Dr. Wipke shared an extensive update on Return to School plans at the Board of Education meeting on Monday, Sept. 14.
Dr. Wipke’s letter to families sent Sept. 15 is below:
Dear Ladue Schools Families and Staff,
During last night’s Board of Education meeting, I shared the latest on our district’s plan to transition our students back to in-person learning. Under this plan, Ladue Early Childhood Center, kindergarten, and first-grade students will begin returning to school buildings the week of Sept. 28. As you know, it has always been our goal to provide in-person learning for as many students as possible as long as it can be done in a safe environment.
This decision is based on community health data trends, recommendations provided by the district’s Medical Task Force and the St. Louis County Health Department, as well as the successful implementation of our summer school program, high school athletics/activities, and Learning Centers.
Below, I have outlined a summary of the district’s phased-in reentry plan:
Through the End of First Quarter
Preschool – first-grade students will begin transitioning back as early as Sept. 30/Oct. 1 to help them acclimate to the school environment and review safety precautions.
- Families will receive additional communication from their building principals throughout this transition.
- After this orientation period, students will attend schools in-person (using a phased-in approach) from Oct. 2-16, Monday-Friday (half-days) 8:50-11:30 a.m.
- Universal precautions will be implemented as outlined in the Return to Learn plan.
Second Quarter (Oct. 19)
- LECC – Grade 4 students will return under Tier 1, in-person, full-days, Monday-Friday.
- Fifth Grade Center students will return under Tier 1 or Tier 2-Hybrid plan. However, we are waiting for additional data and discussions with the district’s Medical Task Force to help guide this decision.
- Grades 6 – 12 we remain hopeful that we can bring students back in a phased-in approach (under the Tier 2 – Hybrid plan); however, at this point, a timeline for secondary reentry has not been finalized. We will continue to monitor data, as well as meet with our Medical Task Force every week.
As students begin to transition back into buildings, we will begin to phase out the district’s Learning Centers. As a result:
- Kindergarten Learning Centers will end Sept. 25.
- First-grade Learning Centers will end Oct. 2.
- Grades 2-5 Learning Centers will end Oct. 16.
- Grades 6-12 Learning Centers will continue until students begin to transition to in-person learning.
Please note, the district will continue to offer Option 2 (fully virtual) for families who may need an alternative learning plan. If you have specific questions about your child’s building plans or this reentry timeline, please feel free to contact your building principal. I also encourage you to refer to our Frequently Asked Questions listed on our website as many questions have been addressed and posted for your convenience.
I appreciate your patience and support of our schools as we continue to work toward providing all students with an opportunity to learn in a healthy and safe environment.
Dr. Jim Wipke