ANSWERS TO FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Student & Family Update | March 25, 2020
On March 12, 2020 Ohio Governor Mike DeWine ordered the closure of all schools in the state to protect our children and staff members and prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
Since that time the Lorain City School District has focused on ensuring the basic needs of our students will continue to be met despite the possibility of an extended closure. Free meal distribution is expanding, our facilities are being disinfected, and social distancing practices are solidly in place.
As our Governor continues to tighten restrictions, with a recent order for all Ohioans to stay at home as much as is practical, we want to provide you with answers to commonly asked questions to ease your concerns.
Q: What is the best way to stay connected to the District right now?
A: District updates will be posted frequently on the website at lorainschools.org and shared by e-mail, social media, mobile app, text and robocalls where appropriate. We are also developing a more formalized plan to share information with those who do not have online access during this time, including those who speak languages other than English.
Q: Where can I find information, in Spanish, from Governor Mike DeWine's office regarding COVID-19?
A:The Ohio Commission on Hispanic/Latino Affairs has been working with Governor DeWine’s office on translating COVID-19 updates into Spanish. For more information, please visit this link: https://t.co/iLm4WLkpRs
Q: What if I have a question that isn’t answered on the website?
A: The District e-mail address [email protected] is monitored from home by staff who will respond within 24 hours. Individuals who speak Spanish can either call El Centro at (440) 277-8235 or the District’s Línea Español: (440) 830-4088.
Q: Where can I find a list of Community Resources for myself and to share with others?
A: Click on the links at left for a complete listing of resources and assistance programs in our community. We will also share these resources during student meal distributions, and during school food pantries.
Q: What is the District doing to ensure schools are safe from COVID-19?
A: Lorain City Schools essential staff members are proactively keeping our buildings safe by disinfecting facilities and practicing social-distancing, including:
Taking temperatures of staff before entering buildings
Regularly disinfecting “high touch” surfaces
Providing sanitizing supplies
Removing chairs to encourage distance
No community gathering in lunch rooms, etc.
No sharing of equipment without first disinfecting
Staggering breaks for lunch
Abiding by the 6-ft rule
Washing hands and not touching faces
Further, we encourage employees to not travel at this time, to stay home after work, and to go home if exhibiting any symptoms.
LORAIN SCHOOLS MEAL PROGRAM
"Grab 'n Go" meals (breakfast, lunch & super snack) will be provided each day, Monday - Friday, for the entirety of the extended school closure, including Spring Break. Two additinoal weekend meals are also provided during the Friday distributions.
10:00 - 10:20
FRANK JACINTO ELEMENTARY
| 2515 Marshall Ave.
CENTRAL PARK | 2800
10:30 - 10:50
LORAIN CITY SCHOOLS WAREHOUSE | 1930
W. 19th St.
ELEMENTARY | 610 W. 20th St.
11:00 - 11:20
| 200 W. 31st St.
ADMIRAL KING ELEMENTARY
| 720 Washington Ave.
11:30 - 11:50
STEVAN DOHANOS | 1625 E. 32nd St.
| 305 Louisiana Ave.
12:00 - 12:20
PALM ELEMENTARY SCHOOL | 2319 E. 34th St.
CROMWELL HOUSING | 2811 Cromwell Dr.
12:30 - 12:50
WESTLAKE GARDENS APARTMENTS
| 5009 West Erie Ave.
| 2321 Fairless Dr.
1:00 - 1:20
CHURCH OF THE OPEN DOOR (FORMERLY TOWER SPORTS AND FITNESS) | 1121 Tower Blvd.
Q: Does this schedule change after Governor DeWine’s stay-at-home order?
A: Food service is an essential function and will continue for our students. Meal distribution will continue, with expanded provisions coming soon.
Q: Do I have to go to the school my child attends?
A: No, families may visit the school most convenient for them.
Q: Do parents have to be in attendance?
A: Our concern right now is that every child is fed. Anyone can assist the child in picking up meals - grandparents, aunts & uncles, neighbors or babysitters may all help. A child may come alone; older siblings may bring younger siblings. Thank you to everyone who steps up to assist the well-being of our youth during these unprecedented times.
Q: Does my child have to be school-age to receive meals?
A: No - any child under the age of 18 is eligible for free meals.
Q: What if I'm taking care of children who do not attend Lorain City Schools?
A: Please bring the children to one of our schools - they will be provided with food.
