Reopening Plan 2020-21 Frequently Asked Questions

Medical

About COVID-19

What data is available regarding adults and COVID-19?

Is the Wauwatosa Health Department aligned with the District’s Reopening Plan?

What are the long-term effects of COVID-19 on children and adults?

How do I know if my child needs to stay home from school?

Who will be responsible for making the assessment of students’ symptoms if they fall ill at school?

My child suffers from seasonal allergies and the symptoms don't always improve with medication. Will these allergies be considered a symptom requiring them to stay home?

Medical Plan

Where can students and staff get tested for COVID-19? Who will pay for testing?

How long will students or staff need to stay home if they’re sick?

How will I know if my child or I have been in contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19?

How is WSD handling out-of-District exposures?

Teaching + Learning

What options do I have for my child's learning this year?

What is the difference between synchronous learning and asynchronous learning?

If a class is quarantined, will staff and students be able to learn/teach virtually?

What are the dates of the end of trimester or semester?

Can I change to a different model of instruction before the school year starts?

Virtual Learning

Tosa Connected

What will the Tosa Connected week look like?

What classes can students take if they’re enrolled in Tosa Connected?

What other information is available about Tosa Connected?

When is the first day of school?

Is Wauwatosa Virtual Academy an option for students in grades K-5?

What do Wauwatosa Virtual Academy courses look like at each grade level?

What supports are in place for families that cannot facilitate learning from home?

How will students enrolled in virtual learning transition back into schools?

Will students have access to a teacher for coursework questions in WVA?

Are students offered technology to facilitate virtual learning?

If a student chooses WVA for senior year, where does their graduation diploma come from?

Phase Into Learning

When will information about student cohorts be communicated?

How many students will be in each classroom?

What is the threshold to switch between phases?

How will the District communicate with families about extended school closure or a change in model of instruction?

What are the opportunities for elementary teachers to have prep time and/or time away from their room?

When is the first day of school?

Will virtual learning be synchronous and with the same teachers and day structure?

What does the Phase Into Learning timeline look like?

Special Education

In the Phase Into Learning plan, how will the hybrid model work for students with disabilities?

Can students with IEPs or disabilities participate in Wauwatosa Virtual Academy?

How is the District supporting mask-wearing for students and staff who are deaf or hard of hearing?

How will the District assess the need for additional services for students with disabilities?

What are we doing to promote safety for students with sensory issues?

Will students who receive one-on-one help per their IEP be able to receive the same level of support while maintaining social distancing?

Montessori + STEM Schools

Is the District considering a virtual STEM or Montessori school?

If I choose to homeschool my child for the 2020-21 school year, will they lose their spot at Montessori, STEM or other school?

How will Montessori or STEM students transition back into the classroom from virtual learning?

Elementary

Can I send my JK student to school part time?

Will students at Wilson/WSTEM and McKinley be in larger classes due to construction?

Which options are available for before- and after-school care and JK wrap care?

Secondary

Will/How will our relationship with Elmbrook and the LAUNCH program impact our plan?

What is being done to ensure students in AP or accelerated classes get the instruction they need to succeed?

Activities + Athletics

Will students in Tosa Connected and WVA be able to participate in sports?

What extracurricular activities and/or specials will be allowed?

When will sports start?

Will there be anything prohibiting student travel with club activities?

Buildings + Grounds

How will the District address air circulation in buildings?

How will the District clean and sanitize buildings?

How will COVID-19 impact construction efforts?

Classrooms + Learning Spaces

Will students and staff have access to communal spaces?

How will classrooms be set up to accommodate social distancing?

Health + Safety

Mental Health

What mental health resources are available for students, families and staff?

Mask Wearing

Will students and staff be required to wear masks?

Will face shields be acceptable in lieu of masks for younger students?

What does my child need to do to qualify for a mask exemption?

Will students get mask breaks?

What is an appropriate space for a mask break?

What are the expectations for mask use in physical education classes, music classes, and on the playground?

What are the recommended guidelines for the number of students who can be on a mask break?

Is my child allowed unlimited mask breaks?

How long will a mask break last?

Will students need to wear masks during recess and gym?

If students remove their masks at lunch, doesn’t that negate the effectiveness of the mask wearing?

What is the District doing to build a culture of safety in our schools?

Will the District implement random COVID-19 testing?

