COVID-19 Closure Community Update: Tuesday, March 24 Hamilton County Schools will send out regular communications to the community during the school closure with information and resources to help make this transition as easy as possible for families.
The safety of our students and staff is our top priority. Thank you for your patience and understanding during this challenging time. We are Hamilton!
Click on a topic below to go directly to the item listed.
* UPDATE: School Closure Extended
* Whole Child Wednesday
* Update Contact Information
* Printing School Learning Packets
* UPDATE: WiFi Access
* New Student and Parent Checklists
* UPDATE: Student Meal Delivery
* Chromebook Tutorials
* TNReady and Testing Update
* Hotlines for Families
* HCS Continued Learning Resources for Families
* Family Resources
* Preventative Measures Reminder from the CDC
* Frequently Asked Questions
UPDATE: School Closure Extended
Today, Governor Bill Lee announced all schools in the state of Tennessee will remain closed through Friday, April 24. With this announcement, Hamilton County Schools’ will remain closed through April 24, with schools opening and students returning to school on Monday, April 27. The district’s teachers and students will continue virtual learning during this period with the exception of Spring Break.
The break begins on April 3, and continues the week of April 6 through April 10. District leadership will monitor the situation and provide regular updates regarding the anticipated return to school on Monday, April 27.
Whole Child Wednesday
Starting on March 25, the district will launch “Whole Child Wednesday” to support the social and emotional needs of students, teachers, and families. Every Wednesday, educators, and stakeholders from the social-emotional learning community will share sessions and strategies on the district’s social media channels to help manage stress and navigate change. Stay tuned!
Update Contact Information
If your contact information has changed, please make sure to update this information with your school. Schools need the most up-to-date information to reach families and students during the time schools are closed.
Printing School Learning Packets
This week, schools will be sharing new learning packets and/or online lessons and resources with students. Families should contact their school if they need help with printing.
UPDATE: WiFi Access
Hamilton County Schools is working with a variety of community partners to identify options for providing internet access to as many families as possible to ensure students can continue their learning.
* Comcast has opened its WiFi hotspots for public access.
* EPB is installing 25 EPB Quick Connect free WiFi locations across the community. View the current locations here<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/4hazfm>. More locations could be added, so check this website regularly for updates.
Hamilton County Schools is also working to identify the best option for rapidly providing in-home internet access to as many students as possible. Contact Hamilton County Schools’ Tech Hotline if you need help (423) 493-0350, and we’ll let you know about the best available options from a range of internet service providers.
Here are some additional WiFi resources.
Free Public WiFi Map<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/kabzfm>
Low Cost WiFiConnectivity Options<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/02bzfm>
New Student and Parent Checklists
The district created student and parents checklists to help guide families through remote learning. Download the checklists below.
UPDATE: Student Meal Delivery
Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, our bus drivers deliver meals to students in need. The buses run the elementary school bus routes. To find your stop, select the elementary school closest to you on our Bus Stop Finder<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/cgezfm> or call the transportation hotline at (423) 498-5555. Once you’ve found your bus stop, find the corresponding bus number here<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/s8ezfm>.
Below are the timeframes for the student meal delivery:
* Special Education Routes – 11 a.m. – 12 p.m.
* Buses 1-111 – 11:15 a.m. – 12 p.m.
* Buses 300-499 – 12 p.m. – 1 p.m.
All meals are provided free to children up to age 18. Families do not need to provide proof of school enrollment, income, or free/reduced lunch eligibility. Children must be present to receive the meals.
There will still be some school sites available if families prefer to pick up the meals. The list of school sites is on our website<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/80fzfm>.
If you’re interested in helping with meal deliveries, sign up here<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/otgzfm>.
We recognize some families may not be familiar with using a Chromebook, so we’ve created some tutorial videos to support families who need it.
Chromebook Tutorial Videos<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/4lhzfm>
TNReady and Testing Update
The Tennessee General Assembly passed legislation on March 19th that waives the requirement for any spring 2020 assessments under the Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program (TCAP), which includes TNReady, end-of-course, English learner, and TCAP-Alt assessments. Additionally, the legislation waives the assignment of priority schools based on 2019-20 assessments, unless the data results in a higher grade for the school or district.
The legislation also addresses the revision of high school graduation requirements for the 2019-2020 school year to ensure that no high school seniors who were on track to graduate will be affected by the school closures. The Tennessee Department of Education’s official statement regarding this legislation can be read here<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/keizfm>, as well as the information on full legislation here<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/06izfm>.
Advanced Placement (AP) and International Baccalaureate (IB) have each put out statements around the impact on COVID-19 on their individual course assessments. You will find announcements from College Board about AP exams here<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/gzjzfm>, and announcements from IB can be found here<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/wrkzfm>.
All junior students scheduled to take the ACT at their schools this spring will be provided alternative opportunities to test by the Tennessee State Department of Education (TDOE). The TDOE is in active conversation with ACT to determine appropriate next steps.
Resources for Exceptional Education, ELL, and Whole Child Supports
The district has organized additional resources on our website to support our learners with the highest needs, including exceptional education students<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/cklzfm> and English Language Learners<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/scmzfm>. You will also find whole child supports<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/84mzfm>.
Hotlines for Families
HCS Continued Learning Resources for Families
During the school closure, students are expected to engage in HCS Continued Learning through printed learning packets or a digital learning platform designated by their teacher. Please visit our website for more information.
HCS Continued Learning<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/oxnzfm>
Community partners and volunteers in Hamilton County are offering services for families in need during the school closure. We’ve created a resource page on our website to house all of the resources available to Hamilton County Schools families.
HCS Family Resources<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/4pozfm>
Preventative Measure Reminders from the CDC
Please remind students that even though they aren’t at school, they still need to be practicing preventative measures recommended by the CDC:
* Avoid close contact with people who are sick. This means maintain a distance of at least six (6) feet.
* Do not gather in groups of 10 or more.
* Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
* Stay home when you or your child are sick. A fever must be absent for 24-hours with no fever-reducing medication before returning to school.
* Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. If you don’t have a tissue, use your elbow and not your hands to cover the sneeze or cough.
* Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
Frequently Asked Questions
This closure is an unprecedented situation for our schools, and we know there are a lot of questions about how this will affect families, staff, and the remainder of the school year.
COVID-19 Closure FAQ<https://t.e2ma.net/click/ohfm3c/41ltyx/kipzfm>
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