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CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 SHUTDOWN - ONGOING UPDATES


Posted Date: 03/17/2020

CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 SHUTDOWN - ONGOING UPDATES

 

CORONAVIRUS COVID 19

District COVID -19 Ongoing Updates

 

March 27th, 2020

Updated FAQ for Public Schools from OSDE

https://sde.ok.gov/sites/default/files/FAQS%20FOR%20PUBLIC%20SCHOOLS%20-%20COVID-19.pdf

March 26th, 2020

Continuous Learning Internet and Device Survey

Blackwell Public Schools is about to start a new adventure in public education.  With this new undertaking there will be a huge learning curve requiring all teachers, students, and parents to work together.  With the start on this new journey called “Continuous Learning,” it best serves our children when everyone remains positive and upbeat with the situation that has been dealt to the students and teachers of Blackwell.  Please keep in mind that this new journey begins with little to no preparation time. For the immediate future, plans will literally be developing on a day by day basis. Again, please remain patient and positive while refraining from publicly criticizing what is being done to educate the children of Blackwell Public Schools.  You will be updated as we receive guidelines from the State Department of Education, and as the Continuous Learning Plan for Blackwell is unfolding. If you are without internet services or have limited data, please know that the plan will not be reliant on online access. We want to do what’s best for ALL the children in Blackwell.

Thank you for your ongoing patience, support, and partnership. Survey Link:  https://forms.gle/yBMLfk7WeFVxRWtu6

 

Support Staff Amended Leave Board Approved 

The Blackwell Board of Education approved an amended leave policy March 25 providing ten days of emergency leave and ten days of extended sick leave for employees affected by covid-19.‚Äč

5.19 Benefits, Insurance, and Deductions

 

Holidays

 

Because of the time school is in session and the requirements of the various employee's jobs, all employees do not have the same holidays. The employees who work only when school is in session will have access to a school calendar each year. Other full-time employees will be notified by their supervisor as to the holidays that they will receive each year. No twelve month employee will receive less than eight paid holidays.

 

Vacations

All twelve month support personnel will be granted paid vacation according to the following schedule:

 

1 - 10 years      10 days

11 years           11 days

12 years           12 days

13 years           13 days

14 years           14 days

15 years           15 days

 

The employee must have been on the payroll the last day of school and must have worked a minimum of nine months during the fiscal school year. Those on the payroll at the end of the year having less than nine but six or more months will be allowed accumulated vacation time at the rate of one day per month.

 

Effective July 1, 2001, twelve month support employees may not accumulate more than a maximum of 30 vacation days, except with the advance written approval of the superintendent. All accumulated days over the maximum of 30 will be forfeited if not used by the employee. An employee who is granted written approval by the superintendent not to use their vacation days shall be compensated at their daily rate of pay. It is the employee’s responsibility to schedule vacation time to avoid the forfeiture of accumulated vacation days. The School District will not pay employees for vacation days accumulated (beyond 30 days) after July 1, 2001 upon termination of employment.*

 

*          Support employees who have accumulated more than 30 days of vacation prior to July 1, 2001 shall retain rights to the vacation days which they have accumulated.

Emergency Leave

 

 

For the 2019-2020 school year only, The board of education shall provide not more than ten days for emergency leave.  These days shall not be chargeable to sick leave and will be noncumulative.  The term emergency should be construed to mean a situ­ation or occurrence of a serious nature, developing suddenly and unexpectedly, and demanding immediate attention.  Emer­gency leave will be granted at the discretion of the superintendent or designee.

Sick Leave

 

One day per month sick leave with full pay is granted to each regular full-time noncertified employee. These days may accumulate to a maximum of sixty (60) days; except that unused personal business leave may accumulate as sick leave and therefore make possible the accumulation of more than sixty (60) sick leave days, such converted days will be used first in case of illness. Sick leave is defined as illness or accidental injury of a staff member or his/her immediate family or pregnancy of a staff member.

 

A member of the immediate family is considered to be father, mother, sister, brother, wife, husband, son, daughter, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, mother-in-law, father-in-law, grandmother, grandfather or grandchildren. Also, the employee may use sick leave for the listed relationships that are step-relations. If, after exhausting all sick leave, an employee is absent from his/her duties due to illness, the employee shall receive, for a period of not to exceed twenty (20) days, his/her salary, less the amount paid a substitute if one is hired. The Board of Education may require certification of illness by a medical doctor before honoring sick leave. The District may offset an employee's wages paid under the District's sick leave policy against any benefits received under the District's worker's compensation plan.

 

The board of education will provide sick leave benefits to all support employees in order to promote a sense of security and permit the ease of mind essential to the satisfactory performance of services.  Effective March 18, 2020, and expiring December 31, 2020, the school district shall make available 80 hours of paid sick leave for full time-employees (or the equivalent of the average number of hours over two weeks for part time employees) for the following reasons:

 

  1. The employee is subject to a federal, state, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19.
  2. The employee has been advised by a healthcare provider to self-quarantine due to concerns related to COVID-19.
  3. The employee is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and seeking a medical diagnosis.
  4. The employee is caring for an individual who is subject to enumerated item 1 or 2 above.
  5. The employee is caring for their son or daughter if the school or place of care of the son or daughter has been closed, or the childcare provider of the son or daughter is unavailable, due to COVID-19 precautions.
  6. The employee is experiencing any other substantially similar condition specified by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, in consultation with the Secretary of the Treasury and the Secretary of Labor. 

