School Closure FAQs
Frequently Asked Questions About KPS Closure Plans
SCHOOL CLOSURE FAQs
April 14, 2020
FINISHING THE 2019-20 SCHOOL YEAR
Q. What does the Governor’s closure of schools for the remainder of the year mean for student learning?
Learning will continue. We are working on our KPS Continuity of Learning Plan and will share the details soon. Content will be delivered in multiple ways so all students can access learning. We are keeping all children at the center of our planning with the goal of finding ways to maintain connections and relationships.
Until the plan is formally approved by the Michigan Department of Education, students will have the opportunity to engage in learning activities by visiting The Learning Hub website which has activities organized by grade level, by information sent out by teachers, and by the learning packets available at the food distribution sites.
Students can expect to hear from their teachers directly on a weekly basis. Teachers will also be available to provide assistance during designated virtual office hours. Families have always been a key to a student’s success in school. Now, more than ever, we need to work together to get through this unprecedented time.
Q. Will my child receive a Chromebook?
A limited number of Chromebooks have been distributed to high school students who need a device at home. After that, we will notify other students by grade level if additional Chromebooks become available.
Q. What if we do not have Internet access?
We are conducting a survey of families to ask about Internet access and your preferred method of communication. We are working with Internet providers to expand opportunities for those families who do not currently have Internet access. Learning materials will be provided to students in a variety of methods. Internet access is not required.
Q. Will students who are on track to move up a grade level next school year be able to move up?
Seniors: Per the Governor’s executive order, the district is creating a process to review and award credits needed for graduation, provide for completion of the Michigan Merit Curriculum, and issue diplomas to students in grade 12. Seniors who were on pace to graduate, will graduate. Counselors will be working with students on an individual basis.
Other grade levels: Kindergarten through 11th grade students will advance to their next grade level at the beginning of the next school year. For example, a student currently in first grade will advance to second grade in August.
Q. Have all end-of-the year events been canceled?
We know that many special events cannot be replicated by taking place virtually. Although we have not yet officially canceled all school events, principals are working with parents and students to discuss possible alternate ways to honor students.
Q. What is the status of winter and spring sports for secondary schools?
The Michigan High School Athletic Association has canceled all athletic activities for the remainder of the school year.
Q. Will standardized tests such as the M-STEP and PSAT/SAT be held as originally scheduled?
No. The Michigan Department of Education has canceled all standardized testing that was to occur this spring. It is our understanding that the PSAT and SAT will be rescheduled for fall 2020.
Q. Is the third-grade reading law still in effect for this school year?
No. Michigan’s Third Grade Reading Law requiring the retention of third-grade students who are more than one grade level behind in reading has been suspended per the Governor’s executive order. All current third-grade students will advance to fourth grade.
Q. Are there resources available to address my students’ social emotional needs during this time?
We know that some students may be experiencing anxiety, depression and other mental health issues over the extended school closure. We want to support you. There are resources available at The Learning Hub. Emotional support and crisis intervention are available at (269) 381-HELP (4357) or on the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Dial 2-1-1 for additional information or to get connected to other resources. If there is an emergency, please call 9-1-1.
KPS personnel are also available to assist. Please call (269) 337-0100 or email Student_Services@kalamazoopublicschools.net.
Q. How can I get my child’s personal belongings from school?
Buildings and school facilities, including playgrounds, remain closed. There will be an opportunity at some point for students to return to their school, on a controlled basis, to retrieve items. This cannot occur until the Governor’s stay-at-home order has expired. If there is an urgent need to retrieve an essential item (as defined by the state) from a school, please contact the Facilities Department at (269) 337-0400 and requests will be considered on an individual basis.
Q. How can my child get a work permit? Minors under 18 years of age must obtain a work permit entered into between the employer and the governing school district before starting work. While schools are closed, Student Services Department personnel will have a limited number of work permits available on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays between 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. at the following food distribution sites:
Parkwood-Upjohn Elementary School, 2321 S. Park St.
Washington Writers’ Academy, 1919 Portage St.
Milwood Elementary School, 3400 Lovers Lane
Students must bring a driver’s license or student ID. If possible, should print and bring the correct form with them when visiting the food distribution site.
CA-6 Work Permit (must be printed pink and front to back)
CA-7 Work Permit (must be printed yellow and front to back)
PDFs are attached below.
Q. Will the meal program continue?
Yes. Unless a further announcement is made, KPS plans to continue the 24 food distribution sites on Monday, Wednesday and Friday indefinitely. Seven days worth of breakfasts and lunches will be distributed to students over three days each week in a “grab and go” format, where students will pick up food to eat at home. Students receive two days of meals on Mondays and Wednesdays, and three days of meals on Fridays.
11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. — All Kalamazoo Public Schools school buildings except Greenwood, Indian Prairie, and Winchell elementary schools, the Alternative Learning Program/ALP, and South Westnedge School.
11:30 a.m.-Noon — Interfaith, 1037 Interfaith Blvd.
11:30 a.m.-Noon — Eastside Neighborhood Association, 1301 E. Main St.
12:30-1 p.m. — Fox Ridge Apartments, 1320 Fox Ridge Dr.
12:30- 1 p.m. — New Village Park, 2500 St. Albans Way
Q. What is the plan for report cards?
Secondary trimester 2 and elementary third-marking period grades will be mailed by the end of April.
Q. Will there be summer school?
At this time we do not know when the Governor’s stay-at-home order will be lifted. We also do not know if it will be advisable to open our schools for students during the summer. As soon as we have enough information to make a decision regarding summer school and the opening of buildings, we will inform parents as to our plans.
Q. Do I still need to turn in a Letter of Intent?
Yes. If you have not yet turned in a Letter of Intent for next school year, it can be emailed to Student_Services@kalamazoopublicschools.net or dropped off in the mail slot located next to the side entrance of the KPS Administration Building, 1220 Howard St.
We realize there are still a lot of questions, and we continue to problem-solve with input from all stakeholders.
To reach us with questions or suggestions:
Phone: (269) 337-0100
Contact your child’s principal via email for assistance. Emails can be found in the staff directory. https://www.kalamazoopublicschools.com/DirectoriesLinks/StaffDirectoryMain/tabid/100/agentType/ViewSearch/Default.aspx
We will update this FAQ and resend it when we have additional information. Thank you for your continued patience and partnership as we navigate this crisis together.
KPS Coronavirus Information:
Continuity of Learning Plan Announced
Schools Closed for Remainder of the School Year
KPS COVID-19 Plans
KPS Launches The Learning Hub with Online Resources for Students
KPS Sets Up Emergency Food Distribution Network
Governor Closes All K-12 Schools
Coronavirus: KPS Steps Up Cleaning Measures
Health Department Issues Coronavirus Update