Letter (7/1/20) to Parents/Guardians re: School Opening

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Dear Parents/Guardians —

As we close the 2019-20 school year, our learning community reflects on how we approached emergency remote learning. During emergency remote learning, our teachers and staff quickly began the process of discovering how to teach virtually while still managing challenges we all faced when working from home. We appreciate your kindness and understanding during that time because none of us were prepared for this “hard shutdown,” and we thank the Bay Village community for staying together during a physically distanced time. I am proud of our families’ commitment to being our educational partners, our students’ perseverance as learners, and our staff’s dedication as public servants in education. 


We appreciate and understand the angst we all feel during this period of waiting. Originally, our goal was to send our parent letter once the Governor announced school reopening rules and guidelines; but, we cannot wait any longer after several delays. We expect the announcement to include health rules or requirements for all schools, and guidelines that offer more local control where each school district can make decisions based on their community’s unique features. Our administrative team, teacher leaders and Board of Education have been preparing a myriad of procedures, protocols and plans to reopen our schools.  But, we will need your help to make the reopening successful.


Our primary goal is to provide a safe learning environment for students, and at the same time, safe working conditions for staff and faculty.  We must ensure our adults are healthy in order to serve our children. This is a challenging puzzle because we are balancing mitigation strategies with access to a high-quality education; consequently, it may be necessary to adjust our plans differently and we request your input.  


Please look for an important survey that will be sent via email (along with a text alert) within the next day or so -- it is not an anonymous survey because we are seeking actionable information from families.  We are sending to only one parent per household (to mother first if email is available).*


In-Person School Reopening

As things presently stand, the Bay Village City School District plans to welcome students back to school on August 18th. (This is one day after our regularly scheduled date for the 20-21 school year and will need school board approval.) Our custodial and maintenance staff are preparing our buildings to meet this timeline. We continue to expect the Ohio Department of Health to release official guidelines by the end of this week, and this will help us finalize the reopening plan details. We anticipate sending out an announcement about academic school schedules by mid-July.


However, we know that an outbreak of the virus could spike again in the future, resulting in the potential closing of in-person school again. We also know that there will be a small percentage of Bay Village students who, due to health reasons or family situation, will need to use remote learning as their primary means of accessing their education. Therefore, staff professional development will ensure that we will be ready for any of the following scenarios: 

  1. returning to school with physical distancing measures in place; 
  2. remote learning for families who choose this option; and
  3. remote learning (synchronous/asynchronous) for all with a daily student schedule and required attendance during district shutdown. 

We are working diligently to maximize our ability to safely return to in-person school, while also preparing equitable accommodations for all students. 


Potential Calendar Adjustments

At this point, we cannot know for sure the degree to which the COVID-19 pandemic will impact school, but there will be a few minor adjustments to next year’s calendar.

  • Bay Village Schools will resume one day after our originally announced date and will begin on August 18th (with school board approval)
  • We are not formally planning a scheduled shutdown during the winter, but if we see or are informed of warnings, we will adhere to the Cuyahoga County Board of Health or Ohio Department of Health directives.  We suggest strongly that families prepare a plan if schools must shut down quickly.

Academic Schedule

While students will attend every day for in-building instruction,  times for instructional days will be modified as we create a schedule that allows us to adhere to physical distancing requirements. Once we have clear health guidelines from the state for managing COVID-19 safety protocols for next year, we will let you know your child’s schedule by mid-July.

Health and Safety

Our administration has been working with health experts to keep our learning community safe upon our return to school. We will be sending a safety plan that outlines how each stakeholder will be our partner regarding health protocols and safe school operations.  In order to collaboratively provide a high-quality and safe education, our safety plan includes expectations for parents, students, faculty, staff, custodians, and administrators.  We cannot provide a safe learning environment and staff working conditions without your help.  The plan will include social distancing, hand-washing, facial coverings (depends on state health guidance), transportation support by parents, and daily health screenings. 


Along with you, we are reading and learning daily about new studies published regarding public education during a pandemic.  As an institution, we are committed to following the Center for Disease Control, Ohio Health Department guidelines and Cuyahoga County Board of Health guidance to reopen our schools; therefore all our staff will receive extensive health training.


In addition to conducting re-entry training for staff, we expect that the health departments may require that we ask where people who enter our buildings have recently traveled. Please consider that Ohio may once again ask travelers to self-quarantine for two weeks when returning from certain areas of the country or globe and how that may affect your family returning to school.


Food Service

We will be instituting a “Lunch & Learn” model where students will have time within the academic day to eat at their desks.  Students will be able to order and purchase “Grab & Go” lunches from our cafeteria or bring from home.  We feel strongly that we want to avoid any large group gatherings; therefore, the cafeterias will be repurposed for next year.



We know that socialization is very important to a child’s overall development and well-being; therefore, we will be providing recess at the K-4 levels.  We will continue to integrate our mindfulness strategies, classroom yoga, and growth mindset lessons into the classroom.  Moreover, we are expanding our mental health support across the district by partnering with the City of Bay Village to have a dedicated social worker, Ms. Kristine Harris, in our district. She has a stellar resume including earning a Masters Degree in Social Work from Case Western Reserve University.  Her experience and knowledge will support our students and families during this difficult time and other life challenges. 


Furthermore, in partnership with the Bay Village Police Department, we are excited to announce that a new school resource officer, Officer Ben Kitchen, will be joining our team.  He will bring a positive approach to supporting our students and respectfully teaching them the importance of personal safety and good decision-making. His kind demeanor and strong communication skills will build trusting relationships with students and staff.  



Because we are in Bay Village, we are planning to run our regular bus routes.  We are waiting to hear from the Governor about specific transportation rules.  There are clear studies that community spread occurs at a higher rate on buses; therefore, we encourage walking, bike riding (grades 3-12) and car riding to school.  We may need to ask for your help transporting your child(ren) because space on our buses may be limited due to safe distancing for students and drivers. Please ensure you answer the survey carefully regarding the transportation question.  Remember, our safety protocols are to protect our students and our staff.  We need all children and adults healthy to remain open. 



Given the challenge of holding large events during the COVID-19 pandemic, we will continue to evaluate all of the Bay Village City Schools events. Unfortunately, we expect that we will need to cancel, postpone or modify some events based on the pandemic’s impact. We are always hopeful, and we will make careful decisions as we proceed through the year.  


Summer Training/Fall Sports

Following the guidance of Governor DeWine and the Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA), we have followed protocols to return our athletes to skills training. These specific protocols are communicated to athletes via their team head coach. It is imperative that following these protocols with fidelity will make it more likely for us and others to engage in more athletics during the 2020-21 school year. Athletic Director Mr. Matt Spellman and our dedicated coaches are working with our Cleveland Clinic Athletic Trainer to evaluate and update our training programs and safety protocols. 


Thank you again for your continuing partnership as we make plans to move forward to provide the best possible learning experience for your students.  We will send updates weekly via email or text about our planning, or if conditions change. I appreciate in advance your attention to these communications. The kindness, patience, empathy, and unwavering support inspires our Bay Village learning community to continue to work together.  


We cannot do this without you: we are One Rocket Nation!



Jodie Hausmann, Superintendent

*If you believe you did not receive a survey by Friday, July 3, please check your email spam folders. If neither parent in your family received the survey, complete the form at: https://bit.ly/DidNotReceiveParentSurvey0720 and we will get a survey link to you.

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