March 27, 2020
Dear Mountain Song Community,
Thank you for all your patience and understanding during this trying time for our school and community. As you are aware, Governor Polis on March 25 issued an Executive Stay-at-Home Order. Previously, on March 18, he issued an Executive Order directing all schools to suspend in-person instruction through April 17, 2020, in order to limit the spread of Coronavirus 2019. Additionally, you should be aware that the governor said there is a high possibility in-person instruction will not resume this school year.
As a result, changes will be necessary for some important educational functions, such as the number of teacher-pupil instructional hours, special education, and graduation requirements.
Waivers for instructional hours
The Colorado Department of Education has waived the minimum number of school days and teacher-pupil instruction hours normally required under state law. Instead, districts must make every effort to provide alternative learning opportunities during this time. For Mountain Song, this means that we are not expected to extend the school year or start early next year to make up for lost in-person instructional time.
As a result of the possibility of an extended period of disruption on in-person instruction, we will transition to continuous learning through a combination of online and home-based learning. We are making plans to determine what continuous learning will look like for Mountain Song.
This week, March 23-27, has been our regularly scheduled Spring Break. When teachers return to work next week, they will communicate with you to determine your child’s learning context at home and to provide some learning activities for the week. We will be training and planning with teachers next week to begin implementation of our unified continuous learning plan for Mountain Song beginning April 6th. You will receive further communications about this.
Services to students with special needs
Mountain Song will make every effort to provide appropriate special education and related services for students with disabilities. We have been given some flexibility on how to provide these services, so we are thinking about other ways to meet the needs of students with disabilities based on the nature of a student’s disability and individual needs of the student.
To support students with identified IEP-related services, we will work with our schools to determine whether it is appropriate to provide alternative services or delay services in coordination with students’ parents and IEP teams. We may also determine whether we can make up for a gap in access to the curriculum or delay in services with additional services in the future.
Thanks again for your support during these difficult times.
The Executive Leadership Team