Dear Upper Arlington families,
I hope you and your family have had a good week.
Click here to watch my video update, and check out the email below for other important updates.
Board of Education meeting
I’ll start this week’s update with a summary of a very productive Board of Education meeting this morning. Dr. Naeem Ali of our Medical Advisory Team shared the process the group used to develop the draft matrix for a future move to all-in learning. He stressed that the matrix is meant to be a flexible guide that can adapt as new or additional information develops. He also shared that the team is excited to welcome Dr. John Ackerman to the team. Dr. Ackerman is a clinical psychologist with expertise in the areas of social/emotional well-being in students.
The board intends to take action on the matrix during its next meeting, which was originally scheduled for November 17 but has been moved to November 18th at 6 p.m. in the Upper Arlington High School auditorium.
Also during today’s meeting, the board heard from our COVID Nurse Coordinator, Gina Rancitelli, regarding the types of cases we are currently seeing in the district. She shared that while we saw a notable increase in student cases at the high school level last week, we are seeing an increase in staff cases this week. With six-feet of distancing in place due to our hybrid model - the spread still seems to be taking place primarily outside of the classroom.
I think it’s also important to note here that staff absences - either due to illness or quarantine - are already having an impact on operations. In any of our work areas - teachers, bus drivers, custodians - it’s harder to find substitutes than during a normal year. There is a possibility that at some point this year we might have to temporarily close a building or a program due to a staffing shortage.
But for right now, I want to thank all of our staff members for going above and beyond to find ways to keep everything running. This team is dedicated to our kids and our community, and that’s never been more evident than it is right now.
COVID-19 dashboard and links
You can see the latest data on our COVID-19 dashboard. And you can find the following resources on our website:
Transitioning to or from the Online Academy
As we approach the end of the first half of the school year, we are offering families the opportunity to consider a transition either to the Online Academy pathway or to the school-based pathway. Please review the upcoming dates below if you are interested in changing your student’s current learning pathway:
Online Academy virtual information session - November 12 at 6:30 p.m.: Families interested in transitioning to the Online Academy may join us for an information session on Thursday, November 12. To join the Zoom webinar, click here (passcode: 626858), or you can watch a recording of the meeting anytime on our YouTube channel.
Transition request window - November 13-29: The window for requests to transition to the Online Academy or to the school-based pathway will open Friday, November 13 and close at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, November 29. Please look for a link to complete this request form, if it applies to your family, in my update next week.
Transition date - January 5, 2021: All approved transition requests will take effect on January 5, 2021, following winter break, and any changes would be for the remainder of the school year.
Please note that if you want to maintain your student’s current learning pathway (either remaining in the Online Academy or in the school-based pathway), you will not need to take any action.
As you may have heard, the City of Upper Arlington and Continental Real Estate Companies have announced a proposed development at the Kingsdale Center on the site of the former Macy’s building. The Board of Education has been approached to consider a TIF (tax increment financing) for that site. The City of Upper Arlington will be at the November 18 Board of Education meeting to share more information.
That does it for this week’s update. Have a great weekend, and always, go Bears!
Paul Imhoff, Ed.D.
Superintendent, Upper Arlington Schools