April 14, 2020
RE: Extended School Year Closure
Dear SPARC Preschool Families,
I hope this letter finds you and your family healthy. As you have already heard, Governor Inslee has extended the school closure through the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. For most, this news comes with mixed emotions. On one hand, we are relieved our most vulnerable will have a decreased risk of exposure to the virus. On the other hand, we are concerned about the potential loss of skills our students have gained. I imagine you are wondering about your child’s educational and therapeutic services; what it will look like or if it will even happen? With that, I want to present SPARC’s plan for the remainder of the school year.
First, SPARC will be following the guidance of the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI). We will prioritize decisions and actions based on health and safety first, communication with families, and then consider requirements of IDEA and Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 392-172A, including the need to update IEPs and provide Written Prior Notices.
With that said, to ensure the health and safety of all, SPARC will be offering learning opportunities through a virtual platform. Even though your child will not be attending classes face-to-face, your child’s teacher/therapist will be finding ways to connect with you and your child virtually. Specifically, teachers will be recording themselves reading a book, signing songs, doing a fun activity, etc. These activities will be planned with consideration of your child’s specific developmental needs outlined on their IEP. These recordings will be made available to you via a virtual platform. You will need access to a computer, laptop, cell phone or Chromebook and have internet access. If this is a need for you, please let your teacher/therapist know as we will have access to devices that can be loaned out. If you haven’t already heard from your child’s teacher/therapist, you will. Please let them know if you have any concerns or if your child has had any developmental changes during this time. Feel free to contact the teacher/therapist at any time. No need to wait for them to call you.
Second, many are wondering if they can still have your child’s IEP meeting? Yes. SPARC will be offering virtual meetings to all families whose child’s IEP is due during this closure. If you would prefer a face-to-face meeting, this can be done once the social distancing restriction has been lifted. However, SPARC would like to complete as many as we can in alignment with the original due date in order to prevent a backup once we’re functioning as before.
As we get settled into our new routine, we’ll be sure to keep you informed about any updates or new resources. In the meantime, our priority is everyone’s safety. If you have any suggestions, I would love to hear them. Feel to contact me directly or share your ideas with your child’s teacher/therapist.
Thanks again for your patience. Stay healthy and safe.
Executive Director 360-416-7570 ext.1002