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Update: Family Feedback Survey & Return to School Planning

Over the past few weeks, the district has aggregated the data obtained through the Family Feedback Survey sent to all families at the beginning of June. More than 2,000 families, which represent approximately 80 percent of the student body, submitted the survey to provide input about their children’s experience during emergency remote learning this spring and their preferences for return to school in the fall.
 
Ohio schools have still not yet received specific return-to-school guidance from the Governor, the Ohio Department of Health or the Ohio Department of Education. Whenever that guidance is issued, the Solon Schools will continue to follow the recommended public health guidelines as well as consult locally with the Cuyahoga County Board of Health.
 
“To best prepare for what we anticipate will be a changing situation surrounding the impact and extent of COVID-19 in our community, our district is finalizing detailed plans with contingencies for three different models: All students attend class in their school buildings, all students continue full remote learning and students attend school in a hybrid, blended model that combines some in-school learning and some remote learning at home,” said Fred Bolden, Solon Schools Superintendent Pro Tempore. “These plans also include flexibility for families who may need to choose the remote learning option regardless of how the district returns to school in August due to health issues of their child or in their family. All of the reopening decisions will be based on prioritizing student safety and student learning.” 
 
In addition to input from staff at each school in the district, the return-to-school plans incorporate feedback from the June family survey.
 
Considering the experience of each of their children, overall, the majority of families reported that remote learning was successful or very successful. While there were slight differences by grade level with older students reporting more success than younger ones, approximately 60 percent of our families reported that their children’s experience was either successful or very successful. Approximately 25 percent of families at each school reported that remote learning was inconsistent for their child.
 
Reflecting more on their experience with the remote learning from the spring and identifying what would help if remote learning continued, families indicated a need for increased direct live instruction from their children’s teachers, more specific guidance on prioritizing and planning work and assignments, as well as a more formalized schedule outlining what times of the day class periods meet virtually.
 
Looking ahead, families provided their preferences for return to school:
• Approximately 53 percent of our families selected full in-classroom learning as their first choice.
• 58 percent of families selected a hybrid or blended model combining in-school and remote learning (such as alternate days, partial days) as their second choice.
• 15 percent of families selected full remote distance learning as their first choice.
 
It is clear from this data that an overwhelming majority of our families want their children receiving some or all of their instruction in person. The data does also highlight a need to have a virtual option for those families that cannot access the learning in person.
 
Additionally, families underscored the need for adhering to public health recommendations at school. These include:
• 98 percent of families said increased cleaning and sanitization of classrooms, buildings and busses is important or very important.
• 96 percent of families said frequent and monitored student hand washing is important or very important.
• 74 percent of families said students wearing face coverings (such as masks or face shields) is important or very important.
• 77 percent of families said staff members wearing face coverings (such as masks or face shields) is important or very important.
 
Once the state’s guidance is issued hopefully this week, the district’s planning team will refine each of the plans to be sure all guidance is considered and incorporated. At that time, we will communicate directly with families, Mr. Bolden added.