Dear LCPS Families and Staff Members,
The Loudoun County School Board met last night to continue its consideration of matters related to Loudoun County Public Schools return-to-school planning and other business. The School Board made several decisions that will affect families across the division and we want to share them with you.
As you may recall, on July 21 the School Board authorized LCPS to return to school on September 8 in a 100% distance learning mode with limited exceptions, and to subsequently implement the planned hybrid model in stages. (Information about that decision was provided in a message to the community on July 22.)
Last night, the School Board directed LCPS to expand the 100% distance learning plan to include additional hybrid, in-person learning for certain groups of students:
- LCPS is to begin providing up to 2 days per week of hybrid in-person learning for students with disabilities that receive instruction through the Aligned Standards of Learning (ASOL) curriculum and those served in self-contained programs beginning in Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) through age 22. This instruction is to begin by October 13 for students who choose hybrid learning, and who do not have medical conditions or intensive needs that present increased safety risks to self and others that cannot be sufficiently mitigated as determined by the student’s IEP team.
- LCPS also is to begin providing hybrid in-person learning for English Learners of Proficiency Level 1.0 – 1.9 and for preschool and pre-kindergarten students who choose to participate in hybrid learning and who do not have medical conditions or intensive needs which would preclude participation. Staff will present recommendations to the School Board on Sept. 8 for when to begin hybrid in-person learning for these students, with a start date no later than October 27.
These expansions of hybrid in-person learning are in addition to in-person instruction that LCPS will provide to students enrolled in Monroe Advanced Technical Academy (MATA) courses, many of which require hands-on experiences. The School Board authorized that expansion of instruction at its August 11 meeting. MATA instruction will involve approximately 900 students receiving one day of instruction each week, beginning September 8.
LCPS staff members have begun revising plans based on the School Board’s guidance last night, and will share additional information with the families of the students who will participate in these expanded hybrid learning experiences and the community as soon as possible. We will assess data relating to implementing hybrid in-person learning for the students referenced in this email as we work toward including additional groups of students in future stages of implementation of hybrid in-person learning, as conditions permit.
LCPS’ highest priority remains the health and well-being of students, staff members, their families and the community, and we are working to operate our schools in compliance with all Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Virginia Department of Health (VDH) recommended mitigation measures. As recommended by the CDC, VDH, Executive Order, and School Board requirements related to face coverings, employees, students, and visitors to LCPS buildings are required to wear face coverings at all times. The LCPS Protocol for Face Coverings outlines this requirement and approved exceptions.
As we look to the start of the new school year for all students on September 8, LCPS teachers and staff members are making final preparations to ensure that every opportunity for student learning and support is maximized as we begin the year in the 100% distance learning mode for most students, which is described in more detail in the Reopening in Stages: 100% Distance Learning Model document. LCPS’ goal is to maximize in-person learning, as long as we can provide learning experiences safely and in accordance with the requirements and recommendations of state and public health officials. We appreciate your continued support as we work to achieve that objective.
Eric Williams, Ed.D.