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COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Information and Updates

Communications
 
UPDATE: June 2, 2020
PHS Updates June 2
 
 
UPDATE: May 26, 2020
PHS Updates May 26, 2020
 
 
UPDATE: May 19, 2020
PHS Update May 19, 2020
 
 
UPDATE: May 14, 2020

LMS Families,
As we adjust to doing distance learning, our plan to ensure students can access the material in a systematic way is evolving.  Up to this point, we have been following a schedule that is very similar to the schedule students would have while attending school in person. However, we are aware that this method has been difficult for students and families. We want to continue to evolve as we learn to deliver distance learning more effectively. The schedule you see below is in response to input from families and our own growing understanding of best practice for distance learning. This new schedule has specific days in which students should work on material for their classes.  With this new schedule, students will only need to work on a few classes each day.  The plan is to begin this schedule on Monday, May 18th .

Much of the feedback we have received is that it is difficult for students to plan their week and manage assignments well.  We hope this updated schedule helps students to manage distance learning better!

 

Teachers will still post all assignments for the week no later than Monday morning at 9am.  This gives students the freedom to work ahead if they would like to do so.  This also gives kids a chance to look ahead and see the work that is assigned for the week.  We are hoping this eases some of the anxiety of “Distance Learning” which is new to all of us!

 lms distance learning schedule

 

Examples:

1.     My middle school student received all their work on Monday for his/her classes.  What do they do on Monday?  Students will work on material from their specialist class/es as well as English/Language Arts and Math.  Students will have the same schedule on Tuesday.  They will then work on Social Studies, Science, and specialist courses on Wednesday and Thursday.  Examples of Specialist classes are given on the sheet above.

2.     What if my student doesn’t complete the work on the indicated days?   We will accept student work for the remainder of the semester, even after the due date.  Students can turn work in to their teacher when it is finished…no matter what day it is.

3.     Why have a schedule?   Many of our students are struggling to come up with a schedule for themselves during the school week, and this is difficult on many families.  We have tried to map this out for students and parents to show what work should be done on specific days.  This will also give teachers better opportunities to provide meaningful feedback to students on their work on other days of the week.  We want students to engage in school during this time, but our goal is to ensure they are learning as well. 

4.     What if my student wants to do all their work for the week early…can they still do this?  Of course.  This is a guide for students, not a directive.  Students can still complete work early and turn in to teachers when they are ready,  that is why all assignments will still be posted on Monday mornings.

5.     So if my student has a schedule that works for them can they stick with that?  Yes

6.     Based on the schedule, what will students do each Friday?  This is a chance for students to finish anything they did not complete Monday-Thursday,  including work from all their classes, including specialists.  Teachers will be conducting zoom meetings and checking in with students who may be struggling and providing meaningful feedback for all kids.

7.     Does each teacher set up their times for zoom meetings or when their office hours take place?  On the bottom of the schedule are guidelines for office hours or check ins with students.  Teachers may offer more opportunities than the ones listed and for longer periods during the week.  This will be communicated to students on an individual class basis.  Stay tuned.

8.     Why make this change now?  This is new for all of us! We are learning more and more about Distance Learning every day and our plans will evolve over time, and we are dedicated to improving as we learn.  The goal is to provide a structure for students and develop a building wide approach to Distance Learning. 

 

Please feel free to email me if you have more questions:  cgrow@psd267.org  .  We are trying to get really good at this, really fast.  It’s a process! Thanks for continuing to support LMS and our teachers. 

 

Take care,

Cameron Grow
Principal
Lincoln Middle School

 

 
UPDATE: May 12, 2020
PHS Update May 12
 
 
UPDATE: May 6, 2020
Summary of the May 5 Update from OSPI

Dear Pullman Public Schools Families,

The following is a summary of the May 5, 2020 Update from Chris Reykdal, Washington State Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI):

 

OSPI has established the major building blocks of continuous learning, and is now working on clarifying the guidelines and addressing questions from school districts and families. OSPI has an extensive FAQ on their website that provides information about grading, online learning, and more.

 

Highlights

 

Graduation
OSPI and school districts have put a lot of work into caring for seniors and their unique needs. OSPI still has no definitive answers regarding graduation ceremonies, but it is very unlikely that schools will be able to have in-person graduation this spring since the Governor’s order is to close schools through June 19. School districts are advised to plan for an online graduation ceremony.

Pullman Public School Information:

  • Pullman High School’s graduation is June 6th and the last day for seniors is June 12th
  • Pullman High School is working on a plan for graduation and a variety of activities to recognize seniors – stay tuned for more information.

 

Days/Hours Waiver – OSPI Requirement
Resolution: School boards must adopt a resolution that will approve a continuous learning plan for the district and directs the superintendent to seek a waiver for days/hours from the state.
    • While questions still remain between the disconnect in the WACs and the three options OSPI is suggesting districts may select as a waiver/or not, Reykdal has remained firm that districts need to add the five days to the school year (not to exceed June 19th) and apply for a waiver of days and/or hours of instruction.
    • The OSPI form and the district’s Continuous Learning Plan must be submitted by May 29th.
    • Districts that fail to submit the form and their Continuous Learning Plan will be subject to reduced apportionment at the end of the funding year.

 

Pullman Public Schools will be presenting our Continuous Learning Plan and Resolution Wavier (fulfilling the 180-day requirement and not instructional hours) at the upcoming Board meeting. This will ensure our apportionment for the remainder of the school year. I want to thank our staff for their work and contributions building the continuous learning plan.

 

Open Public Meeting Act (OPMA) has been extended through May 31st. Virtual meetings approved until the end of May, with the extended stay at home order. Business activities should remain necessary and routine or COVID-19 related.

 

Re-Opening Schools:
The state faces a very tough decision regarding the plan for re-entry to schools, there is still a lot of information we don’t know related to re-opening. Opening schools is in one of the later stages in re-opening the state, likely to come with some limitations. The plan for re-opening will be research based, looking at what other countries and states have done and what has been successful.
  • OSPI will put together a large working group with subgroups; goal is to have menu of options available early June and to recognize that one size fits all won’t work with 295 districts.
  • Expect the plan to have a significant health component (masks, screening, cleaning, limited number of students in a classroom etc.)
  • Final decision will be up to the Governor.

 

Connectivity
  • School districts will need to report to OSPI related to numbers of students without devices and connectivity. This will help OSPI lobby for increased connectivity and connectivity/tech funding for school districts.
  • Reykdal noted that there is a need for school districts to move towards a single online learning platform in the future, for student and family ease of use as well as staff Professional Development. OSPI noted they may help fund purchase of and support professional development for perhaps three or four different platforms, most likely including: Google Classroom, Canvas, Microsoft Teams, and Schoology.
  •  

Pullman Public Schools continues to work hard to support students and families. We appreciate the continued communications from families, please keep sharing your challenges and celebrations with us!

Bob Maxwell, Superintendent

 

 

 

UPDATE: May 6, 2020
PHS Update May 6
 
UPDATE: April 29, 2020
Summary of the April 28 Update from OSPI
The following is a summary of the April 28 Update from Chris Reykdal, Washington State Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI):

We’ve come a long way in just 8 weeks! We started this school closure with so many questions and so many unknowns, and together we are working on tackling these challenges. 40+ states have closed schools for the remainder of the school year – we are not the only state in this position. Below is a summary of several items presented during the OSPI webinar yesterday.