Will families be required to provide test results or a letter of clearance to return to school?

Will the District place a travel ban on staff or students?

Human Resources

Staff Benefits + Policies

If a staff member becomes sick with a non-COVID-19 illness, will they need to use sick days?

Will health insurance premiums increase for staff?

Are you offering an earlier early retirement option for teachers who are within two years of retirement?

If I decide the decision to return is not safe for me and for my family, will I have to still pay the broken contract fee?

How is the District addressing substitute teachers?

How will we handle teachers that travel between rooms and schools?

Will teachers need to stay home for three days each time they are sick? Are sick days being increased accordingly?

Other

How do I log in to Infinite Campus?

Will students have access to Chromebooks?

How will the District communicate about the Reopening Plan?

How is the District addressing equity issues related to COVID-19?

How will sick and/or quarantine days impact the District’s student learning reporting?

Will the School Board continue to have virtual meetings or will they have in-person meetings?

What proactive steps is the District taking to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in our community? What education and advocacy is taking place?

Did the District implement CDC guidelines in its decision?

Does the District need to comply with Milwaukee County metrics and orders to return to in-person classes?

What impact will the change in the school start date have on the last day of school?

How will students conduct safety drills while maintaining six feet of distance from each other?

Does the Health Department have any authority to approve school reopening plans for public or private schools in Wauwatosa?

Medical 

About COVID-19

What data is available regarding adults and COVID-19?

This is a broad question. We know that adults are more easily infected than children. There are several risk factors for more serious infection including such things as age, hypertension, diabetes, chronic lung disease, obesity.  COVID-19 also disproportionately affects certain racial and ethnic groups. It is important to note that the virus is typically spread from adult to adult and adult to child; transmission from child to child or from a child to an adult is rare.

Is the Wauwatosa Health Department aligned with the District’s Reopening Plan?

We have collaborated extensively with the Wauwatosa Health Department in our planning process. Recommendations outlined in our Reopening Plan follow the guidance and recommendations provided by the Health Department. Please be aware that as additional guidance is released from the WI State Department of Health and the CDC, recommendations outlined in the Reopening Plan may change. WSD and WHD will collaborate to ensure that new guidance is followed and that staff and families are made aware of changes.

What are the long-term effects of COVID-19 on children and adults?        

Unfortunately, COVID-19 is still too new for the medical community to be certain of the long-term effects for people who have recovered from the virus. There are multiple studies currently underway that are focusing on how patients are recovering from COVID-19. It may be several years before the medical community has a true understanding of the long-term effects.

How do I know if my child needs to stay home from school?         

Please refer to this document for clarification on when individuals need to stay home and when they can return. These guidelines are consistent with our local health department, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services and the CDC.

Who will be responsible for making the assessment of students’ symptoms if they fall ill at school?         

Building staff will follow this flowchart to determine when a child needs to be sent home. If building staff have any questions about whether a student can stay in school or go home, they will contact one of our school nurses. This is the same practice we have followed every school year.

My child suffers from seasonal allergies and the symptoms don't always improve with medication. Will these allergies be considered a symptom requiring them to stay home?

We recognize that many students have chronic conditions that could be quite similar to those of COVID-19. We request that parents work with their child's primary care provider to develop a treatment plan that eliminates or minimizes these symptoms. In the rare case that symptoms cannot be eliminated after working with a medical provider, our school nurses are prepared to develop an individualized plan for students with a history of documented chronic conditions.

Medical Plan 

Where can students and staff get tested for COVID-19? Who will pay for testing?

You may contact your primary care physician for this information or visit the Wisconsin Department of Health Services website to find sites in the greater Milwaukee area. Currently all commercial insurance carriers, Medicare, Medicaid and government plans cover COVID-19 testing and waive copays and deductibles. Some testing sites are free.

To ensure that staff have access to testing, we are developing local partnerships with Froedtert and Aurora that will allow us to provide rapid turnaround testing to staff members who are unable or choose not to access these options. More information will be provided as details are finalized.

How long will students or staff need to stay home if they’re sick?

Current DHS, DPI and CDC guidelines state: anyone showing signs of illness must stay home for 10 days from when the symptoms started AND must have at least 3 days of improving symptoms including no fever without the use of medication. If an individual tests negative COVID-19, they may return after 24 hours of improved symptoms.

How will I know if my child or I have been in contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19?

