March 23, 2020 KPBSD Update

Greetings to the KPBSD community,

Over the past few months, we have all experienced a surreal situation unfolding before our very eyes. COVID-19 emerged as an isolated situation that had a profound impact in China but caused little disruption to our daily lives here in the U.S.A. What a different reality we are experiencing now with this virus present in our own communities.

During this time, when spring break is extended and schools closed for students, our incredible staff is hard at work preparing and delivering meals for students, and planning remote learning lessons. The education of our students must continue. Therefore, on Monday, March 30, students will “return to virtual schooling and remote learning activities,” by State Health Mandate 008.

On a personal note, in addition to the challenges of this pandemic, the Friday before spring break I was diagnosed with kidney cancer. I have been out of state receiving medical care and diagnostic testing. This week on Tuesday, I will undergo surgery and begin treatment. I feel blessed that it was caught early and my prognosis is good once surgery and treatment occur. I am thankful for our incredible Leadership Team which has risen to the occasion and will continue to lead our school district while I focus on my health, treatment, and recovery. During my absence, Assistant Superintendent Dave Jones is serving as Acting Superintendent, until I return.

I thank each of you for your courage and resilience during these difficult, trying, and uncertain times. I wish you all well. We will come out of this stronger and more united than before. Take care of yourselves, your friends, and family.

With hope for the future, Superintendent John O’Brien
Kenai Peninsula Borough School District

Phenomenal Learning for KPBSD Staff
On Monday, online workshops via zoom launched for any KPBSD employee who wants to learn, as schools prepare to deliver education differently. More than 40 KPBSD presenters will offer over 260 sessions this week! Support for parents will begin after school resumes next week. More information will be available in coming days.

Internet Access Offers
KPBSD maintains a list of Internet Access Resources with details from local providers committed to support students and educators looking for connectivity in this exceptional time of COVID-19.


“Get-It and Go” Free Meals for KPBSD Students

If you want to sign-up, or stop delivery, please call Student Nutrition Services at 714-8890.

COVID-19
A positive COVID-19 case was confirmed this evening, in the Sterling area. At this time, we do not believe there is any nexus to KPBSD schools. Employees that can are teleworking. Schools are open to staff, and by Health Mandate 010: March 23, 2020, are considered part of the Alaska Critical Workforce Infrastructure.

Wash your hands, practice social distancing, and do everything you can to help stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Links

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Update from KPBSD Superintendent John O’Brien

March 23, 2020

Greetings to our KPBSD community,

Over the past few months we have all experienced a surreal situation unfolding before our very eyes. COVID-19 emerged as an isolated situation that had a profound impact in China but caused little disruption to our daily lives here in the U.S.A. What a different reality we are experiencing now with this virus present in our own communities.

During this time, when spring break is extended and schools closed for students, our incredible staff is hard at work preparing and delivering meals for students, and planning remote learning lessons. The education of our students must continue. Therefore, on Monday, March 30, students will “return to virtual schooling and remote learning activities,” by State Health Mandate 008.

On a personal note, in addition to the challenges of this pandemic, the Friday before spring break I was diagnosed with kidney cancer. I have been out of state receiving medical care and diagnostic testing. This week on Tuesday, I will undergo surgery and begin treatment. I feel blessed that it was caught early and my prognosis is good once surgery and treatment occur. I am thankful for our incredible Leadership Team which has risen to the occasion and will continue to lead our school district while I focus on my health, treatment, and recovery. During my absence, Assistant Superintendent Dave Jones is serving as Acting Superintendent until my return.

I thank each of you for your courage and resilience during these difficult, trying, and uncertain times. I wish you all well. We will come out of this stronger and more united than before. Take care of yourselves, your friends, and family.

KPBSD Superintendent John O’Brien

With hope for the future,

John O’Brien

Superintendent, Kenai Peninsula Borough School District

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KPBSD Update, Sunday, March 22, 2020

On Saturday, two new positive COVID-19 cases were announced on the central peninsula: Soldotna (1), and Sterling (1). Sunday afternoon, Acting Superintendent Dave Jones said, “At this time we are not aware of a nexus from these two positive cases to KPBSD schools. KPBSD plans for all “Get-It and Go” student meal sites to be available for pickup on Monday, March 23, 2020.”

