Community

Trego School to Resume In-Person Learning

This weekend, school board and staff attended a virtual meeting to determine the date to resume in-person learning. Most of the discussion focused on logistics. School will be resuming Wednesday (November 4th) when a majority of the staff are no longer required to quarantine. Details of the school’s Health and Safety plan can be found on the school’s website.

Staff and school board were in full agreement that the best thing for the students is to have classes in person, and to reach that point as quickly as possible. Children benefit from routine and consistency, both of which are difficult to maintain with distance learning. While distance learning provides some semblance of the usual daily routine in the form of homework, studying, and interaction, it is a poor substitute.

The meeting was upbeat and collaborative. School board and staff were united in the objective of getting kids back in the school, and talk swiftly turned from “How do we make this work?” to “How soon can we make this work?” and “What will it take to do it sooner?” Wednesday (November 4th) was the compromise between an urgent desire to get students and staff back into the school and the logistical challenges of scheduling and staffing.

It’s a rare meeting that is full of positive questions. It is very easy to find reasons not to do things, reasons that things cannot work. It is a rare person who can ask “What will it take to get this done?” and “How can we make this work?”. It was a pleasure to witness a meeting characterized by that approach.

Community

Trego School moves to Distance Learning

In accordance with the school’s Health and Safety Plan, the school has moved temporarily to distance learning. The School’s Health and Safety Plan is a three part plan outlining the response to each potential scenario. Part A is “Traditional Learning with Precautions” and has been in place since the school year started in September.

The screens around the desks are one of the precautions outlined in Part A of the Health and Safety Plan.

The school had recently moved to Part B, “In the event a community member in School District becomes infected”. During Part B, traditional in-person learning continued with additional precautions beyond those outlined in Part A.

As of Monday (October 19th), Trego School is in Part C: “In the event a student or staff member in School becomes infected”. Taking advantage of some very lucky timing, the school board has been able to put over two weeks between the date of potential exposure and on-site learning resuming with only a week of distance learning.

How? As parents know, last week had some time off of school. While there were not holidays there was MEA, a statewide conference hosted by the Montana Educators Association. This, combined with well timed absences, will allow for two weeks between the potential exposure and on-site learning, with a single week of distance learning.

In keeping with the Health and Safety Plan, the school bus will be delivering breakfast and lunch to students. On-site learning is scheduled to resume on Monday (October 26th). The school board, after taking input from parents, will be deciding whether to resume on-site learning in Part A or Part B of the Health and Safety Plan, but it regardless, students will be back to in-person learning on Monday.