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FHS Transition to Full-Time In-Person School 5 Days Per Week

FHS Transition to Full-Time In-Person School 5 Days Per Week

Start Date:  Monday, May 3, 2021

Dear FHS Clippers and Families - As you know, like many other high schools across Massachusetts, we have been actively preparing over the past few weeks for a return to full-time in-person school 5 days a week, and I am pleased to announce that we are planning on inviting students back starting on Monday 5/3.  

We currently have 799 students enrolled at FHS, and at this time, approximately 70% have elected to attend school on a 100% full-time in-person basis 5 days per week, with 30% choosing the 100% remote option 5 days per week.

Note that Tuesday 5/4 is a Half Day for students, so we will be following our regular Half Day Schedule which can be found here:  FHS New Half Day Bell Schedule 9.7.20.pdf.

Cohort Assignments

During the week of 4/26, students and families will see that student Cohort assignments in PowerSchool will change to indicate that students are assigned to either the Every Day Cohort or the Remote Cohort depending on which option each family has selected for their child (i.e., 100% full-time in-person v. 100% remote).  

Students in the Every Day Cohort will attend school in-person 5 days per week, while students in the Remote Cohort will attend school remotely 5 days per week.

Spring 2021 Bell Schedule

Please note that we are maintaining the same Bell Schedule that we have had in place all year, and all students will follow their schedules exactly as they have been and as they appear in PowerSchool.  

No Remote Wednesdays - The one update to our Bell Schedule is that Wednesdays will no longer be Remote Wednesdays, and instead, will be in-person school days for students who have elected the 100% full-time in-person option.  On Wednesdays, students will be dismissed at 12:00 pm with a grab and go lunch.  There will be no lunch waves at FHS on Wednesdays.  

Just as they did on Remote Wednesdays, students will attend all 7 of their class periods on Wednesdays which means we will have several staggered transition times between periods during the day on Wednesdays for students who are in-person.

In-person students who need to remain home for quarantine and/or other legitimate reasons will be able to log into their classes from home on those days.  It is extremely important to keep in mind that students who will be in the Every Day Cohort should indeed be attending school in-person unless they have a legitimate reason for attending school remotely.  It is not acceptable for in-person students to decide on a day to day basis that they would prefer to stay home and attend school remotely.

Here is our Updated Spring 2021 Bell Schedule: FHS Spring 2021 Bell Schedule.pdf

Classroom Seating

In order to accommodate the increase in the number of students who will be attending school in-person on a daily basis, we have been moving additional desks into classrooms where students will be seated 3 feet apart from each other.  If we find that we have more students than desks in a particular classroom, we will either switch that classroom to a larger classroom that can accommodate more desks, or we will place students in an overflow location within the school where they will be able to virtually log into their teacher’s class.

Lunch Wave Seating

Students will remain 6 feet apart during lunch waves.  

In order to accommodate the increase in the number of students who will be attending school in-person on a daily basis, we have had to create an additional lunch space in our Small Gym.  We anticipate assigning freshmen students to eat lunch in the Small Gym.

QR Code Pilot - Starting on Monday 4/12, we began piloting a QR Code system for lunch wave cafeteria seating.  Students are currently still required to sit in their previously assigned seats, but we are asking them to use the QR Code on their assigned seats as we want to determine whether a QR Code system will work for seating and contact tracing purposes.  

If the QR Code Pilot is successful, we are considering allowing students to select their own seats during lunch so long as they use the QR Code, as it is necessary for us to know where students are seated during lunch for contact tracing purposes.  

Updated FHS COVID-19 Guidebook

We also are preparing an Updated FHS COVID-19 Guidebook, similar to this one which we published back in September of 2020:  FHS COVID-19 Guidebook (Updated 9.11.20).pdf.  Once the Updated Guidebook is completed, I will share it with students and their families.

Arrival & Dismissal

Parents/Guardians - Arrival and dismissal routines will remain the same at FHS, but we ask for your patience and understanding as we are anticipating an increase in the number of students who will be dropped off and/or picked up by parents/guardians.  Parents/guardians who are driving their children to school should enter the Student Parking Lot near the FHS Tennis Courts where staff will direct you to the back of FHS where you will drop off/pick up your child.

Student Drivers - If you have been a student in the Remote Cohort who has elected to now be in the Every Day Cohort and will be driving to school, please visit Ms. McKenzie in the Student Activities Office for a Student Parking Sticker.  There is no fee for Student Parking Stickers.

While the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) has not yet issued its guidance regarding high school students returning to full-time in-person school 5 days a week, once DESE does issue its guidance, which is expected some time this month, we will make any necessary adjustments and communicate changes immediately.

Additional information will be provided during the week of 4/26.  

In the meantime, if you have any questions whatsoever, please do not hesitate to contact me by email at mgans@falmouth.k12.ma.us or by phone at 508-540-2200 ext. 4050.

Sincerely,
Mrs. Gans