with parent-teacher conferences and material pick-up. The District’s school calendar for the 2020-21 School Year can be found here www.unionesd.org/calendar (PDF).

Based upon the recent guidance from the Arizona Department of Health Services (PDF) the Board has approved the new projected date to begin in-person, teacher-led classroom instruction as October 19, 2020. This date may be revised by the District at any time based upon the community spread of COVID-19.

Attendance Requirements

Your child will need to participate in the District’s on-line learning to be counted as present and attending. The District’s plan requires students to attend daily on-line synchronous instruction, during the 6-hour school day. Attendance is taken at the start of the school day and monitored throughout the day.

Please note that state law (A.R.S. § 15-802) requires as follows:

Every child between six and sixteen years of age must attend a school and be provided instruction in at least the subjects of reading, grammar, mathematics, social studies and science.

  • The child’s parent or guardian must enroll the child in a school and ensure that the child attends the school for the full time that school is in session. Our District is currently anticipating conducting 180-days of instruction during the 2020-21 school year (see attached school calendar).
  • Certain exceptions apply to these attendance requirements, such as medical necessity. If you believe your child qualifies for such an exception, please contact your local school’s attendance clerk.

Free On-Site Support Services

Beginning on August 17, 2020, noon, we will begin offering on-site support services for pre-registered high-need students. No drop-ins are allowed.

  • Please be advised that free on-site support services are not teacher-led classroom instruction. However, free on-site support services will include student supervision for students in need during standard school hours. This service will be supervised by classified employees, including paraprofessional support for students to engage in their on-line learning classes.
  • If you believe your child needs a place to go during the day, please contact your school principal to discuss whether your child qualifies for this service.
  • The Arizona Department of Education currently describes this service as a “safe learning space for students who are at-risk, in special education programs or who are the students of essential workers.” For more information on this service and qualifications, please visit www.unionesd.org/onsitesupport.
  • Please be advised that free on-site support services may be suspended or terminated if the District or the Arizona Department of Health Services advises closing the premises for public health reasons or in the best interests of the staff and students.

To learn more about our onsite support services, please visit the District’s website at www.unionesd.org/onsitesupport. The details of these services may be modified based on additional guidance from ADE. Updates will be posted on the District website.

Thank you for your patience, as we navigate our first quarter together. If you have any questions or concerns about the information in this letter, or if you need additional assistance, please contact us at: Ms. Shelly Sotelo at (623) 478-5020 or ssotelo@uesd.org. The information contained in this letter may change as the situation changes, and in accordance with any applicable law, regulation, order or Governing Board policy. Please continue to regularly review the websites listed below for important updates.

Thank you,

Ms. Kristine Morris

Superintendent

Important Websites

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