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Bering Strait School District
P.O. Box 225  • Unalakleet, Alaska • 99684 •  (907) 624-3611  • Fax 624-3099
Dr. Bobby Bolen, Superintendent
907-624-4261  • bbolen@bssd.org  


Dear BSSD Family:

I hope that each of you have had a great summer and have been able to have quality family time while riding out these unprecedented times living with COVID-19. The staff at BSSD have been hard at work all summer ensuring that your children can return to school this fall, while keeping students, staff, and community members safe. 

As we look forward to reopening schools, we will start gradually and continuously monitor community spread and mitigation as we move through each step.

Important Dates for All Students and Families: 

August 26, 2020 – September 11, 2020 Back to School Readiness Challenge

School breakfast and lunch will be available for pickup. Students will be given the “Back to School Readiness Challenge” activity when they pick up their meal. There will be activities for students to complete over the next two and a half weeks. Students will not report to classes at the school. Enrolled students will be marked as present during the distance learning activity. If you have questions about your child’s enrollment, please contact the school.

September 14, 2020 – October 2, 2020 Modified School Opening

Students will be grouped by schedule into Group A & B. Group A will attend school in the building on Mondays and Tuesdays. Group B will attend school on Wednesdays and Thursdays. No students will attend school in the building on Fridays. Students will receive instruction in all core subjects, as well as have opportunities for cultural and art activities in a modified in-person learning environment. Assignments will be sent home with students to complete on the days they are not in school. Student dismissal will be early (exact time TBD).

October 5, 2020 and beyond

District administrators will monitor all COVID-19 activity in the region and make future school schedule determinations on an on-going basis. 

Information Updates

All COVID-19 information will be updated on the BSSD website as necessary. Please check the COVID-19 banner at the top of the web page to access all information and updates. Notices will also be posted on the District Facebook page and each school’s Facebook page. In addition, the District will be utilizing PowerSchool Messenger this year. Stay tuned for more information and to ensure your students contact information is up to date to receive all updates in a timely manner.

School Use

School facilities will remain closed to all non-school personnel until further notice. All school gyms will remain closed to assist in the prevention of community mitigation. Use will be allowed by AST and NSHC officials for community safety.
There will be no adult meals available for purchase to non-school employees. Only employees that are working will be allowed to purchase adult meals. There will be no Elder Lunches or coffee times in schools until further notice.

Activities

Cross-country running practice will begin at sites soon. Practice will be outside and will not include use of the school. Participants will be required to wear masks during team meetings or when not able to social distance. Participants may remove masks during actual physical activity. 

The District plans to also offer cheerleading and volleyball in modified formats during the Fall. Further updates will come as the start of the seasons get closer. 

Under current conditions, there will be no wrestling offered this year. 

The status of Spring sports is TBD.

Safety Precautions

All schools have been undergoing continuous cleaning throughout the summer to ensure the safety of all staff that have remained in the community.

Beginning August 17, 2020, all individuals who enter the school will be monitored for temperature and wellness. There will only be one entrance at each school. Each school will be equipped with hand sanitizer dispensers at the entrances of the school, as well as distributed throughout the classrooms.

Face masks will be required to be worn by students in grades 3-12. In addition, all visitors and staff will be required to wear face masks when in groups. All parents will be required to wear masks when dropping off or picking up students. At the teacher’s discretion, students may not wear face masks during independent work, when social distancing is available. Face masks will be mandatory for any group work or activities.

Face shields will be available for students and teachers who may not be able to wear a mask for health reasons or for teachers of younger students. Plexiglass is being designed for student desks and all common areas, such as the MPR or Library.

Travel

There will be no non-essential school business travel between communities. There will be no student travel until further notice.

Thank you to everyone who has worked on our reopening plan. Our goal is to ensure the safety of all our precious students, as well as their family members and community members.
We will continue to provide further updates as August 26 nears.

We wish you all health as you enjoy the remainder of the summer, and we look forward to having students back in schools on September 14.

Respectfully,



REVISED 2020-2021 School Year Calendar

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