If an exposure occurred at school or other District program, you will be contacted by the Wauwatosa Health Department or you will receive a letter from our District Nurse, Katelyn Lasse. Letters will be sent based on risk classification.

LOW RISK: those who were in the same District building on the same date as the COVID-19-positive individual. Click here to view a sample LOW RISK letter.

MEDIUM RISK: those who have come within 6 feet of a COVID-19-positive individual for more than 10 minutes. Click here to view a sample MEDIUM RISK letter.

Any individuals who have experienced a high-risk exposure will be contacted directly by the Wauwatosa Health Department.

If the exposure happened outside of District programming, then you will only hear from the Wauwatosa Health Department.

How is WSD handling out-of-District exposures?

The Health Department will provide guidance on any exposures that happen outside of the District. If a family member is exposed through work and must quarantine for 14 days, the rest of the household could continue to attend District programming as normal. If the family member develops symptoms and tests positive, then the entire family must stay home during the family member's illness, plus and an additional 14 days past the family member's well date to make sure they did not contract COVID19.

Teaching + Learning

What options do I have for my child's learning this year?         

Families were given the choice between our Phase Into Learning framework, Tosa Connected and Wauwatosa Virtual Academy.

What is the difference between synchronous learning and asynchronous learning?

Synchronous learning occurs live and with all students at the same time.  Asynchronous learning occurs independently through the support of the learning management system Canvas and the use of tech tools.

If a class is quarantined, will staff and students be able to learn/teach virtually?  

Learning opportunities will be provided for students in quarantine using Canvas. We are currently exploring additional opportunities for students and staff to engage virtually and will finalize those details prior to the first day of school.

What are the dates of the end of trimester or semester?

Semesters:

 

Trimesters:

Can I change to a different model of instruction before the school year starts?

Model of Instruction selections were to be made by Monday, August 10, 2020. Families that did not submit a form will have their student(s) placed in the Phase Into Learning model of instruction.

Virtual Learning

Tosa Connected

What will the Tosa Connected week look like?

Students will participate in two days of synchronous (live) lessons and three days of asynchronous (pre-recorded, independent practice) learning. We do anticipate that our younger learners will require support from family members.

What classes can students take if they’re enrolled in Tosa Connected?         

All students will be enrolled in english, math, science and social studies courses, with the opportunity to participate in other select offerings. We will, however, not be able to offer as robust a selection of courses as are normally available in the traditional model of instruction. Please contact your school's guidance counselor to discuss course selection.

What other information is available about Tosa Connected?

Please click here for a full FAQ specific to Tosa Connected!

When is the first day of school?

Students enrolled in Tosa Connected (Cohort A) and Wauwatosa Virtual Academy will begin school on Tuesday, September 8. Students in Tosa Connected (Cohort B) will begin school on Thursday, September 10.

Is Wauwatosa Virtual Academy an option for students in grades K-5?

Yes! We are partnering with Pearson to provide Wauwatosa Virtual Academy courses for students K-12.

What do Wauwatosa Virtual Academy courses look like at each grade level?

WVA course descriptions can be found here.

What supports are in place for families that cannot facilitate learning from home?

Schools will work with families on a case by case basis to provide support and make accommodations to support student learning at home.

How will students enrolled in virtual learning transition back into schools?

If a family chooses to transition from Tosa Connected or WVA to the Phase Into Learning model at the trimester or semester, the student will return to their neighborhood school or the school that they were assigned to through an approved intradistrict transfer at the start of the 2020-21 school year. Students will be provided with an orientation to Canvas, and principals and staff will work with students individually to welcome and support them upon return.

Will students have access to a teacher for coursework questions in WVA?

Yes! Instructors will be available to support student learning and answer questions regarding coursework.

Are students offered technology to facilitate virtual learning?        

All students will have the opportunity to use a District-issued Chromebook to engage in virtual learning.

If a student chooses WVA for senior year, where does their graduation diploma come from?          

Students will maintain enrollment at their home high school. The student's diploma would be issued by their home high school.

Phase Into Learning

When will information about student cohorts be communicated?

Student cohort information is available via Infinite Campus. Log in, click on the Inbox tab and open the cohort assignment message for each student to view their cohort information. We have made efforts to keep students within the same household in the same cohort. However, if you’d like to request a change in cohort, please complete this form by 11:59 pm on Thursday, September 3, 2020. Changes will only be considered for extenuating circumstances and if the flexibility exists to support your request while maintaining small and balanced class sizes.

