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Ferndale School District Communication Updates and Information Resources

Governor Jay Inslee mandated that all K-12 schools in Washington State close for traditional, in-person learning due to COVID-19 in March 2020. This web page provides communication updates and resources for families during the pandemic.

Friday, April 2, 2021

Ferndale School District Information Update

A letter families from Superintendent Dr. Linda Quinn sent Friday, April 2, 2021 with an information update.

Find previous communication update letters archived below the latest featured update.


Dear Ferndale Families,

I am writing to let you know where we are with plans to expand in-person learning in Ferndale.

We have decided to return to five days per week of in-person instruction for all students who are currently in our hybrid model on Thursday, April 29. To give staff time to prepare their spaces for this transition, the first three days of that week (April 26, 27, and 28) will be asynchronous (remote) learning days for all students.

Ever since Governor Inslee announced new health guidelines for Washington schools on March 25, we have been processing what the guidelines mean for Ferndale. They are not as simple as putting twice as many students in our schools. The new three-foot rule only applies to the space between students in classrooms. We still need to provide six feet of space in all common areas and any place where people have their masks off, like hallways and lunchrooms. We still need to follow all of the other mitigation strategies, like checking daily attestations and contact tracing. Fulfilling these requirements with twice as many students takes significant planning, physical rearrangement of spaces, and hiring additional staff.

We have a great deal of work to do to get ready for this next transition, including figuring out what kinds of changes we need to implement for our remote learners to ensure they and their teachers are being treated equitably. Here are some of the steps we have planned:

  • We are hosting a meeting this afternoon of district leaders, building leaders, union leaders, and volunteers to engage in collaborative problem solving about expansion of in-person learning and any concurrent changes in remote learning.
  • We are making plans for maintenance and custodial personnel to move furniture into schools and classrooms over Spring Break, so we can see what additional items we will need to get. (Even at three feet, the space requirements mean we can’t use all of the tables we had been using prior to the pandemic.)
  • We are working on hiring additional staff for supervision, classroom assistance, and/or other support.
  • We are figuring out how to restructure routines and protocols for recess, passing periods, and lunch times in a way that meets the guidelines with twice as many students.
  • We are reviewing school schedules to determine where they may need to be revised. 
  • We are continuing to partner with our bargaining groups to ensure we have appropriately addressed staff needs and concerns.

Based on my most recent meeting with the Whatcom County Health Department and other Whatcom County Superintendents, I am confident the plans we are making for moving forward will comply with WCHD recommendations. We will continue to work in close partnership with WCHD to ensure we are effectively mitigating risks to keep our students, staff, and community safe, while addressing the academic, social, and emotional needs of our students. 

We still have lots of details to work out. You can expect to hear more specifics from us during the weeks following Spring Break, but I wanted to give you this general information today so you could plan accordingly.

Thank you for your ongoing support and patience during this year of challenges and changes. On behalf of the whole district staff, I want to express our gratitude for all you have done to partner with us. We are proud of our safety record to date. I assure you we are planning carefully so that we can continue to maintain a safe environment for students and staff.

Best wishes for a wonderful Spring Break.

Linda


Archived Letters from Superintendent Dr. Linda Quinn:

Week of August 10 - August 14

Week of August 3 - August 7

Week of July 27 - July 31

Week of July 13 - July 17

Week of June 29 - July 3

Week of June 15 - June 19

Week of June 8 - June 12

Week of June 1 - June 5

Week of May 18 - May 22

Week of May 10 - May 16

Week of May 3 - May 9

Week of April 26 - May 2

Week of April 19 - April 25

Week of April 12 - April 18

Week of April 5 - April 11

Week of March 29 - April 4

Week of March 22 - March 28

Week of March 15 - March 21

Week of March 8 - March 14

Week of March 1 - March 7

Week of February 23 - February 29

Quick Links Resources

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Student and staff safety is our top priority. If you have a question, concern or comment about any health or safety issue, please let us know.

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Additional resources

Provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Preventions:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

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