One of the largest employers on the peninsula, KPBSD is providing essential services in our borough by providing meals for children, and preparing to deliver education via distance delivery to our students beginning March 30, 2020, until May 1, 2020. Mr. Jones strongly asks that all KPBSD employees, “practice social distancing, frequent hand-washing, and adhere to the KPSBD Symptoms Free School Protocol.” This means if staff have a temperature, cough, sore throat, or runny nose, they should stay at home and not report to work. Additional mandates and guidance from the State of Alaska includes a 14-day quarantine for everyone who travels into Alaska on or after March 20, 2020; if you have COVID-19 symptoms; or if you are exposed to someone with symptoms, who has been tested, or received a positive COVID-19 test result.

Telework – strongly encouraged
To further reduce the density of staff in schools, if staff are able, they are strongly encouraged to Telework from home as soon as they are prepared to do so. This will create a safer workplace for employees who need to continue coming to schools at this time. All staff received the Telework checklist and agreement via district email on Thursday, 3-19-20, and are asked to work with their administrator or supervisor if there are questions about this process.

This coming week is critical to flatten the curve of COVID-19 spread in our diverse communities. Specific school sites or meal delivery could be suspended based on results of COVID-19 exposure. The school district leadership is working closely with school administrators, the state, and Borough Office of Emergency Management.

In coming days we will likely learn about positive cases of COVID-19 in our communities—with our friends, loved ones, and strangers. The coronavirus is a pandemic, and it is not selective. Be kind to one another, practice social distancing. If you have any symptoms or learn you may have been exposed, please let your administrator or supervisor know.

Borough Facebook Live: COVID-19 Community Conversation, daily at 7:00 PM
Tip:
For very good local COVID-19 information and to ask questions, tune in daily from 7:00 – 7:30 PM for a KPBalerts Facebook Live with the Borough Incident Commander and Public Information Officer.

Thank you for watching out for each other, and continuing to prepare to deliver education to our youth. This will be a big week of preparation for education to begin on March 30, and to respond to the pandemic arriving and spreading on the Kenai Peninsula. We must all do our part. Be safe, and pause to delight in the Sunday sunshine today.

Links

Learn more about how to prevent the spread of COVID-19 at coronavirus.alaska.gov

For non-clinical related questions please call 2-1-1 or 1-800-478-2221, or contact your health provider

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KPBSD Update March 20, 2020

Breaking News!
On Friday night, Governor Dunleavy announced Alaska schools will be closed to students through May 1, 2020.

And …KPBSD is preparing to welcome students & families to a new model of digital and digital free learning beginning Monday, March 30, 2020*
*Over the weekend after we receive, read, and interpret the March 20, 2020, COVID-19 Health Mandate 008, we will clarify more details for our students, staff and families! Stay tuned!

KPBSD STAFF ALERT: TRAVEL and Self-Quarantine
March 20, 2020 State of Alaska COVID-19 Health Alert 9.1 – Out of State Travel

Please contact your administrator to talk about the option to telework while you self-quarantine:
All Kenai Peninsula Borough School District staff who return to Alaska on or following March 20, 2020, after traveling outside of the state need to self-quarantine for 14 days, not return to work, and monitor for illness.
All travelers returning from a Level 3 area are mandated to self-quarantine for 14 days as previously outlined in COVID-19 Health Mandate 004.

“Get-It and Go” Meal Deliveries
If you want to continue receiving meals next week, March 23-27, and are already receiving meals, do nothing. If you want to sign-up, or stop delivery, call Student Nutrition Services at 714-8890.

Seward!
Seward “Get-It and Go” meal delivery resumes on Monday, March 23, 2020, and schools will be open to staff

On Friday, 1,326 meals were delivered to students on the Kenai Peninsula!

Wash your hands, practice social distancing, and do the little things now to help stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Links:

For non-clinical related questions please call 2-1-1 or 1-800-478-2221, or contact your health provider

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KPBSD Update March 19, 2020

“Little things really do matter. The small actions you can do right now will really make a difference. … We can socially distance ourselves without socially isolating. We’re Alaskans; we know how to do hard things.” – Dr. Anne Zink, Chief Medical Officer for the State of Alaska

“Get-It and Go” Meal Deliveries
If you want to continue receiving meals next week, March 23-27, and are already receiving meals, do nothing. If you want to sign-up, or stop delivery, call Student Nutrition Services at 714-8890.