How many students will be in each classroom?

Class sizes will vary and may be reduced depending on the number of families who choose to enroll their student(s) in our virtual option. In a hybrid model of instruction, class sizes will be reduced by approximately 50%.

What is the threshold to switch between phases?

Our Medical/Public Health Advisory Panel has established benchmarks and a scorecard that will provide guidance to the School Board. The School Board will make the final determination regarding phases, and efforts will be made to provide families with as much advance notice as possible regarding transitioning between phases.

How will the District communicate with families about extended school closure or a change in model of instruction?

We will deliver closure information across a variety of platforms to ensure effective communication to all stakeholder groups. Those platforms include, but are not limited to: email, web updates, social media, text messages, printed flyers and signage on our buildings. We intend to provide families with as much advance notice as possible regarding school closures or changes to the model of instruction.

What are the opportunities for elementary teachers to have prep time and/or time away from their room?

In the virtual learning model, teachers will use the full day on Friday to plan and prep for the upcoming week. Elementary teachers will have time away from the classroom during students' specials classes, including art, music and gym; secondary teachers will have scheduled prep time in a hybrid and in-person model as well.

When is the first day of school?

Cohort A will have their first day of school on Tuesday, September 8. Cohort B's first day of school will be Thursday, September 10. Please visit our Resource Library to view a Learning Overview for each cohort group.

Will virtual learning be synchronous and with the same teachers and day structure?

In the hybrid phase, students will learn in person two days per week and virtually three days per week. During the three virtual days, students will work independently through Canvas. In a full-virtual phase, students will learn synchronously two days per week and asynchronously for the other three days.

What does the Phase Into Learning timeline look like?        

You can view the board-approved timeline for the Phase Into Learning model at this link. Please note that this timeline assumes all conditions are favorable. The School Board may revoke approval based on guidance provided by our Medical/Public Health Advisory Panel.

 

Special Education 

In the Phase Into Learning plan, how will the hybrid model work for students with disabilities?  

In a hybrid model, students with disabilities will follow the hybrid model of their current schedule and remain in the class or the classes they are currently enrolled in.

Can students with IEPs or disabilities participate in Wauwatosa Virtual Academy?

When a student with a disability expresses an interest in WVA an IEP team meets to review the current IEP and disability related needs.  If needed, the IEP team will review and revise the IEP to include supports and services for the student to access the WVA curriculum. Please contact Dean Heus with additional questions.

How is the District supporting mask-wearing for students and staff who are deaf or hard of hearing?

We have ordered masks with clear windows and face shields.  We will work with our Deaf and Hard of Hearing teachers to ensure that each child who is deaf or hard of hearing has an inclusive environment.

How will the District assess the need for additional services for students with disabilities?

The District will follow guidance from the Department of Public Instruction bulletin 20.01 to determine if there is a need for additional services.

What are we doing to promote safety for students with sensory issues?

Each student and situation will be looked at individually and a plan will be created with a district nurse and the child's special education team or classroom teacher. We will provide our staff with the recommended PPE based on current guidelines - including, but not limited to face shields, masks, etc. - and we will evaluate modifying the environment in a way that maximizes safety.

Will students who receive one-on-one help per their IEP be able to receive the same level of support while maintaining social distancing?        

Students will receive the special education support and services outlined in their IEP. In situations where social distancing cannot be maintained, staff will be trained on necessary precautions and provided with equipment/PPE to deliver services.

Montessori + STEM Schools

Is the District considering a virtual STEM or Montessori school?

Students who are currently enrolled in STEM or Montessori programs may participate in Phase Into Learning or Tosa Connect, which will both consist of classes taught by STEM and Montssori teachers.

If I choose to homeschool my child for the 2020-21 school year, will they lose their spot at Montessori, STEM or other school?

By choosing to homeschool, you are withdrawing from the Wauwatosa School District. Families with seats in our lottery programs of WSTEM, USTEM, Montessori and MSTEM who choose to homeschool for 2020-21 will lose their lottery seat. Families with seats in the lottery programs who select a virtual option in the Wauwatosa School District (either Tosa Connected or Wauwatosa Virtual Academy) will maintain their seat for the 2020-21 school year.

