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Muskego-Norway News September 2020 - Please Scroll Down to See Contents

COVID-19 Response, Reentry and Recovery Efforts

We are excited to be in week three of our 2020-21 school year. Thank you for your support as we opened school doors and virtual platforms for students and staff. It has been impressive to see how well students have acclimated to the mitigation measures implemented as we continue to follow Waukesha County’s recommendations to Stay Safe to Stay Open. When a COVID-19 event occurs, we support Waukesha County Health Department’s efforts to isolate and quarantine individuals impacted. We are grateful for the vast majority of people in our community who understand the current reality and the district’s need to operate differently during this pandemic. The additional health precautions, recommended by state and local officials, are designed to keep the virus from spreading within our community and help our schools stay open for in-person learning. With 88% of our student population choosing to be in-person, maintaining 6 feet of physical distancing is a challenge. Therefore, we are grateful for the incredible support we have received for the use of face coverings. We appreciate your patience and compliance with district requirements and the other inconveniences that are a result of our response, reentry and recovery approach to the pandemic.

Friendly reminder to:

With our commitment to open schools, our continued ask of our community, families, and students is that we all do our part. Please consider travel plans, mass gatherings and the impact your attendance at those events may have on our ability to remain open for business. We are grateful for our community’s partnership!

Metric Team

The District has deployed a Metric Team tasked with monitoring COVID-19 transmissions within our schools and the community. This team includes district administration, the school board president, our district nurse, data personnel and building personnel as needed. The team meets weekly to review trends and monitor COVID related absences and will collaborate with the Waukesha County Health Department when there is a potential need to move into temporary distance learning at a school or district level per this document. Some of the data sources reviewed are available on our COVID-19 Reentry Planning webpage.

Activities

With our schools now open and our co-curricular activities operational under our local health department guidelines, it is important to draw our families' attention to an overriding principle. Although we love to see our whole community at each of our district's events, during this unprecedented time we are asking our families to operate under a singular school community mindset when attending events. Essentially, keeping each school's events to just that school's clientele, no multi school level events.

School Community ONLY = High School students at high school events, middle school students at middle school events, elementary students at elementary events.

We recognize that many of our students' support systems are their family members and it means a great deal to our students to have their closest advocates in attendance supporting their athletic, musical, and leadership endeavors. We are excited to see our students in their performances and competitions! For additional information: MNS Non-Essential Spectators @ Events.

Tier 1 - MNS Virtual Option

Virtual learning plans for elementary students use district identified curriculum resources and a combination of both synchronous (live) and asynchronous (recorded and written) instruction. For additional information about elementary virtual learning, please view a presentation from an informational parent meeting.

Middle and high school students are using Edmentum within their virtual learning plans. For more information about Edmentum, please refer to these documents:

Team of the Week - 105.3 The Fan

Revised 2020-21 Calendar

On Monday, August 17, the School Board took action on a REVISED 2020-21 CALENDAR. Of particular note, you will see some days highlighted in blue. Those days are being designated for the following:

1. Planned remote learning days, where students will be at home and will have designated learning to complete (November 23, 24, March 26, April 30).

2. District custodial crews will engage in a thorough, deep cleaning of our respective buildings as well as reapply an antimicrobial protective product on high touch surfaces.

3. Staff will be participating in professional learning aligned to ensure our students in both the virtual and in-person learning platforms are keeping pace with essential standards and assessments measuring those identified standards.

One final change to note was made in February, where the red "No Student - Professional Day," was changed from February 26th to the 19th.

2020 Summer School Enrollment

This year, our summer school programs, while presenting some challenges due to COVID-19, were able to maintain a high rate of participation across our K-12 system. We provided gap closing, enrichment opportunities and other courses to almost 2,000 students (see chart below for enrollment). The participation from this summer is slightly higher than that of two years ago. Considering some last minute changes that needed to be made to our course offerings, again, due to COVID-19, we are excited to see that nearly 50% of our total student population was able to take advantage of our summer offerings.

In large part, our enrollment continues to see high participation numbers because of the enrichment and online courses we offer our students. This summer, we offered for the first time ever, virtual learning courses for our K-8 students (335 students enrolled in a virtual course). Additionally, we offered swim lessons to our youngest learners in the system for the first time. We had 346 students take advantage of this learning opportunity. Our high enrollment numbers continue to allow students to positively engage during the summer months and also have a positive impact on our District budget.

Thank you families for your strong interest in our summer programming and for giving the District extended opportunities to engage the minds and hearts of our students.

2020-21 EOTG

The Eye on the Goal (EOTG) articulates our district’s strategic plan. This plan aligns our practices and efforts toward a common vision and mission. Department and building-level EOTG plans have a uniform design and approach. As a result, our system is integrated and aligned – we are all moving in the same direction. The 2020-21 EOTG is posted on our website (go to the left on the page and select 2020-21 to view the specific goals for this year).

The following list highlights some of the district’s key focus areas for the 2020-21 school year.

