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Board Notes

April 2022

 

This is a new feature of our Newsletter.  The week after each board meeting, Mr. Rouse will provide a short informal summary of the actions taken at the board meeting.  These are not the formal board minutes.  Those are prepared by the clerk and approved by the board at their next meeting.

 

After the approval of the consent agenda that included routine business matters of the school district, we moved to the report from the 8th graders regarding their monthly report on their upcoming culminating activity—trip to Florida. Teacher reports were given by Ashley Olsen and Jessica Van Kerkhove. Both reports mentioned various aspects of our literacy grant and the impact that the professional development through the grant has impacted their teaching. 

 

Mr. Rouse presented his principal’s report which highlighted our recent Parent-Teacher conferences and the teachers’ use of data during these conferences. He also pointed out that Dr. Esmont, our literacy consultant, will be returning to spend another full week in our school next week.

 

Mr. Rouse also discussed our new Summer Support Program that will be taking place this summer.  The program is designed to serve a few students who are still struggling to meet their benchmarks in reading and/or math in grades k-2. This program is funded through Federal Covid relief dollars (ESSER III).

 

Heather Marcella presented her clerk’s report in which she stated that our auditor has begun the audit process.  Each year, the school district is required to have an independent financial audit conducted.

 

There was no Old Business to be considered.  Under New Business, the approval of Kathy Wilson as a substitute teacher was pulled from the agenda because we are still waiting for her required criminal history check. Scott Taillefer was approved to serve as our Artist-in-Residence during Natalie Howard’s upcoming absence. The board approved Amy Baier as a new teacher for the 2022-23 school year.  Ms. Baier will be assigned to teach the third graders next year because we are splitting the grade2/3 combo class into two separate classes.

 

The board approved the certified teachers’ contracts for the 2022-23 school year. They also approved their intent to hire Heather Marcella as our District Clerk for the 2022-23 school year.  They approved the employee health insurance plan for 2022-23.

 

The board approved adding three computers to our “surplus” items list, so they can be disposed of properly. The items included:

  • 2015 MacBook Pro
  • Dell Vostro Laptop
  • Dell Inspiron Laptop.

 

The school calendar for 2022-23 was approved.

 

The board reviewed, revised, and approved on first reading a number of policies.

 

The next meeting will be May 9th at 7:00 pm.


 

Potomac School District #11

Stakeholder’s Meeting

(In Person or Virtual via WeBex)

 

ESSER III Funds

and

Participation in Federal Programs by Non-Public schools

 

April 18, 2022

 

6:00 – 6:45 PM

 

Purpose of the Meeting – We are required by the federal government to host stakeholder meetings periodically to discuss how thew school district is proposing to use its federal funds. As a requirement for receiving ESSER Covid-relief Funding, we are also required to review our ESSER Plan and our Return-to-School Plan.  Public input is critical in this process. Also during this meeting, the administration will go over all of the federally-funded programs offered in the school district, including Title I, Title II, and Title IV. Included in the discussion will be information for non-public schools (home schools) regarding participation in federal programs.

 

When – April 18, 2022 at 6:00 PM in Room 112 at Potomac School as well via WeBex connection

WeBex connection.

Join from the meeting link

https://potomacschooldistrict11.my.webex.com/potomacschooldistrict11.my/j.php?MTID=m053d8b23bab655a5afefaee2824fbd8c

Join by meeting number

Meeting number (access code): 2557 421 1737

Meeting password: Yad8JdBx3s3 (92385329 from phones and video systems)

 

 

 

AGENDA

 

REQUIRED TOPICS

  1. Review ESSER Plan
    1. Place-based learning program
    2. Summer Support Program
    3. Mediation Proposal for Maintaining Acceptable Levels of Arsenic and Lead in the Water Supply
  2. Review Return-to-School Plan
  3. Discuss MCLSDP Literacy Grant Fund Allocations
  4. Participation in Federal Programs by non-public school (home schools)
  5. Discuss Federal Entitlement Fund Allocations

 

ADDITIONAL TOPICS (If time allows)

  1. What are “permissive” levies?
  2. Other types of levies


Board Notes

March 2022

 

This is a new feature of our Newsletter.  The week after each board meeting, Mr. Rouse will provide a short informal summary of the actions taken at the board meeting.  These are not the formal board minutes.  Those are prepared by the clerk and approved by the board at their next meeting.

 

After the approval of the consent agenda that included routine business matters of the school district, we moved to the teacher reports since no 8th graders were present to give the monthly 8th Grade Class Report. Teacher reports were given by Jodi Hausmann and Bryanna Peterson. Both reports mentioned various aspects of our literacy grant related to writing.  Ms. Hausmann also shared her experience of attending the Plain Talk conference.

 

Mr. Rouse presented his principal’s report which highlighted our District and School Report Cards for 2020-21 which were just released by OPI. The data from these school and district report cards show that the Potomac students are scoring better in both English Language Arts and mathematics than students across the state. For example, in mathematics, 85% of the Potomac students tested scored nearing proficient, proficient, or advanced compared to 66% across the state. In ELA, 89% of the Potomac students tested scored nearing proficient, proficient, or advanced compared to 71% across the state. Mr. Rouse had displayed samples of student writing from prekindergarten through 8th grade.  This display of student work allowed board members to see first-hand the progression of our students’ writing. Mr. Rouse’s written report also included details regarding our new Summer Support Program for identified students who need additional academic support on the in summer.  This program is specifically for selected students in grades K-2. The program will include six one-hour small group sessions in June and six more in August.  Information and registration information will be sent to the parents of identified students after spring break. Mr. Rouse also

 

Mr. Rouse also presented data supporting his request for an additional teaching position for the 2022-23 school year, so we would not have to continue having two combined grade level classes. The additional staff will allow us to split the current grade 2/3 combined class into two separate classes for 2022-23.

 

Mr. Rouse presented a proposal to help address the problem that the water system at the community center has regarding the arsenic levels in the drinking water at the community center.

 

Heather Marcella presented her clerk’s report in which she provided a review of our current general fund.  She also went over the FY 2022-23 preliminary general fund budget.

 

There was no Old Business to be considered.  Under New Business the board received Kristina Davis’ resignation letter and expressed their appreciation to her for her service to Potomac School students. The board approved a motion to add a new teaching position for 20022-23.  The board also approved a motion to approved the reallocation of ESSER III funds set aside to replace the carpet in the main building to addressing the concern about the community center’s water supply’s arsenic levels. The board also approved the preliminary 2022-23 budget. The board briefly discussed a preliminary school calendar for the 2022-23 school year. Finally, the Board discussed some possible uses of adult education funds.


Board Notes

February 2022


 

This is a new feature. After each board meeting, Mr. Rouse will provide a short informal summary of the actions taken at the board meeting.  These are not the formal board minutes.  Those are prepared by the clerk and approved by the board at their next meeting.

 

After the approval of the consent agenda that included routine business matters of the school district, 8th graders, Oscar Leathers and Gabe Knapp, gave the monthly 8th Grade Class Report stating that fund-raising is nearly complete for their end-of-the-year culminating experience.  They just need to raise around $150 to reach their goal. They also stated that the eighth-grade class would like any additional funds that they raise and do not need to go towards next year’s eighth graders.  Teacher reports were given by Sarah Schmill and Terri Klein. Both reports mentioned various positive impacts that our literacy grants have had on our student achievement and professional development.  Mrs. Klein also discussed how she teaches her first graders about money and how they use their “banks” to learn how to count money and to create number sentences.

 

Mr. Rouse presented his principal’s report which highlighted the impact that Covid-19 has had on staffing at Potomac School. Mr. Rouse also stated that he held a second Stakeholder’s Meeting that was open to anyone who has an interest in our school district.  The purpose of the meeting was to discuss how we intend to use federal grant dollars, including the ESSER funds related to Covid.  That meeting was held virtually on February 14th at 6:00 pm just before the board meeting.

 

Mr. Rouse also recognized those staff members who make up the school’s Intervention Team.  As interventionists, these individuals help provide extra instructional support to our students. The current Intervention Team members are: Gail Abbott, Kayla Brewer, Sarah Duello, Teresa Patterson, Nikki Scheer, Jessica VanKerkhove (Teacher and Interventionist), and Jen Vogel (Teacher and Interventionist).

 

Mr. Rouse reported that Potomac School is now part of a five-year literacy grant with McREL, a regional educational research center. Through this grant, Potomac School will receive additional professional development support and other resources.

 

Heather Marcella presented her clerk’s report in which she explained the estimated changes to our permissive levies for next school year. This included projected increases to our Tuition levy and our Transportation levy. The increases are due to an increased need for personnel to support some special needs students and increased costs of operations for our school bus transportation needs.

 

There was no Old Business to be considered.  Under New Business the board approved the employment of Madison Chiotti as a new teacher for the 2022-23 school year to fill the position vacancy that resulted from Ms. Klein retirement. In other action, the board approved changes to the ARP ESSER Plan and the Return-to-School Plan.  They approve the proposal submitted by Rebecca Vann to redo our school’s web site. They also approve contracts for Majestic Bus Company, Shadow Asphalt, and Handley Transportation. A lease was also approved for the use of the community center facilities for 2022-23. Mr. Rouse’s contract as principal for 2022-23 was approved. An election was called to fill two board member positions.



Potomac School Board Makes Revisions to the ARP ESSER Plan

As a requirement of the ARP ESSER grant, we are required to periodically review our ESSER Plan.  Following our second stakeholder's meeting of the 2021-22 school year during which the ARP ESSER Plan was reviewed, the school board at their February 14, 2022 meeting accepted the recommendations for some minor changes to our ARP ESSER Plan.  Those changes included the reallocation of grant funds to cover the expenses for funding a part-time school nurse position, and the addition of an additional paraprofessional position to assist with a special needs student who requires one-on-one support while attending our Place-based Learning  (PBL) program on designated Fridays.


 

 

 

 

 

 

Montana Office of Public Instruction State Superintendent Elsie Arntzen round logo with an outline of the state of Montana and an A+

 

Potomac Elem, LE0589

 

Initial Plan Submission ARP ESSER Funding

2021

(Revised 02/14/2022)

 

 


 

Table of Contents

 

Table of Contents

Introduction: Plan Basics

Section 1 - School District Identified Priorities

Priority 1

Priority 2

Priority 3

Data Points Used to Identify Priorities

Student Groups Most Affected

Section 2 - Meaningful Consultation

Stakeholders Consulted in Development of Plan

Methods used to seek stakeholder input

Section 3: Goals

Instruments

Goals

Student Group Goals

Section 4: Coordinating Funds

Section 5: Creating a Safe and Healthy Learning Environment

Section 6: Addressing Lost Instructional Time

20% Set Aside

80% Set Aside

Section 7: Supporting the Educator Workforce

Section 8: District Monitoring of Impact

 


 

Introduction: Plan Basics

 

State Date

8/27/2021 18:26

End Date

8/27/2021 19:38

Recorded Date

8/30/2021 11:35

Response ID

R_ugjyr85fh4SKlsB

County

Missoula

District

Potomac Elem, LE0589

Submitter Name

John Rouse

Submitter Role

Other (Please identify your role in the box below.)

Potomac School District #11

Submitter Official Email

jrouse@potomacschoolmontana.us

Submitter Phone

 

Initial or Revised Plan

Initial Plan Submission

 


 

Section 1 - School District Identified Priorities

Priority 1

GPRA Goal #1: Increase the percentage of children aged 3 to 5 who make significant gains on the DIAL. Expand our current preschool program to include services for three-year students living in the Potomac School District.

Priority 2

GPRA Goal #2: Increase the level of proficiency on the Smarter Balanced Assessment for 5th and 8th grade students. Improve vocabulary acquisition for all 5th and 8th grade students as measured by MAP.

Priority 3

Improve informational text skills for all 5th and 8th grade students as measured by MAP. 80% of Potomac’s Free and Reduced students will score average or above as measured by MAP. 80% of Potomac’s Title I students will score average or above as measured by MAP. Includes providing support for special needs students requiring additional one-on-one attention while attending the Place-based Learning program. Providing access to services of a part-time school nurse to serve the needs of students impacted by Covid or other health-related issues.

Data Points Used to Identify Priorities

MAP Assessments, SBAC data, ISIP data, and DIAL data.

Student Groups Most Affected

Student groups specifically referenced in ARP ESSER were more affected than others in this district.

Student Group

More affected than others in this district

Economically Disadvantaged (Free and Reduced Lunch)

Yes

White

 

Black or African American

 

American Indian or Alaska Native

Yes

Multi-Racial

 

Migrant

 

Homeless

 

Foster Youth

 

Children with Disabilities

Yes

Male

 

Female

 

English Language Learners

 

Other (please identify in the box below)

Yes

Title I Students

 

 


 

Section 2 - Meaningful Consultation

Stakeholders Consulted in Development of Plan

Stakeholder Group

Consulted?

Parents

Yes

Students

 

Teachers

Yes

Staff

Yes

Tribal Governments

 

Local Bargaining Units

Yes

Educational Advocacy Organizations

 

County Health Departments

 

Community Members

Yes

Other (please identify in the box below)

 

 

 

Methods used to seek stakeholder input

Methods

Used?