Grading
OSPI shared grading guidance last week, school districts are expected to make a grading plan within this guidance, Pullman Public Schools finalized and shared the plan on April 28. The OSPI guidance is an emergency ruling, effective for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. Any longer term changes would take more discussion and law changes. Additional information can be found on our website.

Guidance overview:
  • DO NO HARM
  • High school courses and high school credit bearing courses must be graded using letter grades from A-D.
  • No “F” grades are to be given.
  • Students may improve grades, but their grades are not to be lower than they were prior to the school closure.
  • Incomplete grades are an option, but a plan must be in place to determine how that student will complete the course.
  • Pass/No Pass is an option only for courses that were set up that way prior to the school closure.
  • Graduation requirements can be waived based on local decision, for seniors only.
  • Elementary and non-high school credit middle school courses can retain their current grading methods, or can be locally determined.
  • All students are expected to engage, and teachers are expected to make every effort to engage students and continue learning. We are still receiving state funding because we are instructing students.


Last Day of School
ALL school districts in the state are required to hold school until June 19th, in an effort to add additional instructional time for students. For Pullman Public Schools, this means our last day of school will be June 19th.

School Re-Entry in the Fall
The Governor is working with epidemiologists to study scientific models related to COVID-19 and will make decisions on re-opening schools and other entities based on science. The governor will tell OSPI what the options are for re-opening schools in the fall. OSPI will convene a team, with various voices representing stakeholders, to inform what a re-opening of schools would look like. Reykdal emphasized that this is a huge undertaking, and there are a lot of aspects to consider. School districts are directed to not make any decisions or announcements regarding a return to school in the fall since we do not have those answers yet.

Graduation Ceremonies
There is a low probability that in-person graduation ceremonies will be permitted this spring/summer, and will be dependent on social distancing guidelines from the Governor. We hope to know more by May 4. Pullman High School graduation is scheduled for June 6th.

Special Education
As of now, federal special education laws are still in place, and special education staff are working hard to continue meeting IEP deadlines and goals. Please continue to support students in engaging in special services programming. If you have concerns or questions about special education, please reach out to your student’s teacher. Thank you for your continued patience and flexibility as we adjust to serving students in formats that are new to us all!

Student Engagement
Teachers are asked by OSPI and our district to document student engagement. Please continue to encourage students to be engaged in learning each day!

These decisions affect our school district and our community on many levels, and I want you to know how deeply our leadership team and staff values and centers on our students and families. Stay safe and well.

Sincerely,
Bob Maxwell, Superintendent

 

UPDATE: April 28, 2020
PHS Update April 28
 
UPDATE: April 28, 2020
Revised Calendar Dates for the Remainder of the 2019-2020 School Year
On April 6, 2020 Governor Inslee and State Superintendent, Chris Reykdal, announced that schools will be closed for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year in order to slow the spread of COVID-19 Coronavirus. The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) stated that districts are required to make every effort possible to make-up any days and instructional hours lost due to the COVID-19 outbreak, including extending the school year to June 19, 2020.

We understand that continued school closures are difficult on students, staff, families and the entire community. Being unable to return to school is disappointing news for all of us. The extended closure also raises numerous questions for students and families. We continually work to answer your questions as quickly as possible providing you the most current information we have available. The following are dates regarding the remainder of the academic year.

  • June 6 - Pullman High School graduation. The PHS administrative team is working with seniors on the specific details for graduation. In-person graduation will be modified and/or delayed. Additional information will be shared in the coming weeks.
  • June 12 - Last day of classes for seniors. During the week of June 8 – 12, seniors will be wrapping up year-end items (picking up personal items, paying fines, completing course work if necessary, etc.).
  • June 19 - Last day of school. This date complies with OSPI’s guidance regarding the last day of school for the 2019-2020 school year. This demonstrates a “good faith effort” by Pullman Public Schools to show effort towards meeting the instructional hours for students.
  • June 19 - Last day food service “Grab and Go” meals will be provided.
  • Summer School - We are awaiting information from the Governor on whether school facilities will be open to provide summer school services to students. Additional information will be shared with families in the coming weeks as it becomes available.


Resource:
OSPI COVID-19 Closure Information, Waivers and Make-Up Days: https://www.k12.wa.us/about-ospi/press-releases/novel-coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-resources

 
 
UPDATE: April 28, 2020
Fifth Grade Camp Update

On April 6, 2020 Governor Inslee, and Superintendent Chris Reykdal announced that schools will be closed for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year in order to slow the spread of COVID-19 Coronavirus. Unfortunately, this means that many school events, including 5th grade camp, have been cancelled. We know this is a beloved tradition in Pullman and that this is disappointing for our students, staff, and families.

While camp has been cancelled for this spring, we are brainstorming other possibilities to provide this outdoor education opportunity for our current 5th graders. We are exploring options, including the potential of offering a camp experience this fall. In the meantime, all 5th grade camp deposits have been returned by mail to families.

 
UPDATE: April 23, 2020

High School Students: College Admissions & Dual Credit Updates from OSPI, April 2020

Pullman Public Schools continues to prioritize supporting our students, especially high school students that are navigating considerable changes due to the Coronavirus related school closure. A few updates from the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) that impact high school students:

COLLEGE ADMISSIONS UPDATES
Washington’s 2- and 4-year colleges have created statements explaining how colleges will be adjusting their admissions process to account for the COVID-19 school closures. Click here for a statement that includes COVID-19 contact information for specific colleges and here for a statement that includes guidance on what seniors should do now to be prepared for the transition to college this fall.


RUNNING START
Colleges on the quarter system are now starting spring quarter. With the stay at home orders, colleges have moved to online learning. Students enrolled in a Running Start program that is on the quarter system, should reach out to their counselor immediately about spring quarter course registration.


COLLEGE IN THE HIGH SCHOOL
It is critical for high schools to work with their college partners to establish practices on how courses will be delivered and graded (for college grades) for the remainder of the semester. OSPI has released guidance on grading and attendance to help guide the development of high school grades. Districts should use the OSPI guidance in collaboration with the policies developed by their partner colleges to provide equitable and accurate grades for CHS students. Joint guidance from our colleges can be found here.


AP TESTING UPDATE
The College Board has extended the deadline to identify AP students for the reduced fee test rate. The new deadline for students to access a reduced fee for this spring’s modified exams is May 26th

Students who qualify for the fee reduction will have their exams paid for by OSPI. Click here for details on how students can qualify.

AP/College Board updates related to COVID-19 at:

https://pages.collegeboard.org/collegeboard-covid-19-updates

 

OSPI COVID-19 guidance can be found at:

https://www.k12.wa.us/about-ospi/press-releases/novel-coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-resources

 
 
 
UPDATE: April 16, 2020

AP Testing Update

 

The latest AP testing information from College Board

 

In late April College Board will be providing information and practice sessions directed at taking the online exams and the technical information.  The above link has a lot of information including the new test schedule and details about each exam content. 