Seward Meals
Unfortunately, meal delivery in Seward will be suspended one more day on Friday, March 20, 2020. We hope to resume Monday.

On Thursday, 1,354 meals were delivered to students on the Kenai Peninsula!

KPBSD staff are doing phenomenal planning and learning this week for all our students! The updates next week will share more information for parents and students. Meanwhile, it is important for students and families to remain calm – we are working closely with the Department of Education and Early Development and will provide many more answers to questions about school next week, including how education will happen when the extended spring break ends and school begins March 30, What about assessments?, and more. Remember, students are on an extended spring break now, and these days will not be added to the end of the school year.

Wash your hands, practice social distancing, and do the little things now to help stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Links:

For non-clinical related questions please call 2-1-1 or 1-800-478-2221, or contact your health provider

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KPBSD Update, March 18, 2020

March 18, 2020

The first positive case of COVID-19 on the Kenai Peninsula was confirmed in Seward today.

On Thursday, March 19, 2020, our three schools in Seward will be closed to staff.

The meal delivery service in Seward is also suspended on Thursday.

Join us to send positive thoughts to the City of Seward, and the staff, students, and families who live in this community.

Telework
KPBSD staff received information about the opportunity to telework Wednesday evening and can talk to their administrator or supervisor mid-morning on Thursday about this option.

“Get-It and Go” Meal Deliveries
If you want to continue receiving meals next week, March 23-27, and are already receiving meals, do nothing. If you want to sign-up, or stop delivery, call Student Nutrition Services at 714-8890.

The best thing each of us can do right now is practice social distancing. We have a choice—we can each rise to the challenge to learn new things, be resilient, kind to ourselves, and others. Social distancing works to slow the spread of COVID-19. Your actions matter in your social circles, grocery store, and workplace. Everywhere you interact with others will make a difference in these days.

“Teaching is not location; it’s a relationship and action.”

– DEED Commissioner Michael Johnson, 3-18-20

Links:
COVID-19 and KPBSD webpage

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KPBSD Update, March 17, 2020

KPBSD March 17, 2020 Update

In this unplanned, unpredictable pandemic that is emerging with many unknowns, we will not give up on educating our kids. Everyone has an important role in our mission, and today a family survey went out from schools. Our amazing staff are reaching out to every family this week.

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KPBSD UPDATE: March 16, 2020

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District
Monday, March 16, 2020 UPDATE

Spring Break for students is extended for students to March 16-27, 2020 by State Mandate.

  • Missed student school days will not be added to the end-of-the- year calendar

“Get It & Go” Free Meals for KPBSD students will be delivered daily to 25 locations, between 12:00 – 1:00 p.m.

  • Sign-up by Tuesday at 10:00 AM for delivery March 18, 19, and 20
  • New: The KPBSD child does not need to be present–the parent or person picking up can simply bring their student ID. This option came at the request of parents who might not have their children with them at pickup time.
  • Scan the QR Code or go to http://bit.ly/KPBSDmeals

Questions: call Student Nutrition Services 907-714-8890

KPBSD staff return to work*

  • Symptom Free School Protocol is in place.
  • Social–physical–distancing will be followed in the workplace
  • *KPBSD is following the CDC and State of Alaska guidelines about travel, flattening the curve, and social distancing in schools and the workplace
  • KPSBD staff will be contacting all families this week to access family needs!
  • Staff focus will be to prepare digital & digital free resources for educational delivery in case of a longer school closure due to COVID-19, and slowing community spread

“The next nine days will be filled with training staff to move instruction to an online platform and use appropriate technologies to ensure instruction is accessible, meaningful, and engaging. We are asking teachers to potentially move the work they do every day, directly with students, from a physical classroom to an online environment, and that’s a significant undertaking.”

–John Pothast, Director of Innovation and Strategic Planning

Everything is changing rapidly. You have dozens of questions and want answers. The KPBSD team will have more answers on Tuesday with an update late in the day, and there may likely be further changes and updates based on state and federal alerts and mandates.

For now, practice social distancing, wash your hands, be kind to one another, and do everything in your power to assist in the challenges and sacrifices we each are called upon to make in this spring of COVID-19.