Webinars

 

Public Meetings

Yes

Website

Yes

Media

 

Social Media

Yes

Email

Yes

Other (please identify in the box below)

Yes

School Leadership Team Meetings

Virtual stakeholder sessions.

 

Section 3: Goals

Instruments

Instruments or methods that will be used to monitor the progress of the goals and determine if the goals are met are listed here for each goal.

Math Goal

: Improve math literacy skills, such that reading comprehension does not impede the solving of mathematical problems.

 Currently, 50% of Special Education students score average or above in Operations and Algebraic Thinking as measured by MAP.

 -By of the grant, 60% of Potomac’s Special Education students will score average or above as measured by MAP. 33% of American Indian students score average or above in Geometry as measured by MAP.

 -By the end of the grant, 55% of Potomac’s American Indian students will score average or above as measured by MAP.

ELA Goal

Improve vocabulary acquisition for all 5th and 8th grade students as measured by MAP.

 â— 25% of Special Education students score average or above in Vocabulary Acquisition and Use as measured by MAP.

 -By the end of the grant, 40% of Potomac’s Special Education students will score average or above as measured by MAP.

 

 â— 50% of Title I students score average or above in Vocabulary Acquisition and Use as measured by MAP.

 -By the end of the grant, 60% of Potomac’s Title I students will score average or above as measured by MAP.

 

 Improve literary text skills for all 5th and 8th grade students as measured by MAP.

 

 â— 25% of Special Education students score average or above in literary text and details or literary text, craft, and structure as measured by MAP.

 -By the end of the grant, 40% of Potomac’s Special Education students will score average or above as measured by MAP.

Other Goal

Increase family engagement through Family Literacy Nights such as Poetry and Pie Night. Expand access to participation in Stakeholder’s meetings via online (WeBex) sessions.

 

Goals

For each goal find the following below:

      Identify what strategies/action steps will be used to support the achievement of the goals.

       Describe a realistic and achievable timeline to achieve the goals.

      Identify who is responsible to ensure the strategies/action steps are achieved. Click the box and provide the text response for each applicable box.

Math Goal

-Develop and implement a vertically aligned math curriculum that is linked to the Montana Common Core Standards and deeply aligned with the Smarter Balanced assessment as well as the other key formative assessments used by Potomac School teachers.

  By the end of Year 2, Potomac School District teachers will select a new math textbook series to support our math program.

 -Research appropriate intervention programs and strategies that will address the needs of our identified disadvantaged student groups.

  By the end of Year 2, appropriate, effective research-based intervention program(s) will be selected by the teaching staff working collaboratively as a SLT with the principal.

  Two outside consultants will work directly with our teachers on specific math strategies to address the areas of weakness identified through data analysis. This will initially take place during a two-day workshop conducted by these consultants in September of 2021 as a follow up to the conference they provided in February of 2021.Our in-house instructional coach, the principal, and the outside consultant will conduct classroom walkthroughs to gather data as a means of accountability for the implementation of effective explicit vocabulary strategies. Teachers will also participate in walkthroughs and video self-reflections.

ELA Goal

-Provide explicit instruction PD on vocabulary

  By the end of the first quarter, teachers will report out at the SLT meeting the strategies they are using to address explicit vocabulary instruction.

  Our instructional consultant will work directly with each of our teachers and our instructional coach on implementing effective research-based explicit vocabulary strategies. The instructional coach will be onsite multiple times during thew school year for at least 21 days during the 2021-22 school year. Our in-house instructional coach, the principal, and the outside consultant will conduct classroom walkthroughs to gather data as a means of accountability for the implementation of effective explicit vocabulary strategies. Teachers will also participate in walkthroughs and video self-reflections.

Other Goal

Professional Development Goal- The instructional staff will consider the recommendations and findings of our recent curriculum management audit that calls for us to do the following:

 -Revise our district policies regarding teaching and learning,

 - Develop and implement course and unit organizers, and

 - Increase the rigor of our lessons through strategies that will cause students to respond to questions using Levels two and three of DOK (Death of Knowledge).

 

Student Group Goals

For which of the following student groups does the district have a distinct Math Goal, ELA Goal, or Other Goal?

Student Group

Distinct Math Goal

Distinct ELA Goal

Distinct Other Goal

American Indian or Alaska Native

Yes

Yes

 

Black or African American

 

 

 

Hispanic

 

 

 

Multi-Racial

 

 

 

White

 

 

 

Free and Reduced Lunch

Yes

Yes

 

Homeless

 

 

 

Students with Disabilities

Yes

Yes

 

None

 

 

Yes

 

 

Math Goal for Each Identified Student Group

Improve math literacy skills, such that reading comprehension does not impede the solving of mathematical problems.

 50% of Special Education students score average or above in Operations and Algebraic Thinking as measured by MAP.

 -By the end of the grant, 60% of Potomac’s Special Education students will score average or above as measured by MAP.

 

 33% of American Indian students score average or above in Geometry as measured by MAP.

 -By the end of the grant, 55% of Potomac’s American Indian students will score average or above as measured by MAP.

 

 Note: We just have two identified American Indian Students, and they are also in either the Title I or Free/Reduced Lunch group of students.

 

ELA Goal for Each Identified Student Group

: Improve vocabulary acquisition for all 5th and 8th grade students as measured by MAP.

 â— Subgoal: Currently, 25% of Special Education students score average or above in Vocabulary Acquisition and Use as measured by MAP.

 -By the end of the grant, 40% of Potomac’s Special Education students will score average or above as measured by MAP.

 

 â— Subgoal: Currently, 50% of Title I students score average or above in Vocabulary Acquisition and Use as measured by MAP.

 -By the end of the grant, 60% of Potomac’s Title I students will score average or above as measured by MAP.

 25% of Special Education students score average or above in literary text and details or literary text, craft, and structure as measured by MAP.

 -By the end of the grant, 40% of Potomac’s Special Education students will score average or above as measured by MAP.

 60% of Free and Reduced students score average or above in Informational Text: Key Ideas and Details or Informational Text: Language, Craft, and Structure as measured by MAP.

 -By the end of the grant, 80% of Potomac’s Free and Reduced students will score average or above as measured by MAP.

 

 

 Note: We just have two identified American Indian Students, and they are also in either the Title I or Free/Reduced Lunch group of students.

 

Other Goal for Each Identified Student Group

Our other goal was a professional development goal that addresses all students and subgroups of students.

 

If the District is planning to develop or use approaches that are novel to achieve your Math, ELA, or other goal, and they are willing to share these innovations, the innovation is described here.

We have maintained a focus on "authentic literacy" for the past four years. We meet as a School Leadership Team at least monthly for a full day to review our most current data related to our goals, and we use that data to inform our decisions regarding our instructional design and delivery to be certain that our written, taught, and tested curriculum are all aligned with the needs of our students.

 


 

Section 4: Coordinating Funds

 

Will this district coordinate ARP ESSER funds with other federal funds to address student needs?

Yes

 

 

Funding Source

Plan to Coordinate with ARP-ESSER Funds

Title I, Part A of the ESEA (Improving Basic Programs Operated by LEAs)

Yes

Title I, Part A-section 1003 school improvement (Comprehensive and Targeted Supports)

 

Title I, Part C of the ESEA (Education of Migratory Children)

 

Title I, Part D, Subpart 1 of the ESEA (Prevention and Intervention Programs for Children and Youth Who Are Neglected, Delinquent, or At Risk)

 

Title II, Part A of the ESEA (Supporting Effective Instruction)

 

Title III, Part A of the ESEA (English Language Acquisition, Language Enhancement, and Academic Achievement)

 

Title IV, Part A of the ESEA (Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants)

 

Title IV, Part B of the ESEA (21st Century Community Learning Centers)

 

Title V, Part B, Subpart 2 of the ESEA (Rural and Low-Income School Program)

 

McKinney-Vento Education for Homeless Children and Youth Program and section 2001(b)(1) of the ARP Act

 

Carl D. Perkins Act Career and Technical Education Act

 

IDEA, Part B (Excess costs of providing FAPE)

 

IDEA, Part B (Coordinated Early Intervening Services)

 

Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act

 

 

 


 

Section 5: Creating a Safe and Healthy Learning Environment

This section addresses the Prevention and/or Mitigation Strategies that the district will fund with ARP ESSER funds..

Evidence Based Practice

Planning to Use

Mental health supports

 

Social emotional learning

 

Academic support

Yes

Extended learning/enrichment

 

Hiring new staff and avoiding layoffs

 

Meeting the nutritional needs of underserved students.

 

Locating absent students and re-engaging disconnected youth

 

Providing safe, healthy, inclusive learning environments.

Yes

Activities to address the unique needs of at-risk populations.

Yes

Developing and implementing procedures and systems to improve the preparedness and response efforts

 

Training and professional development for staff of the local educational agency on sanitation and minimizing the spread of infectious diseases

 

Purchasing supplies to sanitize and clean the facilities

Yes

Planning for, coordinating, and implementing activities during long-term closures, including providing meals to eligible students, providing technology for online learning to all students, providing guidance for carrying out requirements under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and ensuring other educational services can continue to be provided consistent with all Federal, State, and local requirements.

 

Purchasing educational technology (including hardware, software, and connectivity) that aids in regular and substantive educational interaction between students and their classroom instructors including low-income students and children with disabilities, which may include assistive technology or adaptive equipment.

 

School facility repairs and improvements to enable operation of schools to reduce risk of virus transmission and exposure to environmental health hazards, and to support student health needs.

 

Inspection, testing, maintenance, repair, replacement, and upgrade projects to improve the indoor air quality in school facilities, including mechanical and nonmechanical heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems, filtering, purification and other air cleaning, fans, control systems, and window and door repair and replacement

Yes

Other (please identify in the box below)

Yes

Professional development to improve teaching strategies for students who have learning gaps.

Provide access to school nurse’s services.

Provide paraprofessional support during PBL activities.

 

 

If the District is planning to develop or use approaches that are novel to implement prevention and mitigation strategies, and they are willing to share these innovations, the innovation is described here.

 

 


 

Section 6: Addressing Lost Instructional Time

20% Set Aside

This section addresses the Evidence Based Practices that the district will fund with the required 20% to address lost instructional time.

Evidence Based Practice

Planning to Use

Extended learning time

 

Tribal/community engagement

 

Wraparound academic/health/social services

 

SEL learning supports

 

Evidenced-based curriculum

Yes

Accelerating learning through instructional approaches: In-school acceleration-Certified educators provide support for students within the classroom and grade-level work, using high-quality instructional materials, instructional strategies, and formative assessments.

Yes

Accelerating learning through instructional approaches: Tutoring program-High-dosage tutoring provided consistently by well-trained tutors or educators at least 3 days per week for at least 30 minutes at a time in groups of five or fewer students.

 

Accelerating learning through instructional approaches:Out-of-school time programs-Identified students, needing additional support before, and after the regular school days, as well as on weekends, and during school breaks.

 

Accelerating learning through instructional approaches: Summer learning and enrichment: Summer learning programs, camps, community partnerships, work-based learning or community service that provide high-quality instruction and are designed to meet the social and emotional needs of students through engaging and enriching experiences.

 

Access to and effective use of technology

Yes

Engaging families in digital learning training and effectively using technology and platforms

 

Administering and using high-quality assessments that are valid and reliable, to accurately assess students’ academic progress and assist educators in meeting students’ academic needs, including through differentiating instruction

Yes

Providing information and assistance to parents and families on how they can effectively support students

 

Tracking student attendance and improving student engagement provided by the school

 

Using data about students opportunity to learn indicators to help target resources and support

Yes

Professional Learning Communities

Yes

Access to advanced coursework, dual enrollment, work-place learning, and/or internships

 

Career, Technical, and Agricultural Education expenses (approved under Perkins Act)

 

Distance/Remote Learning: connectivity (hot spots, outfitting buildings/buses with Wi Fi, other wireless, internet service, etc.), devices (laptops, tablets, etc.), printing costs for learning packets, instructional resources/tools, hardware, software, subscriptions, licenses, assistive technology or adaptive equipment, online learning platforms/learning management systems, other distance/remote learning costs

 

Other (please identify in the box below)

Yes

Professional development provided by high quality instructional consultants in the areas of ELA and math.

 


 

80% Set Aside

This section addresses the Evidence Based Practices that the district will fund with the remaining 80%. Allowable uses for this funding include: preventing, preparing for, and responding to COVID-19 as required by ESSER I, II, and III. See page 5 of the ARP ESSER Fact Sheet for more information.

Evidence Based Practice

Planning to Use

Extended learning time

 

Tribal/community engagement

 

Wraparound academic/health/social services

Yes

SEL learning supports

 

Evidenced-based curriculum

Yes

Accelerating learning through instructional approaches: In-school acceleration-Certified educators provide support for students within the classroom and grade-level work, using high-quality instructional materials, instructional strategies, and formative assessments.

Yes

Accelerating learning through instructional approaches: Tutoring program -High-dosage tutoring provided consistently by well-trained tutors or educators at least 3 days per week for at least 30 minutes at a time in groups of five or fewer students.

 

Accelerating learning through instructional approaches: Out-of-school time programs-Identified students, needing additional support before, and after the regular school days, as well as on weekends, and during school breaks.