A few PHS students have asked about not taking the exams.  Information about cancellation:

Student Exam Decisions
Students don’t need to communicate whether they plan to take the exam before the exam administration, and there’s no action required if a student decides not to take an exam that was ordered for them. If a student doesn’t take an online exam, PHS will be notified in early June and will start the fee refund process. There will be no cancellation fee charged.  College Board encourage students to wait until closer to the exam date to decide whether they will take the exam.

 
 
UPDATE: April 13, 2020
Chromebook Internet Filtering Update

Parents/Guardians of Pullman Public School students,
During these unprecedented times of remote learning, we continue to be concerned about the content your children have access to through the internet. Over spring break we remotely updated all district Chromebooks with a new web filtering tool called “Securly”, a tool specifically designed for one-to-one, and distance learning situations. Your students may notice a new block page should they venture into less-than-desirable content. Our teachers have been made aware of this new solution and will be prepared to address any challenges your student may encounter with filtering.

We want to alert you to this change and ask that you let your student’s teacher know if your student is blocked from a teacher-directed site. Please know that our primary goal is to keep your student safe while online and Securly is designed to do just that.

For any technical problems you might encounter, please remember to email remotesupport@psd267.org.

 
 
UPDATE: April 7, 2020
Extracurricular Activities and Athletic Update
An update from WIAA:
The WIAA has received clarification that the order issued by Governor Inslee on Monday, April 6, 2020 includes the cancellation of all in-person extracurricular athletics and activities through the end of the school year. This will include all regular season contests and practices as well as all postseason tournaments and championship events.


The decision was undoubtedly a difficult one for Governor Inslee. However, it was done so to keep the students and families of Washington safe. The WIAA Executive Board and the WIAA Staff feel for those students around the state that have had their seasons or careers cut short. This terrible disease has not only prevented students from creating lifelong memories through competition, it has limited the valuable lessons gained through participation in education-based athletics and activities.

The WIAA will continue to work with member schools around the state of Washington to navigate this unprecedented time. We have already seen some outstanding examples of athletic directors and coaches making the best of their situations and we know that work will continue.
 
 
UPDATE: April 6, 2020
All Pullman Public Schools Closed for the Remainder of the 2019-2020 School Year
On April 6, Governor Inslee announced schools will be closed for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year, in order to slow the spread of COVID-19. Without these restrictions, public health authorities say the rate of infection will overwhelm the healthcare system.

We acknowledge continued school closures are difficult for students, staff, families and our entire community. This is disappointing news for all of us: students miss their friends and teachers, and we miss our students. The extended closure also raises numerous questions for students and families. We are working to answer your questions as soon as possible. In the meantime, here is what we know now:
  • Digital Learning will continue. We are committed to continuing to partner with families and community to support our students’ learning while they are at home.
  • We will continue to prioritize support for our high school seniors to ensure they have what they need for post-secondary transitions. We are working with the state’s college system to ensure smooth transitions. 
  • We will continue to provide meals for students.
  • If your child needs a Chromebook please contact remotesupport@psd267.org
  • All events, including athletics, dances and scheduled school trips, are canceled. We will be reaching out to students to come up with creative alternatives to celebrate milestones such as prom and graduation. We will keep students and families updated.
  • In-person graduation ceremonies will be modified to virtual ceremonies and/or postponed. We will communicate plans as soon as possible.
  • We are awaiting information from the Governor on whether schools will be open for summer school. 


We will continue to support our students and families during this difficult time. We are committed to delivering the very best education possible in these unprecedented circumstances and to doing all we can to support students’ well-being. 

If you have questions, please contact your child’s school principal. As a reminder, we have many resources and information related to Coronavirus at www.pullmanschools.org.

We are a strong community, and we will get through this together.

Sincerely,
Bob Maxwell

 
 
 
UPDATE: April 3, 2020
An Update from Pullman Public Schools
Dear Families,
Important Information:
  • Spring Break for Pullman Public Schools is next week – Monday, April 6 through Friday, April 10. While it seems as if nothing is normal right now, we are honoring this break and asking staff and students to unplug and recharge. Enjoy a much deserved break!
  • Food Service: We are still providing meals during Spring Break! The delivery schedule will remain the same. Meal pick-ups will be from 11:30am-12:30pm at LMS and PHS only. Food service information: https://www.pullmanschools.org/apps/pages/index.jsp?uREC_ID=1668785&type=d&pREC_ID=1853685
  • School Closure Update– Governor Jay Inslee announced the extension of Washington State’s Stay Home, Stay Healthy initiative through May 4th. This means that schools will remain closed. The earliest schools might reopen would be Tuesday, May 5th.
  • Learning Opportunities – After Spring break, students are expected to engage in assigned learning activities focused on the essential standards. Teachers will be providing feedback. For secondary students grades 6th-12thit is extremely important that students participate in weekly in assignments provided. For students taking classes for credit 8th-12th it is imperative that students participate in assignments to demonstrate progress in order to maintain credit.  If students are not participating, please encourage them to do so. Students that had a compromised grade can, if appropriate, turn in prior work and work on reassessments. 

I appreciate your patience and understanding as we navigate this public health crisis. Please take time to rest and spend time with your family. Be safe and stay healthy.

Bob Maxwell, Superintendent  
 
 
UPDATE: April 1, 2020
Chromebook Update

Families,
We are pleased to announce that all district Chromebooks that are currently checked out to families will be remotely updated to provide internet filtering protection. Monitoring online activity is a challenging task for parents, and we hope this update provides a helpful support for families as we focus on online/distance learning.

Some of the technical details: With district Chromebooks, we can force a PROXY web filter that students can’t update. The filtering level will be set to approve elementary level content – an automated request will be generated for any websites not automatically approved by the filter. Those website requests are sent to the school district for consideration prior to the student gaining access to the site. This is the same setting we use with students when they use technology in our schools.

Please note: This will NOT provide filtering for NON-District owned/managed hardware. We will not be able to filter a student using their home/personal equipment.

For Chromebook or other technology support, please contact our Technology Department at: remotesupport@psd267.org

Internet filtering will be activated on Chromebooks overnight, and will be effective on Chromebooks starting tomorrow.

Please forward technology questions or concerns to remotesupport@psd267.org.

 
 
UPDATE: March 31, 2020

Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction – COVID-19 Update: Timeline

Over the past month, our district, and our state as a whole, has faced unprecedented challenges to the way we operate our schools. With guidance changing nearly every day, we have had the daunting task of trying to reach a moving target. As direction from OSPI and the Governor change frequently, we are grateful for the support and understanding of our community, and the flexibility and positivity of our staff. We hope that the following information provides a helpful snapshot of the evolving guidance our district has received over the past month related to distance learning, as well as the direction we are headed.

