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Welcome Back Message From The Superintendent

Dear Five Star Community,We have been sharing weekly updates since mid-August as a way to provide important information consistently as we began the school year with remote learning and then prepared for a transition to a new learning model. This update will be the last weekly districtwide communication. Moving forward, you can expect to receive information from your child’s school, teacher and the Five Star District as needed.

As a reminder, the most up-to-date information about our plans for the school year can be found in the ONWARD section of our website

Topics in today’s update:

  • Welcome Back Message from Superintendent Chris Gdowski 

  • In-Person/Hybrid Learning

    • Transportation Update

      • Important dates

      • Healthy Buildings 

  • Remote Learning

    • Elementary remote learning schedules


Welcome Back, Five Star Students! 

We are so excited to be welcoming back many of our students to our schools for in-person and hybrid learning this week.

Watch this video message from Superintendent Chris Gdowski about the return to school.


In-Person/Hybrid Learning

If you haven't already, or even if you have, watch the return to in-person learning video to know what to expect tomorrow and get excited with us! 

Transportation Update

Due to limited bus capacity as a result of physical distancing and group gathering guidelines, the district will only be able to provide transportation to a limited number of eligible students. Families of all transportation-eligible students should have received a brief survey earlier this month where they were asked to indicate their need for transportation. 

Not all transportation-eligible families completed this survey so families will hear from school or district staff no later than Friday, Oct. 2 to confirm whether they are in need of transportation services. If you did not complete the survey and do not hear from your school, please reach out to them directly if you need transportation for your child.

Important Dates

  • Thursday, Oct. 1: 

    • Elementary school level (Grades K-5): In-person instruction begins full-time at all elementary and K-8 schools.

    • Middle and high school level (Grades 6-12): Hybrid learning (in-person instruction) begins at all middle, K-8 and high schools with

      • Group Green (last name M-Z) students attending in person on Thursday and Friday (Oct. 1 & Oct. 2)

      • Group Blue (last name A-L) starts with asynchronous learning on Thursday and Friday (Oct. 1 & Oct. 2).

  • Monday, Oct. 5: Preschool returns to traditional four days/week, in-person for all preschoolers. 


Healthy Schedules, Healthy Buildings, Healthy Policies

We know that, as you and your child prepare for this return, you may have questions about important health and safety measures. Here is an overview of what families and students can expect when they return to their school for in-person learning:

All families and students must: 

  1. Complete your student’s self-health screening, including a temperature check before arriving at school each day. 

  2. Wear face coverings when on school property and in all common areas (hallways, classrooms, bus, main office, cafeteria, etc.), during all transition times (passing periods), and during student arrival and pick-up. 

  3. Practice frequent handwashing and use of hand sanitizer. Students and staff will be reminded to wash/sanitize hands multiple times throughout the day, especially during transitions (i.e. before and after recess and meals.)

Below are key guidelines in place to minimize the risk of transmission and allow all students, staff and families to return to in-person learning safely:

  • Sickness protocols: Students who become symptomatic during the school day will move to a dedicated space in the building until picked up by their parents/guardians to go home. Staff will be sent home if they are symptomatic.

  • Classroom setup: Classrooms will maximize space by removing unnecessary furniture and rearranging desks/tables. Desks will all face one direction. 

  • Enhanced cleaning protocols: Custodians and school staff will increase daily cleaning of frequently touched objects (i.e. door knobs, desks and faucet handles, etc.) and restrooms based on usage and need.

  • Increased ventilation: Buildings will double air exchanges every hour (up to six times per hour) to bring in more fresh outdoor air. This increase of fresh air into the building will impact building temperatures especially as cooler weather arrives. Students should consider dressing in layers. 

  • Visitor management: Building access will be restricted for visitors and only permitted for a student in need of medical or social-emotional support, or on an emergency basis.

  • Signage: General health and safety signs will be visible in multiple locations around buildings.

If you haven’t already, we encourage families with students returning in person to read the Onward: Returning to In-Person Learning Guide to familiarize themselves with health and safety guidelines in place, enhanced cleaning and ventilation protocols, classroom and building set up, visitor management, etc.


Remote Learning

New elementary remote learning schedule *Reminder*

Based on feedback from families and teachers, Five Star Schools has modified the remote learning schedule for elementary students. This new schedule includes a half-day of synchronous (live, teacher-led) instruction and a half day of asynchronous (on-demand, self-paced) learning. You can view the latest version of this schedule here. Please note that some schools might modify this schedule, based on specific programming, to best fit their students’ needs. 

If you haven’t already, we encourage families with students continuing with remote learning to review our updated remote learning plan. In this guide, families can review the current remote learning model by grade level with some adjustments based on feedback from students, staff and families.

*The learning plans for district charter schools may be different, families with students in charter schools do not need to submit this form. Please check with your child’s charter school for more information.