 

Accelerating learning through instructional approaches: Summer learning and enrichment: Summer learning programs, camps, community partnerships, work-based learning or community service that provide high-quality instruction and are designed to meet the social and emotional needs of students through engaging and enriching experiences.

 

Access to and effective use of technology

Yes

Engaging families in digital learning training and effectively using technology and platforms

 

Administering and using high-quality assessments that are valid and reliable, to accurately assess students’ academic progress and assist educators in meeting students’ academic needs, including through differentiating instruction

Yes

Providing information and assistance to parents and families on how they can effectively support students

 

Tracking student attendance and improving student engagement provided by the school

 

Using data about students’ opportunity to learn indicators to help target resources and support

Yes

Professional Learning Communities

Yes

Access to advanced coursework, dual enrollment, work-place learning, and/or internships

 

Career, Technical, and Agricultural Education expenses (approved under Perkins Act)

 

Distance/Remote Learning: connectivity (hot spots, outfitting buildings/buses with Wi Fi, other wireless, internet service, etc.), devices (laptops, tablets, etc.), printing costs for learning packets, instructional resources/tools, hardware, software, subscriptions, licenses, assistive technology or adaptive equipment, online learning platforms/learning management systems, other distance/remote learning costs

 

Mental health supports

 

Hiring new staff and avoiding layoffs

 

Meeting the nutritional needs of underserved students

 

Locating absent students and re-engaging disconnected youth

 

Providing safe, healthy, inclusive learning environments

Yes

Activities to address the unique needs of at-risk populations

 

Developing and implementing procedures and systems to improve the preparedness and response efforts

 

Training and professional development for staff of the local educational agency on sanitation and minimizing the spread of infectious diseases

 

Purchasing supplies to sanitize and clean the facilities

 

Planning for, coordinating, and implementing activities during long-term closures, including providing meals to eligible students, providing technology for online learning to all students, providing guidance for carrying out requirements under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and ensuring other educational services can continue to be provided consistent with all Federal, State, and local requirements.

 

Purchasing educational technology (including hardware, software, and connectivity) that aids in regular and substantive educational interaction between students and their classroom instructors including low-income students and children with disabilities, which may include assistive technology or adaptive equipment.

 

School facility repairs and improvements to enable operation of schools to reduce risk of virus transmission and exposure to environmental health hazards, and to support student health needs.

 

Inspection, testing, maintenance, repair, replacement, and upgrade projects to improve the indoor air quality in school facilities, including mechanical and nonmechanical heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems, filtering, purification and other air cleaning, fans, control systems, and window and door repair and replacement.

 

Other (please identify in the box below)

Yes

Professional development provided by high quality instructional consultants in the areas of ELA and math.

 

If the District is planning to develop or use approaches that are novel to address lost instructional time, and they are willing to share these innovations, the innovation is described here.

 

 

 



Section 7: Supporting the Educator Workforce

 

How ARP funds will be used to support and stabilize the educator workforce.

Option

Planning to Use

Cover costs of offsetting the need to furlough or reduce the salaries of school-based staff

 

Cover costs of bonuses for recruiting and retaining educators and support personnel

 

Additional pay for additional work

Yes

Class-size reduction

 

Technology to support learning: enable students to learn anywhere and teachers to teach essential standards

 

Additional professional development for school leaders, teachers, and staff (trainings, extended professional development days, programs, etc.)

Yes

Staffing additional physical and mental health support staff (counselors, social workers)

 

Other (please identify in the box below)

 

 

 

The estimated number of jobs (FTEs) that have been or will be created by the school district through the district’s planned use of ESSER III Funds.

0.25 FTE

 

The estimated number of jobs (FTEs) that have been or will be retained by the LEA through the LEA’s planned use of ESSER III Funds.

0.25 FTE

 

If the District is planning to develop or use approaches that are novel to support and stabilize the educator workforce, and they are willing to share these innovations, the innovation is described here.

We are offering a Place-based learning program on several Fridays for those students who need additional instructional support as well as any other Potomac School students.  Note: we operate a four-day week for students; therefore, Fridays are available for optional programming.

 


 

Section 8: District Monitoring of Impact

This section of the LEA plan outlines how the District will monitor the impact of the ARP ESSER funded interventions or strategies, including but not limited to the 20% set-aside, to respond effectively to the academic, social, emotional, and mental health needs of all students, and particularly those students disproportionately impacted.

 

Description of Monitoring Plan

Our instructional staff meets at least once per month for a full day as a School Leadership Team. During this time, we review the most current data on our students and consider any changes that might need to be made to our design or delivery of instruction to better address the needs of our students. The principal and our in-house instructional coach make frequent walkthroughs to monitor the delivery of instruction.

 

 

Type of Data

Planning to Use

Early Warning System

 

Interim Formative Assessment

Yes

Opportunities to Learn surveys

 

Summative assessments

Yes

Chronic absenteeism

Yes

Student engagement

Yes

Use of exclusionary discipline

 

Advanced coursework

 

Access to technology

 

Educator PD on technology

 

Access to and preparation of high-quality educators

Yes

Access to mental health and nursing staff

 

Student, parent, or educator surveys

 

Per-pupil expenditures

 

Classified and certified staff (numbers of positions or people)

 

Summer, Afterschool, and ESY enrollment

Yes*

Health protocols

 

Student enrollment by Mode of instruction

 

Student attendance by Mode of Instruction

 

Other (please identify in the box below)

*We offer a Place-based learning program on some Fridays. 

 

We also provide for a part-time school nurse.

Yes

Yes

     

Potomac School Board Makes Revisions to the Return-to-School Plan

At the February 14, 2022 school board meeting, the board members approved a change in the school district's Return-to-School Plan.  They revised the length of the online instruction period from seven calendar days to five calendar days in order to be aligned with current health department guidance.


 

 

 

 


Potomac Elementary School

29750 Potomac Road

Bonner, Montana 59823

John P. Rouse, Principal

 

 

 

 

 

 Phone  (406) 244-5581

 Fax (406) 244-5840                     www.potomacschoolmontana.us


“Potomac School equips each student for his/her future

 within a culture of excellence that values the small community experience."

 

 


Potomac School District Return-to-School Plan

2020-21

(Revised December 14, 2020)

(2nd Revision- May 13, 2021)

(3rd Revision- September 27,2021)

(Revised- February 14, 2022)

 

 

 

The Potomac School District #11 will begin the first day of instruction for the 2020-21 school year on August 26th. The Potomac School District Board of Trustees and staff members recognize that these are unusual times as a result of the COVID-19 virus. Because the health and safety of our students and staff members are of primary importance, some policies and procedures will be in place until such time as the COVID-19 emergency no longer exists. The school board approved the 1900 Series – COVID-19 Emergency Policies in June. This Return-to-School Plan is based on those policies, and the procedures and practices outlined in this plan will be followed until the school board determines that the emergency measures are no longer needed.

 

While the desire of the school board and the staff members is to provide a learning environment that is as close to “normal” for our students as is feasible, we are required to follow the directives and mandates of the governor and our county health department.  The steps outlined in this plan are subject to revision at any point should the directives from either of these two entities change. Any references in this plan to “Phases” are based on the phased reopening included in the directives from the governor. At the time of the origination of this plan, schools in Montana were in Phase Two of the governor’s reopening plan, and the steps outlined are based on remaining in that phase.  Should the governor choose to move the state forward to Phase Three or return to Phase One, the plan will be modified accordingly.

 

GOVERNOR BULLOCK’S PHASE TWO REOPENING PLAN WITH NOTED LOCAL MODIFICATIONS

 

Below are the specific requirements that impact schools under the current Phase Two of the governor’s plan. In the process of adopting the 1900 series of board policies, our school board chose to modify some portions of these policies based on the fact that our school enrollment is relatively small. This allows us more flexibility in how we address social distancing and other accommodations. An asterisk next to bullet points from the governor’s Phase Two components below indicates that our school board has exercised their local decision-making authority with regard to that specific point.

 

CLEANING AND SANITATION

• Frequent disinfecting of door handles, desks, and other common spaces.

• Require handwashing in regular intervals.

• Keep libraries, gyms, and playgrounds off limits unless they can be sanitized between groups.*

• Provide hand sanitizer.

*We will continue using these facilities with sanitization taking place daily. at intervals including before and after school.  Handwashing will be required of all students prior to lunch and after any recess periods as well as at times where students come into contact with frequently touched objects such as in the gym, library, or playground.


 

SICK POLICIES

• Implement temperature checks and/or symptom screening when practical. *

• Require anyone (students or staff) with COVID-19 symptoms to stay home.

*All students, staff members, volunteers, or visitors will have their temperature checked upon entry into the school buildings.

 

LIMIT CLASS SIZES

• Consider breaking larger classes into smaller groups.

• Students may alternate school days or attend for half days.*

*We will operate a normal schedule except that recess and library groups will be staggered

 

MAINTAIN SOCIAL DISTANCE

• Consider use of face coverings by all staff and students*

• Keep students with the same group and in the same classroom, with teachers rotating when practical.

• Consider students eating lunch in the classroom to help limit mixing of students.**

• Cancel extracurricular activities.

• Prevent any non-school staff, including parents, from entering school buildings.***

• Consider reducing bus loads to allow for one student per seat. Locally, face coverings will be required of anyone riding on a school bus.

*At the time of the first publication of this plan, the governor’s directive requiring the wearing of face coverings did not apply to schools; however, on August 12th, the governor included all public and private schools in his mandate to wear face coverings while indoors.

**Lunch will be served in the gym with the tables spaced apart and seating arrangements controlled. There will be no salad bar.

***This does not apply to parents/guardians, or volunteers. Other visitors will be required to wear face coverings and be subject to a temperature check.

 

ACCOMMODATIONS for students, teachers, and staff in an at-risk group:

• Schools that reopen will need to take into consideration that some teachers and staff will fall into the at-risk category because of their age or other health risks. These individuals should have additional accommodations including: teaching classes remotely, utilizing a larger classroom where social distancing can be maintained, or given an option not to return until the risks are reduced.

• Students who are high risk or who have family members who are high risk should not be penalized for failing to attend and should continue to receive remote support.

• Accommodations should also be extended to students and staff who are required to quarantine due to exposure or potential exposure.

 

CONFIRMED or SUSPECTED case of COVID-19

• Collaborate with public health to ensure each school has a plan for reporting, contact tracing and both short-term or extended closures in the case of a positive COVID case related to the school or community.

• Utilize CDC guidelines https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/guidance-for-schools.html

 


Potomac School implementation steps and requirements:

  1. All students, staff members, and visitors will be screened for temperature upon entering the building at the start of the day. Students showing a temperature of 100.4 degrees or higher (confirmed by a second reading) will be isolated in a temporary holding area, and their parents will be asked to come and take the child home.

Note: The temporary holding area will be the room adjacent to the main office except on those days when our special need student who needs access to a changing room is present.  On those days, the teacher workroom area will be used as a temporary holding area for students with temperature readings above 100.4 degrees.

  1. Parents will be asked to complete a Daily Health Assessment (guide provided) before sending their child to school each day.  They are asked to also send a mask to school with their students to be worn at all times when inside school facilities.

Note: On August 12th, the governor expanded his original mandate requiring the wearing of face coverings to include all public and private schools in counties with more than 4 active Covid-19 cases. All students, staff members, volunteers, and visitors will be required to wear face coverings while inside our school facilities.

  1. Wearing face coverings in the classroom is required for both students and staff members. When inside school facilities, all adults and children 5 years old or older will be required to wear face coverings unless they have a medical condition that prohibits wearing a mask.
  2. Parents will be asked to send their own water bottle to school for their children’s use. The drinking fountain spigots will be covered and not be used.  The bottle fillers will be available for use.
  3. The movement of students in the staircases will be restricted directionally-- Up Only and Down Only staircases.  The exterior door to the basement will be for Exit Only.
  4. Morning recesses will be scheduled to allow only one classroom group in a designated area of the playground at a time.
  5. Students will wash their hands immediately prior to and immediately after recesses.
  6. PE classes will be conducted outdoors whenever possible.  PE equipment will be cleaned/sanitized before the next use.
  7. Library sessions will be restricted to one class at a time.
  8. Inter-school competitive flag football and volleyball will not be offered this fall. Conditioning or skill development clinics may be offered with some restrictions in relation to social distancing and physical contact. 
  9. School events and other gathering involving more than 50 people will be scheduled only when such gatherings follow the restrictions imposed by our government agencies-- governor's office or the health department.
  10. Student seating during lunch periods will be controlled to allow for social distancing-- Tables will be separated and the number of students per table will be limited.
  11. Hand washing prior to lunch will be required of all students.
  12. Hand sanitizer will be available for use in all classrooms.  Use of hand sanitizers by students in grades preK through third grade will be done under adult supervision only.
  13. The number of students permitted in the restroom will be limited to no more than three students at a time.

Note: This plan may be modified at any time based on directives from the state or county government. These directives are from the health department and the school district must comply with them. If you have questions regarding these requirements or their interpretation, please contact the Missoula City-County Health Department.