A Summary of OSPI Guidance:
  • February 28, 2020: OSPI Bulletin 013-20: Preparation for Possible Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Outbreak in Washington State
    • “School districts must ensure equal access to education for all students. It will likely make more sense to cancel school and/or district services and make up missed days at the end of the school year, rather than deploying a distance learning model that can be accessed by some, but not all, of your students.”
  • March 3, 2020: OSPI Bulletin 014-20: Further Coronavirus (COVID-19) Guidance as of March 3, 2020
    • “Some districts and schools may be in a position to maintain educational continuity using distance learning methods, and you may choose to implement these options. It is important to note that if educational services are being delivered to students in any form, for the district to remain open, those services must be provided to all students, including students who don’t have access to technology at home and the continuance of a free and appropriate education to students with disabilities in accordance with their Individualized Education Programs (IEP). For most of you, it will likely make more sense to cancel school and/or district services and make up or waive missed days than to deploy a distance learning model that can be accessed by some, but not all, of your students.”
  • March 6, 2020: OSPI Bulletin 016-20: Coronavirus (COVID-19) Guidance on Online Learning, Waivers, and School Closures as of March 6, 2020
    • “OSPI does not recommend closed schools transition to an online distance model unless the district can ensure each of the considerations below can be met. These include, but are not limited to:
      • Ensuring all students in the school or district will have equal access to the learning and required materials, including technology.
      • Ensuring the online learning system can effectively support the district’s different learning and teaching needs, including the ability to provide differentiated instruction as well as one-on-one support for students who need it. Regardless of where the learning is happening, supports identified on a student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP) must be provided if the district is operating.
      • Ensuring the requirements of full-day kindergarten are met.
      • Ensuring students can access the assessments associated with dual credit coursework.
      • Providing training to staff, students, and parents and guardians on how the system works and what expectations the district has.
      • The ability to track the attendance of both students and staff.
      • Ensuring the systems in use are secure and will not allow for the release of protected student or staff information.
      • The ability to provide school meals.
Taking a traditional school environment online is not a simple task – nor is it one that should be attempted without serious consideration of the practicality and risk.”
The newest guidance from OSPI was released on March 23, 2020: OSPI Bulletin 019-20: Guidance for Long-term School Closures as of March 23, 2020
  • “Although schools are closed and are not providing traditional in-person instruction, education must continue. Further guidance will be grounded in compassion, communication, and common sense; rather than the traditional compliance measures we are all familiar with in our education community. […] We have an obligation to our students to provide them with opportunities to continue their learning during this pandemic.”

We will use this new guidance as an opportunity for the district and educators to explore new methods of teaching our students.

We continue to meet regularly with principals and Pullman Education Association leadership, via Zoom meetings, to begin framing our understanding of the expectations outlined by OSPI and begin developing an implementation plan for student learning. Teachers will continue to collaborate on instruction for our students. We will continue to keep our families updated on the ever evolving situation surrounding our school closure and guidance from OSPI.

This is a challenging time for each of us, and an excellent opportunity for us to come together as a team. Thank you for your continued patience and grace.

Sincerely,
Bob Maxwell, Superintendent


Resources:

 
 
UPDATE: March 27, 2020
Week 2 Activities and Resources for Students

Families,

Our teachers have collaborated to create a second week of activities and resources for students, to support families as students continue to learn from home.

 

In addition, please note that students now have required/preferred assignments for their Week Two classes, varying based on grade level.

 

The required assignments are found on the Activities and Resources for Students webpage under the grade level and/or subject – Week 2 link.

 

Teachers have noted/highlighted which assignments are required and/or preferred.

 

This is a challenging transition for all of us, and we are grateful for your support and patience as we work together to implement new technology and new instructional methods! If you have questions or concerns, please reach out to your student’s principal.

 

Link to the Pullman Public Schools Resources and Activities webpage

 

What to Expect: The Week of March 30 – April 3:

  • Teachers are working to learn new technologies needed to deliver non-digital and digital learning.
  • Teachers will hold daily office hours for students, over email or another platform.
  • Teachers will begin implementing digital learning opportunities for students.

 

Note: We still have Chromebooks available for checkout! Please contact remotesupport@psd267.org if you would like to check one out for your student.


Helpful Links:

 
 
 
UPDATE: March 26, 2020
What to Expect in the Coming Weeks
Dear Families,
On March 26th, OSPI updated districts in Washington State of the expectations to provide students with opportunities to engage and learn, rather than activities and resources. Since March 13th, the district and the Pullman Education Association (PEA) have been working collaboratively to develop and implement a plan to meet OSPI’s new directives. We know that this has been a challenging time for families as we all try to adjust to “new” instructional delivery strategies. This is an unprecedented situation and we are grateful for continued support and understanding from the Pullman community. 

The following information is a week-by-week guide of what families and students can expect from our teachers during this school closure. Please note that this is subject to change based on future OSPI guidance.

What to Expect: The Week of March 23-27:
  • Teachers are working to learn new technologies needed to deliver non-digital and digital learning.
  • Teachers will connect with their students/families at least once this week (various methods of connecting might include email, Class Dojo, phone call, Remind.com, letters, postcards, etc.).
  • Teachers will develop a second week of activities for students, shifting from engagement opportunities to continued learning activities – these will be posted to the district website and emailed to families.

What to Expect: The Week of March 30 – April 3:
  • Teachers are working to learn new technologies needed to deliver non-digital and digital learning.
  • Teachers will hold daily office hours for students, over email or another platform.
  • Teachers will begin implementing digital learning opportunities for students.

What to Expect: The Week of April 6-10:
  • Spring Break – Staff, students and families take a well-earned week of rest.
  • Families are welcome to continue accessing optional learning activities and resources (not required).

What to Expect: The Weeks of April 13-17 and April 20-24:
  • Teachers will hold daily office hours for students, over email or another platform.
  • Teachers will continue to provide various non-digital and digital learning opportunities for students, focusing on teaching essential standards.


Thank you in advance for your patience as we all adjust to this new approach to learning. This is a substantial change for all of us, and we are working hard to scale up our technological capabilities to accommodate new methods to serve our students and families. As we receive more guidance and shift our educational practice, it will get better. If you have questions, please reach out to your student’s school principal or the district office.

On a personal note, I acknowledge the anxiety around the pandemic and its effects, as well as the fact that social distancing is very hard, particularly for teachers who get so much energy from face to face interactions with students and one another. I hope that we all can continue to find creative and passionate ways to support one another.

Sincerely,
Bob Maxwell, Superintendent

 

 

 
UPDATE: March 24, 2020
Food Service Updates
A few food service updates:
  1. There has been some confusion regarding the impact of the Governor’s most recent announcements and how it will impact Pullman Public Schools food service during the school closure. We will still be distributing meals at schools and delivering meals to families. If that changes, we will communicate updates to families.
  2. Meal pick-up times are changing as of Thursday, March 26, 2020. There will no longer be a morning meal distribution at each school. The afternoon distribution time at each school will be from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. each day. Each bag will include both a lunch and a breakfast. The transportation department will continue to distribute meals at bus stops as scheduled.
  3. Pullman Schools Pantry Program update: for participating families, pantry bags will ONLY be available for pickup at the student’s school from during the meal pick up at 11:30am-12:30pm on Thursday and Friday. If you have questions please call 509-432-6736.
 
UPDATE: March 24, 2020
New Guidance from OSPI Regarding Online Learning

Dear Families,
When schools across the state were closed by order of the Governor, their highest priorities included caring for the basic needs of the students, most importantly providing meals to students. School districts across the state successfully stepped up by continuing to serve and deliver meals to the students.

