End of School Year Superintendent Update

Dear SPS Parents and Guardians,

The COVID-19 pandemic has proven to be more challenging than any of us could have predicted back on March 16th, our first day of remote learning.

 I am awed by the passion for learning displayed by our students as they tuned in and kept learning as our Continuity of Learning Plan was put in place.  I am proud of the dedication, adaptability, and professionalism demonstrated by our teachers, administrators and support staff as they rallied to ensure children were fed and not one single day of scheduled instruction was missed.  I am thankful for the support, perseverance and patience of our parents, guardians and grandparents who fostered learning in so many different ways over the last twelve weeks.

According to Dr. Carol Dweck, a growth mindset “…allows people to thrive during some of the most challenging times in their lives.”  I believe the growth mindset culture intentionally cultivated at Saugatuck Public Schools is one of the key reasons our students have proven to be so resilient during this crisis and will return eager to learn in the fall.

I am sure you are wondering what the 2020-21 school year will look like at Saugatuck Public Schools.  We are currently planning to safely provide face to face instruction with as many students as possible, as often as possible, following guidance being developed by Michigan’s Return to Learning Advisory Council, the Center for Disease Control, and our local health departments.  We also plan to provide hybrid and remote options as allowed by legislation or executive order, to meet the individual health and learning needs of our students and families.

Through our participation in the OAISD Return2School Task Force, we are thoughtfully planning for the successful reopening of our schools in the fall around four key areas: Wellness, Operations, Instruction & Technology, and Facilities.  As part of this process, nearly 4,000 families/students and over 1,000 teachers and support staff were surveyed to gather perspectives on remote learning and returning to school in the fall.  Saugatuck families/students were well represented.  Thank you to those of you who provided this valuable feedback.

This week, Executive Order 2020-110 makes it possible for summer day camps and outdoor practice and conditioning activities to take place on our athletic fields, provided coaches and student/athletes maintain six feet of social distancing and the use of equipment is extremely limited.  Indoor athletic facilities remain closed under this order. We are currently developing health screening protocols and operating procedures, and plan to provide outdoor conditioning opportunities for students after June 15th.  We also plan to operate some community recreation programs beginning in July.  More information on community recreation programming can be found here: https://tshq.bluesombrero.com/Default.aspx?tabid=1773240&mid=1834175&newskeyid=HN1&newsid=347539&ctl=newsdetail

 You can celebrate the end of the 2019-20 school year and provide community recreation scholarships by supporting the Grant Rogers Burd fundraiser this Tuesday, June 9th. ice cream flyer facebook 2020.pdf 

I hope that summer provides more opportunities for our families to enjoy all that our community has to offer.  Please continue to social distance as appropriate, and continue to implement preventive hygiene measures by properly washing hands frequently, disinfecting frequently touched objects, and avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth.  We look forward to welcoming our students and families back to school on September 1st.

Have a great summer,

Tim

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