 

 


MISSOULA COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT DIRECTIVES IN THE EVENT OF EXPOSED TO THE VIRUS

 

Note: The following are directives from the health department to which the school district must comply. If you have questions regarding these requirements or their interpretation, please contact the Missoula City-County Health Department.

 

Schools with a Staff/Student with COVID-19: What to Expect/Who Can Attend?

 

What will happen when a student/staff tests positive for Covid-19?

·       The MCCHD is notified of all positive Covid-19 test results for residents living in Missoula County. MCCHD staff will then contact the positive individual/family and start an investigation.

·       The positive individual will be asked to Isolate at home and not be allowed to come to school or activities until the end of their Isolation period (to be determined by public health).

Does the School need to Close?

·       Not necessarily. If the school is able to remove everyone from the areas that need to be cleaned, the school may clean those impacted areas without closing.

·       Some students and staff with potential exposure may be asked to temporarily not attend while the school works with MCCHD to determine who had close contact with the person with a positive Covid-19 test.

Who will be notified that they were exposed?

·       All Close Contacts-People who were within 6 feet of the person who tested positive for 15 minutes or more. MCCHD will work with the school to notify these individuals/their families.  People who do not receive a phone call from MCCHD have not been identified as a close contact.

·       Above information is gathered by MCCHD staff during their investigation.  MCCHD will work with school staff to get information needed-names and phones numbers of close contacts.

Who cannot come to the school after someone tests positive for Covid-19?

·       Students and staff who had close contact with the person who tested positive will need to stay home(quarantine) until 14 days after their last contact with the person who tested positive. This may be a different time for people depending on when they attended or last worked with the positive person.

·       A close contact cannot come back early if they have a negative test during the 14 days-they could still be incubating the virus.

When can someone who had a positive test return?

·       People with a positive test can return when they have been fever-free for 24 hours without taking fever reducing medication, and it has been at least 10 days since their symptoms started. This may be shorter than the time a close contact needs to stay at home.

·       People with a positive test do not need a negative test to return.

Can siblings/parents of someone who tested positive come to school?

·       No, siblings and parents would have close contact if living in the same home and must stay home until they meet MCCHD criteria for returning (the exact timeline will vary by individual).

Can siblings/parents of a close contact come to school?

·       Yes, they were not exposed to someone with Covid-19 so they can still come.

 

Revisions to Original Return-to-School Plan- Presented to the Board for approval on December 14, 2020 and revised through board action on September 27, 2021. Additional revisions made February 14, 2022.

 

  • As we approach the potential for an ever-increasing number of Covid cases in and around our community, we are having to prepare for the potential that face-to-face instruction in schools may not continue to be possible. In anticipation of this possibility and to address some concern issues we are having with students who are not present for face-to-face instruction, we have made some revisions to our Opt-Out Option. Currently we have a few families who are asking for their students to be served through online instruction even though their students have not been required to be quarantined by the health department nor do they have family members at home who are at risk.  The Opt-Out Option was put in place in response to our recent 1900 policies that were adopted by the board to address the emergency resulting from Covid. Once the Opt-Out Option has been selected by a family and approved by the principal, the student will continue online instruction until the end of the quarter.  All Opt-Out requests will need to be resubmitted for approval each quarter. If the reasons for the Opt-Out request must be related to the impact of Covid on the student or his or her family.  If a student failed to complete his or her assignments during a prior Opt-Out period, the request for a renewal of the Opt-Out Option will be denied unless there are extenuating circumstances approved by the principal. If a student is absent from school due to normal childhood illness, that student should follow our regular procedures for completing his or her assignments while absent rather than attempting to participate through our online protocols involving extra planning and effort on the part of our teachers.
  • Policy 1905 that gave us the authority to grant credit to students for online learning requires that we are able to assess the students’ learning and document their progress. Students who do not complete and submit their online assignments by the deadlines established by their teacher will receive an “Incomplete” for those assignments and assessments. Students who fail to consistently complete assignments and/or assessments may lose the option to Opt Out of face-to-face learning. The principal will consider extenuating circumstances before removing Opt Out option.
  • As the number of Covid cases increases, we will shift to full online instruction even if the health department does not mandate school closures if we reach a target threshold in terms of students or teachers who are not able to attend school for face-to-face instruction.  For example if we have a third or 33% percent of our enrolled students (or 26 students) who are being quarantined, that would average three students per grade level, so in our combined grade level classes that would be six students who would be streaming instruction.  At that point, it would not be practical for our teachers to try to instruct both students in his or her classroom at online.  Likewise if When we have more than two of our teachers out for quarantine, we would not be able to secure enough substitute teachers to cover their in-class instruction; therefore, the administration is recommending that our trigger points for going to all online instruction schoolwide would be 50% 33% of the students (twenty-six) out for Covid-related absences or no more than two of our teachers out. Any individual cohort group-- (preK, Kindergarten, First Grade, Second/Third Grades combined, Fourth/Fifth Grades combined, Sixth/Seventh/Eighth Grade combined) will be placed into online instruction if 50% of the students in that cohort group are out of school for Covid-related absences.
  • Once we go into the online instructional mode, we will remain in that mode for two weeks seven five (5) calendar days—returning the Monday after the seven-day five-day period. and then The administration will reassess where we stand relative to the two trigger points- having 50% of the students out or more than two certified teachers out to determine whether or not to return to face-to-face instruction. Note: The “50% of the students out” metric will be used by the administration to determine both when a cohort group of students or the entire school needs to shift into online instruction.

 




First Grade Class Goes Virtual

CORRECTION ON RETURN DATE

STUDENTS CAN RETURN ON TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 1ST


EXPLANATION FOR MISCALCULATION OF DAYS

When started counting the days of online instruction with Wednesday, January 26th. So technically seven days out starting with the first day of online instruction would have taken us to February 2nd; however, the students have been away from the classroom for seven calendar days as of today, so they can return tomorrow, Tuesday, February 1st.


Sorry about any confusion this might have caused. Thank you to one of our parents for pointing out the error in our count.

A first grade student tested positive for COVID, so according to our Return-to-School Plan approved by our school board, the first grade class will shift to virtual (online from home) learning starting on Wednesday, January 26th.  The Return-to-School Plan states that if more than 50% of the students in any one classroom are not present at school due to quarantining or other absences, then that class will shift to virtual instruction for a period of seven calendar days.  As a result, the first graders can return to face-to-face instruction on Wednesday, February 2nd.  The teacher will be communicating with the parents of the first graders that they can pick up the necessary resources (computers, books, etc.) at school at the end of the school day-- Tuesday, January 25th.





Federal Non-Discrimination Statement

Nondiscrimination Statement: In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA. Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits. Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English. To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027) found online at: http://www.ascr.usda.gov/complaint_filing_cust.html, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by: (1) mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights 1400 Independence Avenue, SW Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; (2) fax: (202) 690-7442; or (3) email: program.intake@usda.gov. This institution is an equal opportunity provider.








 

 


As required by ESSER Federal Compliance requirements, we have reviewed and revised our Safe Return and Continuity of Services Plan (locally called- Return-to-School Plan).  The administration sought input from stakeholders including representatives from the staff, the school board, and the community.  Our school board approved the revisions at a special board meeting on September 27, 2021.  The full text of the Plan is shown below.



Potomac School District Return-to-School Plan

(aka Safe Return and Continuity of Services Plan)

2020-21

(Revised December 14, 2020)

(2nd Revision- May 13, 2021)

(3rd Revision- September 27,2021)

 

 

 

The Potomac School District #11 will begin the first day of instruction for the 2020-21 school year on August 26th. The Potomac School District Board of Trustees and staff members recognize that these are unusual times as a result of the COVID-19 virus. Because the health and safety of our students and staff members are of primary importance, some policies and procedures will be in place until such time as the COVID-19 emergency no longer exists. The school board approved the 1900 Series – COVID-19 Emergency Policies in June. This Return-to-School Plan is based on those policies, and the procedures and practices outlined in this plan will be followed until the school board determines that the emergency measures are no longer needed.

 

While the desire of the school board and the staff members is to provide a learning environment that is as close to “normal” for our students as is feasible, we are required to follow the directives and mandates of the governor and our county health department.  The steps outlined in this plan are subject to revision at any point should the directives from either of these two entities change. Any references in this plan to “Phases” are based on the phased reopening included in the directives from the governor. At the time of the origination of this plan, schools in Montana were in Phase Two of the governor’s reopening plan, and the steps outlined are based on remaining in that phase.  Should the governor choose to move the state forward to Phase Three or return to Phase One, the plan will be modified accordingly.

 

GOVERNOR BULLOCK’S PHASE TWO REOPENING PLAN WITH NOTED LOCAL MODIFICATIONS

 

Below are the specific requirements that impact schools under the current Phase Two of the governor’s plan. In the process of adopting the 1900 series of board policies, our school board chose to modify some portions of these policies based on the fact that our school enrollment is relatively small. This allows us more flexibility in how we address social distancing and other accommodations. An asterisk next to bullet points from the governor’s Phase Two components below indicates that our school board has exercised their local decision-making authority with regard to that specific point.

 

CLEANING AND SANITATION

• Frequent disinfecting of door handles, desks, and other common spaces.

• Require hand washing in regular intervals.

• Keep libraries, gyms, and playgrounds off limits unless they can be sanitized between groups.*

• Provide hand sanitizer.

*We will continue using these facilities with sanitization taking place daily. at intervals including before and after school.  Hand washing will be required of all students prior to lunch and after any recess periods as well as at times where students come into contact with frequently touched objects such as in the gym, library, or playground.


 

SICK POLICIES

• Implement temperature checks and/or symptom screening when practical. *

• Require anyone (students or staff) with COVID-19 symptoms to stay home.

*All students, staff members, volunteers, or visitors will have their temperature checked upon entry into the school buildings.

 

LIMIT CLASS SIZES

• Consider breaking larger classes into smaller groups.

• Students may alternate school days or attend for half days.*

*We will operate a normal schedule except that recess and library groups will be staggered

 

MAINTAIN SOCIAL DISTANCE

• Consider use of face coverings by all staff and students*

• Keep students with the same group and in the same classroom, with teachers rotating when practical.

• Consider students eating lunch in the classroom to help limit mixing of students.**

• Cancel extracurricular activities.

• Prevent any non-school staff, including parents, from entering school buildings.***

• Consider reducing bus loads to allow for one student per seat. Locally, face coverings will be required of anyone riding on a school bus.

*At the time of the first publication of this plan, the governor’s directive requiring the wearing of face coverings did not apply to schools; however, on August 12th, the governor included all public and private schools in his mandate to wear face coverings while indoors.

**Lunch will be served in the gym with the tables spaced apart and seating arrangements controlled. There will be no salad bar.

***This does not apply to parents/guardians, or volunteers. Other visitors will be required to wear face coverings and be subject to a temperature check.

 

ACCOMMODATIONS for students, teachers, and staff in an at-risk group:

• Schools that reopen will need to take into consideration that some teachers and staff will fall into the at-risk category because of their age or other health risks. These individuals should have additional accommodations including: teaching classes remotely, utilizing a larger classroom where social distancing can be maintained, or given an option not to return until the risks are reduced.

• Students who are high risk or who have family members who are high risk should not be penalized for failing to attend and should continue to receive remote support.

• Accommodations should also be extended to students and staff who are required to quarantine due to exposure or potential exposure.

 

CONFIRMED or SUSPECTED case of COVID-19

• Collaborate with public health to ensure each school has a plan for reporting, contact tracing and both short-term or extended closures in the case of a positive COVID case related to the school or community.

• Utilize CDC guidelines https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/guidance-for-schools.html

 


Potomac School implementation steps and requirements:

  1. All students, staff members, and visitors will be screened for temperature upon entering the building at the start of the day. Students showing a temperature of 100.4 degrees or higher (confirmed by a second reading) will be isolated in a temporary holding area, and their parents will be asked to come and take the child home.

Note: The temporary holding area will be the room adjacent to the main office except on those days when our special need student who needs access to a changing room is present.  On those days, the teacher workroom area will be used as a temporary holding area for students with temperature readings above 100.4 degrees.

  1. Parents will be asked to complete a Daily Health Assessment (guide provided) before sending their child to school each day.  They are asked to also send a mask to school with their students to be worn at all times when inside school facilities.

Note: On August 12th, the governor expanded his original mandate requiring the wearing of face coverings to include all public and private schools in counties with more than 4 active Covid-19 cases. All students, staff members, volunteers, and visitors will be required to wear face coverings while inside our school facilities.

  1. Wearing face coverings in the classroom is required for both students and staff members. When inside school facilities, all adults and children 5 years old or older will be required to wear face coverings unless they have a medical condition that prohibits wearing a mask.
  2. Parents will be asked to send their own water bottle to school for their children’s use. The drinking fountain spigots will be covered and not be used.  The bottle fillers will be available for use.
  3. The movement of students in the staircases will be restricted directionally-- Up Only and Down Only staircases.  The exterior door to the basement will be for Exit Only.
  4. Morning recesses will be scheduled to allow only one classroom group in a designated area of the playground at a time.
  5. Students will wash their hands immediately prior to and immediately after recesses.
  6. PE classes will be conducted outdoors whenever possible.  PE equipment will be cleaned/sanitized before the next use.
  7. Library sessions will be restricted to one class at a time.
  8. Inter-school competitive flag football and volleyball will not be offered this fall. Conditioning or skill development clinics may be offered with some restrictions in relation to social distancing and physical contact. 
  9. School events and other gathering involving more than 50 people will be scheduled only when such gatherings follow the restrictions imposed by our government agencies-- governor's office or the health department.
  10. Student seating during lunch periods will be controlled to allow for social distancing-- Tables will be separated and the number of students per table will be limited.
  11. Hand washing prior to lunch will be required of all students.
  12. Hand sanitizer will be available for use in all classrooms.  Use of hand sanitizers by students in grades preK through third grade will be done under adult supervision only.
  13. The number of students permitted in the restroom will be limited to no more than three students at a time.

