Dupo schools to use hybrid model

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The Dupo School District announced last week that it will use a hybrid model when school starts later this month.

The “Return to Learning Plan” the Dupo School Board approved divides students into two groups, with one attending in person Tuesdays and Thursdays and the other attending in person Wednesdays and Fridays. All students will attend school remotely on Mondays. 

Parents will also have the option to have their students remotely attend school full-time. Choosing that route involves a commitment of one quarter at the elementary and junior high school and one semester at the high school.  

“In order to follow the requirements and guidelines from (the Illinois State Board of Education, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Illinois Department of Public Health) for safety precautions of our students and staff, the recommendation to the board was to offer a choice to parents that include an alternate school day for in-person learning or a full remote learning option,” Dupo Superintendent Kelly Carpenter explained. “These are not the learning options that we want for our students. Everyone very much wants in-person every day. However, the requirements do not support that opportunity at this time.” 

The district formed planning committees with stakeholders like administrators, teachers, union leaders, transportation company officials, school board members, the district attorney and public health officials to help develop its plan. 

The district said its plan may require edits as the guidelines and pandemic evolves, referring to the plan as an “ever-changing” document.

Currently, the school day will run from 7:50 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. at Bluffview Elementary School and 7:40 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Dupo Junior/Senior High School.

Breakfast and lunch will be served in the classrooms at both schools, and teachers will be available for remote learning support from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Monday and 2-4 p.m. every other weekday. 

When students are physically at school, they must maintain social distancing as much as possible throughout the day. Furniture has been rearranged to facilitate this, and barriers will be in place for certain types of instruction that require students to be near others or their teacher. 

Face masks will be required for everyone unless they are under two years old or provide a doctor’s note saying they have a medical reason not to wear a mask. Students must provide their own face coverings, as there will only be a limited supply on-hand if needed. 

Staff will also wear other personal protective equipment when teaching requires close contact with students. 

The plan also encourages frequent hand washing, outlines detailed cleaning procedures and requires parents conduct a daily health screening prior to sending their child to school. 

For remote learning, the district said that will be more rigorous than last year – including the standard grading policy being used. The district will provide a device for every student to complete their work. 

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