Yesterday evening, March 23, 2020, OSPI shared another bulletin with new guidance for school districts. This guidance included expectations to continue providing instructional learning rather than just providing activities and resources. We will use this as an opportunity for the district and educators to explore new methods of teaching our students.

This morning I will meet with our principals and Pullman Education Association leadership, via Zoom meeting, to begin framing our understanding of the expectations outlined by OSPI and begin developing an implementation plan for student learning. After this planning meeting, our teachers will continue to collaborate on instruction for our students. We will continue to keep our families updated on the ever evolving situation surrounding our school closure and guidance from OSPI.

This is a challenging time for each of us, and an excellent opportunity for us to come together as a team. Thank you for your continued patience and grace.

Sincerely,
Bob Maxwell
Superintendent

Link to OSPI Bulletin 024-20: https://www.k12.wa.us/sites/default/files/public/bulletinsmemos/bulletins2020/4_Guidance%20for%20Long-term%20School%20Closures%20as%20of%20March%2023.pdf

 

 

 
UPDATE: March 23, 2020
Chromebooks Available for Students to Checkout
Pullman Public Schools recognizes that not all families have enough devices for their students at home. We have Chromebooks available for families that do not have a device per child for their student/s to utilize for educational activities during this school closure. Families are welcome to schedule an appointment with the Pullman Public Schools Technology Department to checkout a Chromebook – parents will simply need to fill out a short form to borrow. Chromebooks will need to be returned at the end of the school year.


To make an appointment or seek technology support for students:
Email remotesupport@psd267.org

 

 

UPDATE: March 23, 2020

Playground Equipment Closed Until Further Notice
Dear Families,
Until further notice, all playground equipment on school district property is closed. Playgrounds are often a gathering place, and we want to do our part to help limit the spread of coronavirus. We know our playgrounds are frequently used by families and encourage families to seek other ways to spend time outdoors with their children. We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your cooperation, as we do our part to keep our Pullman community safe.

Sincerely,
Bob Maxwell, Superintendent

 

UPDATE: March 20, 2020
Activities and Resources for Students

Families,
While students are away from school, we would like to help by providing a variety of optional educational activities and resources. To support families, Pullman Public Schools has created lists of activity choices and resource links to help all students practice, reinforce, and maintain their skills during the school closure. The activities and resources provide students a variety of opportunities to connect with the different academic subjects. Students are encouraged to work at a comfortable pace.
 
 
Please note: While the activities are arranged in a daily format, there is no expectation or need for families to do every activity, every day. Activities will not be graded so there is no need to turn in any work.
 
Grade level and department teams will be developing additional suggested activities for students to stay engaged in ways that complement and reinforce, but don’t replace, classroom learning.
 
The focus is to keep students practicing, reinforcing, and maintaining skills during this interim, and stay sharp for the day they return to regular in-school classes. Students will find several high-interest activities designed to keep their minds thinking about Math, Science, Social Studies, and Language Arts. There are also many activities for students participating in Special Programs, and for students participating in electives such as Music, Art, Health and Fitness, World Languages, and CTE.
 
If your student is in need of translated materials, please contact the district office at 509-332-3581 or sfocht@psd267.org.
 
If you do not have internet access, or know of a student that does not have internet access, please contact the student’s school to request paper packets of resources.
 
 

 

UPDATE: March 20, 2020
A Note From Pullman Public Schools Special Programs
Dear Families, 

The Washington State Governor’s Executive Order of closing all schools statewide from March 17th-April 24th is an unprecedented action. We acknowledge this will create challenges for students receiving Special Education services. There is no defined or correct delivery method that will equitably meet the needs of all students.  

The safety of students, staff, and communities is crucial. Social distancing is being used to reduce the effects of the pandemic. Pullman Public School’s Special Programs department acknowledges service delivery limitations, and the major challenges to meet the needs of all students equitably. Pullman Public Schools is committed to making every effort to fully implement a student’s IEP or 504 plan once school resumes. 

Here is what we can do for students receiving Special Education Services:

  • We have begun to develop enrichment activities.  Enrichment activities will be offered both online and in take-home packets you may choose to utilize.  We realize there are some students who cannot access educational activities without significant adult support. In order to support families and acknowledge the requirement of social distancing we can offer consultation by phone with Special Education staff to support the delivery of enrichment material to the student's parent/guardian. 
  • Currently, we are seeking online enrichment activities to provide an additional choice as a resource.  If a student/family does not have access to Wi-Fi or a computer to support student enrichment, please contact your building principal.   
  • Once the executive order is lifted and students return to school our students will be assessed to determine if there is a regression of skills. If data shows a loss of skill, the student will qualify for Extended School Year services. 


There are many questions we are working hard to answer.  As new guidance comes to light, you can expect a weekly communication to keep families and guardians updated.  Please call or email your student’s principal with questions.   

Based on OSPI Guidance we want to clarify that the plan is to continue to hold IEP meetings and evaluations, that will include parents using alternative meeting methods to maintain social distancing.  We will utilize email and mail for draft IEP’s, parent input will include input forms, in both digital and paper options.  Meetings can be held through Zoom, Skype, or by phone conference.   

Thank you for your support, and please know we will diligently be seeking additional information to keep our students safe and provide enrichment opportunities for all. 

Stay safe and healthy. 
Megan Itani and Cristina Johnson Hyde

 
 
UPDATE: March 19, 2020, 2:40pm

Thank You + How You Can Help!
We have been humbled by the outpouring of offers to help our students during this school closure, Pullman is a supportive community!

If you wish to help, there are a few ways you can help support students. While our students are away from school, they can benefit from having school supplies and activities at home!

We are accepting donations of:

School supplies:
  • Notebook Paper
  • Spiral notebooks
  • Glue sticks
  • Crayons
  • Markers
  • Pencils
  • Pens
  • Erasers
  • Colored pencils


Other items our students can benefit from:
  • Business size envelopes and stamps so our students and teachers can correspond
  • Puzzles
  • Play-Doh
  • Board games
  • Dice
  • Flash cards
  • Playing cards
  • Craft supplies
  • Stickers
  • Coloring books
  • Construction paper
  • Books

 
These items will be made available to students at our schools during meal pick-ups!

Donations can be dropped off at the marked bins in front of any school in the district.

 

UPDATE: March 19, 2020

Notice to Pullman Schools Pantry Program Families During Pullman Schools Closure
The Pullman Schools Pantry Program (PSPP) is committed to continue to serve our students in the Pullman School District during the school closures. The PSPP will provide weekend supplemental food bags for students enrolled in our pantry program.
 
Bags will be available on FRIDAYS via delivery van locations where breakfast/lunch are being distributed by Pullman School District. When you collect your breakfast/lunch bag from the Pullman School District van, please let them know you in the pantry program, and they will hand you a bag.
 
NOTE: If you have FOOD ALLERGIES, please let them know as we have packed allergy specific bags for the students with known allergies.
 