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Free Student Food Service for KPBSD Students Begins Tuesday, March 17, 2020

News Release

Soldotna, March 15, 2020—The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District will continue to feed our students during the extended spring break. With schools closed to students, KPBSD will provide free “Get It & Go” breakfast and lunch meals for KPBSD students at food distribution buses for youth age 18 and younger.

Sign-up online (preferred!) and choose your pick-up location

Action Needed: By 10:00 AM on Monday, March 16, 2020: complete the simple online sign-up for free daily lunch and breakfast meal service delivery. If you do not have access to the internet, call KPBSD Student Nutrition Services at 907-714-8890.

Twenty-five pickup locations throughout the Kenai Peninsula will be open daily from 12:00-1:00 PM beginning Tuesday, March 17 through Friday, March 20, and extending throughout the school closures. You will choose your location when you sign-up. A KPBSD student must be present with you at the pickup location. We apologize that no special dietary substitutions will be accommodated.

Scan this QR code with your phone camera to open the online order form

If a student attends any of these KPBSD schools, all household children 18 and younger are eligible for daily free meal service: Kalideoscope School of Arts and Science, Kenai Alternative, Kenai Central High School, Kenai Middle School, Mountain View Elementary, Nanwalek School, Nikolaevsk School, Ninilchik School, Port Graham School, River City Academy, Skyview Middle School, Sterling Elementary, Tebughna School, and Tustumena Elementary. If your child or children do not attend these KPBSD schools (including Connections Homeschool), only the children currently enrolled in KPBSD are eligible for free breakfast and lunch.

Twenty-Five Pickup Locations
Pickup locations will be open from 12:00-1:00 PM beginning Tuesday, March 17, 2020, At your spot, you will meet a school bus, where students will recognize familiar faces—support staff, including student nutrition employees, and bus drivers—will assist with the delivery of meals! A KPBSD student must be present with you at the pickup location.

  • Across the Water: Nanwalek School, Port Graham School Tebughna School
  • Eastern Peninsula: Moose Pass School, Seward High School
  • Kenai Area: K-Beach Fire Station, Kaleidoscope School of Arts and Science, Kenai Central High School, Mountain View Elementary
  • Nikiski Area: Nikiski Middle-High School, Nikiski North Star Elementary, North Peninsula Rec (formerly Nikiski Elementary)
  • Soldotna Area: K-Beach Elementary, Soldotna High School, Skyview Middle School, Soldotna Elementary, Tustumena Elementary
  • Sterling Area: Sterling Elementary, Sterling Highway Pullout (MP 80.5)
  • Southern Peninsula: Chapman School, East End Road at Basargin Road (MP 18.8) Turnout, Homer High School, McNeil Canyon School, Nikolaevsk School, Ninilchik School
  • Other*

When you pick up your meals, protect your personal health and the people near you by practicing social distancing. These practices include frequent hand-washing, covering coughs and sneezes, and keeping a distance of 6 feet or more between yourself and others. A lunch and breakfast meal will be delivered each day.

* If your child has special needs accommodations for door-to-door bus transportation, please check the “other” box at the end of the online sign-up list, and you will be contacted for your additional delivery option.

If you have questions, or do not have internet access to complete the online signup, call KPBSD Student Nutrition Services, 907-714-8890, or email dbuchanan@KPBSD.org.

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Kenai Peninsula Schools UPDATE: Friday, March 13, 2020

News Release

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District
Friday, March 13, 2020 COVID-19 UPDATE


**COVID-19 Health Mandate for Schools**
Friday evening the State of Alaska extended spring break for students. K-12 students in Alaska will not attend school March 16, 2020, through March 27, 2020. All after school activities are cancelled. The KPBSD will provide additional information to families on Monday about this State Mandate 1.2. Our understanding is that these missed days will not be added to the school calendar.


Read: Commissioner Johnson’s Memorandum to Alaska Public School Families and Staff: COVID-10 Planning and Preparatory Period for Alaska’s Public Schools Starting March 16, 2020


KPBSD STAFF:

KPBSD staff will return to work on March 16 or 17 depending on job type. Details & instructions were emailed to all staff on Friday, March 13, 2020.

MEALS!
A student nutrition services meal delivery plan is in the works to begin Tuesday, March 17, 2020. Details for families to respond will be available by Sunday!


Links

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