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UNITED CUSD 304 Reopening Plan - Fall 2020

Beginning March 17, 2020, school districts throughout Illinois were required to close buildings due to the impending threat of COVID-19. Since that time, the State of Illinois has released the Restore Illinois Plan, which gradually returns all industries to normalcy. In Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois Plan, the schools “reopen” with no more than fifty individuals in one space. The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) “strongly encourages” schools to return to in-person learning at the beginning of the 2020-2021 school year. By blending the learning models of our schools, utilizing consistent learning platforms, and providing adequate resources and professional learning opportunities to staff members, we will continue to provide academic support and continuity to our students.

It is important to note that these requirements and guidelines are subject to change pursuant to updated public health guidance, changing public health conditions, and further directives from the ISBE.

Illinois State Board of Education Guidance

On June 23, 2020, the ISBE released guidance for schools to use in planning for returning to in-person learning. Requirements from the ISBE are:

● Require the use of appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE), including face coverings;

● Prohibit more than 50 individuals from gathering in one space;

● Require social distancing to be observed, as much as possible;

● Require that schools conduct symptom screenings and temperature checks or require that individuals self-certify that they are free of symptoms before entering school buildings; and,

● Require an increase in schoolwide cleaning and disinfection.

While we cannot eliminate the risk of COVID-19, we will work to mitigate risk and related issues.

● August 17, 18 - NO SCHOOL - Teachers Institute

● August 19, 20, 21 - NO SCHOOL - Remote Learning Planning Days

  • August 24 First Day of Student Attendance

● September 7 - NO SCHOOL - Labor Day

● October 12 - NO SCHOOL - Columbus Day

● Parent-Teacher Conferences (?)

● November 3 - NO SCHOOL - Election Day

● November 25-27 - NO SCHOOL - Thanksgiving Break

● December 21-January 4 - NO SCHOOL - Winter Break

School Day & Hours

During Phase 4, school operating hours will be shortened to increase time for cleaning, and disinfecting buildings and for additional meeting and collaboration time with school staff. Transportation will be available to students transporting to and from school in Phase 4. After-Practice bus routes for BOOST, extra curriculars and detentions will be available through Phase 4. Normal hours will resume for Phase 5. Operating hours for Phase 4 are listed.

In-person attendance - Groupings --- A attends Monday-Tuesday; B attends Thursday Friday

Remote learning on Wednesdays (Cleaning, common plan time, curriculum/remote planning)

Remote Groupings --- A remote W,R,F; B remote M,T,W

Full Remote Students remote M-F - expectations remain the same as in person learners.

Elementary - 8:00 - 1:00

JH8:00 - 1:00

HS 8:00 - 1:00

Phase 4 - Restricted In-Person Learning

All students will be offered the opportunity to be present in school buildings. Physical interaction will be limited to fifty people or fewer in any location. All students and staff members will be required to wear face coverings while in school buildings. Students will be asked to social distance as much as possible.

Transportation will be provided for all students; however, buses will have a maximum capacity of forty-four people or fewer. As a result, there may be delays in transportation.

School staff members will check that students are symptom- and fever-free prior to entering school buildings.

Remote Learning will be an option for any student who is not comfortable attending school in person. Student Learning Expectations will remain the same for all students regardless of the option chosen. Students that choose Full Remote Learning are committing to that mode of learning through the 1st quarter grading period.

Families will be required to identify their childrens’ enrollment in Remote Learning at least one week prior to the start of each semester of the school year. To begin the school year as a Remote Learning student, parents must communicate this with school officials by August 7, 2020.

School Registration

Students must be enrolled as a student at United CUSD 304 prior to beginning school. Any student who is not registered will not be allowed to attend classes. Students who are not enrolled will be asked to leave school buildings until registration is complete.

Student Attendance

Students will be required to attend school in all phases of the Remote Learning Plan. Families will be required to report student absences daily. Questions may be asked regarding illness symptoms. Unexcused absences will be recorded for absent students who are not reported absent.

