This fall, school will look very different for Oregon students. Maybe it’ll look a lot like this spring. Maybe it’ll be more like last fall. Or very possibly, school will be somewhere in between.
The Oregon Department of Education released a blueprint for how schools should operate amid COVID-19. And it’s up to individual schools to figure out whether teaching will happen on-site, through distance learning, or a hybrid of the two.
We posed the question to Jewish day schools in Oregon to see what their plans are for the upcoming school year:
“Medical, mental health and educational experts all agree that it is best for students to have the opportunity to attend school in person, even in a limited way, as long as it can be done in a manner that protects the health of teachers and students. At Portland Jewish Academy, we are working hard to develop a plan that complies with all CDC, OHA and ODE guidelines and that allows students to attend school in person, as much as is safely possible, supplemented by rich, virtual learning opportunities.” – Steve Albert, Executive Director of Portland Jewish Academy/Mittleman Jewish Community Center
“We recognize that children learn best when physically present in the classroom, and are working to be able to provide full on-site learning for our students.” – Rabbi Shneur Wilhelm, Principal of Maimonides Jewish Day School
“With Oregon’s guidelines and mandates out of ‘Ready Schools, Safe Learners,’ Maayan is putting their finishing touches on their in-school learning platform for the 2020-21 school year. Maayan plans to have full-time in-school learning for all students. Having large classrooms and smaller class sizes enable Maayan to accommodate the guidelines of 35 square feet per student. Maayan has also hired more staff to keep class cohort sizes small. Maayan will be strictly following sanitary protocol to reduce the risk of infection. With routine sanitizing multiple times a day, stable cohorts, temperature checks, and more, Maayan is confident they are doing their due diligence to keep children, staff, and families safe. Maayan’s preschool division has also received ‘Emergency Childcare Facility’ status and will be able to remain open even if Oregon needs to shut back down again.” – Rabbi Yerachmiel Kalter, Judaics Principal/ Director of Development Maayan Torah Day School