  • Respond to the current pandemic through an agile response, reentry and recovery approach
  • Continue articulating a guaranteed and viable curriculum through the use of Professional Learning Communities to identify Standards of Focus (SOFs) and Common Formative Assessments
  • Create and deploy action steps to improve reading and math achievement and growth and college, career and community readiness
  • Implement effective strategies to close the achievement gap for those students achieving within the bottom 25% of our student population, utilizing high leverage practices (HLP), Positive Behavior Intervention and Supports (PBIS) and Multi-Leveled Systems of Support (MLSS)
  • Determine next steps related to Master Planning efforts
  • Attend to continuous improvement efforts related to student engagement, parent satisfaction and employee engagement

School Lunch Program Update

On Monday, August 31, 2020, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) unexpectedly announced nationwide waivers to allow the continuation of free meals to all students through the National School Lunch Program. The nationwide waivers allow schools and school districts to serve meals in a similar manner to how students were served meals beginning in mid-March.

What does this mean for Muskego-Norway School District families? Any student who chooses a full reimbursable meal at lunch will receive that meal at no cost.

What is a full reimbursable meal and how do I ensure my child is selecting the right options? The USDA meal patterns require five components must be offered to qualify for a reimbursable meal. A Meat/Protein, Fruit, Vegetable, Grain, and Milk must be offered in specific quantities. Please view this presentation for an explanation of how to make a reimbursable meal. If a child does not take one of the five components, they will be charged for an ala carte meal.

When does the free lunch program begin? This program started the first day of school. If your child has been choosing a reimbursable meal, you have not been charged for their lunch.

Are there other options besides the full reimbursable meal? Ala carte items, including milk are still available for purchase.

Where can I go to find out what meal options are available? Please visit the district’s food service website. You can also download the Taher Food4Life app from Google Play or the App Store.

My child is enrolled in the virtual learning option. Does he/she still qualify? Lunch service will be available to virtual families who elect to have meals provided. Surveys go out to virtual families via an Infinite Campus message. Families will continue to receive weekly surveys to request meals for the following week. Please submit all surveys no later than Friday.

These waivers are currently allowed through December 31, 2020. However, the USDA FNS reserves the right to withdraw any or all of the nationwide waivers subject to the availability of funding. We will communicate out to parents in the event there are changes to the program before December, 31, 2020. If you have any questions about the food service program, please contact Chrissy Koerner, Food Service Director at 262-971-1790 x4522 or via email at chrissy.koerner@muskegonorway.org.

Bus Transportation Services

Thank you for your patience and understanding as we continue to work through our fall reentry plan with Dairyland. We understand that there have been a number of changes related to transportation and we want to thank you for your continued partnership. As a reminder, there are mitigating measures that have been put in place to reduce risk for our school community. By now, the following measures should be implemented on each bus:

  • Hand sanitizer stations are available inside each bus
  • Students are physically distancing themselves from others at bus stops
  • Face coverings are required while on the school bus. In the event a student does not wear a face covering because it is not medically feasible (medical documentation is required), the student is assigned to sit in the front rows of the school bus.
  • Eating, drinking (unless medically required) and chewing gum are prohibited on the bus
  • Students' bus routes are limited to only assigned, routine routes
  • Students have received assigned seats on the bus
  • Ventilation systems are operating while students are on the bus and windows will remain open as much as possible in order to increase circulation of outdoor air
  • Similar to staff members within our buildings, bus drivers are required to wear face coverings

Please note, if you have concerns that these mitigating measures are not in place, please contact Dairyland at muskegoquestions@ridesta.com or call 262-203-9938. If you need to make a change to your child(ren)’s bus schedule or route, please fill out the 2020-21 Bus Enrollment/Change Request Form. If you have general district transportation questions, please contact Jamie Gleeson, Executive Specialist at 262-971-1800 x2111 or via email at jamie.gleeson@muskegonorway.org.

2020-21 - Parent Advisory Team

The Parent Advisory Team agenda for the October 5th meeting will focus on curriculum and instruction. If you are interested in joining the Team, please contact either kelly.thompson@muskegonorway.org or jeff.petersen@muskegonorway.org. Meetings will be held online or at a district building TBD from 5:00-6:30PM on the following Mondays: October 5, November 30, February 15, and April 26.

Fall Conversations with the Superintendent

The fall 2020-21 Conversations with the Superintendent at the ESC are scheduled as follows:

  • Morning of September 24 (Thursday) at 7:00 AM
  • Noon on November 23 (Monday) - 12:00 PM

If these dates/times do not fit your schedule and you are interested in meeting, please contact kelly.thompson@muskegonorway.org to schedule an individual meeting.

Follow Us

"Follow Us" on Facebook (Muskego Norway Schools), Twitter (@MuskegoNorwaySC), and/or Instagram (muskegonorwayschools) for up-to-date information about our district’s celebrations and events.

With Gratitude,

Dr. Kelly Thompson

Superintendent