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Return-to-school conversation continues

Poll asks for your opinion

Schools are looking at how to successfully implement changes that will be put in place because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and a new Star survey seeks the opinions of local parents, students, and staff members.

Last week The Star reported on changes schools are facing for the 2020-21 school year after guidelines were released by the state’s Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction.

Those guidelines include rules such as those requiring all students and staff to wear face coverings and maintain a distance from one another.

Those rules have implications for many aspects of school, including meals, transportation, assemblies, schedules, class sizes, teaching, learning, and much more.

“Every question generates 10 more questions,” Superintendent Paul Turner said on designing school to follow the new OSPI guidelines.

“I feel for those in decision making positions moving forward on this,” reader Amanda Burton wrote on The Star’s Facebook page after last week’s story was published. “It is an unprecedented time and I really hope the community comes together and supports the school on whatever is ultimately decided, as well as comes together for each other. This is not going to be easy on working families, kiddos, teachers and teacher aides, or administrators.”

She emphasized the importance of parental perspectives being included in the making of any plans Lake Roosevelt has for the future.

“We, as parents, have a unique perspective that differs from the schools perspective — having been physically with our kids during the distance learning that has taken place already,” she wrote. “We can tell you what we have observed has worked and what has been a check in the box exercise that the kiddos have not really learned from.”

“We can also tell you how our kiddos react to masks, etc,” Burton continues. “Whether our kiddos are freaked out or whether they are handling this well. I can imagine kiddos are all over the spectrum on that and the school needs to be aware of and prepared for potential emotional issues they may be facing in the Fall. My kiddos are handling it well but I know not all are.”

At tonight’s Grand Coulee Dam School District board meeting, a preliminary discussion on reopening in the fall is on the agenda.

That meeting can be attended on Zoom at

The anonymous survey asking for your opinion can be found here.


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