Poughkeepsie City School District to Start Year Remotely

POUGHKEEPSIE – Dr. Eric Jay Rosser, Superintendent of Schools sent the following letter to Poughkeepsie City School District Parents and Caregivers regarding the start of school.
I hope this correspondence finds you and your families well.

Over the past several weeks the Poughkeepsie City School District (PCSD) has engaged in the process of evaluating which instructional delivery model (i.e. in-person, distance learning, hybrid) would be deployed in the opening of schools in September. After careful and deliberate consideration and planning it has been determined that the most appropriate instructional delivery model to begin our school year will be distance learning (remote instruction). This was not an easy decision to make, but please know that it was made with the best interest of all of our students, teachers, staff and parents in mind.

The decision to open PCSD on September 10, 2020 instructing students remotely was largely based on 57.8% of PCSD parents who responded to the Reopening PCSD survey indicating that they prefer this model for their children. Additional factors that informed this decision included a great need to guarantee that the safety and health of students and staff will be protected while high-quality instruction is being provided in school and needing additional time to address this need under the school reopening requirements of the New York State Department of Health (NYDOH) and the New York State Education Department (NYSED).

As we prepare to welcome our students to the 2020-2021 academic year, we will:

* Distribute Chromebooks, musical instruments, and other instructional supplies to our students and families,

* Provide parents and students with multiple opportunities to better understand how to navigate the online instructional environment,

* Engage our teachers and administrators in professional development to improve the robustness of our online teaching practices,

* Provide our teachers with time to collaborate so that the planning and delivery of remote instruction is amplified,

* Continue to develop our ability to deliver social emotional and wellness supports for our students remotely,

* Continue to develop strategies to deliver high-quality supports to students with exceptionalities, and

* Establish thirteen locations throughout Poughkeepsie to provide students with free breakfast and lunches.

Throughout the month of September, PCSD will continue to evaluate the readiness of instruction taking place in person and will provide an update to parents on October 1, 2020.

Additionally, the Poughkeepsie City School District will continue to prepare for students to return to in school instruction by:

* Engaging staff to be fully prepared to implement all of the new protocols associated reopening requirements of NYDOH and NYSED,

* Providing intensive professional development for all faculty and staff,

* Securing all the necessary personal protective equipment (PPE) and facility cleaning equipment required to maintain a safe and healthy learning environment for our students and staff,

* Strengthening the preparedness of our facilities, and

* Working with parents and the community to successfully transition our students back into our schools.

On behalf of the Board of Education and the faculty and staff of Poughkeepsie City School District, I thank you for your patience and understanding as we navigate the unprecedented time of COVID-19. Our goal will remain to provide a high-quality instructional experience to our students while ensuring that their health and the health of PCSD staff is protected.

Working together, I am confident that our children will attain the academic, social, emotional, and wellness success they deserve as future citizens and leaders of our community.

If your child is not already enrolled in school visit the website for additional information.

If your child needs technology or reliable internet access please complete the PCSD Technology Survey online.

If you missed the Superintendent’s Town Hall Meetings, you can download the presentation slides and watch the meetings by accessing the district website.

For additional information on school reopening, please visit our Reopening PCSD website.

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