How will Montessori or STEM students transition back into the classroom from virtual learning?

The Tosa Connected virtual model will follow the benchmarks of the Wauwatosa School District and utilize the adopted supporting resources. Principals and staff will welcome and support returning students.

Elementary 

Can I send my JK student to school part time?

Students are expected to attend as outlined in the framework.

Will students at Wilson/WSTEM and McKinley be in larger classes due to construction?

We are exploring ways to move student classroom spaces to accommodate class sizes.

Which options are available for before- and after-school care and JK wrap care?        

Right At School has been included in our pandemic planning. They are prepared to continue to offer programming that meets the guidelines established by WSD, and registration will be open soon! Please continue to check the Right at School website for more information.

Secondary 

Will/How will our relationship with Elmbrook and the LAUNCH program impact our plan?

We are continuing to partner with Elmbrook to ensure that our LAUNCH students enrolled in Phase Into Learning, Tosa Connected or WVA have the opportunities to participate.

What is being done to ensure students in AP or accelerated classes get the instruction they need to succeed?

We will continue to provide rigorous instruction to students in all classes.

Activities + Athletics 

Will students in Tosa Connected and WVA be able to participate in sports?        

Yes. The District will provide opportunities for students to safely participate in sports and other extracurricular activities if and when it is safe and possible to do so.

What extracurricular activities and/or specials will be allowed?

We are working on those details now and will provide an update in the coming weeks. If we are able to provide opportunities for students to engage, we will make every effort to do so. It is our goal to offer all sports, and we will follow WIAA guidelines for season start dates.

When will sports start?

Some sports have already started. Our Athletics Department will follow the guidelines from WIAA.

Will there be anything prohibiting student travel with club activities?        

Traveling will be evaluated with each club based on its destination and transportation needs.

Buildings + Grounds

How will the District address air circulation in buildings?

Our buildings are balanced environments, meaning the HVAC equipment in each building works to balance the amount and quality of air flow. Each year, we install new air filters, and this year, we will be installing new HEPA air filters to further maximize air quality and safety. We will leave the room dampers (vents) open 100% of the time to maximize fresh air flow. We will also install bipolar ionization in our mechanical systems which helps destroy the COVID-19 virus. We will use portable UV light systems in specific areas like the health room or in rooms where a positive case occurs. Classroom windows may be opened if needed, but we strongly suggest they remain closed to maintain balance.  Our Buildings + Grounds team has secured window air conditioning units to help cool classrooms.

How will the District clean and sanitize buildings?

We have increased cleaning staff and will hold a two-week orientation to train all custodial staff on proper cleaning guidelines and updated cleaning procedures. Buildings will follow the guidelines outlined in the Reopening Framework. Specifics will be determined by each building principal. A deep cleaning will be conducted in each building every Wednesday.

How will COVID-19 impact construction efforts?

Construction continues to move ahead on or ahead of schedule. We do not anticipate that construction will negatively impact any of the cleaning, sanitization or safety procedures in place at our buildings.

Classrooms + Learning Spaces  

Will students and staff have access to communal spaces?

Limited access will be allowed. Social distancing will be followed with guidance from signage installed throughout the space.

How will classrooms be set up to accommodate social distancing?        

Classroom set-up will be specific to age, room and subject, and will be tailored to each individual classroom setting. An example of a possible classroom space can be found in our Reopening Framework.

Health + Safety

Mental Health 

What mental health resources are available for students, families and staff?

We encourage all students, families and staff to review the mental health resources in our Resource Library. The library contains valuable documents and suggestions for talking to your student(s) about COVID-19, social distancing, mask wearing and more.  

For students and families: An emphasis will be placed K-12 to explicitly support and build social and emotional learning (SEL) so that all students are able to effectively apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.  In addition, to promote healthy homes, minds and families, the Wauwatosa School District is proud to offer the Student and Family Assistance Program (SFAP) through Aurora Healthcare at no charge to all Wauwatosa School District students and families residing in the same household. This program provides students and families up to six goal-focused confidential professional counseling, consultation, or intervention sessions per family member, per issue to address personal, family or environmental factors that impact academic performance or personal well being. To use SFAP services, please call Aurora Student & Family Assistance Program at 800-236-3231.

