- Bethel School District
- Back to School
Back to School 2020-21
October 5, 2020
The Bethel School District will not return to in-person learning in October due to the rising rate of COVID-19 cases in Pierce County. All students will continue in our current remote learning instructional model through at least mid November. This decision was made after discussions with the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department.
We know in-person learning is more effective for the majority of students and we will continue to work to move to a hybrid model when COVID-19 case rates decline. However, we will not move to in-person learning for all students until it is safe to do so.
When case rates decrease and continue to show a decline in Pierce County, we will provide families with at least two weeks notification prior to moving to an in-person hybrid model. The earliest this would happen is mid November.
The health and safety of our students and staff will always be our top priority and we will continue to look to the experts at the health department for their guidance and recommendations.
Please remember to wear your masks and follow social distancing guidelines so we can all move towards a safe return to in-person learning in the future.
Visit bethelsd.org/news for the latest information.
Remote Learning Attendance
Student attendance is expected and will be taken daily.
Student attendance in a remote setting is defined as:
- If a student cannot attend the live teaching or independent learning time as described above, then parents may request the absence be marked excused by contacting the school attendance office or reporting the absence through the new ParentVue app or website. Allowable excused absences from prior years remain the same and apply to the 2020-21 school year.
- When, on a regular basis, a student is unable to attend to either the live teaching or independent learning time due to special circumstances, then the parents should contact the school principal to initiate the development of an alternative learning plan with teacher(s) and counselor. Examples of special circumstances include:
- Parent’s work schedule or other obligations during the regularly scheduled school hours, until other arrangements can be made.
- Student’s lack of necessary instructional tools, including internet and broadband access or connectivity.
- Other COVID-19 related circumstances as determined between school and parent or emancipated youth.
- Student’s employment or other family obligations during regularly scheduled school hours that are temporarily necessary due to COVID-19 until other arrangements can be made.
Right At School is providing fee-based childcare services for students in kindergarten through sixth grade at Clover Creek and Nelson elementary schools. Families can select any site that fits their needs. Right At School is planning to help students fully participate in our district’s Remote Learning schedule. Learn more at https://www.bethelsd.org/Domain/5022.
BSD Health & Safety Protocols
The healthy and safety of our students and staff is our top priority. The District will regularly review guidance from state and county health departments, as well as the state Department of Labor & Industries to update the District’s measures as the guidance evolves. Listed below are the current guidelines for physical distancing, health screening, personal protective equipment (PPE), handwashing, and sanitation/cleaning. For more details on specific building protocols, please refer to the additional resources linked at the conclusion of this document.
The District has implemented procedures that will reinforce the physical distancing recommendation of six feet within each group or classroom of students as much as possible to create space between students and reduce the amount of time they are close with one another. Maintaining six feet of distance is most important when students or staff will be engaged in something for more than a few minutes.
Building-specific strategies to increase physical distancing may include:
- Rearranging desks/tables to maximize the space between students
- Keeping students in cohorts/clusters to the maximum extent possible
- Reducing the number of students in hallways at any time
- Mark traffic flow and designate entrances and exits to minimize face to face contact
- Place tape, spots, cones, paint or other markers to signal six feet in areas where students may be waiting in line
- Limiting access to only essential visitors or volunteers
- Reducing congestion in office areas
- Limiting building use outside of school hours to approved District activities
Health screenings will be conducted by way of digital attestation for all staff, students, and visitors before or upon their arrival to school. Symptoms to screen for:
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing.
- Fever, chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, loss of taste or smell.
- Have you been in close contact with anyone with confirmed COVID-19?
- Have you had a positive COVID-19 test for an active virus in the past 10 days?
- Within the past 14 days, has a public health or medical professional told you to self-monitor, self-isolate, or self-quarantine because of concerns about COVID-19 infection
Parents or guardians should screen their child for symptoms prior to sending them to a school building. The district is currently working on a digital attestation using a Synergy Application to attest that they do not have symptoms of COVID-19 and have not been knowingly exposed to COVID-19.
Staff entering a District facility will perform health monitoring of symptoms prior to their arrival using a digital attestation application.
Visitors entering a District facility will need to attest that they do not have symptoms of COVID-19 and have not been knowingly exposed to COVID-19.
- All School Sites will have designated isolation areas for possible cases and each school will follow their existing isolation plan when situations arise.
- Visitors need to sign the building log to indicate time in the building and where they will be in the building and indicate the health assessment was done.