If you are unable to make these times, please call us at 509-432-6736 to make other arrangements. This is a challenging time for many families, and we are here to help! Please reach out if you need us. You can also contact us at pullmanschoolspantry@gmail.com.
 
If there are families who are not currently enrolled in PSPP that would like to start receiving weekend supplemental bags, enrollment forms will be available on hand at delivery locations.
 
Students do need to be enrolled to receive bags. Forms can be found at school or via our website: https://pullmanschoolspantryprogram.org/registration/.
 
 
Our warmest regards,
Pullman Schools Pantry Program Team

 

 

 

UPDATE: March 18, 2020, 11:35am
All School District Buildings Are Closed, Except By Appointment
In an effort to better protect the health of our community and our staff, all schools and the district office will be closed to visitors except those with pre-scheduled appointments. Meals will still be available for families to pick up, we will distribute meals just outside of school entrances.

To make an appointment, please call:
  • Franklin Elementary: 509-334-5641
  • Jefferson Elementary: 509-332-2617
  • Kamiak Elementary: 509-336-7205
  • Sunnyside Elementary: 509-334-1800
  • Lincoln Middle School: 509-334-3411
  • Pullman High School: 509-332-1551

District Office Phone Numbers:
  • Main Line: 509-332-3581
  • Personnel: 509-332-3584
  • Fiscal Services: 509-332-2396
  • Payroll: 509-334-9395
  • Special Education: 509-332-3144
  • Teaching and Learning: 509-332-3144


Thank you for your continued patience and understanding.

 

 

UPDATE: March 18, 2020, 8:00am

Information about Activities and Resources for Students
Families,
We are in the process of working with our talented educators to develop a list of educational activities and resources to assist families in supporting their students practice, reinforcement and maintenance of their skills while schools are closed.

Our activities and resources website is in the early stages. We will share it with families soon, and we will continue to update the page as we obtain and develop additional resources.

Thank you for your continued patience and understanding as we work through the daily challenges the coronavirus has presented us.

 

UPDATE: March 17, 2020

Picking Up Medications for Personal Items from Schools

We know that some families need to pick up medications and personal items from schools during this school closure.
 
To pick up medications please make an appointment with district nurse Michelle Hyatt: 509-432-4536.
To pick up personal items, please call the student's school to make an appointment. 
 
 

 

UPDATE: March 16, 2020, 10:55am
Helpful Information: What is Physical Distancing?

Health officials say physical distancing can slow the spread of the new coronavirus that causes COVID-19. Here are tips for home, at work and for higher risk groups.

At home:
  • Stay home
  • Don’t go out in public when you’re sick
  • Avoid medical settings unless necessary
  • Give 6 feet of space from others
  • Wave instead of shaking hands
  • Practice excellent personal hygiene

Work:
  • Work in ways that minimize close contact
  • Minimize groups over 10
  • Clean your workspace frequently

People at higher risk of serious illness from COVID-19 should put physical distancing into practice, experts say. Higher risk groups include:
  • People older than 60
  • Those with underlying health conditions
  • People with weakened immune systems
  • Pregnant women
 
 
UPDATE: March 15, 2020, 6:00pm
 
 
UPDATE: March 15, 2020, 5:30pm
School Closure - Additional Information

Dear Pullman Families,
Pullman Public Schools will be closed starting Monday, March 16, with plans to return to school on Monday, April 27. While we were originally planning to close on Tuesday, March 17, just today we became aware of the potential exposure of some of our students at an event in the Spokane area last weekend.  Out of an abundance of caution, we determined it was in the best interest of our community to close except for essential personnel on Monday, March 16, and Tuesday, March 17, for deep cleaning.

Thank you for your patience, kindness, and collaboration during this ever evolving challenge for our district. With the help of our families, educators, staff, and community partners, I know our students will have what they need to stay safe and healthy as we take steps to limit the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.

Based on guidance from the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI), we will not be providing educational services to the general student population, therefore, we will also not be providing services to students with disabilities during this time.  Although we are not in session for the next six weeks, it would be valuable for students to maintain their skills and participate in enrichment activities. Administrators and teachers at each of our schools will be working together to prepare suggested activities and resources that students can participate in from home.  We will send a follow up communication informing students and parents of how to access these resources.

  • Food Service – Breakfast and lunch services will begin on Wednesday, March 18, at all school sites and some off-site locations. Please check the website for specific information.
  • Medication – Parents that need to pick up their student’s medication, please contact their school to arrange pick up.
  • Communication – We are developing a FAQ for our website and will begin updating regularly as decisions are made and new questions arise. Please review the current FAQ before submitting additional questions.  We are utilizing our website (pullmanschools.org) as the central location for all information pertaining to this school closure. We encourage you to review this information frequently for updates.
  • School Access – Building principals will be sending out information on how students can obtain essential items left at school.

 

Again, thank you for your patience and understanding during these challenging times.

Sincerely, 
Bob Maxwell, Superintendent

 
 
UPDATE: March 15, 2020, 5:00pm
UPDATED CLOSURE DATE: All Pullman Public Schools Closed Effective March 16
Out of an abundance of caution, we have decided to cancel school on Monday, March 16th after learning today that students from our district were at an event in Spokane last weekend with an individual who has since been identified as having a confirmed case of Coronavirus. We are grateful to our staff, families, and community for their support during this difficult time. We will continue to provide updates to all families by email and on our website. If you have questions, please contact your student’s school or the district office.
 
 
 
UPDATE: March 13, 2020, 8:00pm
 
 
 
UPDATE: March 13, 2020, 5:45pm
All Pullman Public Schools Closed Effective March 17

Dear Families,
Earlier today Governor Jay Inslee and Superintendent of Public Instruction, Chris Reykdal, addressed the media to announce additional school guidelines and other distancing strategies to mitigate the impact of COVID-19. The announcement included the closure of all K-12 public and private schools in every district across Washington state. Beginning on Tuesday, March 17th and continuing through Friday, April 24th all schools will be closed for students.

Monday, March 16th will be a regularly scheduled school day. The day is essential to help all students and staff plan for a successful transition.

These decisions are made out of an abundance of caution, and are based on scientific recommendations that indicate the reduction of social interactions – or said another way, increasing social distancing – can ultimately have a beneficial impact on slowing the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

We are committed to working together to the extent possible to determine how we can best attend to the nutritional needs of students and child care needs for students and families who will need that. Providing continued educational opportunities in a way that is equitable for all the students and families we serve is of course a priority as well. We expect to receive regular guidance from the Governor’s Office and the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction on how to address these challenges. We will communicate additional information by email and the district website.

As COVID-19 evolves, it affects all of us. We are all in the learning phase. We appreciate everyone coming together to do this in a collaborative and problem solving way – respecting that disruptions that may occur in the short term will have a beneficial effect in the longer term – for everyone. We will assuredly keep you updated with all relevant information and, while we recognize that many questions will arise, we are committed to addressing each of them to the best of our ability and resources.

In advance, thank you for your patience and understanding–especially during an unprecedented challenge such as this public health issue.

