By LILY TINOCO | Reporter
The Palisades Charter High School Board of Trustees met virtually on Tuesday, April 20, to discuss updates regarding a future return to campus.
Principal Dr. Pam Magee and Director of Operations Don Parcell addressed school changes and updates in response to COVID-19. The school is reportedly approaching Phase Five of its Reopening Roadmap, where up to 50% of willing students may be able to be on campus at a time where they will be assigned a classroom to Zoom from. This is slated to begin Monday, May 3.
During this phase, students will continue following the same schedules in place during distance learning from classrooms with supervision from a Pali High teacher or staff member, even if it is not their respective teacher. Students will either attend classes on campus on Monday and Tuesday, or Wednesday and Thursday.
“We were looking for a design that doesn’t disrupt the relationship that people have built with their specific teacher,” Magee said. “If you’re wondering what’s the philosophy behind what Pali has designed, that’s a big piece of it: trying to be equitable, trying to ensure consistent instruction.”
Pali High’s Reopening Roadmap leads up to Phase Eight, where the school hopes to return to “pre-COVID” functionality.
Magee revealed that Pali High plans to fully reopen on August 18 for the 2021-22 academic school year without any restrictions on volume of students, physical distancing or bell schedules—as permitted by governing entities. The school would continue to provide personal protective equipment and daily disinfecting throughout the year.
Magee said there will be discussions with union and labor partners, but that she hoped attendees would rally around the intent to reopen school as normal.
There was a motion made for the Board of Trustees to approve the plan to fully reopen to in-person instruction in August as presented by Magee. After some discussion, the motion was passed unanimously.
A COVID-19 Safety and Reopening Task Force has also been established to create, plan and implement procedures regarding the virus among the Pali High community. Magee said the task force is stakeholder based and plenty of parents are a part of it, meeting weekly and currently focusing on the fall reopening plan.
“We have other advisors who are coming in, whether they are epidemiologists or other experts, who I think will play a huge role in helping us interpret the guidance that’s coming from all the various entities,” Magee said during the meeting. “At this point, I think that we’re really on top of what those ordinances are as we move forward with making plans for the remainder of this school year and … moving into next year.”
Pali High recently introduced a COVID-19 case rate dashboard on its website, recording the volume of staff and students on site, as well as confirmed active cases. There were three active COVID-19 student cases reported as the Post went to print Tuesday evening.
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