Note: This plan may be modified at any time based on directives from the state or county government. These directives are from the health department and the school district must comply with them. If you have questions regarding these requirements or their interpretation, please contact the Missoula City-County Health Department.

 

 


MISSOULA COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT DIRECTIVES IN THE EVENT OF EXPOSED TO THE VIRUS

 

Note: The following are directives from the health department to which the school district must comply. If you have questions regarding these requirements or their interpretation, please contact the Missoula City-County Health Department.

 

Schools with a Staff/Student with COVID-19: What to Expect/Who Can Attend?

 

What will happen when a student/staff tests positive for Covid-19?

·       The MCCHD is notified of all positive Covid-19 test results for residents living in Missoula County. MCCHD staff will then contact the positive individual/family and start an investigation.

·       The positive individual will be asked to Isolate at home and not be allowed to come to school or activities until the end of their Isolation period (to be determined by public health).

Does the School need to Close?

·       Not necessarily. If the school is able to remove everyone from the areas that need to be cleaned, the school may clean those impacted areas without closing.

·       Some students and staff with potential exposure may be asked to temporarily not attend while the school works with MCCHD to determine who had close contact with the person with a positive Covid-19 test.

Who will be notified that they were exposed?

·       All Close Contacts-People who were within 6 feet of the person who tested positive for 15 minutes or more. MCCHD will work with the school to notify these individuals/their families.  People who do not receive a phone call from MCCHD have not been identified as a close contact.

·       Above information is gathered by MCCHD staff during their investigation.  MCCHD will work with school staff to get information needed-names and phones numbers of close contacts.

Who cannot come to the school after someone tests positive for Covid-19?

·       Students and staff who had close contact with the person who tested positive will need to stay home(quarantine) until 14 days after their last contact with the person who tested positive. This may be a different time for people depending on when they attended or last worked with the positive person.

·       A close contact cannot come back early if they have a negative test during the 14 days-they could still be incubating the virus.

When can someone who had a positive test return?

·       People with a positive test can return when they have been fever-free for 24 hours without taking fever reducing medication, and it has been at least 10 days since their symptoms started. This may be shorter than the time a close contact needs to stay at home.

·       People with a positive test do not need a negative test to return.

Can siblings/parents of someone who tested positive come to school?

·       No, siblings and parents would have close contact if living in the same home and must stay home until they meet MCCHD criteria for returning (the exact timeline will vary by individual).

Can siblings/parents of a close contact come to school?

·       Yes, they were not exposed to someone with Covid-19 so they can still come.

 

Revisions to Original Return-to-School Plan- Presented to the Board for approval on December 14, 2020 and revised through board action on September 27, 2021.

 

  • As we approach the potential for an ever-increasing number of Covid cases in and around our community, we are having to prepare for the potential that face-to-face instruction in schools may not continue to be possible. In anticipation of this possibility and to address some concern issues we are having with students who are not present for face-to-face instruction, we have made some revisions to our Opt-Out Option. Currently we have a few families who are asking for their students to be served through online instruction even though their students have not been required to be quarantined by the health department nor do they have family members at home who are at risk.  The Opt-Out Option was put in place in response to our recent 1900 policies that were adopted by the board to address the emergency resulting from Covid. Once the Opt-Out Option has been selected by a family and approved by the principal, the student will continue online instruction until the end of the quarter.  All Opt-Out requests will need to be resubmitted for approval each quarter. If the reasons for the Opt-Out request must be related to the impact of Covid on the student or his or her family.  If a student failed to complete his or her assignments during a prior Opt-Out period, the request for a renewal of the Opt-Out Option will be denied unless there are extenuating circumstances approved by the principal. If a student is absent from school due to normal childhood illness, that student should follow our regular procedures for completing his or her assignments while absent rather than attempting to participate through our online protocols involving extra planning and effort on the part of our teachers.
  • Policy 1905 that gave us the authority to grant credit to students for online learning requires that we are able to assess the students’ learning and document their progress. Students who do not complete and submit their online assignments by the deadlines established by their teacher will receive an “Incomplete” for those assignments and assessments. Students who fail to consistently complete assignments and/or assessments may lose the option to Opt Out of face-to-face learning. The principal will consider extenuating circumstances before removing Opt Out option.
  • As the number of Covid cases increases, we will shift to full online instruction even if the health department does not mandate school closures if we reach a target threshold in terms of students or teachers who are not able to attend school for face-to-face instruction.  For example if we have a third or 33% percent of our enrolled students (or 26 students) who are being quarantined, that would average three students per grade level, so in our combined grade level classes that would be six students who would be streaming instruction.  At that point, it would not be practical for our teachers to try to instruct both students in his or her classroom at online.  Likewise if When we have more than two of our teachers out for quarantine, we would not be able to secure enough substitute teachers to cover their in-class instruction; therefore, the administration is recommending that our trigger points for going to all online instruction schoolwide would be 50% 33% of the students (twenty-six) out for Covid-related absences or no more than two of our teachers out. Any individual cohort group-- (preK, Kindergarten, First Grade, Second/Third Grades combined, Fourth/Fifth Grades combined, Sixth/Seventh/Eighth Grade combined) will be placed into online instruction if 50% of the students in that cohort group are out of school for Covid-related absences.
  • Once we go into the online instructional mode, we will remain in that mode for two weeks seven calendar days—returning the Monday after the seven-day period. and then The administration will reassess where we stand relative to the two trigger points- having 50% of the students out or more than two certified teachers out to determine whether or not to return to face-to-face instruction. Note: The “50% of the students out” metric will be used by the administration to determine both when a cohort group of students or the entire school needs to shift into online instruction.

 











Potomac School Board Approves 
Board Mission Statement


One of the outcomes of the recent strategic planning sessions held by the Potomac Board of Trustees was to develop a board mission statement.  Below is the Mission Statement that the Board approved during their November 8, 2021 meeting.

"The Potomac School Board is committed to working together to listen openly to the students, parents, teachers, staff, and community; set policies that guide effective decision making and create a safe environment; adopt budgets that support the school’s goals and curriculum; support high-quality learning experiences based on a broad and balanced curriculum; and empower collaborative teaching/learning through the recruitment and retention of quality staff members at all organizational levels."


Approved: November 8, 2021






Potomac PreK Class will remain in Online Instruction Mode for October 4-7

Due to the fact that both the preK teacher and preK paraprofessional are having to quarantine due to Covid, and we cannot secure substitutes for them, the preK class will remain in online instruction mode for this next week--Monday, October 4th through Thursday, October 7th.

There will be a Zoom lesson provided each day at 9:30 am. Parents should receive an email notification from the teacher today that includes the link information.

We will contact the preK parents on Thursday regarding a decision for the following week.

Thanks.


Potomac School Students Will Return to Face-to-Face Instruction 
on Monday, October 4th

All classes for Prekindergarten through 8th grade at Potomac School will resume our normal full days of face-to-face instruction on Monday, October 4th, at 7:50 am to 4:00 pm. While the wearing of face masks are recommended, they are not required. Parents are asked to continue to do wellness checks of their children each morning including checking for fever and other covid-related symptoms.  If the parent feels that the child might be sick, we ask that the parent keep him or her home and please notify the school. We will continue implementing our Return-to-School Plan which includes checking temperatures, social distancing where possible, and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces.  

Athletic practices and competitions will resume on the 4th of October as well.



Potomac School Board Modifies Return-to-School Plan

In a special called meeting on Monday, September 27, 2021, the Potomac School Board voted to modify the school's Return-to-School Plan. In a previous special meeting held on September 20th, the Board voted down a motion to require the wearing of face masks at the school. After a lengthy discussion, the board members voted to table a motion to revise the Return-to-School Plan and Policy 1905.  At the meeting on the 27th, board members listens to input from a number of concerned individuals, then they took up the tabled motion and passed it by a 5-0 vote to include some changes to the Return-to-School Plan.  The most significant change was to alter the length of time that students are required to remain in the online instruction mode once the school moves to online instruction. The Plan previously required the school to remain in online mode for two weeks before returning to face-to-face instruction.  The revised wording allows the school to return to face-to-face learning after seven calendar days starting from the day after the school shifts to online mode.  The revised wording states that students can return to school for face-to-face instruction after being in online instruction for seven week days with their return taking place on the first Monday after the seven-day period.

Below is a copy of the full text of the revised Return-to-School Plan.  There were only minor clerical revisions made to Policy 1905. The original Policy 1905 remains in effect with these clerical corrections made.

 

 

 

 


Potomac Elementary School

29750 Potomac Road

Bonner, Montana 59823

John P. Rouse, Principal

 

 

 

 

 

 Phone  (406) 244-5581

 Fax (406) 244-5840                     www.potomacschoolmontana.us


“Potomac School equips each student for his/her future

 within a culture of excellence that values the small community experience."

 

 


Potomac School District Return-to-School Plan

2020-21

(Revised December 14, 2020)

(2nd Revision- May 13, 2021)

(3rd Revision- September 27, 2021)

 

 

 

The Potomac School District #11 will begin the first day of instruction for the 2020-21 school year on August 26th. The Potomac School District Board of Trustees and staff members recognize that these are unusual times as a result of the COVID-19 virus. Because the health and safety of our students and staff members are of primary importance, some policies and procedures will be in place until such time as the COVID-19 emergency no longer exists. The school board approved the 1900 Series – COVID-19 Emergency Policies in June. This Return-to-School Plan is based on those policies, and the procedures and practices outlined in this plan will be followed until the school board determines that the emergency measures are no longer needed.

 

While the desire of the school board and the staff members is to provide a learning environment that is as close to “normal” for our students as is feasible, we are required to follow the directives and mandates of the governor and our county health department.  The steps outlined in this plan are subject to revision at any point should the directives from either of these two entities change. Any references in this plan to “Phases” are based on the phased reopening included in the directives from the governor. At the time of the origination of this plan, schools in Montana were in Phase Two of the governor’s reopening plan, and the steps outlined are based on remaining in that phase.  Should the governor choose to move the state forward to Phase Three or return to Phase One, the plan will be modified accordingly.

 

GOVERNOR BULLOCK’S PHASE TWO REOPENING PLAN WITH NOTED LOCAL MODIFICATIONS

 

Below are the specific requirements that impact schools under the current Phase Two of the governor’s plan. In the process of adopting the 1900 series of board policies, our school board chose to modify some portions of these policies based on the fact that our school enrollment is relatively small. This allows us more flexibility in how we address social distancing and other accommodations. An asterisk next to bullet points from the governor’s Phase Two components below indicates that our school board has exercised their local decision-making authority with regard to that specific point.

 

CLEANING AND SANITATION

• Frequent disinfecting of door handles, desks, and other common spaces.

• Require handwashing in regular intervals.

• Keep libraries, gyms, and playgrounds off limits unless they can be sanitized between groups.*

• Provide hand sanitizer.

*We will continue using these facilities with sanitization taking place daily. at intervals including before and after school.  Handwashing will be required of all students prior to lunch and after any recess periods as well as at times where students come into contact with frequently touched objects such as in the gym, library, or playground.


 

SICK POLICIES

• Implement temperature checks and/or symptom screening when practical. *

• Require anyone (students or staff) with COVID-19 symptoms to stay home.

*All students, staff members, volunteers, or visitors will have their temperature checked upon entry into the school buildings.

 

LIMIT CLASS SIZES

• Consider breaking larger classes into smaller groups.

• Students may alternate school days or attend for half days.*

*We will operate a normal schedule except that recess and library groups will be staggered

 

MAINTAIN SOCIAL DISTANCE

• Consider use of face coverings by all staff and students*

• Keep students with the same group and in the same classroom, with teachers rotating when practical.

• Consider students eating lunch in the classroom to help limit mixing of students.**

• Cancel extracurricular activities.

• Prevent any non-school staff, including parents, from entering school buildings.***

• Consider reducing bus loads to allow for one student per seat. Locally, face coverings will be required of anyone riding on a school bus.

*At the time of the first publication of this plan, the governor’s directive requiring the wearing of face coverings did not apply to schools; however, on August 12th, the governor included all public and private schools in his mandate to wear face coverings while indoors.

**Lunch will be served in the gym with the tables spaced apart and seating arrangements controlled. There will be no salad bar.

***This does not apply to parents/guardians, or volunteers. Other visitors will be required to wear face coverings and be subject to a temperature check.

