The school year for Leavenworth public schools originally was scheduled to end next week. But the superintendent said the school year will end, at least in terms of new assignments for students, this week.
Superintendent Mike Roth said some advance placement classes may still need to wrap up next week. But next week also will be used for students and their families to return computers and other school property.
Roth discussed the end of the school year Monday during a meeting of the Leavenworth Board of Education.
The schedule for the school year has changed as a result of disruptions related to COVID-19.
On March 17, Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly issued an executive order directing all kindergarten through 12th grade school buildings to close. The order was intended to help limit the spread of the coronavirus.
Teachers in Leavenworth, as well as other districts in the state, have delivered instruction remotely to complete the school year.
“Our teachers, our principals have done a nice job,” Roth said.
He said the Leavenworth school system officially began its continuous learning plan for completing the academic year on March 23.
“There’s been some learning curves,” he said. “There’s been some pivots. There’s been some adjustments.”
The superintendent said he knows there have been complaints. But there also are people who have been appreciative of what school officials have done.
Because of restrictions related to COVID-19, Roth and the members of the Leavenworth Board of Education met Monday using an online videoconferencing service.
While schools have been closed, the district has offered a service to allow children to pick up free meals.
Roth said this service began March 26. As of Friday, 30,007 meals had been provided.
The superintendent said the people involved in providing these meals “really have been on the front line of this pandemic.”
Roth said district officials plan to use next week to also meet with staff to prepare for the next school year.
He said district officials did not have a lot of face-to-face time with teachers to prepare for this spring’s continuous learning plan.
The superintendent said there is a chance COVID-19 could cause another disruption to schools in the fall.
Roth said he wants to start to prepare for the fall semester next week before teachers begin their summer breaks.
“If we wait until August to begin that process, we’re going to be continually behind,” he said.
Roth said school officials will be following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines for staff meetings. Staff members will be meeting in small groups.
Roth said the state and the school district could head into the next school year facing budget cuts. The superintendent said he wants to use the resources that are available now to prepare for the next school year.