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District Plan for Flexible Learning During Coronavirus Closure
District Plan for Flexible Learning During Coronavirus Closure
Joe Schwan
Friday, March 20, 2020

Friday, March 20, 2020

Dear Families of Groton Area School Students,

The faculty of the Groton Area School District has been provided with a framework from which to build alternative forms of instruction beginning next week.  We will be hosting a virtual meeting with all of them on Monday morning to further clarify our plan and help to provide any support that we can.  I am very happy to say that they are eager to be back in touch with their students providing educational opportunities.

Following our staff meeting we are asking our teachers to reach out to families by phone to establish a line of communication, check in, and find the answer to four questions:

  1. Are you aware of what our plan for the coming week is?
  2. Do you have access to meals for your children? Do you want to participate in the free meals [Details below] being offered by the District?
  3. What is the best way for us to communicate with you?
  4. What is your access to technology devices and/or Internet?

They will also try to answer any questions you have about what your next steps should be.

In order for us to accomplish our goals, we need to be able to get supplies and materials into the hands of the students.  This will take place on Wednesday, March 25 from 7:00 AM to 12:00 PM.  During this process, we want to ensure that we can be mindful of the recommendations of health officials concerning the size of group gatherings, personal hygiene for clean hands, and social distancing.  The following schedule of material pick-up has been established for in-town residents. 

If possible, we ask that you make every effort to follow the timelines provided.  If families are unable to make the established times work, they will not be turned away, but access may be managed if certain times become too busy.  Each building will be open for pick-up from 7:00 AM until 12:00 PM.  Pick-up from the elementary will be held in the Elementary Commons.  Pick-up from the MS/HS will be held in the GHS Gymnasium.


Grade Level

8:00 AM

JK and Grade 6

8:15 AM

K and Grade 7

8:30 AM

Grade 1 and Grade 8

8:45 AM

Grade 2 and Grade 9

9:00 AM

Grade 3 and Grade 10

9:15 AM

Grade 4 and Grade 11

9:30 AM

Grade 5 and Grade 12

9:45 AM

Buses will be loaded with materials for our out-of-town students.

Beginning at 9:45, we will be loading the school buses with materials for every student on a regular bus route whose materials haven’t been picked up.  The buses will run their normal routes, stopping to drop off all of the materials for the rest of the week.

Materials to be picked up and/or delivered on Wednesday will include student computers and chargers for students in grades 6-8, coursework and materials (e.g. textbooks) needed for the remainder of the week, personal items from student lockers, and school meals for three days.

In the event that the school closure is extended, a similar system will be employed for the return of completed coursework and distribution of new material and meals on Monday, March 30 with adjustments made as necessary based on lessons learned from the initial distribution.  The current plan is to provide material exchanges on a week-by-week basis on Mondays with the exception of school meals which will be provided on Mondays and Wednesdays.

During the week, staff will be available via email or telephone from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM daily to answer questions, and provide support and assistance to students.  There will not be any face-to-face meetings or contacts made during the closure.

School Meals

The District will be providing free meals to all enrolled students regardless of income who wish to participate.  Meals for three days will be sent along with classroom materials on Wednesday, March 25.  If the closure is to continue, additional meals will be provided on Mondays and Wednesdays at the Groton Area Elementary from 11:30 AM to 12:30 PM.  Pending approval, we plan to also distribute meals to our out-of-town students through our transportation services (bus routes).  There is no charge for these meals.  One change from the way we’ve provided meals for this week will be that students have to be physically present to receive a meal.  This is a USDA requirement which has not yet been waived.  We are encouraging all families to participate in this service.

We appreciate the support of our community as we work through these days.  Among all of the uncertainty, many have reached out to provide support for students and families in need.  I’ve always felt that our communities are supportive of our children through action.  We appreciate your understanding and patience as we continue to proceed the implementation of these flexible learning opportunities.  If there is anything that we can do to help you support your children or your families please don’t hesitate to reach out.


Joe Schwan Superintendent