 

March 25th, 2020

Coronavirus/COVID-19 School Closure Letter From Superintendent

March 25, 2020

Dear Parent of Blackwell Student:

Today, we learned that Oklahoma students will not return to the classroom for the remainder of the current school year, following a vote by the State Board of Education.  Instead, districts, including Blackwell School District, will implement continuous learning plans that will allow students to complete the school year at home.  State education and health officials believe this move will help our State fight the spread of COVID-19.

We are sharing this information with you now so you can prepare accordingly for your family.  The State Board’s vote also means that all extracurricular activities and special events will be canceled or postponed as well. 

The Blackwell District is developing a plan for your child to continue to have opportunities to learn and grow academically with your parental support.  Because we are unable to gather, these lessons and activities will have to be delivered in a variety of alternative means appropriate to the age of the student.  As you can imagine, this is a significant change for our students and teachers.  Blackwell District will spend time during the next week planning for this effort and will share details with your family as soon as they are available.  Teachers and support staff members that will be responsible for delivery of continuous learning will be involved in the development of the plan. 

Some students will be sad and disappointed to receive confirmation that school as they know it will not resume this year.  Please talk with them about their feelings and assure them that this is only temporary, and things will return to normal soon.  For our seniors and their parents, we know it is an especially difficult time.  We will do everything possible to ensure their efforts are recognized and celebrated at the opportune time.  Please reassure them that this situation that they face does not diminish their achievements and that the obstacles they face are opportunities to demonstrate their strength as Maroons. 

We have posted numerous resources on our website, including information about free breakfasts and lunches for students 18 years of age and under, which will continue, as well as answers to frequently asked questions regarding school closure.  You can find these details and more by visiting our website at https://www.blackwell.k12.ok.us.  The site also includes recommendations from the CDC about protecting your health and the health of your loved ones.  You can follow their advice by washing your hands regularly, staying at home and practice social distancing of at least six feet from others.

This is an unprecedented situation, and it has required an unprecedented response.  As soon as we identify our next steps, we will share them with you.  Please stay safe and as always, we appreciate your support of Blackwell Schools.

 

Sincerely,

 

Rod Reese, Superintendent

March 23rd, 2020

Coronavirus/COVID-19 FAQs For Oklahoma Public Schools

https://sde.ok.gov/sites/default/files/FAQS%20FOR%20PUBLIC%20SCHOOLS%20-%20COVID-19.pdf

Blackwell School Personnel Pay

All Blackwell School personnel should be advised that the District is taking measures to insure that they will be paid while the order for school closure is in effect.  Wednesday, March 25 at 6:00 pm the School Board is meeting to discuss and act upon the recommendation of the Superintendent that policies be approved for ten days of emergency leave and ten additional days of sick leave.for all support employees who are missing work during the school closure for covid-19.  The State Legislature will be considering a bill to extend the same paid leave for school support employees that is currently in law for certified staff.  The legislature is scheduled to be in session before the twenty days of paid leave is spent.  

 

Rod Reese,  Superintendent

March 19th, 2020

 Requests Suspending State Tests for 2019-2020 School Year

https://sde.ok.gov/newsblog/2020-03-19/hofmeister-request-federal-waiver-suspending-state-testing-school-year

Spring Break Travel from Level 2 or 3 countries -COVID-19

https://sde.ok.gov/newsblog/2020-03-06/coronavirus-spring-break-travel

March 18th, 2020

FAQs for Oklahoma Public Schools- COVID-19

https://sde.ok.gov/sites/default/files/FAQS%20FOR%20PUBLIC%20SCHOOLS%20-%20COVID-19.pdf

March 17th, 2020 

Coronovirus Shutdown – “Grab and Go Lunches” 

 

Sack Lunches

March 17th, 2020

Dear Parents:

 

The administration of Blackwell Public Schools has developed a plan to feed the children of Blackwell during the two week school closure mandated by the State Department of Education.  This plan, as of today, is to provide a “grab and go” sack lunch for all children eighteen and under at no cost, including children not presently enrolled in Blackwell Public Schools. Until we receive further instruction, students must be present to receive the lunches.  There will be five sites distributing these sack lunches: 

 

  •  The bus stop at Parkside Elementary School

  •  The bus stop Washington Elementary School

  •  The circle drive at the High School, 

  •  The Middle School Parking lot

  •  The park on the south side of the Elks Asbury Apartments

 

 Lunches may be picked up at all five of these locations, between 11:45 AM and 12:30 PM, Monday through Friday. The meals will be packaged in a to-go container and given at the designated spot at each location outside of the building. We prefer a vehicle but walk ups are welcome too!  If you live outside the city limits and are needing this service, please email Mr. Haskins at shaskins@blackwell.k12.ok.us  with your name, address and phone number and we will try to deliver these lunches to you.  This service will start on Monday, March 23rd, and tentatively will end on Friday, April 3rd.  Parents or students may pick up these lunches. Again, this is a free meal - funded by the federal government at no cost to the district - for all children eighteen years old and younger.  This plan is currently evolving as the social distancing guidelines are recommended and school is out. . Please remain flexible as the situation develops on a daily basis.   


 

Sincerely,

 

Shawn Haskins

Blackwell High School Principal

March 16th, 2020

Oklahoma State Board of Education

Special Board Meeting

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7lk--sBXZlQ&feature=youtu.be

 

Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Coronavirus (COVID – 19)

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

 

Oklahoma State Department of Health

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

 

Oklahoma State Department of Education

https://sde.ok.gov/newsblog/2020-03-12/coronaviruscovid-19-faqs-oklahoma-public-schools