GALA COVID-19 Update #5 (August 7, 2020)

GALA COVID-19 Update #5 (August 7, 2020)

Dear GALA Families:

After careful consideration, the GALA Return to School Committee, consisting of members of the school administration, teachers, and parent representatives have determined that GALA must begin the 2020-21 school year operating fully All Remote through the end of December 2020

We believe that opening remotely provides the best option in the current environment for GALA’s children, families, and staff by prioritizing the school community’s health and safety while delivering on our mission to educate our students. 

The Return to School Committee made this decision based on a number of factors, including:

  • the recommendation from the Cuyahoga County Board of Health that schools begin the 2020-21 school year remotely “due to the elevated health risk posed to students, staff and family members”;
  • the updated state mandate that all K-12 children wear face coverings while at school, and what this would mean for students trying to learn the target language through masks, especially younger children; 
  • the news that several schools around the country, which have already begun the school year, facing positive test cases among their students and staff; and
  • the changing comfort level of some families and staff with the continued higher risk of infection in the county.

The recommendation by the Cuyahoga County Board of Health results in the need for our Return To School Plan, currently based on the four levels of the Ohio Public Health Advisory System, to change.  If conditions change in Cuyahoga County prior to the start of the school year and the Cuyahoga County Board of Health modifies their recommendation, GALA will reevaluate our plan and may adjust accordingly.  GALA’s Return to School Plan has been revised as follows:

OPHAS Level 1 (Yellow) Active Exposure and spread. – Along with a recommendation from the Cuyahoga County Board of Health that supports in-person school, GALA will provide two learning options: Hybrid and All Remote; while adhering to public health sanitation and social distancing measures as outlined in Ohio’s School Reopening Guidance.

OPHAS Level 2 (Orange) Increased exposure and spread. Exercise high degree of caution. – Along with a recommendation from the Cuyahoga County Board of Health that supports in-person school, GALA will provide two learning options: Hybrid and All Remote; while adhering to public health sanitation and social distancing measures as outlined in Ohio’s School Reopening Guidance. 

OPHAS Level 3 (Red) Very high exposure and spread. Limit activities as much as possible. – GALA will provide an All Remote learning option for all students, with no in‐person instruction provided during this period of time.

OPHAS Level 4 (Purple) Severe exposure and spread. Only leave home for supplies and services. – GALA will provide an All Remote learning option for all students, with no in‐person instruction provided during this period of time.

For additional information on GALA’s Return to School plan, and Safety Precautions, please click here.

We will be discussing GALA’s Remote learning plan, collaboratively developed by the GALA Return to School Committee, at the upcoming GALA Board of Directors meeting on Wednesday, August 19th at 5:30PM

Additionally, GALA will host two virtual back to school orientations for all parents.  Please mark your calendars for the following times:

  • Tuesday, August 25th at 5:00pm – 6:00pm for parents of incoming kindergarten students
  • Thursday, August 27th at 5:00pm to 6:00pm, for parents of students in grades 1-5

A recording of the virtual orientation sessions will be shared to all families in case you are unable to attend the live session.

Lastly,  “All Remote” supply lists will be shared next week, and dates and times for chromebook distribution will be shared later this month.

We know this is very frustrating and stressful for the families who were relying on sending their children back to the school buildings this fall, and you probably have many more questions now that our plans have shifted. 

We will continue to work together to provide the best learning experience possible for each and every student, and will continue to share information with you regularly.  As you’ve witnessed by recent events, things change very quickly.  Thank you for your patience and understanding as we continue to navigate these truly challenging and unique times.

As always, be well and be safe.

Sincerely,

GALA Return to School Committee

GALA COVID-19 Update #4 (July 31, 2020)

GALA COVID-19 Update #4 (July 31, 2020)

Dear GALA Parents, 

Thank you for your patience and submitting your student registration form(s).  GALA’s Return to School Committee has spent this week reviewing the student registration information, and we have begun to organize student class groups and staffing arrangements for this upcoming reimagined school year. We are excited to share that we are able to accommodate all of the requests parents made for their student(s) for the All Remote option (45% selected All Remote) and Hybrid option (55% selected Hybrid).  

We understand that other school districts have recently announced that they are no longer providing a Hybrid option to start the school year.  GALA has not made a change to the plans we initially announced, and at this time we are still planning to provide both the Hybrid option and All Remote option, starting September 1st.

GALA will continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation, and inform you if we decide to change our current plans.  We are aware of the recent recommendation from the Cuyahoga County Board of Health for schools to start remotely this fall and will use this information to determine what adjustments may need to be made to our current plans to best serve our school community.

Student supplies lists are currently being revised.  We will send a separate supply list for the Hybrid option and All Remote option as soon as they are ready.