Q: Can I leave my children at home and pick up meals for them?
A: Yes - anyone can pick up meals for children from our school distribution sites.
Q: What about food for adults and on weekends?
A: We are putting together a comprehensive list of food programs throughout Lorain which we will share widely. In addition, upcoming School Food Pantries provide free food for ALL students, families, & surrounding communities. Pantries include fresh produce, protein, bread, milk, and more:
MARCH 26, 2020 | LONGFELLOW MIDDLE SCHOOL | 3:00pm - 5:00pm
APRIL 2, 2020 | SOUTHVIEW MIDDLE SCHOOL | 3:00pm - 5:00pm
APRIL 9, 2020 | GENERAL JOHNNIE WILSON | 3:00pm - 5:00pm
SCHOOL DISTRICT OPERATIONS
Q: What are the current hours of operation?
A: The Lorain City Schools are closed per executive order of the Governor of Ohio.
Q: When will students take state tests?
A: Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced March 22nd that state testing will not be required of students this year. The administration of the OGT is postponed until further notice.
Q; Can students still use the playgrounds and track?
Q: How will students meet graduation requirements?
A: The Lorain City Schools if following guidance from the Ohio Department of Education, which states: “Ensuring that the Class of 2020 is on track to graduate is an important priority. Schools should take this opportunity to review the status of each senior to determine the extent to which the student has met graduation requirements for the Class of 2020. There is significant flexibility in the graduation requirements for the Class of 2020. It is important that schools understand the needs of each of their students and have, to the extent possible, a plan to help each student complete these requirements during the remainder of the school year, both during the closure period (as practicable) and at such time as school may resume.
“Should the current situation change, the Department of Education will provide additional information. Our commitment is to provide reasonable flexibility in the interest of doing what is right for students.”
Q: What about getting into college? Will that be affected?
A: The entire world is experiencing the coronavirus pandemic. It is a far-reaching crisis touching every state in our nation, and the majority of countries. Colleges and universities know and understand the extreme circumstances our students face. We expect not only specific guidance on this issue, but that much understanding will be extended to students as a result.
Q: What about ceremonies, celebrations and extracurricular activities?
A: The Lorain City Schools understand student concerns regarding important rites of passage such as graduation ceremony, celebrations and activities like prom, awards, athletic practices, etc. These are of course important, but our immediate concern is to make sure students are fed, healthy and safe.
Our next area of focus is to make sure students are educated during this time of extended closure. Only after we are confident that all of those needs are met, will we begin to focus on how we can resume normal student life activities. For example, maybe we can host prom or graduation in July. These decisions will be made when we have guidance on when people can gather again by the Ohio Department of Health. Right now it simply isn’t safe to do so.
Q: How can students go about obtaining a work permit under Ohio's Minor Labor Laws if schools are closed?
According to the Ohio Department of Commerce, if a minor has all necessary paperwork completed and is unable to get the permit processed due to school closure, the completed paperwork may itself stand in the place of the physically printed permit. Employers should keep the paperwork on file, just like they would the permit. The formal permit should be processed as soon as the school is reopened. As a reminder, hour restrictions outlined in the Ohio Revsied Code Section 4109 are still in place for any week that was not a pre-planned school holiday (i.e. spring break) and the prohibited/hazardous occupation restrictions are still active. Access the Parent/Guardian Consent Form HERE.
Q: How can I get my transcripts?
A: You can request transcripts on the district website at this link: https://loraincityschools.esvbeta.com/TranscriptRequests.aspx
Q: Will previously scheduled IEP meetings still occur?
A: Some meetings will be rescheduled and some will be done by phone or video conference if possible. Please contact your child's building principal for more information.
Q: My child still needs to pick up some items from school. Will the building be open?
A: Lorain City School buildings are currently closed. If you have an emergency situation please contact your child’s building principal.
Q: Can I still sign my child up for the summer 2020 Safety Town with the Lorain Police Department?
A: Due to COVID-19 the Lorain Police Department has made the decision to cancel this year's Safety Town. It does, however, intend to hold it in the summer of 2021. To read about the cancellation, click HERE.
Q: Will the District still hold Board Meetings and Academic Distress Commission Meetings?
A: Yes. District business must be conducted even during the closure, and meetings must be held in an open and accessible format. Due to the Governor’s stay-at-home order some meeting dates and time may change, and any changes will be broadcast widely. During meetings, Board and ADC members and other essential attendees will practice social distancing as recommended by the ODH. We encourage community members to follow along through our livestream.
