Dare County school year officially ends May 22

[Photo courtesy North Carolina Department of Public Instruction]

Dare County’s school year will officially end for students on May 22, the district announced Friday.

“While the State Board of Education has made several grading policy adjustments given the COVID-19 pandemic, we do not intend to lower our participation and grading standards,” schools Superintendent John Farrelly said in the release. “Please keep in mind that student readiness for the fall and preventing as much academic slide as possible drives our decision to keep our standards exceptionally high. The more academic opportunities your children can receive between now and the fall will benefit readiness for the next grade level.”

Other important information for the end of the school year includes:

State Board of Education Grading Reminders:

Elementary Schools: Grade K-5 students will not receive a final grade. Teachers will provide year-end written feedback for students/families based on their learning this school year. Report cards will be available for parents in the Powerschool parent portal on Friday, June 5. (FAQ Attached)

Middle Schools: Grade 6-8 students will receive a final course grade of PC19 (Pass) or WC19 (Withdrawl). Teachers will provide year-end written feedback for students/families based on their learning this school year. Report cards will be available for parents and students in the Powerschool parent portal on Friday, June 5

High School Grades 9-11: Students in grades 9-11 and non-graduating seniors will choose how each final course grade will appear on their transcript for their currently enrolled courses, year-long and semester courses. Students will make this determination during the week of May 26-29. High school principals will communicate their school process directly with parents and students. Report cards will be available for parents and students in the Powerschool parent portal on Friday, June 5

High School Seniors: See attached FAQ (already sent home). Report cards will be available for parents and students in the Powerschool parent portal on Friday, June 5.

Required Teacher Work Days: Dare County Schools teachers will work for the remaining days on the school calendar preparing a comprehensive K-12 transition plan for the fall when we resume school. We have a significant amount of curriculum work that needs to be done given the significant amount of face to face instructional delivery we have missed this spring. This work will include adjusting instructional pacing guides, creating new readiness assessments, developing additional mental health programs, and creating potential remote learning summer programming. The district will also create various social distancing plans for the fall depending upon our needs and potential future COVID-19 impacts.

Technology Device Returns: Students (or parents) will need to return all technology devices to their schools during the week of May 26-29. This includes wifi “Hot spots”. Students can also pick up any personal effects they may have left in school (lockers etc.) during this week. We will, of course, emphasize social distancing during this exchange week.

Optional Summer Remote Learning Program: We are going to survey parents in the month of May to gauge interest in optional summer remote learning opportunities. If students do engage in our optional summer programs, they will be able to again sign out technology devices.

Graduation: It saddens all of us that the COVID-19 pandemic and social distancing directives are forcing schools to refrain from typical graduation ceremonies. However, we will honor our graduates, only in a different manner. Our senior leadership team has been working for several weeks with our high school principals on possible graduation options. In addition, the principals have solicited feedback on our ideas from HS teachers this week to get their input. Seniors and their parents will receive a survey this Monday (5/4) where you can provide graduation ideas working within CDC guidelines for social distancing. Following our review of stakeholder input, we will announce our DC graduation plans on Monday, May 11.

Proms: We, unfortunately, cannot consider any kinds of student proms given the closing of North Carolina Public Schools due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Scholarship Awards: Each high school will develop its own virtual/video scholarship awards program following social distancing guidelines.  High school principals will communicate directly with families.

School Calendar: It is very likely that North Carolina Public Schools will have a longer school calendar in the 2020-2021 academic year. The general assembly is currently working on bills related to earlier start dates. I would also anticipate the possibility that remediation programs for at-risk students may begin by August 1. I will keep parents updated as news develops.

Meal Program: Our Tuesday/Thursday meal programs will remain in place between now and at least August 1.

Book Mobile: My senior leadership team and I distributed over 600 new books to K-8 children this past Tuesday at our meal program distribution sites. We will continue to provide a brand new book to every child in K-8 every Tuesday for the next month. This program is supported by donations from DareCASA, Participate Learning (Our Dual Language Immersion Program Partner), and Pierce Group Benefits.

In closing let me once again thank parents for all that you have done in working with your children at home! Your response and support of our remote learning programs have been phenomenal! Three cheers to our parents! 

Take care, stay well, and enjoy the weekend.

Avatar
About Kari Pugh 717 Articles
Kari Pugh is digital director for OBXToday.com, Beach 104, 99.1 The Sound, 94.5 WCMS and News Talk 92.3 WZPR. Reach her at [email protected]