N-O-W forms virtual school as option to in-person instruction

By SARAH PARKER | County Line Editor

At present, Norwalk-Ontario-Wilton intends to hold school five days a week in-person, plus virtual options will be available, Superintendent Travis Anderson wrote in a letter to parents last week.

But Anderson noted, “With the complexity and uncertainties of the Covid-19 pandemic, we want everyone to understand that whatever plans we have in place can literally change overnight based on health department regulations and mandates that our district will have to follow.”

Each day, students in grades kindergarten through 12 may arrive at school at 7:45 a.m. (no earlier) and will be dismissed at an earlier-than-usual time — 2:30 p.m.

From 2:30 to 3:45 p.m., teachers will be allotted virtual teaching/learning time with students who are absent from school due to quarantining or other health-related concerns, plus they may build virtual lessons and create and upload material, etc. Moreover, the staff will have a chance to deep clean the entire building.

Masks or face shields will be required in the hallways and when an individual is within 6 feet of another person. In the classroom, mask use will be up to the teacher and will be based on students’ physical closeness.

Water fountains will be turned off, but students may fill their own water bottles, plus hand sanitizing stations will be placed in each classroom and throughout the building.

Visitor access will be restricted, buses will be cleaned daily, high-touch areas will be cleaned throughout the day, plexiglass dividers will be installed in high-traffic areas, and students will have no-touch lunch purchasing options.

Furthermore, personal protective equipment will be provided to everyone: students, staff members, bus drivers and substitute teachers.

Students in pre-kindergarten will attend school on either Monday and Tuesday or Thursday and Friday.

The district is encouraging families to provide their own transportation, as social distancing will be practiced on the buses. Students will have to wear face masks on the buses and sit with family members.

Technology

Every seventh- through 12th-grade student will be given a laptop with Windows software and access to the Google Suite tools. Also, technological devices will be available to elementary students and will be sent home with them in the event of a mandated closure.

Additionally, all staff in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade will be furnished with a Microsoft-based laptop.

Virtual options

Partnering with Education Solutions of Oregon, Wis., the N-O-W School District will host the Falcons Virtual Academy for students in kindergarten through fifth and Wisconsin Virtual School classes for students in sixth through 12th.

Those who choose one of those options will still be designated as N-O-W enrollees. So far, 10 families have shown interest in participating in virtual education, Anderson said.

“Students in our virtual academy will be taught by trained teachers in a virtual setting where all of the curriculum content is aligned with the Wisconsin state standards, while our in-house teachers at N-O-W will be able to focus all of their attention on the students in the face-to-face learning option,” Anderson said.

The Falcons Virtual Academy can be found under the “Elementary” tab on the district website at now.k12.wi.us.

The virtual school is not a temporary solution during the pandemic, but rather will be a part of N-O-W’s offerings for “years to come,” Anderson added.

Parents who wish to enroll their children in a virtual school should contact elementary principal Gayle Luebke (grades kindergarten through fifth) at[email protected]or counselor Holly Nemec (grades sixth through 12) at[email protected]by Friday, Aug. 14.

A meeting for virtual-option families will be Thursday, Aug. 20, in the high school gym. The time slot for those in kindergarten through fifth grade will be from 6:30 to 7:15 p.m.; and grades six through 12, 7:30 to 8:15 p.m.

Survey

The N-O-W School District conducted a survey earlier this summer, receiving 202 responses. These were the results:

• 68 percent — district should reopen even if everyone can’t be socially distanced

• 58 percent — a return to school five days a week for face-to-face instruction is an acceptable solution

• 40 percent — Parents are comfortable sending their children to school without additional safety measures in place

Comments are closed.

  • Book review: ‘Countdown 1945’ by Chris Wallace with Mitch Weiss

    August 5th, 2020
    by

    Harry Truman had become FDR’s vice president through a convoluted process. FDR had been elected for his fourth term at least in part because he was a third of the triumvirate of Churchill, Stalin and Roosevelt, the leaders who were successfully prosecuting the Second World War.


    N-O-W’s next meeting will be virtual

    August 5th, 2020
    by

    Once again, the special board of education meeting on Thursday, Aug. 6, at 7 p.m. will remain virtual.


    Got blood? Give it up! Wilton’s Saturday drive will include Covid-19 antibody tests

    August 5th, 2020
    by

    The severe blood shortage continues, as well over 75,000 blood drives have been canceled throughout the United States.


    Book review: ‘Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone’ by J.K. Rowling

    July 30th, 2020
    by

    Harry Potter knew that as a baby he had been placed with the Dursleys, his aunt and uncle.


    Online or five-day-a-week schooling available at Royall

    July 29th, 2020
    by

    The Royall Board of Education approved the administration’s draft reopening plan at its meeting Monday, but Superintendent Mark Gruen noted that the document is subject to change as circumstances surrounding the pandemic evolve.


  • Book review: ‘The Lager Queen of Minnesota: A Pamela Dornam Book’ by J. Ryan Stradal

    July 22nd, 2020
    by

    Helen Magunnson convinced her father to give her the family farm to sell so she could restart Blotz Brewery. The other sister, Edith, got nothing and had to make it on her own.


    Monroe County to issue WIC benefits, offer education in August

    July 22nd, 2020
    by

    The Monroe County Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) will issue benefits and offer nutrition education in August.


    Sparta museums open by reservation

    July 22nd, 2020
    by

    The Monroe County Local History Room & Museum and the Deke Slayton Memorial Space & Bicycle Museum, both located in the same building in Sparta, have reopened their exhibit spaces to the public by reservation.


    Two arrested in Valley on theft, drug and firearm charges

    July 21st, 2020
    by

    Executing a warrant for felony theft, Vernon County police searched the Simon O. Shelton residence in the unincorporated village of Valley on July 17 and arrested two people, according to Vernon County Sheriff John Spears.


    Suspected medical emergency may have caused Jefferson crash

    July 21st, 2020
    by

    Police suspect that an 86-year-old woman had a medical emergency that prompted her single-vehicle accident in the town of Jefferson at about 6 p.m. Monday, according to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.


    Man sustains minor injuries in Clinton accident

    July 21st, 2020
    by

    In the town of Clinton, a single-vehicle crash occurred Monday on County Highway P, east of Wang Ridge Road, according to Vernon County Sheriff John B. Spears.


  • [Advertisement.]
  • Archives