Q: Will the District still need to go on the ballot for a renewal levy in November?
A: The Lorain City Schools is focusing on the immediate needs of students at this time. A determination regarding the levy will be shared when we have more information about how the extended closure affects our District.
Q: Can the District take advantage of the current low interest rates and refinance bonds to help with the budget?
A: The Lorain City Schools is exploring all options to maximize finances at this time.
Q: Can I register my child into the district's preschool program for the 2020-2021 school year?
A: The Lorain City Schools pre-k registration for the 2020-2021 school year has been delayed as a result of the ordered school building closure. Please continue to check our website for updates on when pre-k registration will resume.
Q: What are the home learning expectations for my children at this time?
A: In the short term, home instruction should focus on keeping current skills strong, with students following daily routines that include reading, writing, and connection with loving parents, guardians and caregivers in the home. The goal right now is to keep students engaged, curious, and comfortable within their “new normal.”
Q: Where can I find quality learning material for my child?
A: The Lorain City Schools will soon be launching the @HomeLearning program following Spring Break on April 6, 2020. The program will provide suggested assignments and activities to engage your child in the love of learning from home. We also encourage parents and students to connect with their teachers and principals through their school social media accounts. A full list of accounts is available HERE.
Q: What will @HomeLearning look like?
A: The Lorain City School DIstrict is sensitive to the varying abilities of homes to access learning materials online, pick up learning packets, and access information in various languages. Our goal is for the @HomeLearning program to be accessible within these varying needs.
Q: Will assignments be graded? Will there be tests?
A: PLEASE NOTE: NEW INFORMATION POSTED 03/29/20: Student work for grades K-8 should be checked by a parent, guardian or caretaker to help answer questions. We think adults will be amazed at how much there is to re-learn throughout this process! And while tests will not be formally administered, several online learning programs have components designed to assess a student’s mastery of concepts. Parents, guardians and caretakers will be responsible for continuing to prioritize school work, however no work for grades K-8 will be turned in for a grade for students K-8 during the closure.
Q: Will assignments and tests be graded at the high school?
A: Yes. On March 29th Lorain High School announced that lessons would continue after Spring Break. Here's what you need to know:
- Students will complete assigned work for credit each week
- Students who do not have access to technology will have the opportunity to complete assignments at a later date which is dependent upon guidelines by the State as the novel coronavirus crisis develops
- All teachers will assign work to students and enter grades through PowerSchool
- All teachers will provide specific "office hours" in which students can connect with them via e-mail
- Guidance Counselors will also share their office hours as students begin scheduling for the 20/21 school year
- Graduation will be RESCHEDULED - those details will be shared widely as soon as we are able to put them in place
Q: What will teachers be doing during this time?
A: A quality education occurs when we teach students how to think - and not how to simply memorize facts and content. This goes for us as well. In the weeks ahead our teachers will be developing accessible home learning content while learning new strategies to provide instruction and support from home, which includes delivering this support online, on paper, and in some cases, in various languages. While there will be some growing pains, we believe we will be stronger educators because of this unique period in time.
Q: Help! I don’t know where to begin with teaching!
A: Lorain City Schools principals, teachers and support staff will be sharing recommended schedules, strategies and supports when we launch our @HomeLearning program. We’ll get through this together!
Q: What are the remote learning options for my child if I do not have internet service and/or a computer?
A: Currently, Spectrum Internet Services and locally-owned TECHNE are both offering services to help bridge the technology gap between provider and consumer, when it comes to providing distance learning to Lorain students, during this time of physical distancing.TECHNE currently has reliable, trusted, certified laptops and desktop computers that they can provide at their cost. Desktops tower $75 & Laptops $190. With the public libraries and community service organizations across Lorain County closed, Spectrum and TECHNE are offering ways to get free internet and the necessary accessibility tools to where they are most needed. To inquire about purchasing a desktop or laptop, contact Bartholomew Gonzalez at 440-258-3486. For information regarding Spectrum’s High-speed Internet at an affordable price, and to see if you qualify, click HERE. Para obtener esta información en español, haga clic AQUÍ. We will continue to explore options for our students and families who are unable to utilize this service, as we strive for equity across our school district.
Have a question that wasn’t answered here? Contact us [email protected] and we will respond within 24 hours.