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Royal School District decides against year-round school in reopening plan

by CHERYL SCHWEIZER
Staff Writer | June 2, 2021 1:00 AM

ROYAL CITY — The Royal School District will offer summer school and extra tutoring to help kids who fell behind during the COVID-19 pandemic, but will not implement year-round school.

The details of the district’s reopening plan for the 2021-22 school year, which starts Aug. 30, were reviewed at the May 24 meeting of the Royal School District School Board. All districts statewide must submit a reopening plan if they plan to apply for funds through the federal Elementary and Secondary Emergency Relief plan.

Year-round school, called a “balanced calendar,” was one of the suggestions from the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction. Royal district officials opted against it.

State officials also gave districts the option of extending the school year, although stopping short of year-round school. Royal district officials also decided against that option.

Royal opted not to add class time before and after the regular school day for all students, although that’s a possibility for kids who were more severely impacted by school closures and the other steps taken to fight the coronavirus pandemic.

Other details of the plan will be announced over the summer.

Kids who have fallen behind due to the pandemic will be eligible for more tutoring, as well as additional mental health and social skills services.

State officials require communication with families and students, as part of the plan, to determine what’s working and Royal officials are choosing to talk with parents in conferences through the district’s advisory groups and surveys.

Districts will be required to report their progress periodically throughout the year and will be asked to administer extensive tests to measure gains or losses.