Dear Parents/Guardians and Community Members:
As we close out our first semester this week, allow me to take a moment to thank you for supporting our teachers and schools during this trying time. Our teachers and staff are sincerely committed to providing our students with the highest quality education, in all circumstances, but it takes the whole community supporting these efforts to result in the best outcomes. On behalf of the School Board members and all Sarasota County Schools employees, we appreciate your support.
The second semester begins on Monday, January 25th and as you may know, the Florida Department of Education (FLDOE) recently issued Emergency Order No. 2020-EO-07 - Spring 2021 Improvements to all school districts, requiring them to submit a plan outlining their course of action for schools in the second semester. I’m happy to share that our plan for second semester was approved by the FLDOE. We’ve made the plan available on the home page of our website, directly above the link to our COVID dashboard.
Per the Executive Order, families will have the option to continue with the learning platform they selected for their child during first semester, whether that be face-to-face learning or remote learning. However, if a student has shown a decline in performance, the school will strongly encourage the necessity to transition the student back into the physical classroom. If parents of struggling remote learners do not agree with the change to face-to-face learning, they may sign a form declining the recommendation and indicating their decision to continue the remote learning option.
The school year began with 70% of our students physically in our classrooms and currently, the percentage has increased to 80%. As more students steadily return to face-to-face learning, each school may have a slightly different plan to meet the unique needs for their students. Due to these logistical considerations, please contact your administration team directly if you have any questions regarding your child’s school.
As we move forward into the second semester, let’s continue to collaborate, working as one successful school district. Let’s hold high our expectations, integrity, and accountability for the success of our students.
Dr. Brennan Asplen
Superintendent of Schools