Missoula County Public Schools will start slowly while they roll out the transition into Phase 2 with students in school four days a week.

Communications Director Hatton Littman has details.

“Starting on Tuesday, January the 26th, we will start transitioning our students in various different grade levels into what we call phase two of our reopen plan,” said Littman. “What we'll start in that transition will be students at four days a week in school. We haven't quite messaged about when we'll ramp up to five days a week.”

Littman said the step to four days per week will be done by classes.

“We feel like this is a responsible first step,” she said. “That's why we're starting with just grades K through two and six through eight. That first week we phase up, and then we'll welcome back grades three through five and nine through 12. On Tuesday, February the second and that'll be when they start there four days a week.”

Littman said the process will begin soon to hire more staff members to provide the services for full time school attendance.

“We really are hiring quite a few staff members,” she said. “Parents can either look at those positions themselves or spread the word to those that they know might be available. From certified teachers in certain grade levels to para-educators. We need lots and lots of para-educators as well as noon duty aides crossing guards, really anything you can imagine; such as custodians. Parents can help spread the word and share that information with folks in the community so we can get staffed up appropriately.”

Littman said, as always, success begins with parental involvement.

“Parents can do what they always do, which is support their children in making great healthy decisions for themselves, keeping students home if they're feeling sick, supporting their students in getting a good night's sleep, having breakfast before they come to school or getting them to school and time to have breakfast at school, and helping focus on their instructional and academic goals for their own students,” she said.

Eventually, Littman said the plan is to return to five days of in-class instruction per week.

 

In Pictures: What Education Looks Like Around the World During a Pandemic