June 12, 2020
I think it is safe to say that we could not have predicted what has occurred over the past three months and the changes that were required due to the COVID-19 crisis. Since the conclusion of this school year, we have worked with teams to help plan for the upcoming school year by creating alternative plans to meet the guidelines set out by the Iowa Department of Public Health and Iowa Department of Education. These plans consist of a Continuous Learning plan (100% required online), a hybrid where students learn part of the time on-site while the other time they are online, and an on-site plan that would look similar to a normal opening with health and safety protocols. As public health learns more about the virus these guidelines continue to change, so what they look like on August 1st could be completely different then they do today. Given this fact, it is impossible to answer everyone's questions of what the start of the Atlantic CSD 2020-21 school year will look like.
Now that some school activities, under strict guidelines, have opened I am optimistic that these experiences will provide a lot of information over the next month and a half. Two weeks ago our baseball and softball teams began practices. I am very proud of all the people who have made this experience safe for coaches and players as these two weeks have been very positive. On Monday these two teams begin playing games and we add another component to this activity, the fans. Hopefully, not only will our two teams perform well, but we have a positive experience related to COVID-19.
Another group of activities, if guidance remains the same, can open on July 1. These activities will have strict guidelines, but we will have a number of activities that will be taking place in our facilities. Once again if these aspects of reopening are positive it will be helpful in determining the best plan for education and ensuring the safety of all our stakeholders.
On Monday, we will be sending a short survey to parents to help with our planning. The feedback from parents now and in the future will be beneficial as we develop our plans that provide the best learning environment given the parameters in which we must operate. Please take a few minutes to complete the survey. We are committed to doing what is best for our children and families!
Steven H. Barber
The Atlantic Community School District will prepare all learners to be creative, innovative and productive citizens by providing diverse opportunities to learn and apply relevant skills and knowledge in a positive, disciplined and challenging environment.