Students enrolled in Remote Learning will be required to report their attendance daily to identified personnel in respective school buildings. In most cases, this will be completed via a “remote learning check in” process, but may require additional correspondence on occasion. Students and families who do not report their attendance will be counted as absent.

During Phase 4, students in grades K-12 will be issued a Chromebook. The Chromebooks will be issued to students to take home and use while in school.


Symptom Certification & Protocol

Parents will be asked during registration to certify that they will complete the most current recommended symptom checks of their student(s) on a daily basis to promote the overall wellness of the students’ attendance center. Student’s exhibiting one or more of the listed symptoms (registration) should be kept home until well.

Staff Members

In accordance with ISBE guidance, staff members will be required to self-certify they are symptom- and fever-free prior to reporting to school buildings. Any staff member with confirmed symptoms and a temperature of over 100.4°F will not be allowed to enter a school building or board a school bus.


During registration, parents/guardians will be required to acknowledge that they will be responsible for verifying that their student(s) is symptom free on a daily basis. By signing off that they will keep their child(ren) home if they have any symptoms of COVID-19.

All students will be screened for temperature and may be asked questions regarding symptoms by school staff members prior to entering school buildings or boarding school buses. Students will be asked:

1. Do you have any symptoms of COVID-19?

2. Have you or your family been exposed to anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19?

Students will then be screened for their temperature using a non-touch thermometer or kiosk. Any student with confirmed symptoms or a temperature of over 100.4°F will not be allowed to enter a school building or board a school bus. Parents or guardians will be responsible for ensuring their children return home safely.

Additionally, a form will be sent to all families through Registration requiring families to confirm they will:

● Ensure their children will be symptom- and fever-free;

● Ensure the proper use of a face covering by their child; and,

● Ensure they have read all other necessary required information

prior to allowing their children to attend school.

United 304 asks for cooperation from all families in assisting with ensuring all persons are safe prior to attending school.

Surveillance of Illness

All families are required to self-certify their children are symptom- and fever-free prior to attending school or boarding a school bus. Families are asked to report all absences to schools, when children are ill, and report any symptoms to school personnel. Families may be asked questions regarding symptoms. Any student with symptoms or who is confirmed to have COVID-19 will be reported to the IDPH for additional surveillance and tracing.

Quarantine Location

In accordance with the ISBE recommendations, a separate quarantine location will be identified at each school for those who become ill or exhibit signs and symptoms of illness during the school day. The location will be monitored by staff members if a student is ill. If a student is quarantined while at school, no other persons will be allowed in the vicinity of the student. Parents will be required to pick up their child from school if they become ill.

Illness Protocol

In accordance with ISBE guidelines, any student or staff member who has confirmed symptoms (i.e. cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, temperature, etc.) of COVID-19 will be required to be absent from school buildings for ten days after symptoms were confirmed and be seventy-two hours fever-free or with two confirmed negative COVID-19 tests done at least 24 hours apart. Ill students with a confirmed negative COVID-19 test will be subject to current policies and procedures.

Returning to School Buildings

Following quarantine, all students and staff members will be required to check-in with the school nurse and/or the building administrator prior to returning to buildings. Appointments to meet with the school nurse will be required, and individuals must certify they are symptom- and fever-free prior to entering school buildings. Additional health screenings may occur prior to meeting with the school nurse.

Social Distancing

When physically present, social distancing will be practiced whenever possible. All persons within a school building will be asked to maintain an appropriate distance from each other to reduce the risk of infection. During Phase 3, no more than ten persons will be allowed in a space within the schools at a time. During Phase 4, no more than fifty persons will be allowed in a space within the schools at a time.

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

All students and staff members will be provided with one (1) cloth face covering. In accordance with the ISBE guidance, all people in school buildings will be required to wear face coverings while indoors. Additional PPE will be available at all schools.

