At Home Learning Plan
Dear Evergreen Families,
I am pleased to send the Evergreen At Home Learning Plan 2020-2021 to you. This document is the result of countless hours of reflection, analysis, research and planning for how best to implement a Montessori-based learning program from home. I am grateful to Kimberly Sandridge for taking the lead on the project as well as for our teachers’ input into the final document. We are committed to building on the foundation we set in the spring to make learning from home as meaningful and engaging as possible.
As you read the plan, please keep in mind that our Board of Trustees, working in tandem with the Head of School, will be making final decisions soon about the format of our programs which are set to begin on August 31. We are weighing many factors as we plan for the year ahead—in person, remote, or hybrid. In addition, we are working on logistics so that families may be able to choose to in-person or remote learning. We know that children’s day-to-day experiences will need to look different than they have in the past. Thank you for your flexibility and understanding as we work to develop a program that best meets all our children’s need for meaningful learning and interpersonal connection.
The reopening of Evergreen School is guided by the following principles:
- Act in alignment with Evergreen’s Mission and Core Values
- Protect the health and safety of students and staff
- Follow the guidelines set out by the CDC and MD Departments of Health and Education
- Reduce contact and commingling of children between classroom groups as much as possible
- Implement a health and safety plan that is consistent between summer sessions and the academic school year
- Prefer face-to-face learning over remote learning whenever it is safe to do so
- Provide clear expectations for teachers and students during periods of remote learning
We are grateful to the 67 families who completed our re-opening survey so far. According to the results, approximately 60% of families are comfortable or very comfortable with in-person learning at Evergreen for the fall. 31% are uncomfortable or very uncomfortable with in-person learning.
And finally, we continue to monitor the health policies and requirements of the county, state and childcare officials, as well. We have been working with our regional associations of independent schools (AIMS and AISGW) to get clarity about the conflicting messages and legal requirements that we are getting from our different regulatory agencies.
Different Evergreen programs are regulated by different agencies-- from the Maryland Child Care Office to the Office of Non-public Schools and the Department of Health-- and none of them align with the Montessori mixed-age philosophy-- so our situation is more complex and nuanced that for other K-8 or K-12 independent schools.
Once again, I am grateful for your incredible patience during this uncertain time. I know families are eager to know our plans so that they can prepare for the school year ahead. I will update you as soon as we can.
All the best,