We are pleased to announce the first day of school for Letcher County students will be August 4, 2021, with staff beginning on August 2, 2021. We will be following a regular school calendar so start and end times will be adjusted back to a regular day. Please keep in mind that our plans can change quickly depending on the incident rate of COVID-19.
Health and Safety
The health and safety of our students and staff continues to be our priority, and we will follow the guidelines set forth by the Kentucky Department of Education, the Department of Public Health, the Governor’s Office, and the CDC. Students will return to in-person classes five days a week. There is no virtual option at this time.
- Upon arrival, students will report directly to classrooms, where they will be supervised by staff.
- Masks are required for all students and staff indoors.
- Proper hand hygiene will be encouraged, and hand sanitizer will be readily available throughout each classroom and building.
- Detailed records/seating charts will be maintained for the purpose of contact tracing.
- All facilities will be cleaned and disinfected multiple times throughout the day. Desks in classrooms will be sanitized between each class.
- Students will be allowed to have meals in the cafeteria. The cafeteria will be cleaned between groups. Cafeteria tables will have dividers to help eliminate the spread of germs.
Masks on the bus are required because we cannot keep students socially distant. As soon as they board the bus, we ask that they use the hand sanitizer that is provided. Detailed seating charts will be maintained for the purpose of contact tracing. All buses will be cleaned and disinfected after each run.
Each school will have a designated area for isolation of sick students supervised by adults until a parent/guardian can pick the student up. Each school will be served by our MCHC School Based Clinics and a school nurse. We ask that if a child is sick or exhibiting symptoms, please do not send them to school. Our school-based clinics will be able to test for COVID, influenza, and strep on site. Contact tracing will be conducted for each positive case following the CDC guidelines.
Trauma Informed Care
The Letcher County School District (LCSD) began transforming into a trauma-informed school district in 2018 utilizing the Center on Trauma and Children Evidence in Action program from the University of Kentucky, utilizing the ACE’s project. The ACEs Project was designed to enable the LCSD to utilize systemic trauma-informed practices throughout the district, encompassing not only school-based practices but informing key organizational domains which include: (a) leadership, (b) policy, (c) finance, (d) safety, (e) continuous improvement, (f) student supports, and (g) staff supports. Staff at LCSD have received introductory and advanced trauma-informed professional development and consultation for the past two years. This teamwork has positioned LCSD to move forward as a trauma-informed district, meeting and exceeding the requirements of the Kentucky School Safety and Resiliency Act. Student learning at the Letcher County School District will be enhanced by systemic, trauma-informed practices and policies utilized by all staff to improve each students’ sense of safety, caring, and belonging by the entire school community.
Academics and Learning Gaps
We are excited to get students back in the classroom five days a week. We will focus on learning acceleration, which is a process for teachers to engage in formative practices to improve students’ access to and mastery of grade-level content. We will be conducting assessments to address academic needs and learning gaps and scaffold as needed. Classroom teachers will use the data to create lessons that address student needs daily. We will provide a learning environment that will foster the social and emotional well-being of students, families, and educators. We will improve equitable access to grade level content and high-quality resources for each student. We will focus on deeper learning rather than pace. The district will also employ an interventionist at each school to work with smaller groups of students or one on one as is necessary. Each school will also offer a more extensive after school tutoring program to give students more time to work directly on learning gaps. We will also offer sessions for students during fall and winter breaks and during the summer. We will work to ensure that all students have access to high quality instruction.
We are excited and look forward to reopening schools. We will stay in contact with our local health department, KDE, and the CDC to ensure we are following appropriate procedures to keep our students and staff safe and healthy. We will be flexible and ready to make changes as necessary and as advised. In the coming weeks, we will work to ensure that all procedures and protocols are in place and ready for the arrival of students. If you have questions or concerns, feel free to contact your child’s school or the central office at 633-4455.