 

ACCOMMODATIONS for students, teachers, and staff in an at-risk group:

• Schools that reopen will need to take into consideration that some teachers and staff will fall into the at-risk category because of their age or other health risks. These individuals should have additional accommodations including: teaching classes remotely, utilizing a larger classroom where social distancing can be maintained, or given an option not to return until the risks are reduced.

• Students who are high risk or who have family members who are high risk should not be penalized for failing to attend and should continue to receive remote support.

• Accommodations should also be extended to students and staff who are required to quarantine due to exposure or potential exposure.

 

CONFIRMED or SUSPECTED case of COVID-19

• Collaborate with public health to ensure each school has a plan for reporting, contact tracing and both short-term or extended closures in the case of a positive COVID case related to the school or community.

• Utilize CDC guidelines https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/guidance-for-schools.html

 


Potomac School implementation steps and requirements:

  1. All students, staff members, and visitors will be screened for temperature upon entering the building at the start of the day. Students showing a temperature of 100.4 degrees or higher (confirmed by a second reading) will be isolated in a temporary holding area, and their parents will be asked to come and take the child home.

Note: The temporary holding area will be the room adjacent to the main office except on those days when our special need student who needs access to a changing room is present.  On those days, the teacher workroom area will be used as a temporary holding area for students with temperature readings above 100.4 degrees.

  1. Parents will be asked to complete a Daily Health Assessment (guide provided) before sending their child to school each day.  They are asked to also send a mask to school with their students to be worn at all times when inside school facilities.

Note: On August 12th, the governor expanded his original mandate requiring the wearing of face coverings to include all public and private schools in counties with more than 4 active Covid-19 cases. All students, staff members, volunteers, and visitors will be required to wear face coverings while inside our school facilities.

  1. Wearing face coverings in the classroom is required for both students and staff members. When inside school facilities, all adults and children 5 years old or older will be required to wear face coverings unless they have a medical condition that prohibits wearing a mask.
  2. Parents will be asked to send their own water bottle to school for their children’s use. The drinking fountain spigots will be covered and not be used.  The bottle fillers will be available for use.
  3. The movement of students in the staircases will be restricted directionally-- Up Only and Down Only staircases.  The exterior door to the basement will be for Exit Only.
  4. Morning recesses will be scheduled to allow only one classroom group in a designated area of the playground at a time.
  5. Students will wash their hands immediately prior to and immediately after recesses.
  6. PE classes will be conducted outdoors whenever possible.  PE equipment will be cleaned/sanitized before the next use.
  7. Library sessions will be restricted to one class at a time.
  8. Inter-school competitive flag football and volleyball will not be offered this fall. Conditioning or skill development clinics may be offered with some restrictions in relation to social distancing and physical contact. 
  9. School events and other gathering involving more than 50 people will be scheduled only when such gatherings follow the restrictions imposed by our government agencies-- governor's office or the health department.
  10. Student seating during lunch periods will be controlled to allow for social distancing-- Tables will be separated and the number of students per table will be limited.
  11. Hand washing prior to lunch will be required of all students.
  12. Hand sanitizer will be available for use in all classrooms.  Use of hand sanitizers by students in grades preK through third grade will be done under adult supervision only.
  13. The number of students permitted in the restroom will be limited to no more than three students at a time.

Note: This plan may be modified at any time based on directives from the state or county government. These directives are from the health department and the school district must comply with them. If you have questions regarding these requirements or their interpretation, please contact the Missoula City-County Health Department.

 

 


MISSOULA COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT DIRECTIVES IN THE EVENT OF EXPOSED TO THE VIRUS

 

Note: The following are directives from the health department to which the school district must comply. If you have questions regarding these requirements or their interpretation, please contact the Missoula City-County Health Department.

 

Schools with a Staff/Student with COVID-19: What to Expect/Who Can Attend?

 

What will happen when a student/staff tests positive for Covid-19?

·       The MCCHD is notified of all positive Covid-19 test results for residents living in Missoula County. MCCHD staff will then contact the positive individual/family and start an investigation.

·       The positive individual will be asked to Isolate at home and not be allowed to come to school or activities until the end of their Isolation period (to be determined by public health).

Does the School need to Close?

·       Not necessarily. If the school is able to remove everyone from the areas that need to be cleaned, the school may clean those impacted areas without closing.

·       Some students and staff with potential exposure may be asked to temporarily not attend while the school works with MCCHD to determine who had close contact with the person with a positive Covid-19 test.

Who will be notified that they were exposed?

·       All Close Contacts-People who were within 6 feet of the person who tested positive for 15 minutes or more. MCCHD will work with the school to notify these individuals/their families.  People who do not receive a phone call from MCCHD have not been identified as a close contact.

·       Above information is gathered by MCCHD staff during their investigation.  MCCHD will work with school staff to get information needed-names and phones numbers of close contacts.

Who cannot come to the school after someone tests positive for Covid-19?

·       Students and staff who had close contact with the person who tested positive will need to stay home(quarantine) until 14 days after their last contact with the person who tested positive. This may be a different time for people depending on when they attended or last worked with the positive person.

·       A close contact cannot come back early if they have a negative test during the 14 days-they could still be incubating the virus.

When can someone who had a positive test return?

·       People with a positive test can return when they have been fever-free for 24 hours without taking fever reducing medication, and it has been at least 10 days since their symptoms started. This may be shorter than the time a close contact needs to stay at home.

·       People with a positive test do not need a negative test to return.

Can siblings/parents of someone who tested positive come to school?

·       No, siblings and parents would have close contact if living in the same home and must stay home until they meet MCCHD criteria for returning (the exact timeline will vary by individual).

Can siblings/parents of a close contact come to school?

·       Yes, they were not exposed to someone with Covid-19 so they can still come.

 

Revisions to Original Return-to-School Plan- Presented to the Board for approval on December 14, 2020 and revised through board action on September 27, 2021.

 

  • As we approach the potential for an ever-increasing number of Covid cases in and around our community, we are having to prepare for the potential that face-to-face instruction in schools may not continue to be possible. In anticipation of this possibility and to address some concern issues we are having with students who are not present for face-to-face instruction, we have made some revisions to our Opt-Out Option. Currently we have a few families who are asking for their students to be served through online instruction even though their students have not been required to be quarantined by the health department nor do they have family members at home who are at risk.  The Opt-Out Option was put in place in response to our recent 1900 policies that were adopted by the board to address the emergency resulting from Covid. Once the Opt-Out Option has been selected by a family and approved by the principal, the student will continue online instruction until the end of the quarter.  All Opt-Out requests will need to be resubmitted for approval each quarter. If the reasons for the Opt-Out request must be related to the impact of Covid on the student or his or her family.  If a student failed to complete his or her assignments during a prior Opt-Out period, the request for a renewal of the Opt-Out Option will be denied unless there are extenuating circumstances approved by the principal. If a student is absent from school due to normal childhood illness, that student should follow our regular procedures for completing his or her assignments while absent rather than attempting to participate through our online protocols involving extra planning and effort on the part of our teachers.
  • Policy 1905 that gave us the authority to grant credit to students for online learning requires that we are able to assess the students’ learning and document their progress. Students who do not complete and submit their online assignments by the deadlines established by their teacher will receive an “Incomplete” for those assignments and assessments. Students who fail to consistently complete assignments and/or assessments may lose the option to Opt Out of face-to-face learning. The principal will consider extenuating circumstances before removing Opt Out option.
  • As the number of Covid cases increases, we will shift to full online instruction even if the health department does not mandate school closures if we reach a target threshold in terms of students or teachers who are not able to attend school for face-to-face instruction.  For example if we have a third or 33% percent of our enrolled students (or 26 students) who are being quarantined, that would average three students per grade level, so in our combined grade level classes that would be six students who would be streaming instruction.  At that point, it would not be practical for our teachers to try to instruct both students in his or her classroom at online.  Likewise if When we have more than two of our teachers out for quarantine, we would not be able to secure enough substitute teachers to cover their in-class instruction; therefore, the administration is recommending that our trigger points for going to all online instruction schoolwide would be 50% 33% of the students (twenty-six) out for Covid-related absences or no more than two of our teachers out. Any individual cohort group-- (preK, Kindergarten, First Grade, Second/Third Grades combined, Fourth/Fifth Grades combined, Sixth/Seventh/Eighth Grade combined) will be placed into online instruction if 50% of the students in that cohort group are out of school for Covid-related absences.

·       Once we go into the online instructional mode, we will remain in that mode for two weeks seven calendar days—returning the Monday after the seven-day period. and then The administration will reassess where we stand relative to the two trigger points- having 50% of the students out or more than two certified teachers out to determine whether or not to return to face-to-face instruction. Note: The “50% of the students out” metric will be used by the administration to determine both when a cohort group of students or the entire school needs to shift into online instruction. Once 50% of an isolated cohort can return to in-person learning they will return under a hybrid model.

 

 


Potomac School ARP ESSER Plan

As a requirement of the ESSER III funding for Covid Relief to Schools Program, school districts are required to post their ARP ESSER Plan on their websites.  Below is an attached copy of the Potomac School District ARP ESSER Plan (Response Summary).


ESSER_ResponseSummary_8_21









Safe Return to In-Person Instruction and Continuity of Services Plans

The Potomac School Board Revised the Return-to-School Plan

Potomac School District Return-to-School Plan

2020-21

(Revised December 14, 2020)

(2nd Revision- May 13, 2021)

(Approved as revised on August 9,2021)

 

 

 

The Potomac School District #11 will begin the first day of instruction for the 2020-21 school year on August 26th. The Potomac School District Board of Trustees and staff members recognize that these are unusual times as a result of the COVID-19 virus. Because the health and safety of our students and staff members are of primary importance, some policies and procedures will be in place until such time as the COVID-19 emergency no longer exists. The school board approved the 1900 Series – COVID-19 Emergency Policies in June. This Return-to-School Plan is based on those policies, and the procedures and practices outlined in this plan will be followed until the school board determines that the emergency measures are no longer needed.

 

While the desire of the school board and the staff members is to provide a learning environment that is as close to “normal” for our students as is feasible, we are required to follow the directives and mandates of the governor and our county health department.  The steps outlined in this plan are subject to revision at any point should the directives from either of these two entities change. Any references in this plan to “Phases” are based on the phased reopening included in the directives from the governor. At the time of the origination of this plan, schools in Montana were in Phase Two of the governor’s reopening plan, and the steps outlined are based on remaining in that phase.  Should the governor choose to move the state forward to Phase Three or return to Phase One, the plan will be modified accordingly.

 

GOVERNOR BULLOCK’S PHASE TWO REOPENING PLAN WITH NOTED LOCAL MODIFICATIONS

 

Below are the specific requirements that impact schools under the current Phase Two of the governor’s plan. In the process of adopting the 1900 series of board policies, our school board chose to modify some portions of these policies based on the fact that our school enrollment is relatively small. This allows us more flexibility in how we address social distancing and other accommodations. An asterisk next to bullet points from the governor’s Phase Two components below indicates that our school board has exercised their local decision-making authority with regard to that specific point.

 

CLEANING AND SANITATION

• Frequent disinfecting of door handles, desks, and other common spaces.

• Require handwashing in regular intervals.

• Keep libraries, gyms, and playgrounds off limits unless they can be sanitized between groups.*

• Provide hand sanitizer.

*We will continue using these facilities with sanitization taking place at intervals including before and after school.  Handwashing will be required of all students prior to lunch and after any recess periods as well as at times where students come into contact with frequently touched objects such as in the gym, library, or playground.


 

SICK POLICIES

• Implement temperature checks and/or symptom screening when practical. *

• Require anyone (students or staff) with COVID-19 symptoms to stay home.

*All students, staff members, volunteers, or visitors will have their temperature checked upon entry into the school buildings.

 

LIMIT CLASS SIZES

• Consider breaking larger classes into smaller groups.

• Students may alternate school days or attend for half days.*

*We will operate a normal schedule except that recess and library groups will be staggered

 

MAINTAIN SOCIAL DISTANCE

• Consider use of face coverings by all staff and students*

• Keep students with the same group and in the same classroom, with teachers rotating when practical.

• Consider students eating lunch in the classroom to help limit mixing of students.**

• Cancel extracurricular activities.

• Prevent any non-school staff, including parents, from entering school buildings.***

• Consider reducing bus loads to allow for one student per seat. Locally, face coverings will be required of anyone riding on a school bus.

*At the time of the first publication of this plan, the governor’s directive requiring the wearing of face coverings did not apply to schools; however, on August 12th, the governor included all public and private schools in his mandate to wear face coverings while indoors.

**Lunch will be served in the gym with the tables spaced apart and seating arrangements controlled. There will be no salad bar.

***This does not apply to parents/guardians, or volunteers. Other visitors will be required to wear face coverings and be subject to a temperature check.

 

ACCOMMODATIONS for students, teachers, and staff in an at-risk group:

• Schools that reopen will need to take into consideration that some teachers and staff will fall into the at-risk category because of their age or other health risks. These individuals should have additional accommodations including: teaching classes remotely, utilizing a larger classroom where social distancing can be maintained, or given an option not to return until the risks are reduced.

• Students who are high risk or who have family members who are high risk should not be penalized for failing to attend and should continue to receive remote support.

• Accommodations should also be extended to students and staff who are required to quarantine due to exposure or potential exposure.