In Person Services
When in-person services are provided for assessment or evaluation purposes during the school closure, Bethel District staff, students, and families must follow all Pierce County Health Department Guidelines which include:
Students and Families:
- Students will wear masks when checking in and the during the entire testing/meeting time
- Family members will wear masks when checking in students
- Students will answer medical screening questions upon check-in
- Parents will indicate who will be picking the student up at check-in
- Students will sanitize hands upon entry to the building
- Students will have temperature taken upon check-in
- Students will bring their Bethel School District iPad
- Students will bring their own Earbuds
- Students will NOT bring food/drink or other materials into the testing room
- Students will remain in assigned seats during test (spread at least 6 feet apart
- Students may bring a book of their own to read during scheduled breaks
Drop off and pick up procedures will ensure physical distancing with designated traffic flow to reduce physical proximity. Staff will adhere to the appropriate health screening and cleaning and disinfection of all spaces and materials used.
Personal Protective Equipment
Districtwide protocols regarding PPE usage (face coverings or shields, and barriers) designed to comply with the guidance of state and local public health agencies. These protocols may change as public health guidance continues to evolve around COVID-19 Increased levels of face coverings and barriers will be provided based on procedures being performed with students, level of face covering being worn by the student and the amount of time breaking social distancing.
All staff, students age 5 and older, and visitors must wear cloth face coverings or other approved face coverings upon arrival to any district facility.
Children age five years or older must wear cloth face coverings at child care, preschool, or day camp when indoors.
Children age two to four years may wear cloth face coverings.
Cloth face coverings should not be worn by: Children younger than age 2 years.
- Those with a disability that prevents them from comfortably wearing or removing a face covering.
- Those with certain respiratory conditions or trouble breathing.
- Those who are deaf or hard of hearing, and those who provide instruction to such people, and use facial and mouth movements as part of communication.
- Those advised by a medical, legal, or behavioral health professional that wearing a face-covering may pose a risk to that person.
- Staff not able to wear cloth face coverings will need to contact human resources to get accommodations.
Even when cloth face coverings are worn, continue practicing physical distancing.
Students may remove face coverings to eat and drink and when they go outdoors for recess, physical education, or other outside activities when they can be physically distanced. If students need a “mask break” take them outside or to a large, well-ventilated room where there is sufficient space to ensure more than six feet of physical distance between people.
Handwashing for hands with soap and water for 20 seconds will be promoted over the use of hand sanitizers because it works better and to prevent students’ exposure to high levels of alcohol in hand sanitizers.
- Hand sanitizers with at least 60% alcohol will be present in every room that does not have a sink
- Young children will be supervised when using hand sanitizer.
- Hand washing instructions will be provided to students.
- Signs promoting hand washing steps and when to wash hands appropriate to students’ development will be placed in rest rooms and at sinks.
- Teach children and adults not to touch their eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Cover coughs or sneezes with a tissue, throw the tissue in the trash, then clean hands with soap and water or hand gel.
Children and adults should clean hands when
- Before getting on the bus
- Arrival at school,
- before meals or snacks,
- after outside time,
- after going to the bathroom,
- after blowing nose or sneezing,
- before leaving to go home.
Sanitation, Cleaning, and Disinfection
All schools and district facilities will be provided with disinfecting wipes and hand sanitizers that have been approved by the EPA for effectiveness and low toxicity. Ventilation will be set to maximize outside airflow continuously. Filters will be used that provide the maximum filtration recommended for the HVAC equipment of the building and will be changed on a routine basis.
Custodial staff will implement cleaning protocols to ensure that high touch surfaces like light switches, remotes, door handles, phones, countertops, tables, and toys. are cleaned more frequently.
Cleaning and disinfection protocols for a probable case of COVID-19 will comply with CDC recommendations.
Local and Regional
- August 11, 2020 Letter to School Partners from Dr. Chen
- August 14, 2020 Blog Post FAQ
- COVID-19 in Pierce County
Child Nutrition Services will be offering meals at 12 curbside school locations this fall beginning Thursday, September 3rd.
Meal service will run from 11 a.m. -1 p.m. daily on student school days. Students will receive lunch, and a breakfast for the following morning.
Meals can be picked up for your student at any of the 12 locations nearest you. We’re utilizing curbside pick-up to continue to maintain social distancing.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has extended the waiver that allows us to offer free meals to all kids (ages 1-18) this fall, just like we did in the spring and over the summer. This means meals will not be charged as we previously had advertised. Please keep the meal card you were recently sent in the mail, as the waiver is only extended through December 31. You can learn more on the USDA website.
