HoS Update: 5/29/20
My notes are brief because I am including the link from yesterday evening’s webinar during which Mr. Bauer, Mr. Bluestein, Dr. Smith, and I discussed plans for the re-opening of school on September 1. Our guiding principle is to have Gillispie students and employees return to campus for face-to-face learning as safely as possible. As we think through scenarios and put protocols in place, we need to honor a learning environment in keeping with our mission where students are proactive, hands-on learners. We will come back slowly and it will be inconvenient for families. But returning thoughtfully will allow us to meet our goal.
As we explore options for 2020-2021, three modes for teaching must be considered for each of our programs: early childhood and elementary. Particulars for each program are presented in the webinar.
- On-Campus Learning Model with an option for virtual learning with recorded lessons
- Distance Learning Model where the campus is closed and school occurs through remote learning with synchronous and asynchronous opportunities
- Hybrid Learning Model that toggles between on- and off-campus learning
When we are on campus, certain strategies, when combined, will keep children’s and employees’ wellbeing at the forefront. Applying research from many sources and experts, we will focus our efforts on density reduction and physical distancing; health screening and preventative hygiene; and campus ventilation and cleaning.
With lessons we have learned over the past few months, technology will be very important as we plan both on-campus and distance learning, and Gillispie will continue to look at devices, platforms, and audio-visual systems that will best serve students. The importance of training teachers for distance learning and providing malware protection and content filtering will also be areas of focus.
I recognize that the webinar may raise more questions than it answers. Our roadmap for re-opening will be more robust as time passes and new information and research are put forth. In turn, Gillispie can make sound decisions for the health and safety of our community. Please expect more updates from me in mid-June so that you can feel confident that we will move forward together, in various modes, next year.
Head of School