For staff: The Wauwatosa School District is proud to provide an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) in partnership with Aurora. This program provides staff with six (6) free sessions per issue, which can be conducted via teletherapy or on-site. We also will continue to provide additional opportunities to hear and access advice and perspectives from experts to support self-care and mental health. And within each building, we offer smaller cohorts to support ongoing, consistent check-ins.  

Mask Wearing

Will students and staff be required to wear masks?

Masks are currently required in all District buildings and will be required as we begin the 2020-21 school year.  The District will provide options for our staff including face masks, face shields and other barriers to wear. If a student does not have a mask, the District will provide one for them.  

Will face shields be acceptable in lieu of masks for younger students?        

No. A face shield is not a substitute for a mask. A face shield may provide additional protection to the wearer when worn with a mask, but they provide little protection to the wearer or those around the wearer when worn alone.

What does my child need to do to qualify for a mask exemption?

If your child has an existing 504 or IEP, their team will meet to evaluate the “no mask” request on a case-by-case basis. However, if your child does not have an IEP in place, they will need to be evaluated by the nurse and principal.

To begin, the parent must complete the Request for Face Covering Accommodation form. While your child is going through the evaluation process, they will have the option to wear a mask and continue to attend in person, or they can stay home and the teacher will provide homework until a decision regarding mask usage is made.

Will students get mask breaks?

Yes. We recognize that mask wearing is a new skill for all of us, and we are prepared to help students learn. However, we also need to clarify and provide specific examples to ensure the safety and wellbeing of students and staff.

What is an appropriate space for a mask break?

Any space that can be supervised by an adult and is six feet away from others is appropriate for a mask break. Teachers may choose to designate a corner or spot in the classroom where this is allowed. We recommend that our younger students are given a visible boundary (tape on the floor, carpet square, or a taped down hula hoop) to help them better understand the specific area where they are allowed to remove their mask.

What are the expectations for mask use in physical education classes, music classes, and on the playground?

Masks must be worn at all times when indoors or when outside and unable to physically distance.

What are the recommended guidelines for the number of students who can be on a mask break?

Ideally, one child at a time will be on a mask break within a classroom. However, if a child shares they are having difficulty breathing, we will be flexible and find space and staff supervision to assist.

Is my child allowed unlimited mask breaks?

Teachers will use their professional discretion based on the age, grade, and development of the child. If your child says they need a break, we will accommodate and provide one. However, mask breaks are not meant to be fun or to be used to avoid learning. Teachers will be asked to ensure there are no books, cell phones, school work, or other items for children to interact with during their mask break. The student’s focus should be on controlling their breathing.

How long will a mask break last?

Teachers will be recommended to set a timer and monitor for five minutes or less. If it is a sensory need, this time period most likely will be enough. However, if children were running around outside, they may need more time to recover. For example, for students with inhalers, it can take up to 20 minutes for the treatment to work and provide relief. If after 20 minutes, a child says that they cannot put on their mask, the family will be notified and the child will need to go home and be evaluated by a medical provider.

Will students need to wear masks during recess and gym?        

If recess or gym take place indoors, they will need to wear masks. If recess or gym take place outdoors, then masks may be removed at the discretion of the teacher or playground supervisor. Students must be spaced at least six feet apart for the removal of masks to be allowed outdoors.

If students remove their masks at lunch, doesn’t that negate the effectiveness of the mask wearing?

When someone is not wearing a mask, their droplets will enter the environment. However, the effectiveness of mask wearing is not all or none. Taking masks off to eat does not eliminate the benefit the masks provide during the rest of the school day.  

What is the District doing to build a culture of safety in our schools?

We are consistently using messaging that underscores the importance of masks, hand hygiene and social distancing in our buildings. All individuals that are currently involved in activities taking place in District buildings and facilities are required to wear a mask, as indicated by signage in and around our buildings.  

Will the District implement random COVID-19 testing?

No, the District will not implement random COVID-19 testing.

Will families be required to provide test results or a letter of clearance to return to school?        

In this situation, the District may ask for verification of a negative test result before the child returns to school.

Will the District place a travel ban on staff or students?         

We cannot control what our students and staff choose to do in their free time. However, students and staff will be required to follow any quarantine guidelines after travel, as defined by the CDC. Information on this can be accessed here.

Human Resources

Staff Benefits + Policies

If a staff member becomes sick with a non-COVID-19 illness, will they need to use sick days?