Households are encouraged to continue to apply for the Free and Reduced Price meal program online at emealapps.bethelsd.org. Paper applications can be obtained through Child Nutrition Services, your school or the district office.
Parents/guardians may pick up meals without students present.
Fall 2020 Meals in Motion Locations
Meal Pick up Monday-Friday 11am-1pm
Clover Creek Elementary School (front of school)
16715 36th Ave. E., Tacoma, 98446
Cougar Mountain Middle School (front of school)
5108 260th St. E., Graham, 98338
Elk Plain School of Choice (front of school)
22015 22nd Ave. E., Spanaway, 98387
Graham-Kapowsin High School (front of school-gym entrance)
22100 108th Ave. E., Graham, 98338
Kapowsin Elementary School (front of school)
10412 264th St. E., Graham, 98338
Liberty Middle School (front of school-gym entrance)
7319 Eustis Hunt Rd. E., Spanaway, 98387
North Star Elementary School (front of school)
7719 224th St. E., Graham, 98338
Roy Elementary School (front of school)
340 Peterson St. S., Roy, 98580
Shining Mountain Elementary School (front of school)
21615 38th Ave. E., Spanaway, 98387
Spanaway Elementary School (parent drop off, west side of school)
412 165th St. S., Spanaway, 98387
Spanaway Middle School (front of school-gym entrance)
15701 B St. E., Tacoma, 98445
Spanaway Lake High School (front of school)
1305 168th St. E., Spanaway, 98387
Family Access, where you’ve always gone to view class schedules, test scores, and health records, has been discontinued.
ParentVUE is our new replacemnt. ParentVUE one part of the new Synergy system for managing student data. Synergy will provide a modern interface, improved communication tools, and dedicated apps for individual user groups.
The ParentVUE web portal and mobile app will serve as direct lines to your child’s classroom – anytime, anywhere, and in any language, so you always have access to the information you need to help your child succeed.
You’ll be able to see upcoming assignments so you’ll know what’s due, and when. You will have access to class websites with documents and teacher-recommended resources, grades for each class, and notifications about missing assignments. You can also sign up to receive alerts anytime your child’s grade falls below a level you specify.
All of this shows up in real time, as soon as it’s posted.
Both ParentVUE and StudentVUE will be available in Self Service on student iPads, on any web browser, or in the app store on your personal device.
Are you a parent or guardian of an existing or returning student(s)?
ParentVUE is the main portal to enroll new students and to complete the required annual information updates. Parents will receive an email to the address we have on file that describes the process for activating your ParentVUE account. Please follow the instructions within that email to activate your account. When you first sign in, you will view the Introduction page. Please read through this information and click "Continue" at the bottom to be guided through a process to validate your student's information. If you did not receive this email, please check your Junk or Spam folders. If you still did not receive it, please contact us at ParentVUE@bethelsd.org.
Are you new to the Bethel School District?
Please visit our Enrollment page to begin Online Registration.
Our first day of school, September 3, is fast approaching! The 2020-2021 school year will begin as last year ended with all students learning remotely. However, this year instruction and student learning will look different. Below you will find links to the elementary, middle, and high school students’ daily schedules. These schedules provide the plan for what students will be doing during the school day. They will engage in both live instruction with their teachers and self-paced learning with expectations from their teachers.
Click on the links below to see the schedules.
Bethel Virtual Academy (BVA), Challenger High School and Elk Plain Middle School students will not be following any of these schedules. Early next week, information about their learning format/schedule will be sent to parents by principals.
As you review the schedules, you will see two different types of learning that students will engage in:
This is two-way, real-time instruction that requires students and teachers to be present at the same time, virtually. Students will connect via Zoom and will complete lessons and activities assigned by the teacher in SeeSaw, Canvas and/or Edgenuity. Examples include:
- Live interactive classes with students and teachers participating in real-time
- Teachers working with students
- Teacher-supported structured work time on Zoom
- Scheduled and timed online assessments
This is self-guided student instruction that does not require all participants to be present on Zoom at the same time. Students will be expected to access and complete teacher-assigned lessons and activities in SeeSaw, Canvas or Edgenuity. Teachers will be working with small groups of students and providing targeted small group instruction.
If you have questions about this or other schedule related questions, please contact your child’s school.