Washougal, WA – Washougal School District is making plans to reopen a two-day per week hybrid learning model in January. Following Washington State Department of Health updated guidelines for school reopening released this week, the district will begin the phased implementation of its hybrid model, starting with students in grades K-3. The hybrid model features both school and remote learning components.
“We are so excited to welcome additional students back in-person, we know how critical this is for student success,” said Mary Templeton, WSD Superintendent. “We know this will be a huge support to our students and their families, and make so much more learning possible.”
These new state guidelines include new metrics, based on emerging research and data gathered by state and national officials, that will allow schools to have increased in-person learning opportunities for students.
“We are working with our teachers and staff, public health officials, and other area school districts to review our safety protocols,” said Aaron Hansen, Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources and Student Support, in a letter to parents and staff. “We will get students into classrooms as quickly as we safely can within these new frameworks.” School and class schedules will be posted as soon as they are available.
The WSD timeline calls for grades K-3 to begin the hybrid model starting Tuesday, January 19, 2021. Grades 4 & 5 would begin the hybrid learning model starting shortly thereafter, as long as transmission in the school environment is limited. Students are placed in small cohorts, or groups of 15 or fewer students per group. They will be assigned their group alphabetically by their guardian’s last name.
“We want our families to know they have a choice to come back to the classroom in the hybrid learning model, or to stay in distance learning,” said Templeton. “Families can let the school office know if their student will remain in full-time distance learning, and teachers are provided time each week to support these students.”
According to state guidance, plans for middle and high school will be available once the spread of COVID in our community declines to levels specified in the updated reopening guidance (average cases per 100,000 over 14 days below 350 for middle school, below 200 for high school). “In order to serve more students in our classrooms safely, all of us must wear masks, watch our distance, and wash our hands,” added Templeton. “Health officials studying the spread of COVID emphasize these simple, but critical steps the entire community can take to enable next steps in our reopening.”
For more information visit the WSD website at: http://www.washougal.k12.wa.us/covid-19-communications/