Sincerely,
Bob Maxwell, Superintendent

 
 
UPDATE: March 13, 2020, 5:45pm
All Pullman Public Schools Events and Activities Suspended

Dear Families and Staff,

Beginning on Saturday, March 14th at 12:01 a.m. the following are suspended until further notice:

  • All field trips
  • All athletic events (including practices)
  • Before and after school clubs and activities
  • All evening or weekend events, including concerts, dances, and plays
  • Rentals and use of school facilities by external groups
  • All work-related travel by district staff


These measures are in place to support the Governor’s proclamation and recommended practices from the Department of Health.

Thank you for your continued patience and support during this challenging situation.

Sincerely,
Bob Maxwell, Superintendent

 

 
 
UPDATE: March 13, 2020, 12:50pm
COVID-19 Update from Pullman Public Schools

Dear Families and Staff,
Earlier this morning the school district superintendents and other school leaders in our region met together to discuss a variety of issues related to COVID-19 and its impact in our state, nation and the world.  We also, of course, discussed its impact on, and implications for, K-12 education in Washington state. The Governor has scheduled a press conference for 3:00 pm today.

As you are well aware, earlier this week our Governor, Jay Inslee, announced a proclamation that required the closure of all school districts in King, Pierce and Snohomish counties – to take effect as of midnight on Monday, March 16 and continuing through at least midnight on Friday, April 24.

Quickly on the heels of that proclamation, school districts in numerous other counties in the state (Skagit, Whatcom, Clark, Thurston) reached the same decision to close.  These decisions are made out of an abundance of caution, and are based on scientific recommendations that indicate the reduction of social interactions – or said another way, increasing social distancing – can ultimately have a beneficial impact on slowing the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

During the time the superintendents and leaders were together, we had communication with the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction and, through OSPI, with the Governor’s office.  With the number of counties in which school districts are now set to close – which, combined, include almost 70% of Washington’s K-12 enrollment – the Governor is being pressured to do what a neighboring state has done, which is to close ALL school districts in the state.

As of the time I am sharing this with you, I do not have specific details as to when that decision might be finalized nor when it will go into effect, but you deserve to be aware of this strong possibility.  When and if our school district is required to close (the authority to make such broad decisions rests with both the Governor’s emergency powers and with the local regional health district), we will work closely with all of you as we chart a path forward.

As superintendents, we did request that we be given some amount of lead time to prepare for an extended closure, and we are committed to working together to the extent possible to determine how we can best attend to the nutritional needs of students; to child care needs for students and families who will need that; and whether we will be able to provide any continued educational opportunities in a way that is equitable for all the students and families we serve.

As COVID-19 evolves, it affects all of us.  We are all learning about it, and we appreciate that we all come together to do that in collaborative and respectful ways – respecting that disruptions that may occur in the short term will have a beneficial effect in the longer term – for everyone. I will assuredly keep you updated with all relevant information and, while I recognize that many questions will occur, we are committed to addressing each of those to the best of our ability and resources.

In advance, thank you for always giving one another grace – and especially for doing so during an unprecedented challenge such as this public health issue.

Sincerely,
Bob Maxwell, Superintendent

 

 

 

UPDATE: March 12, 2020, 4:10pm
State Solo and Ensemble Postponed
Due to the closing of numerous schools around the state until the end of April, and with the safety of student-participants and their families in mind, the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association and the Washington Music Educators Association have made the decision to postpone the State Solo and Ensemble Contests until further notice. The event was scheduled to be held April 24-25 at Central Washington University.

The WIAA and WMEA are looking at potential rescheduling options for a later date and will keep membership apprised of information as it becomes available.
 
 
UPDATE: March 12, 2020
Event Update: PHS Production of "Beauty and the Beast"

Dear Staff and Families,
The Pullman High School production of Beauty and the Beast will take place as scheduled in the PHS theater, with several precautions in place.

Performance dates:
  • Thursday, March 12, 7pm
  • Friday, March 13, 7pm
  • Saturday, March 14, 2pm and 7pm
  • Thursday, March 19, 7pm
  • Friday, March 20, 7pm
  • Saturday, March 21, 2pm and 7pm


Tickets are available at the door: $10 for adults and $5 for seniors and students.

Please note: seating at each performance will be limited to 225 individuals in accordance with social distancing recommendations. The theater will be cleaned and disinfected prior to every performance.

Individuals that are considered to be most at-risk are encouraged to avoid this setting. Higher risk groups, according to the CDC include:
  • Older adults
  • People who have serious chronic medical conditions like:
    • Heart disease
    • Diabetes
    • Lung disease


Performances of Beauty and the Beast will be filmed and made available online here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC2VdE9lYEeQXXUgndaCERzw/videos by March 24th. This production is double cast, and both full casts will be filmed.

If you would like to donate to the Pullman High School Drama club to support Beauty and the Beast and future projects, donations can be sent to Pullman High School (checks should be made payable to PHS ASB Fund, note “PHS Drama Club” on the memo line).

 

UPDATE: March 11, 2020
COVID-19 Update from Superintendent Maxwell

Dear Families and Staff,
With recent events and serious concerns regarding the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) front of mind for citizens across our nation and across the globe, we as a school district recognize, and take very seriously, our responsibility to be as informed and prepared as possible, as this situation evolves.  Of our many commitments and priorities, the health, safety and well-being of our students and staff are paramount.

Over the past number of weeks, we have been working closely with experts and government and educational partners to learn as much as is known, and to be as prepared as possible for the impacts and implications that COVID-19 may have for schools and school districts.  Expert information continues to be provided by the public health and medical professionals associated with the Center for Disease Control, the Department of Health, and the local Regional Health District(s) that have jurisdiction in our county.  We are also in frequent communication with the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, the Office of the Governor, our educational service district, and with fellow school districts and institutions of higher education in our region and across the state.

As the science of this virus comes into sharper focus, and as its impacts continue to be felt in our state – albeit more significantly in other areas of the state at the current time – we are mindful of the potential impact on the normal operation of schools.  We know that growing concerns may lead to recommendations that could alter our regular operations.  We respect that the Office of the Governor holds emergency powers and authority in circumstances like this, and that public health agencies share in the authority relative to making decisions about a public school district’s continued normal operation.  

As of March 6, 2020, the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction issued the following guidance regarding Distance/Online Learning:
“OSPI does not recommend closed schools transition to an online distance model unless the district can ensure each of the considerations below can be met.”

These include, but are not limited to:

  • Ensuring all students in the school or district will have equal access to the learning and required materials, including technology.
  • Ensuring the online learning system can effectively support the district’s different learning and teaching needs, including the ability to provide differentiated instruction as well as one-on-one support for students who need it. Regardless of where the learning is happening, supports identified on a student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP) must be provided if the district is operating.
  • Ensuring the requirements of full-day kindergarten are met.
  • Ensuring students can access the assessments associated with dual credit coursework.
  • Providing training to staff, students, and parents and guardians on how the system works and what expectations the district has.
  • The ability to track the attendance of both students and staff.
  • Ensuring the systems in use are secure and will not allow for the release of protected student or staff information.
  • The ability to provide school meals.


Taking a traditional school environment online is not a simple task – nor is it one that should be attempted without serious consideration of the practicality and risk.”

At this time, the Pullman School District is unable to ensure all students will have equal access to learning utilizing distance or online learning.