Additional protective equipment will be provided to school personnel as necessary.

Hand Hygiene

All classrooms and other locations throughout the school will be equipped with hand sanitizer dispensers. Hand sanitizer will be at least sixty-percent alcohol, in accordance with the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) recommendations. All students and staff members will be asked to use hand sanitizer when entering and exiting locations within a school building.

Protocol for a Confirmed Case

If there is a confirmed case of COVID-19 from a student or a staff member, schools will communicate with families. United CUSD 304 requests that families and staff members also report possible cases to the school where the individual attends school or works to initiate contact tracing.

Following a confirmed case, the area of the school used by the individual will be closed off immediately, and it will not be used until after proper cleaning and disinfection procedures have been completed. If possible, windows will be opened to increase air circulation, and custodial staff will wait as long as possible to clean the location in accordance with the CDC recommendations.

Individuals who did not have close contact with the individual who is sick can safely return to school. Those who have close contact with someone who tests positive for COVID-19 or is suspected of being infected will be asked to isolate at home and monitor for symptoms for fourteen days. Close contact means the individual was within six feet of the individual with symptoms for more than fifteen minutes.

United CUSD 304 will communicate any confirmed cases with families. All personal, identifiable information will remain confidential when reporting confirmed cases.

Any confirmed case may result in the closure of all school buildings for an extended period of time as a safety precaution. If school buildings are closed due to a confirmed case, all students will transition to Remote Learning until buildings are reopened. Communication will be made with families in advance of schools reopening.

Facilities Cleanliness

All schools and buildings will be cleaned and disinfected daily in accordance with the CDC and IDPH recommendations. All hard surfaces will be cleaned with soap and water. All frequent-touch surfaces will be cleaned with soap and water, then sanitized using approved disinfectants. Following all cleaning of classrooms, hallways, bathrooms, etc., disinfectant misters will be used as a further precaution.

The cleaning and disinfection schedule will be posted in all locations in school buildings. Custodians will certify when each location has been cleaned and sanitized.

Additional cleaning materials will be available for all staff members to use throughout the school day.


Remote Learning Platform

All students in grades K-2 will use the SeeSaw platform for Remote Learning. Students in grades 3-12 will use the Google Classrooms Platform. All students and families will be provided with additional information at a later date. Google Meets will be utilized for online meetings with teachers.

Remote Learning will be offered to students that choose that option. Information on Remote Learning can be found above. Students enrolled in Remote Learning will be enrolled by Quarter, and will not have the option of in-person learning. There will be no exceptions to this. A deadline will be set with Remote Learning students/parents to determine a change to in-person learning at the quarter mark.

Students that begin a grading period in in-person learning, may opt into full remote learning at any time.


Grades and assessments will be given for all students, regardless of the choice of in-person or remote learning. Updated policies regarding late work, participation, and mastery of standards will be communicated by each teacher.

Learning Assessment & Addressing Learning Loss Learning Assessment

Upon returning to school in the 2020-2021 school year, students will be assessed in Reading and Mathematics for their individual achievement levels. United 304 will utilize the Renaissance STAR assessment to determine individual student achievement levels for students in grades K-9. Teachers of other content areas will develop assessments and assess student learning accordingly.

Addressing Learning Loss

Collaboration time will be given to teachers and staff members to work together to identify learning standards not addressed during Remote Learning. Teachers will adjust curriculum and instruction to teach the identified standards to students. Small group instruction, academic intervention, and individualized-online academic intervention programs will be utilized at all three schools to supplement all instruction.

Special Education

The education of students with Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) and 504 Plans will be prioritized. All meetings will occur as scheduled by Special Education Administrators and IEP Teams. Individualized Transition Plans may be developed to support students in their transition back to in-person learning. Special education protocol may be adjusted throughout the year due to further developments and directives.