If an illness is not related to COVID-19, the District’s current sick leave policy will remain in effect.

Will health insurance premiums increase for staff?

We do not anticipate an increase in insurance premiums at this time.

Are you offering an earlier early retirement option for teachers who are within two years of retirement?        

This is not an option being offered at this time.

If I decide the decision to return is not safe for me and for my family, will I have to still pay the broken contract fee?        

Employees who wish to resign and break their contract will be required to pay the liquidated damages fee.

How is the District addressing substitute teachers?         

Each school in the district will hire a building substitute to allow for increased flexibility and coverage. Additionally, each school is developing a proactive plan to address staff shortages and implement substitute support. The district is also taking steps to recruit additional substitute teachers by increasing pay and providing other perks, such as free lunch. We are also implementing a bonus structure to increase substitutes' acceptance of assignments.

How will we handle teachers that travel between rooms and schools?        

We are looking at opportunities to minimize travel to the greatest extent possible, while maximizing safety protocols.

Will teachers need to stay home for three days each time they are sick? Are sick days being increased accordingly?

Current DHS, DPI and CDC guidelines state that "anyone showing signs of illness must stay home for 10 days from when the symptoms started and 24 hours of improving symptoms including no fever without the use of medication." If a staff member is quarantined or out sick due to a COVID-19 related illness, the district will cover their sick time.

Other  

How do I log in to Infinite Campus?

You can log into Infinite Campus through the Parent Portal. If you do not have an account, please contact our Help Desk.

Will students have access to Chromebooks?

Yes! All students enrolled in the Wauwatosa School District will have access to a District-issued Chromebook for their use.

How will the District communicate about the Reopening Plan?

The District is placing an increased emphasis on proactive, frequent communication. All important updates will be published on the Reopening page of the District website: www.wauwatosaschools.org/reopen. As information is available, staff and families will also receive email and/or SMS communications from the District. Updates may also be published on the District's Facebook or Twitter pages.

How is the District addressing equity issues related to COVID-19?

Equity is the driver for all of our decisions. We have developed partnerships with local medical centers to provide access to testing for all of our staff members. We will provide staff with the necessary PPE for their position and role within our schools, and we will also provide a face mask for students and staff who are unable to obtain one.

How will sick and/or quarantine days impact the District’s student learning reporting?

As we currently do with grading and reporting, we will report on the information and learning that students have been able to participate in.

Will the School Board continue to have virtual meetings or will they have in-person meetings?

Currently, the school board meetings are drawing large crowds that go above the 50 person gathering limit in Wauwatosa.  Having meetings via zoom makes the meetings more accessible to everyone who wants to comment. The Board will be back in session before we expect staff to return to the buildings, and we will continue to look for ways to reduce risk at all in-person gatherings in our buildings.

What proactive steps is the District taking to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in our community? What education and advocacy is taking place?  

We believe it's important to encourage people to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 now so we can safely return to school in the fall. We are having proactive conversations at the state level and have reached out to local legislatures. We also encourage members of our community to contact their local Alders and Mayor to express support for an all-city mask ordinance.

We have also developed a robust Resource Library that contains valuable information regarding COVID-19 symptoms, social distancing and more.

Did the District implement CDC guidelines in its decision?

The District will continue to follow the guidelines put forth by the Wauwatosa Health Department, Wisconsin Department of Health Services and the CDC. It is important to note that we are governed by local rule and that the city of Wauwatosa or Wisconsin Department of Health Services may have more stringent guidelines than the CDC.

Does the District need to comply with Milwaukee County metrics and orders to return to in-person classes?             

The Wauwatosa School District must follow all guidelines provided by the Wauwatosa Health Department.

What impact will the change in the school start date have on the last day of school?         

We do not plan to modify or move the last day of school for the 2020-21 school year. The District will meet or exceed the number of target minutes outlined by the Department of Public Instruction. However, we also anticipate receiving a waiver from DPI.

How will students conduct safety drills while maintaining six feet of distance from each other?        

Specifics will be determined by each building principal in conjunction with our Safety and Security Coordinator.

Does the Health Department have any authority to approve school reopening plans for public or private schools in Wauwatosa?         

At this time, the Wauwatosa Health Department has not required any schools to submit their reopening plans. However, the Wauwatosa School District and Wauwatosa Health Department will continue to collaborate on the District's reopening.