More information will be shared in the coming weeks, including: a revised school calendar, details of our remote plan and daily schedules, daily schedules for the Hybrid option, aftercare plans, and schoolwide presentations to prepare for the school year,

If you have not yet done so, please take some time to read through the resources posted on our website at: https://galacleveland.org/covid-communications/.  Specifically the COVID Response: GALA Return to School Safety, Sanitization, and Closure Procedures

Last but not least, we are happy to announce GALA’s new principal, Ms. Ericka Davis!  Please see Ms. Davis’ bio below and send her a warm welcome at EDavis@GALACleveland.org.

Ms. Ericka Davis has 15 years of experience as an educator. She has taught 12 years within the classroom from grades Pre-K to 5th grade. After teaching in the classroom, Ms. Davis joined the administrative staff through Curriculum and Instruction for grades Pre-K through 8th grade. She continued her aspirations to lead and was the Head of Schools for a charter school in Cleveland. Ms. Davis continues to sharpen her teaching skills through teaching Chinese students English skills and concepts online through VIPKid.  She is a graduate of Cleveland State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Education. She also has a Master’s Degree from the University of Phoenix for Curriculum and Instruction. Ms. Davis is a certified Real Time Teacher Coach for educators for management as well as instruction. Ms. Davis grew up in East Cleveland and is a proud graduate of East Cleveland public schools. She is the first high school and college graduate of her siblings. Ms. Davis is the proud mother of a son and resides in Cleveland with her family.

In addition to Ms. Davis, we have added more amazing members to Team GALA. See more at: https://galacleveland.org/staff/

GALA COVID-19 Update #3 (July 17, 2020)

GALA COVID Update #3 (July 17, 2020)

Dear GALA Families, 

Thank you for your patience as we continue to work out plans for the upcoming 2020-21 school year.  Please be advised that GALA will rely on the Ohio’s Public Health Advisory System (OPHAS) color-coded system in making school‐wide decisions. GALA will provide learning options for students depending on the color status for Cuyahoga county.  These include:

OPHAS Level 1 (Yellow) – Active Exposure and spread. –  GALA will provide All in Person instruction for all students while maintaining public health sanitation measures as outlined in Ohio’s School Reopening Guidance.

OPHAS Level 2 (Orange) – Increased exposure and spread. Exercise high degree of caution. –  GALA will provide two learning options, Hybrid and All Remote, while adhering to public health sanitation and social distancing measures as outlined in Ohio’s School Reopening Guidance. 

OPHAS Level 3 (Red) – Very high exposure and spread. Limit activities as much as possible. –  GALA will provide two learning options, Hybrid and All Remote, while adhering to public health sanitation and social distancing measures as outlined in Ohio’s School Reopening Guidance. 

OPHAS Level 4 (Purple) – Severe exposure and spread. Only leave home for supplies and services. –  GALA will provide an All Remote learning option for all students, with no in‐person instruction provided during this period of time.

For your convenience, all COVID-19 related communications will be posted here: https://galacleveland.org/covid-communications/; the information provided on this site will continue to be updated as we receive/confirm more information. A list of answers to Frequently Asked Questions has been posted.  We ask that all families take time to read through the FAQ.

We acknowledge that with this additional information, some parents may wish to change the learning option they selected for their child in GALA’s Student Registration form, as well as need more time to make a decision.  With that said, if you would like to make a change, please just resubmit the form.  *If you are not changing your student registration option, please DO NOT submit the form again. Additionally, the deadline to submit the student registration form is extended to Monday, July 27th

We understand that this is a big decision that is causing stress and pressure to families. We are asking for all student registration forms to be submitted by Monday, July 27th to allow GALA sufficient time to organize class lists, schedules, and make staffing arrangements.  A list of answers to Frequently Asked Questions has been posted.  We ask that all families take time to read through the FAQ.

Click the student registration form (https://forms.gle/UsiHvTyFLxM4GbD49) to select the learning plan you want for your child.  A separate form for each student must be submitted.  Student registration is required and the deadline to register is Monday, July 27th. For consistency in scheduling, students will be required to remain in the learning option they are registered for through the end of December 2020. There may be an opportunity to change your registration in December for the second half of the school year, which begins in January 2020.

Learning Options:

  • All Remote  – Students will be required to participate in online instruction 4 days a week: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday. Assignments will be provided and students are expected to complete assignments. There will be no live instruction on Fridays for cleaning and professional development.
  • Hybrid – Students will be required to participate in a combination of online and in-person instruction. In-person instruction will be 2 days a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Online instruction will be 2 days a week on Mondays and Wednesdays. Assignments will be provided and students are expected to complete assignments. There will be no live instruction on Fridays for cleaning and professional development.

Sincerely, 

GALA Return to School Committee

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