Education

Tumwater School District plans for return to in-person learning with hybrid model

Timeline for this move not yet determined

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Following guidance from the Thurston County Public Health and Social Services Department, the Tumwater School District (TSD) has decided to take steps towards reopening schools. In a recent letter to Tumwater families, Superintendent Sean Dodson, Ed.D., shared that district leadership would be taking steps “to finalize planning and to move forward with a thoughtful process to serve students with in-person learning.”

Dodson highlighted a planned ten-step process to in-person learning, titled “Heading to Hybrid,” which began with Thurston County Health Officer Dimyana Abdelmalek’s approval for schools to return to traditional classrooms on Sept. 23. The comprehensive plan will end with set dates and phases for a return to in-person schooling.

“We are not yet prepared to share a timeline for opening hybrid learning,” wrote Dodson.

TSD has plans to release a hybrid learning plan following staff and parent surveys, collaborative work with school affiliated associations, building preparations, and new hiring of teaching faculty, among other steps.

“While we have a reopening plan, some of these steps could not be completed until we know when we can move forward. Now that we know, we will determine and communicate a reasonable timeline as soon as possible,” wrote Dodson.

Dodson shared that in accordance with Abdelmalek’s guidance of a slow and phased in return to traditional schooling, the learning of high-need students would be prioritized first. Kindergarten students and high-needs students at all age levels will receive priority when determining who will return first to a hybrid learning model. 

The “Heading to Hybrid” plan outlines steps to determine what school staff and students will be able to return to in-person learning. Options for online learning will continue to be provided for students unable to return to the classroom.

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