 

CONFIRMED or SUSPECTED case of COVID-19

• Collaborate with public health to ensure each school has a plan for reporting, contact tracing and both short-term or extended closures in the case of a positive COVID case related to the school or community.

• Utilize CDC guidelines https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/guidance-for-schools.html

 


Potomac School implementation steps and requirements:

  1. All students, staff members, and visitors will be screened for temperature upon entering the building at the start of the day. Students showing a temperature of 100.4 degrees or higher (confirmed by a second reading) will be isolated in a temporary holding area, and their parents will be asked to come and take the child home.

Note: The temporary holding area will be the room adjacent to the main office except on those days when our special need student who needs access to a changing room is present.  On those days, the teacher workroom area will be used as a temporary holding area for students with temperature readings above 100.4 degrees.

  1. Parents will be asked to complete a Daily Health Assessment (guide provided) before sending their child to school each day.  They are asked to also send a mask to school with their students to be worn at all times when inside school facilities.

Note: On August 12th, the governor expanded his original mandate requiring the wearing of face coverings to include all public and private schools in counties with more than 4 active Covid-19 cases. All students, staff members, volunteers, and visitors will be required to wear face coverings while inside our school facilities.

  1. Wearing face coverings in the classroom is required for both students and staff members. When inside school facilities, all adults and children 5 years old or older will be required to wear face coverings unless they have a medical condition that prohibits wearing a mask.
  2. Parents will be asked to send their own water bottle to school for their children’s use. The drinking fountain spigots will be covered and not be used.  The bottle fillers will be available for use.
  3. The movement of students in the staircases will be restricted directionally-- Up Only and Down Only staircases.  The exterior door to the basement will be for Exit Only.
  4. Morning recesses will be scheduled to allow only one classroom group in a designated area of the playground at a time.
  5. Students will wash their hands immediately prior to and immediately after recesses.
  6. PE classes will be conducted outdoors whenever possible.  PE equipment will be cleaned/sanitized before the next use.
  7. Library sessions will be restricted to one class at a time.
  8. Inter-school competitive flag football and volleyball will not be offered this fall. Conditioning or skill development clinics may be offered with some restrictions in relation to social distancing and physical contact. 
  9. School events and other gathering involving more than 50 people will be scheduled only when such gatherings follow the restrictions imposed by our government agencies-- governor's office or the health department.
  10. Student seating during lunch periods will be controlled to allow for social distancing-- Tables will be separated and the number of students per table will be limited.
  11. Hand washing prior to lunch will be required of all students.
  12. Hand sanitizer will be available for use in all classrooms.  Use of hand sanitizers by students in grades preK through third grade will be done under adult supervision only.
  13. The number of students permitted in the restroom will be limited to no more than three students at a time.

Note: This plan may be modified at any time based on directives from the state or county government. These directives are from the health department and the school district must comply with them. If you have questions regarding these requirements or their interpretation, please contact the Missoula City-County Health Department.

 

 


MISSOULA COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT DIRECTIVES IN THE EVENT OF EXPOSED TO THE VIRUS

 

Note: The following are directives from the health department to which the school district must comply. If you have questions regarding these requirements or their interpretation, please contact the Missoula City-County Health Department.

 

Schools with a Staff/Student with COVID-19: What to Expect/Who Can Attend?

 

What will happen when a student/staff tests positive for Covid-19?

·       The MCCHD is notified of all positive Covid-19 test results for residents living in Missoula County. MCCHD staff will then contact the positive individual/family and start an investigation.

·       The positive individual will be asked to Isolate at home and not be allowed to come to school or activities until the end of their Isolation period (to be determined by public health).

Does the School need to Close?

·       Not necessarily. If the school is able to remove everyone from the areas that need to be cleaned, the school may clean those impacted areas without closing.

·       Some students and staff with potential exposure may be asked to temporarily not attend while the school works with MCCHD to determine who had close contact with the person with a positive Covid-19 test.

Who will be notified that they were exposed?

·       All Close Contacts-People who were within 6 feet of the person who tested positive for 15 minutes or more. MCCHD will work with the school to notify these individuals/their families.  People who do not receive a phone call from MCCHD have not been identified as a close contact.

·       Above information is gathered by MCCHD staff during their investigation.  MCCHD will work with school staff to get information needed-names and phones numbers of close contacts.

Who cannot come to the school after someone tests positive for Covid-19?

·       Students and staff who had close contact with the person who tested positive will need to stay home(quarantine) until 14 days after their last contact with the person who tested positive. This may be a different time for people depending on when they attended or last worked with the positive person.

·       A close contact cannot come back early if they have a negative test during the 14 days-they could still be incubating the virus.

When can someone who had a positive test return?

·       People with a positive test can return when they have been fever-free for 24 hours without taking fever reducing medication, and it has been at least 10 days since their symptoms started. This may be shorter than the time a close contact needs to stay at home.

·       People with a positive test do not need a negative test to return.

Can siblings/parents of someone who tested positive come to school?

·       No, siblings and parents would have close contact if living in the same home and must stay home until they meet MCCHD criteria for returning (the exact timeline will vary by individual).

Can siblings/parents of a close contact come to school?

·       Yes, they were not exposed to someone with Covid-19 so they can still come.

 

Revisions to Original Return-to-School Plan- Presented to the Board for approval on December 14, 2020.

 

  • As we approach the potential for an ever-increasing number of Covid cases in and around our community, we are having to prepare for the potential that face-to-face instruction in schools may not continue to be possible. In anticipation of this possibility and to address some concern issues we are having with students who are not present for face-to-face instruction, we have made some revisions to our Opt-Out Option. Currently we have a few families who are asking for their students to be served through online instruction even though their students have not been required to be quarantined by the health department nor do they have family members at home who are at risk.  The Opt-Out Option was put in place in response to our recent 1900 policies that were adopted by the board to address the emergency resulting from Covid. Once the Opt-Out Option has been selected by a family and approved by the principal, the student will continue online instruction until the end of the quarter.  All Opt-Out requests will need to be resubmitted for approval each quarter. If the reasons for the Opt-Out request must be related to the impact of Covid on the student or his or her family.  If a student failed to complete his or her assignments during a prior Opt-Out period, the request for a renewal of the Opt-Out Option will be denied unless there are extenuating circumstances approved by the principal. If a student is absent from school due to normal childhood illness, that student should follow our regular procedures for completing his or her assignments while absent rather than attempting to participate through our online protocols involving extra planning and effort on the part of our teachers.
  • Policy 1905 that gave us the authority to grant credit to students for online learning requires that we are able to assess the students’ learning and document their progress. Students who do not complete and submit their online assignments by the deadlines established by their teacher will receive an “Incomplete” for those assignments and assessments. Students who fail to consistently complete assignments and/or assessments may lose the option to Opt Out of face-to-face learning. The principal will consider extenuating circumstances before removing Opt Out option.
  • As the number of Covid cases increases, we will shift to full online instruction even if the health department does not mandate school closures if we reach a target threshold in terms of students or teachers who are not able to attend school for face-to-face instruction.  For example if we have a third or 33% percent of our enrolled students (or 26 students) who are being quarantined, that would average three students per grade level, so in our combined grade level classes that would be six students who would be streaming instruction.  At that point, it would not be practical for our teachers to try to instruct both students in his or her classroom at online.  Likewise if we have more than two of our teachers out for quarantine, we would not be able to secure enough substitute teachers to cover their in-class instruction. Therefore, the administration is recommending that our trigger points for going to all online instruction would be 33% of students (twenty-six) out for Covid or no more than two of our teachers out.
  • Once we go into the online instructional mode, we will remain in that mode for two weeks and then reassess where we stand relative to the two trigger points- having 26 students out or more than two certified teachers out to determine whether or not to return to face-to-face instruction.

 

Parents and Families:

Today (May 10th) at around lunchtime, the Missoula County Health Department and the Board of Health made the following announcement:



Masks Now Strongly Recommended

Missoula County has met its intermediate vaccination goal of 60% eligible having received at least one dose.  The Health Board in April directed the Health Officer to rescind the mandate and issue recommendations upon meeting this goal.  Those recommendations are issued in the attached document and effective immediately as of May 10, 2021. 

 

Missoula County is among the top in the state for vaccination progress.  The Board and Health Officer commend its many vaccinating partners and citizens' cooperation with masks and the progress with vaccinations that have brought Missoula to this place of low COVID transmission and high vaccination rates. 

 

The Governor's signing of HB 257 occurred simultaneous to Missoula County meeting it's goals and rescinding mask rule as planned by the Health Board. 


Mr. Rouse has posted signs on the doors of the school stating that wearing face masks is recommended (not required).  He has met with each class to let the students know that the wearing of face masks is now optional.  For the younger students, he told the students that their parents would talk to them about whether or not they needed to wear a face mask at school anymore. 


John P. Rouse, Principal




 

Notice of Election: School & Special District Election and Notice of Close of Regular Voter Registration

 

 

 

 

Notice is hereby given that on May 4, 2021, a mail ballot election for the following districts will be held:

 

School Districts:

·       Potomac School District #11

o   Trustee Election 1 Yr Term (choose 1)

o   Trustee Election 3 Yr Term (choose 1)

 

Ballots mail to all active and provisional voters on April 14, 2021 and are due by 8:00 p.m. on May 4, 2021. Inactive voters may request a ballot before 12:00 p.m. May 3, 2021 with the Missoula County Elections office. Please visit the Secretary of State’s My Voter Page (http://www.MyVoterPageMT.com) to check your voter registration status.

 

School district electors, as defined in Title 13, are those who reside in the District and are registered to vote by the close of registration on April 5, 2021.

 

Absentee ballots for the May 4, School-Special District Election may be acquired at the Elections Office at 140 N Russell Street weekdays between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. from April 14 – noon on May 3.

 

Voters who miss the Close of Registration deadline may late register for the Annual School & Special District Election at 140 N Russell Street from April 6, 2021 through May 3, 2021. Currently, between noon and the close of business on the day before Election Day, voters can complete & submit a voter registration card, but they will need to return to the local election office on Election Day to pick up and vote a ballot. Same day voter registration is currently also available at the Elections Office on Election Day – May 4, 2021.

 

On Election Day, drop off locations open at 7:00 a.m. and will continue to be open until 8:00 p.m.

DROP OFF LOCATION ON ELECTION DAY:


        Potomac Greenough School, 29827 Potomac Rd, Potomac, MT 59823


 

Notice is hereby given that regular* registration for the Annual School & Special District Election to be held on Tuesday, May 4, 2021 will close at 5:00 p.m., on Monday, April 5, 2021.

 

Ballots will be automatically mailed on Wednesday, April 14, 2021 to active electors only.

 

Voters who miss the Close of Registration deadline may late register for the Annual School & Special District Election at the Elections Office (140 N Russell Street, Missoula, MT 59801) from April 6, 2021 through May 3, 2021. Between noon and the close of business on the day before Election Day, voters can complete & submit a voter registration card, but they will need to return to the local election office on Election Day to pick up and vote a ballot. Same day voter registration is currently also available at the Elections Office on Election Day – May 4, 2021.

 

All active, provisional, and inactive electors of the included districts in Missoula County Montana are entitled to vote in said election.

 

**Note: An application for voter registration properly executed and postmarked on or before the day regular registration is closed must be accepted as a regular registration for 3 days after regular registration is closed. Inactive electors may reactivate by appearing at the Elections Office in order to vote, by requesting an absentee ballot in any election, or by notifying the County Election

Administrator in writing of the elector’s current address in the county.

 

Please visit our current election webpage at www.MissoulaVotes.com or contact the Elections Office at (406) 258-4751.

 

 

 

DATED this 26th of March Missoula County Elections

 

Run Date: March 28, April 4 and April 11, 2021 (Not more than 40 days or less than 10 days before election 3x).











Potomac School Wellness Action Plan


Background:  As a partial requirement to participate in the summer food program, the school district is required to have a School Wellness Action Plan. The Potomac School District has a School Wellness policy (See Policy 2510-R under school board policies). Prior to developing our School Wellness Action Plan, we formed a School Wellness Committee that is composed of staff members and students.  The committee completed an assessment of our current school wellness efforts using a survey instrument developed and disseminated by the Montana Team Nutrition Program at the Montana Office of Public Instruction.  The survey was completed independently by the committee members.  The results of the survey were presented to the Potomac School District Board of Trustees and the Parent Teacher Club (PTC) for their consideration and input. The survey included five goal areas: Nutrition Guidelines,Nutrition Education, Nutrition Promotion, Physical Activity, and School Wellness.  The goal areas from this survey that contained ratings indicating that a particular indicator has not been met are addressed in the Action Plan.


Note: The School Wellness Action Plan shown below is a draft version.  After it has been reviewed by the school board and the PTC, it will be updated and finalized.

 

 

 


Potomac Elementary School

29750 Potomac Road

Bonner, Montana 59823

 

 

 

 

 

 Phone  (406) 244-5581

 Fax (406) 244-5840                     www.potomacschoolmontana.us


“Potomac School equips each student for his/her future

 within a culture of excellence that values the small community experience."