In addition, we will continue to access and make plans regarding after school activities and travel to determine if the activity/travel will be cancelled or adjusted. This will be in consultation with our local health department and/or the office of the Governor.

We will continue to keep you informed as we move forward, and we appreciate and value your partnership with us.

Sincerely,
Bob Maxwell

 

UPDATE: March 11, 2020
COVID-19 Update Related to Pullman Public Schools Travel

Dear Staff and Families,

In light of concerns related to COVID-19, Pullman Public Schools will cancel all school related travel to Western Washington, effective immediately, out of an abundance of caution for the health and welfare of our students and community. The travel restriction aligns with the Governors announcement today regarding new community strategies and social distancing plans in western Washington.

 

We continue to closely monitor guidance from the CDC, Washington Department of Health, and Governor’s office.  We are committed to following their recommendations and communicating updates to all staff and families. We appreciate and value your partnership.

 

Sincerely,

Bob Maxwell, Superintendent

 

UPDATE: March 6, 2020
COVID-19 Update from Pullman Public Schools

Dear Pullman Public Schools Staff and Families:

Thank you to our staff and families for the extra effort made to keep our schools clean and our students healthy this week! We continue to closely follow COVID-19 (Coronavirus) updates and guidance from the CDC and the Washington State Department of Health. There are no reports of COVID-19 in our schools.

I would like to provide an update to you about COVID-19 preparations and guidance.

NEW Guidance from the Whitman County Health Department
Parents are asked to keep a child with flu-like symptoms at home until their symptoms are gone and until they have been free of fever (less than 100°F, without the use of fever-reducing medicine) for at least 72 hours.

Illness Response
Our school nurses are on alert for students with flu-like symptoms and are acting quickly to send ill students home. While they are waiting to be picked up, students with flu-like symptoms will be separated from other students and may be asked to wear a mask to prevent the spread of illness to others.

Our schools are tracking student and staff illness and will report high levels of absenteeism to the Whitman County Health Department. Our custodians are remaining vigilant about cleaning surfaces where germs may reside. This includes frequent cleaning and sanitizing of door handles, faucets, countertops, and other surfaces. This increased cleaning applies to high touch areas on our buses as well.

Your patience is appreciated as we work to follow public health guidelines. Please visit the following websites for the most up to date information:


Thank you for your understanding and support as we work together, to keep our students and staff healthy.

Sincerely,
Bob Maxwell, Superintendent

 

UPDATE: March 3, 2020
COVID-19 Update from Pullman Public Schools

Dear Pullman Public Schools Families:
The health of our children is important to all of us. While there are currently no reports of COVID-19 (a type of coronavirus) in our schools, over the coming months we may see potential cases of COVID-19, in addition to seasonal flu, among students and staff. Currently, the risk to the general public of COVID-19 is low. However, I would like to take this opportunity to update you about preparations and anticipated responses to these illnesses in our schools.

Education and Prevention
COVID-19 is a respiratory illness that includes a fever, cough, and difficulty breathing. It is a highly contagious viral infection that is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes and/or from contact with infected surfaces or objects. We are actively reminding our staff and students to use recommended hygiene techniques to prevent the spread of viruses, including:

  • Wash your hands often – with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, then use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Cover your nose and mouth – cough or sneeze into your sleeve/elbow, not into your hands. You may also use a tissue when you sneeze, cough, or blow your nose. Quickly dispose of used tissues into a garbage container, then wash your hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick– most germs spread when a sick person coughs, sneezes, or talks.
  • Do not share - food, utensils, beverages, towels, chapstick/lipstick, toys, or anything else that might become contaminated with germs.
  • Stay at home while you are sick - if you have a fever, cough, respiratory and/or flu-like symptoms. Flu-like symptoms include fever (100°F or higher), cough, sneezing, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, tiredness, or extreme exhaustion.


Communications and Planning
The district is working closely with the Whitman County Health Department and we are reviewing and updating our district’s pandemic influenza plan to adapt it for COVID-19.

Illness Response
Our school nurses are on alert for students with flu-like symptoms and are acting quickly to send ill students home. While they are waiting to be picked up, students with flu-like symptoms will be separated from other students and may be asked to wear a mask to prevent the spread of illness to others.

Parents who pick up a child with flu-like symptoms at school will receive instructions from the school with the recommendation to keep sick children at home until their symptoms are gone and until they have been free of fever (less than 100°F, without the use of fever-reducing medicine) for at least 24 hours. Our schools are tracking student and staff illness and will report high levels of absenteeism to the Whitman County Health Department. Our custodians are remaining vigilant about cleaning surfaces where germs may reside. This includes frequent cleaning and sanitizing of door handles, faucets, countertops, and other surfaces. This increased cleaning applies to high touch areas on our buses as well.

What You Can Do
As a parent, there is much you can do to help prevent the spread of viruses, including COVID-19 and influenza in our schools. Most importantly, please keep your sick child at home until completely well. Continue to reinforce proper hand washing and hygiene techniques with your children throughout the year.

Parents are also encouraged to plan for childcare at home if your child gets sick. In addition, if you have children with other medical conditions that put them at higher risk from the flu, talk to your healthcare provider now about additional planning specific to your child.

Your patience is appreciated as we work to follow public health guidelines. Please visit the following websites for the most up to date information:


Thank you for your understanding and support as we work together, to keep our students and staff healthy.

Sincerely,
Bob Maxwell, Superintendent

 

UPDATE: March 3, 2020
 
 
UPDATE: February 27, 2020
COVID-19 Update from Pullman Public Schools

Pullman Community, Families, and Staff, 
In light of the continuing concerns regarding coronavirus, I would like to pass along factual information. The Washington State Department of Health recently shared novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) guidance for schools: https://www.doh.wa.gov/Emergencies/Coronavirus/Schools

This site answers many common questions people may have, including the questions summarized below:

How can we prevent Coronavirus infections in our schools?
Schools do not need to take any special precautions beyond what is normally recommended to prevent the spread of viruses in schools. Students and staff can help reduce their risk for getting and spreading viral respiratory infections, including the flu and the common cold, by taking simple steps which will also help prevent Coronavirus. These include:
  • Staying home when sick.
  • Frequent hand washing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after nose blowing. Help young children do the same. If hands are visibly dirty, use soap and water to clean hands.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching one’s eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Other suggestions for prevention: https://www.doh.wa.gov/Emergencies/Coronavirus/Schools
 
Should children returning from China stay home from school for 14 days?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that all travelers from China (including school students, staff and volunteers) arriving in the United States AFTER February 2, 2020 at 2 p.m. stay at home, away from others, and monitor their health for 14 days. 
 

Travelers to and from certain areas of the world may be at increased risk. Although coronavirus originated geographically in Wuhan, China, the disease is not specific to any ethnic group. Chinese ancestry – or any other ancestry – does not make a person more vulnerable to this illness. 

The risk to the general public still remains low in Washington and the US. There is no evidence that the Coronavirus is spreading in Washington at this time.  

Pullman Public Schools will continue to monitor updates from the CDC and Washington State Department of Health.


Thanks, 
Bob Maxwell
Superintendent