IEP Meetings

All meetings will continue to be offered through Google Meets. All appointments and meetings with school staff will be scheduled in advance. In-person meetings will be available to parents/guardians beginning in Phase 3. IEP teams will be limited to 10 persons or fewer in Phase 3. For teams larger than 10 persons, Google Meets will be offered concurrent with the in-person meeting.

Elective & Special Courses Elective and special courses will continue to be offered in-person during Phase 4. Courses may be limited if in Phase 1-3. Individual schools will determine and communicate which courses will be available to students. United 304 will follow all guidelines and recommendations from the ISBE for Physical Education and Music Courses. Information about special courses will be provided by individual school buildings.

Off-Campus Courses

Students attending courses in the building of another district (special ed, vocational, etc) will follow the return to school plan for the serving building. Any out of district student attending classes at United, will follow the return to school plan that we are following.

Extracurricular Activities Athletics

United 304 will follow the guidance and recommendations from the Illinois Elementary School Association (IESA) and the Illinois High School Association (IHSA) for athletic events.UHS Activities Director will establish protocols and requirements for returning to practice and interscholastic competition.

Clubs & Other Activities (BOOST)

No clubs or activities will be offered in Phases 1-3. Clubs and other activities may be offered to students in Phase 4 on a limited basis. Participation will be limited due to the fifty person restriction in one location.

Facilities Usage & Visitors to Schools

No visitors will be allowed in the school without having a symptom and temperature screening from a school staff member. All visitors will be required to wear a face covering if entering school buildings. All visitors will be asked to practice social distancing, if possible.

Facilities usage will not be allowed by any unauthorized outside group or organization until Phase 5.

Authorized outside organizations, volunteers, or consultants will be allowed in school buildings during normal school hours following a successful symptom and temperature screening. Individuals entering buildings will only be allowed at the discretion of the Building Principal.

Parents or family members who are picking up their children at school will be asked to remain outside of the school when picking up their child from school. Communication will occur through the phone or intercom system at each school.

Cafeterias & Food Service Phase 1-3

Previously established meal distribution (remote learners) will be the first day of each week students are scheduled to be in session. Meals can be picked up by family members of students at their attendance centers ONLY.

Breakfast will be available in a grab and go format to all students, and will be required to eat in the classroom. Cafeterias will not be used for breakfast.

Lunch will be provided to all students and eaten in the classroom.

School transportation

Bus transportation will be offered to all students. Parents and families are encouraged to provide private transportation of students to assist the school with transportation logistics.

All buses will be limited to a maximum of 44 persons at a time, in accordance with the ISBE requirements.

Seating charts will be required for students riding the bus.

All persons will be required to wear face coverings while accessing school transportation. Students not wearing face coverings will not be permitted to ride the school bus. All vehicles will be equipped with disposable face coverings for students. All students must be symptom- and fever-free prior to boarding any school bus.

District Communication

Communication will occur through a variety of media. Skylert and Skyward, social media, email, print media, and on the dedicated COVID-19 page on United Schools website will be utilized to reach as many families as possible. Only refer to communication received from official United CUSD 304 representatives.

Families will be asked to update their contact information on Skyward to ensure they are receiving all communication from United CUSD 304

Daily announcements will be sent by each building through email regarding any and all updates, and will include safety reminders for students and families.

Safety Reminders & Signage

Safety reminders and signs will be posted throughout buildings and district property. Signs will include reminders to wear PPE, have good hand hygiene, practice social distancing, etc.

All persons in the school building will be encouraged to maintain a six-foot distance, when possible.

Facilities Cleanliness Training

The entire custodial staff of United CUSD #304 will receive training on how to properly clean, to sanitize, and disinfect rooms and other locations throughout the school building. Staff will be trained on appropriate PPE usage necessary for cleaning, how to properly clean all locations in buildings, and how to certify an area has been cleaned and disinfected. Training will be ongoing with the custodial staff as necessary.