Back to School during the pandemic-Superintendent’s Letter
Dear TSD Families,
Welcome to Back to School 2020! It certainly isn't hyperbole to say that this is a BTS season unlike any other we’ve ever experienced. Schools and families are facing challenges and decisions like never before as we begin the new school year. I’ve shared throughout the spring and summer that the pandemic has felt like a months-long “table top” exercise where we are given a disaster scenario and we must quickly develop a response and a plan. Then the very next day (or hour) the scenario changes and it’s time for a new plan?!? The planning will continue throughout the school year as we will have to react and adjust. But finally, we get to move beyond just planning. Finally, we get to start the new school year!
As we enter September, I am thrilled that we are back to school in the Tuscarora School District. I am nervous about how things could progress throughout the fall and winter, but for now, we are happy to welcome students into our buildings and there is great joy in that. As I visited classrooms last week, it felt “right” to have teachers and students together! It was a little different than normal as we changed our routines, adjusted to new rules, wore our masks, and kept our distance from each other. But it was great! Our students, faculty, and staff did an amazing job adjusting to the situation and displayed resilience, professionalism, compassion, and joy.
We are also happy to be able to offer an option for those families who are not ready to send their kids back in person. Our TSD cyber program will continue to grow and develop over time to best meet the needs of our students who choose this delivery model. This will be a lasting benefit to our district as we develop a better online presence which provides more flexibility and options for our students.
Though many student activities have been scaled back as we start the school year, the PIAA has given the green light for our student athletes to play this fall. We are working with league officials to navigate the gathering size limits for both inside and outside activities. However, we hope to livestream as many of our events as possible so that our families and supporters can watch the events, even if they are unable to be there in person.
Finally, as a benefit from the pandemic, the USDA has approved us to provide free meals to our students through December 2020. This is an extension of the program initiated during the spring and summer months and will be a great benefit to our TSD families and community.
Thanks, as always, for your support, as we begin this challenging but exciting school year. Best wishes for continued health and safety.