• June 9, 2021

     

    Since March 2020, Pinellas County Schools has successfully followed the health and wellness recommendations of our Medical Advisory Group and the Pinellas County Department of Health. The district has modified protocols as conditions and information changed and will continue to seek and follow sound medical advice. 

    Pinellas County Schools is committed to providing high-quality instruction and enrichment opportunities for all students, while also maintaining wellness protocols for students and staff. The district anticipates that as the community continues to return to pre-pandemic conditions, that the processes below will also guide the school district’s return to pre-pandemic operations. Any updates will be communicated to all stakeholders.

     

    Accelerating Learning through Student and Family Engagement

    Instruction

    • All summer bridge and enrichment programming will be delivered via in-person instruction for all students.
    • Simultaneous teaching, which served a valuable purpose in the 2020-21 school year, will not be utilized during the summer or 2021-22 school year.
    • Academic growth will be accelerated for every student through in-person instruction, high-quality teaching practices, programs and targeted enrichment and intervention opportunities matched to student needs.
    • All students will be engaged in rigorous, collaborative and inclusive educational practices which include whole class, small group and individual instruction across all grade levels and content courses.
    • The Florida Department of Education has indicated that funding will not continue in the 2021-22 school year for innovative, online programming such as MyPCS Online. Pinellas County Schools offers a robust full- and part-time Pinellas Virtual School (PVS). To learn more about PVS or to schedule a meeting to discuss the supports available, go to www.pcsb.org/virtual

    Technology

    • Schools and teachers will leverage the PCS Connects Initiative, Level Up activities and digital platforms to extend learning both within classrooms and beyond the school day. One-to-one student devices will expand to include students in grades 3 to 10.
    • The district, schools and teachers will continue the use of digital learning applications and platforms within classrooms including, but not limited to, the use of: Canvas, Nearpod, IXL, iStation, etc.

    Extracurricular Activities

    • Summer extra-curricular, performing arts and athletic activities will resume to support student engagement and will follow district and/or organization (e.g. Florida High School Athletic Association- FHSAA) guidelines, review, permission and wellness protocols.
    • Summer activities and/or field trips will resume and follow the district review, permission and wellness protocols. Any field trip to a non-district location must follow the wellness practices of both the district and the field trip location.

    Family Engagement and Campus Visitors/Volunteer

    • In-person family engagement meetings will resume and, whenever possible, virtual options will also be made available to meet the needs of all stakeholders.
    • Opportunities for on-campus visitors and volunteers will return to pre-pandemic participation. All visitors and volunteers must follow district wellness practices and approval processes (e.g. check-in procedures, Level II clearance, etc.).
    • Schools will review their drop-off and pick-up protocols and communicate any changes directly to families. 

     

    Wellness Protocols

     

    • Face coverings will continue to be recommended (not mandatory) when indoors for both staff and students.
    • School district personnel will not monitor nor enforce the use of face coverings for staff or students; however, face coverings will continue to be made available at school sites for students and staff.
    • All district buildings will continue enhanced cleaning and sanitizing protocols. Cleaning supplies will continue to be provided to each site by the district office.
    • Social distancing practices, to the extent possible, will continue while also ensuring collaboration in classrooms and throughout all district buildings. Schools and district offices will use 3-6 feet as a guide for social distancing.
    • While plexiglass barriers were once regarded as a strong mitigation layer, it is no longer viewed by the medical community as a priority strategy. The use of plexiglass has a negative impact on a collaborative learning environment but may be used sparingly.
    • Water fountains in all district buildings will remain closed.
    • Seating charts for classrooms, lunchrooms and busses will not be required during the summer but may be requested if there is a positive case at a school site to support contact tracing under the direction of the Department of Health-Pinellas.
    • School nurses will be assigned to a cluster of schools during the summer for student support. Any site with a student who has a documented need for nursing services will have a nurse specifically assigned to be at that site for the identified times needed.
    • School sites will maintain a separate space for individuals exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19.
    • The district will maintain the COVID team to ensure staff and summer site-based inquiries are addressed in a timely manner. Processes for submitting positive cases to the COVID team will remain the same as the 2020-21 school year.
    • In alignment with state reporting practices, the district dashboard of confirmed COVID-19 cases will be updated on a weekly basis.  https://www.pcsb.org/COVID19Cases

     

    Staff Specific Updates

    • In-person staff meetings, professional development and trainings will resume.  District and schools may still leverage virtual opportunities, if it best meets the needs, goals and outcomes of the opportunity.
    • The use of meeting spaces, including those not fully utilized during the 2020-21 school year, will reopen to facilitate collaborative meetings, trainings and development opportunities. Staff members who used these locations as workspaces will work with their supervisor, as appropriate.
    • Adjustments made to summer protocols for meal distribution, room or space capacities and/or building flow will be reviewed by administration. Any changes at a building will be communicated by the building administrator.
    • Staff will no longer need to do the daily attestation of wellness. Employees who are not well, exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 or have a pending COVID-19 test due to symptoms should not enter a district building and should contact the district COVID team and/or their medical providers for guidance. 
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