 

 

 


School Wellness Action Plan 

2020-21

(Draft as of April 1, 2021)

 

Goal Area

Action Steps

Timeline/Responsible Person

Evaluation

2. Nutrition Education

The school allows students opportunities to apply critical thinking skills in making menu selections.

Food Service Manager

Direct observation of students making choices during menu selection. Manager will track the number of students not exercising critical thinking while in the process of selecting food choices.

 

3. Nutrition Promotion

The school implements only fundraising projects that promote nutritious choices.

Fund Raising Sponsors

All fundraising projects that involve food must have prior approval of the principal.

4. Physical Activity

Teachers and other personnel do not prohibit or deny student participation in recess as a consequence for inappropriate behavior.

Teachers and principal

Teachers will not withhold participation during recess as a consequence for disciplinary infractions. Verified by direct observation.

5. School Wellness

School administration and staff partner with community groups to promote nutrition, physical activity, and wellness to students and staff members.

Staff members and principal

At each School Wellness Committee meeting, the members of the committee will review our progress with respect to achieving this goal.

 

Potomac School District's Return-to-School Plan

posted Aug 11, 2020, 3:19 PM by John Rouse

August 11, 2020

Our first day of school is Wednesday, August 26th.  This school year is obviously going to be a different type of year because of the impact that the Covid-19 virus is having.  We have been working over the summer to be prepared for whatever conditions might exist when school opens.  We have prepared a Return-to-School Plan.  We have emailed out copies of that plan to those parents/guardians for whom we have email addresses. The Plan and associated documents have also been posted on our webpage.

 

The Plan provides some detail as to the precautions we will be taking at school to create and maintain a healthy environment for students and staff members.  As noted in the plan, wearing face coverings in the classrooms is optional for both students and staff members; however, all adults (staff members, volunteers, and visitor) must wear face coverings anytime they are inside of school district buildings and the community center, except for staff members while they are in their work area—classrooms, offices, or kitchen.

 

While we are looking forward to the return of our students on the 26th, we understand that some students will need to remain home until the conditions at school are such that families feel safe sending their students to school.  In the packet of materials that were emailed out was an Opt-Out Form.  This form needs to be completed and returned by the parent/guardian for any student(s) who will not be returning to the classroom on August 26th. By completing this form, the parent/guardian is indicating their intention of keeping their student(s) home from school until the end of the first quarter of school (October 22nd).  The Opt-Out Form will need to be resubmitted at the beginning of each quarter. A copy of the Opt-Out form is on the school district’s webpage as well.

 

From the initial surveys that were sent to parents, it appears that only about ten students will be remaining at home when school opens.  There were nine students whose parents indicated that they were still undecided about their students returning to the classrooms. For those students whose parents submitted the Opt-Out of In-Class Instruction Forms, we will be providing live streaming of the classroom instruction as it is taking place at school.

 

Also, in the packet and on the webpage is a Health Screening and Liability Waiver Form that needs to be reviewed, signed, and returned to this school.  This form is an acknowledgement that the school will be conducting temperature screening of students, staff members, volunteers and visitors.  Our hope is to keep our school open for our students. We will utilize social distancing as much as possible in our facilities and stress good personal hygiene including handwashing, appropriate use of hand sanitizers, and cleaning and disinfecting frequently contacted surfaces. A critical step in this process will be for every parent/guardian to conduct a quick Health Assessment on their student(s) before sending them to school. An easy-to-use Daily Health Assessment is also available in the information that was included in the email documents and on the webpage.

Thanks for your patience and understanding during these unusual circumstances.

Getting Ready for the New School Year

posted Jul 16, 2020, 12:46 PM by John Rouse


The first day of school at Potomac School District #11 for the 2020-21 school year will be August 26th. As you are aware, these are unusual times due to the COVID-19 pandemic. During the month of June, the administration, staff members, and school board members, spend a great deal of time developing some policies and procedures that will provide the framework and guidance for us as we prepare for the opening of our new school year. At this point in time, most of the decisions regarding the reopening of schools have been left up to local school boards working within some parameters from the governor's office and the public health department. The governor recently issued a directive requiring the wearing of face masks in public settings. At this time, this directive does not apply to schools.
We are planning to begin our school year with our regular classroom instruction in place. We will be practicing social distancing to the extent possible in our school facilities and at school functions. There will be some adjustments in how we provide our meals in the cafeteria and how we provide for library and recess times to allow us to spread our students out.
Some of the steps we will take to provide a safe environment for our students and staff members will include:
  • checking the temperature of students, staff members, and visitors when they enter the building using non-contact thermometers;
  • providing frequent opportunities for students to wash their hands and use hand sanitizer when appropriate;
  • adjusting hallway traffic flows to avoid crowding;
  • restricting access to some playground equipment that does not allow for social distancing and/or frequent cleaning;
  • reducing or eliminating the sharing our classroom supplies (ie- scissors, pencils, pens, and computers); and
  • providing for daily cleaning and sanitizing of of classrooms and frequently touched surfaces.
We are still awaiting updated information regarding athletic events and other larger group gatherings from the appropriate organizations and agencies.
For those families who need to keep their children at home rather than send them to school due to health concerns for the student or a family member, provisions will be made to allow the opportunity for the student's learning to continue at home. These situations will be addressed on an individual basis upon request from the family. We believe that our flexibility and our small class sizes allow us to serve the needs of all students in the Potomac school district.
Should you have questions regarding how the school can address any special needs of your child, please contact John P. Rouse, principal, anytime at jrouse@potomacschoolmontana.us or call 406 244-5581 extension 201 beginning August 3rd.

The School Calendar for the 2020-21 School Year Was Modified by the Board

posted Apr 20, 2020, 3:20 PM by John Rouse   [ updated Apr 21, 2020, 9:12 AM ]

The Board of Trustees took action during their April board meeting to revise the previously approved 2020-21 school calendar to reflect the scheduled spring break week that matches the March 15-19, 2021 spring break as shown in the MCPS school calendar. In order to accommodate this change the break that was scheduled in the original calendar around Easter weekend has been removed and two additional days were added to the end of the calendar in June.  Under the newly revised calendar for 2020-21, the last day of school for students will be June 10th.

Governor Bullock extended the Public School Closure Until April 24th

posted Apr 7, 2020, 1:48 PM by John Rouse   [ updated Aug 10, 2020, 5:06 PM ]

Governor Steve Bullock just announced at 2:00 PM on April 7, 2020 that he is extending the Stay-At-Home order and the Closure of Public Schools for the state of Montana until April 24th.

He also encouraged all Montanas to wear cloth face masks when you go out into public places. Also continue washing your hands and utilizing social distancing

eBooks Available

posted Apr 6, 2020, 11:16 AM by John Rouse

Parents,
Although the public library is not allowing anyone to check out or return library books during the virus pandemic, you or your child can access eBooks online through two easy-to-use apps--Overdrive and Libby. You must have a Missoula Public School library card to check out and read books from these sites.  You may contact John Rouse at the school at 244-5581 or jrouse@potomacschoolmontana.us, if you would like him to look up your child's library card number.

Thanks.
John Rouse, principal

Thank you to Parents

posted Apr 6, 2020, 7:31 AM by John Rouse   [ updated Apr 6, 2020, 7:31 AM ]


Potomac School Parents,
I wanted to take a moment to say thank you for your hard work and patience during this time of our school closure. I know that for many people--adults and children--this is a stressful period. I am hearing from our teachers that most of our students are doing well with their school work at home, and we recognize that this is because you are taking your role as parent seriously by creating at learning atmosphere at home that gives your child the structure and guidance he or she needs to continue learning during these unusual times.

Most teachers are creating lessons that take advantage of the many resources that are available to us including Youtube videos created by the teachers. These video segments allow our students to feel like they are still connected to their teachers and their classes. Also most of our teachers are providing the entire week's worth of lessons early in the week, so students can pace their work throughout the week. Please help your child with the pacing of the work, so he or she does not get overwhelmed or fall behind. Finally do not hesitate to contact your child's teachers if the student or you have any questions.

Thanks again.

John Rouse
Principal

Ms. Olson's Class - Website

posted Mar 27, 2020, 5:49 PM by John Rouse

Ms. Olson has created a class web site that is accessible by her students' parents.  Please see the link below:


March 27th Potomac School Closure Update--The governor extended the school closure until April 10th

posted Mar 27, 2020, 1:03 PM by John Rouse

Governor Bullock has extended the school closures in Montana until April 10th. We will continue offering instruction through distance learning.  A variety of different online programs are being used by our teachers to provide our students will the best instruction possible under the circumstances.  You or your student should be receiving regular communications from his or her teachers either through e-mail, telephone, or papers sent home with the meal deliveries at the bus stops.  If you are not receiving these communications, email the teacher or contact me at jrouse@potomacschoolmontana.us.

Parents- Please continue providing a routine structure at home for your children that includes set times during the day for them to complete their schoolwork.  We strongly encourage your children to read at least 40 minutes a day in addition to that required for their assignments.  Also, there our art activities being offered by our art teacher, Asha MacDonald.  See "Art with Asha" on Youtube.

Istation is a program that our teachers use in both math and reading.  Your children are familiar with the program and know how to use it.  Please allow them to access this program.  Istation has added a new component called Home-to-School Connection that will allow your child to continue progressing through the Istation activities and assessments.  Plus, Istation’s Parent Portal offers online access to supplemental home activities and skill-building lessons that a parent can go over with their child and includes printable materials for use at home. Parents can also track progress with personalized data profiles. The Parent Portal can be accessed on any device with a browser, such as a smartphone, tablet, or PC.

In order for the program to accurately determine the level at which your child needs to be working, it is important to have accurate assessment data.  Please do not assist your child, when he or she is taking an Istation assessment.  The link to begin access to Istation's home to school program is below.  You will be asked to load the Isation app on your device.  It should work fine on the school's Chromebooks or Ipads.

IMPORTANT COMMUNICATION FOR POTOMAC SCHOOL PARENTS...PLEASE READ

posted Mar 23, 2020, 3:27 PM by John Rouse

IMPORTANT COMMUNICATION FOR POTOMAC SCHOOL PARENTS...PLEASE READ

 

Potomac School Parents,

As we are continuing through this period of some degree of uncertainty resulting from the virus outbreak, our staff members have been working hard to find the best ways to continue to serve the educational needs of our students. This letter is to outline what you can expect from our teachers during the period of school closure.  Although the governor initially closed schools until March 27th, one of his recent communications used language that implies that the closure will “likely” extend beyond the 27th of March. We anticipate that the closure will extend longer.

 

Our teachers are committed to serving their students to the greatest extent possible given the circumstances.  The manner in which lessons, instruction, and follow-up support will be offered to the students varies depending upon the grade level of your child and the courses he or she is taking. Teachers will use the email addresses that we have on file to communicate directly with parents during this time.  Each of your child’s teachers will be contacting you by email. These emails will contain important information regarding the tasks, assignments, and activities your child will be expected to complete.  I cannot emphasize enough how important it is for your child to continue to complete these assignments. If your child struggles or needs additional support, your child’s teacher will be available for support. If your child does not attempt to continue to learn during this time period, he or she will likely fall behind in terms of student achievement.  These activities are not suggestions for your child, they are, in fact, regular assignments that are expected to be completed by the student.  Each teacher will develop a method for assessing the degree to which each student is successfully completing these assignments, and that assessment will be used to determine the student's progress.

 

On Wednesday, March 25th,  from 7am to 7pm, Mr. Rouse will be available at the main building of the school.  During this time, students and/or parents will be allowed to enter the building to collect textbooks and supplies that the student needs. 

 

Our teachers are taking advantage of technology to provide the best activities possible for their students.  We will be using programs like Google Classroom, Khan Academy, Istation, and the online portions of our English Language Arts program to provide interesting and challenging lessons.  Because for many of our students having access to some type of device-- desktop computer, Chromebook, iPad, or smartphone will be important, we are allowing families to check out Chromebooks or iPads from our school (one unit per family).  

 

Mr. Rouse will be available Wednesday, March 25th, 7am to 7pm to allow a parent to sign a “Consent To Use” document and pick up the device/charging cord.  Mr. Rouse will facilitate this process in order to respect social distancing and to limit the numbers of people in the building.  Please come to the front entrance of the main building (West side of the building).  Please park your vehicle only on the side of the street closest to the school to allow traffic to continue to flow on Potomac Road. During the time of the school closure, students may drop off any school work for their respective teachers by simply dropping their work in the library book Drop Box located at the school library building.  Please be sure the student’s name is on the materials, and that they are bundled together with a rubber band.  Do not put technology equipment at the drop box.  Simply keep the equipment until we reopen the school.

 

Because of the dedication of our staff members, your child can expect opportunities during this time period to speak directly with his or her teacher either via the computer or directly over the phone during normal school hours. Please allow your child time to talk with his or her teacher when contacted by phone or by device.  It is important to maintain personal contact with each student to provide the child with a sense of security in knowing that his or her teacher is there. 

 

Because the school facilities will be closed during this time, if you have questions please do not hesitate to call Mr. Rouse at 406 540-2013. 

 

Thanks,

 

John P. Rouse, Principal

 

January 20th is a school holiday

posted Jan 17, 2020, 2:12 PM by John Rouse

Potomac School District #11 is closed on Monday, January 20th, in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

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