In Response to COVID-19 HCS Reopening Plan

Dear Honeoye Central School District Community,
I hope this note finds you all well and enjoying the beautiful morning.
During a Regular Meeting of the Board of Education last night, our school board unanimously approved the Honeoye Central School District’s In Response to COVID-19 HCS Reopening Plan. It is with great hopefulness that the district shares our reopening plans with the HCS community at this time.   
The Honeoye Central School District would like to extend our sincerest gratitude to 
all of the participants of the HCS Reopening Committee and to the many other 
individuals and organizations for their invaluable contributions 
which informed the In Response to COVID-19 Reopening Plan.
Factoring in NYSED and NYDOH guidance, feedback obtained from the Family Voice Survey (July), feedback from the Student Voice Survey (June), individual communications with community members, counsel from the district’s legal team, input from our Medical Director and Ontario County Health, and the dynamic dialogues during HCS Reopening Committee meetings, the recommendation moving forward for reopening this fall includes a mixed hybrid model of return for students:
  • At the elementary level, all PreK-5 students will engage in 100% in person learning within small, static cohorts. Staffing and spacing reconfigurations permit smaller class sizes and satisfy social distancing requirements.
  • At the secondary level, students in grades 6-12 will engage in 50% in person learning and 50% remote learning. Students will report to campus for in person learning on defined days. This approach will limit the number of students in a classroom, on buses, and in the hallways at one time. Secondary Students will be assigned into one of two cohorts.
    • Cohort 1 will attend school on Monday, Wednesday and every other Friday (Friday 1).
    • Cohort 2 will attend school on Tuesday, Thursday and every other Friday (Friday 2).
  • Parents also have the OPTION of choosing to have their Pre-K-12 child(ren) participate remotely 100% of the time. This option requires student participation in live, synchronous instruction via Google Meet with their same age/grade level peers throughout the school day. This model differs vastly from the remote learning model executed during the extended closing last spring.
  • Please note: Governor Cuomo is expected to make a final determination surrounding the opening of schools between August 1 - 7. We will adjust the Reopening Plans for HCS as necessary to ensure compliance with Executive Order.
The In Response to COVID-19 HCS Reopening Plan may be access via the attached link(s) in this communication or on the HCS website. Our plan includes a comprehensive overview of how we intend to address safety, programming and operations within the following areas:
  • Introduction
  • The Model for Reopening at Honeoye Central School District
  • Communication / Family and Community Engagement
  • Health and Safety 
  • Facilities 
  • Child Nutrition 
  • Transportation
  • Social Emotional Well Being
  • School Schedules
  • Attendance
  • Chronic Absenteeism
  • Technology and Connectivity
  • Teaching and Learning: Communication
  • Teaching and Learning: Elementary Level Provisions
  • Teaching and Learning: Secondary Level Provisions
  • Career and Technical Education
  • Special Education   
  • Athletics and Extracurriculars
  • Bilingual Education
  • Staffing and Student Teaching
  • APPR
Please Save the Date!  While the In Response to COVID-19 HCS Reopening Plan is comprehensive in nature, we anticipate that there will be numerous questions relative to the provisions of the HCS Reopening Plan.  As such, members of our COVID-19 Safety Coordination Team (instructional and operational leadership, school nurse) will be available to respond to questions from families and students during a voluntary, virtual Town Hall Meeting scheduled for Wednesday, August 5 from 6:30 - 8:00. The structure for our time will be as such:
  • 6:30 - 6:45 Operations: Transportation, Meals and Nutrition, Facilities
  • 6:45 - 7:15 Health and Safety
  • 7:15 - 7:35 Elementary Model of Reopening
  • 7:35 - 7:55 Secondary Model of Reopening
  • 7:55 - 8:00 Closing and Identification of Next Steps
  • Please note that times are flexible! 
In the event that there are a substantial number of questions/concerns which we are unable to respond to due to time constraints, we will either schedule an additional K-12 Town hall session,OR schedule two additional Town Halls, one meeting specific to elementary reopening provisions and a second specific to secondary reopening provisions. We will be responsive and available to the HCS community based on your need and input. Access information for our Town Hall Meeting via Google Meet will be shared with the HCS community early next week.
One Last Consideration... Given that we will execute an option of “choice” for programming at HCS, all families will receive a commitment letter the week of 8/3.  Families will be asked to commit to the finalized plan model of instruction at the elementary/secondary level OR the 100% distance learning model of instruction for each child registered in the district.  Commitment letters will need to be returned to the district in a self addressed, stamped envelope by August 14 to ensure adequate time for placement and scheduling. 
Please note the following:
  • Family commitment to programming options is not absolute. We recognize that once families and students “live, breathe, function” in the chosen model, there may be instances when families reconsider their preference in programming to best support their child’s academic experience. HCS will consider an alternate programming selection by parent request at the end of each ten week marking period AND on a case by case basis. Please understand that there are multiple health and safety considerations which must be factored into any midyear change in programming (staffing, space, transportation).   
  • The placement process at the elementary school level will NOT be finalized until the week of August 17 so that we may factor both models of programming into cohort groupings: 100% in-person OR 100% remote learning.
  • The designation of cohorts at the secondary level will NOT be finalized until the week of August 17 so that we may factor both models of programming into cohort groupings: 50% in-person/50% remote learning OR 100% remote learning.  
  • Student placement, cohort designation, and master schedule information will be mailed to families the week of August 24. We recognize that this is later than we would like for hope for, but there are MANY moving pieces which must be factored into this very nontraditional reopening of schools.
  • Ray Thomas, our Transportation Coordinator, will be working closely with both building level principals to ensure that plans for transportation factor in provisions such as cohort assignments at the secondary level which allow for same family students to attend in-person learning on the same days.  
Thank you all for your patience, kindness and understanding throughout the process of developing the HCS Reopening Plan.  As always, please feel free to reach out with any questions or concerns.
Best to you and yours,
Bridget Ashton
Elizabeth Bridget Ashton
Superintendent, Honeoye Central School District
8528 Main Street
Honeoye, New York 14471
On Twitter: @EBridgetAshton