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Letter from USD 235 Superintendent
Letter from USD 235 Superintendent
Bret Howard
Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Governor closed school buildings, not cancelled school

 All Kansas schools will be working to implement Continuous Learning plans for all students going forward.  What we have known as a traditional school day will look very different for the remainder of this school year. 

 "When we are tested beyond what we think we are capable; we have the privilege to experience the depth of our resilience." - Author Unknown

I believe in this quote.  We have an opportunity to be at our best over the coming weeks.  I look forward to undertaking this journey with all of Uniontown USD 235 and show our resilience for our students, families and communities.

Please understand that all the information we know at this time is included in this letter.  We will update as new information comes available.  

Mr. Reith (UHS Principal), Mr. Eden (WBE Principal) and I became aware of this information earlier this afternoon.  We began discussions immediately to find possible solutions to these challenges.  

This announcement does not mean that school is over and we will not be working to plan lessons for our students going forward.  It simply means that school will look differently than we have ever done it before.

We are awaiting the recommendations of the task force on Wednesday.  We have been told those recommendations will be a combination of small group face to face, online, and or packet learning.  Once we receive these recommendations we will begin the process of developing what we believe will be best for our situation in Uniontown USD 235.

We understand this announcement brings many questions and concerns from our USD 235 community.  We will continue to update you as new information becomes available.  I have a sophomore daughter that is asking me questions as well that I simply can’t answer yet. The unknown is scary for our students.  I promise our parents and students that we will get answers to these questions and make it the best we know how.  We have outstanding teachers and staff working at USD 235. There is not another group of people I would want working together to find a best possible solution to this difficult situation. 

Here is what we know today:

· Spring Break, March 23-27, will remain student and staff time off as scheduled. 

· The following week, March 30-April 3, will be a planning week for our staff to implement the plan provided by KSDE and the Kansas Extended Learning Task Force. Once the plan is ready to implement we will notify students and families of what this will look like going forward.

· USD 235 will continue to provide meals until March 20 and begin again following Spring Break. Our food service staff made and delivered 50 meals to children and students ages 1-18 on Tuesday, March 17.  We will be making meals again and delivering to drop-off points on Thursday, March 19.  If you would like meals made available for your children, please call Michelle DeMott at 620-238-4968.  She will need to know the number of meals requested and where you will be picking them up at.  Uniontown – WBE, Redfield – Marmaton Community Church, Bronson – Bronson Locker, and Mapleton – City Park.  Please understand that your child and/or student will need to be present to get these meals.  We can only provide meals if the children/students are present.  This is one of the requirements of the waiver that was given to us to serve meals.

· USD 235 will make every effort to provide opportunities to our Eagles for continuous learning with the guidelines provided by KDHE and KSDE. We will take every Eagle into consideration moving forward. 

· At this time, all USD 235 activities and events occurring on or before Friday, May 29, 2020, have been postponed.  We will be looking at options to reschedule events as possible after that date. This includes prom and graduation.

As we have more specifics about what services we will be able to provide for families in need during this closure, we will communicate through our regular means.  As we move forward, please do not hesitate to email me at bhoward@uniontown235.org.

I will answer your questions as quickly as possible and to the best of my ability.  Please understand that while I answer your questions honestly...the answer may or may not be the answer you are hoping for. I ask for your understanding and patience as we work together in this difficult situation.         

 

Sincerely,

Bret Howard, Superintendent at Uniontown USD 235