District initiates hybrid learning

High school will start new learning model February 22

Shorewood High School will become the last school in the district to return to a partially in-person learning model on February 22. This model will allow for more direct communication among students and staff, and allow student’s educational needs to be better met. 

“For many students, the ability to interact more directly with your teachers, to be able raise your hand and get feedback and having that personal connection, is really important and is something that’s been really difficult for a lot of our students in a virtual environment.” said Bryan Davis, superintendent.

In order to limit risk, the number of students present on campus at any given moment will be reduced. If a student has chosen to return in a hybrid format, they will be sorted by their last name. Those with the last name beginning with A-L will attend school in-person on Monday and Tuesday, while those with last names beginning with M-Z will stay virtual. The groups will be flipped for Thursday and Friday, with AL leaning virtually and MZ at the high school.

There will only be around 200 students in the school at a time — a significant decrease from the pre-pandemic 700. The district has meticulously planned for every class to have a safe number of students at all times, so social distancing guidelines are able to be maintained.

Everything is going to be very clearly orchestrated,

— Tim Kenney, prinicpal

“Everything is going to be very clearly orchestrated,” said Tim Kenney, principal.

Part of the district’s strategy to safely return students to a school is combining many imperfect techniques for reducing risk at the same time, hoping that each offers increased protection to those on campus. 

“If there is a gap or a hole in one of your mitigation strategies, it will hopefully be caught by one of the other strategies,” said Joseph Patek, assistant principal and district safety director.

These mitigation strategies follow standard guidelines for COVID19 safety: frequent sanitization, six feet of distance at all times and constant mask wearing. Additional measures include: specific custodial procedures, hallway markers that encourage distance during transition time and a COVID self screener.

While this model will help establish daily routine, it is important that students understand there are increased safety measures at school and that they need to remain safe in their social lives. 

“What we’ve seen is, based on all of the safety measures in the school, transmission at school is not likely. What schools are seeing is transmissions because kids are carpooling to and from school. They’re walking home in large groups and they take their masks off,” Kenney said. “The responsibility for the safety of everyone extends outside of the high school.”

If students have any further questions, they can refer to the SHS Hybrid Letter which was distributed via email, or communicate directly with counselors or administrative staff.