COLORADO SPRINGS — Colorado Springs School District 49 (D49) will return from Spring Break on March 29 with a full-schedule, full-population model for all grades to complete the school year, the district said Wednesday.
The new model will include a full Monday-Friday schedule for all in-person students while still offering E-Learning for those who choose to attend remotely.
“Although we strongly encourage students to attend in-person, we are committed to support remote learning for families who choose that mode for the remainder of the school year. We are fully aware that community transmission levels remain at Level Yellow-Concern, but our state and county health departments support in-person learning at our current level, so long as we continue to implement safety protocols with vigilance,” the district said in a note to parents. “To support our return to more standard attendance, we will also lift the limits on bus seating capacity while maintaining masking requirements.”
According to the district, since D49’s two-week Spring Break begins on March 15, returning earlier in March would only add 4 additional in-person days while creating heightened risks of exposure, transmission, and disruptive quarantines.
D49 announced, “In exchange for a more measured return, we will recapture those in-person days by converting ‘flexible Fridays’ to standard attendance and instruction days. Those Fridays have been a resource for planning and support services, so restoring a five-day schedule will create one final workload challenge. To moderate that extra burden on educators and support staff, we are asking families to attend in person if at all possible.”
Under the new model beginning March 29, D49 will prioritize in-person learning, so individual schools may consolidate E-learning sections to reduce the burden on teachers who support live or asynchronous E-learning.
Although we are encouraged by these trends, we remain cautiously optimistic as we see declining case rates flattening out above the next step down on the COVID dial. We know we may see increased transmission rates as restrictions ease and our community returns to more normal activity levels. Those dynamics will impact our schools, so we will redouble our vigilance about our safety system to prevent transmission in our schools to the greatest degree practical. We will continue to practice our system of cleaning, washing, distancing, and masking to limit the spread of illness on our campuses.
Although the schedule will look more normal, students and staff will still be required to wear a mask and socially distance, and regular cleaning and sanitizing will be in effect.
For more information regarding D49 returning after Spring Break, click here.