Families in the Milton School District are asked to select one of two instructional models outlined in the district’s reopening plan known as Milton Forward. The deadline for signing up is Friday, July 24.
The online signup form can be accessed via a link provided in The Red Hawk Review, emailed to families July 17. Anyone not able to complete the form online is asked to contact their student’s principal or the district office at (608) 868-9200.
One form must be submitted for each student in a family.
While Rock County remains in Phase 2 of its reopening plan, the district will offer two instructional options for families.
For families who would prefer to keep their students home, virtual learning is an option. Director of Curriculum and Instruction Ryan Ruggles said Virtual Learning 2.0 is designed to be an improved version of the program implemented in spring.
The other option is in-person schooling. Students will learn in “cohorts” or groups. “Cohorting,” a recommended instructional option from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, keeps students assigned to a limited group of their peers. Smaller group sizes will limit coronavirus exposure among students and staff, and allow for better physical distancing in district buildings.
In grades 4K-6, cohorts will work with a primary homeroom teacher. Teachers will rotate to cohorts as needed. Classes such as art, music and physical education will take place within the cohort’s learning environment. Lunches and recesses will be staggered to help encourage physical distancing between cohorts. Grades 4K-6 cohorts meet in person five days a week.
Students in grades 7-12 will be assigned to A/B cohorts based on last names. A/B schedules will alternate every other day. Students will attend in-person or virtual instruction every other day on week days.
In recent surveys about 85% of guardians and 97% of Milton School District staff indicated that the sanitization and regular cleaning of classrooms and shared spaces would make them feel more comfortable with students physically returning to the schools. In the same surveys, both guardians and staff indicated that physical distancing and following the recommendations from local health officials were important in any return to school planning.
According to Superintendent Rich Dahman, as long as the Rock County Department of Public Health recommends the use of face coverings, the district will follow that guidance. The district will require the use of face coverings (cloth masks, face shields, gaiters) in shared spaces and learning environments where physical distancing cannot be maintained.
Milton Forward Virtual Q&A sessions were scheduled for Tuesday, July 21. A follow-up story will be posted at miltoncourieronline.com.