Boca News Now | November 30, 2020
Letter From Dr. Donald Fennoy Follows Comments From Florida Governor Ron DeSantis
BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) — Palm Beach County School District Superintendent Dr. Donald Fennoy confirmed late Monday what Florida Governor Ron DeSantis announced earlier in the day: distance learning will remain a fully-funded option in the school district for the spring semester. Parents who wish to keep their children safe at home in the midst of skyrocketing COVID infections are welcome to do so. Parents who believe it’s safe to send their children to school are allowed to remain in — or sign up for — in-person education.
Here is the letter from Dr. Fennoy. As of Monday afternoon, November 30th, at least 785 students and employees have tested positive for COVID-19 in Palm Beach County Schools.
Dear Parents, Guardians, and Staff,
Parental choice is critically important, particularly as our community and nation continue to navigate through the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic.
As expected, on November 30, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis extended parental choice in education modality, through the spring. That means that the Palm Beach County School District will remain open for in-person instruction for K-12 students, and we will continue to offer parents and guardians the option of choosing distance learning instruction.
The Governor’s Executive Order also contains the protections of school district funding and one new addition. Parents and guardians must be notified by their child’s school if the student is struggling in distance learning. School administrators will discuss the potential academic benefits of returning the child to in-person instruction, but again, this is ultimately the choice of the parent.
In order to receive the benefits provided for in the Order, school districts must submit to the Department a Spring 2021 Education Plan that satisfies the requirements of this Order.
For now, everything remains unchanged. The mode of instruction that parents selected for the first semester stays in effect for the remainder of the first semester, which ends on January 29, 2021.
After Winter Break, parents will be invited to indicate their instruction preference for the second semester which begins on February 2, 2021, and runs until the end of the school year. The window for parents to submit their second-semester choice, through the student portal, will be open from January 4 through January 11.
The District has continually supported parental choice regarding a child’s preferred mode of instruction during the COVID-19 pandemic. I am grateful to the Governor and the Florida Department of Education for continuing this process.
As always, communication with your child’s teacher is critical. If you have concerns about your child’s progress, whether they are on campus or learning remotely, contact your child’s teacher directly to discuss additional means of assistance and engagement.
I appreciate your support of the School District of Palm Beach County as we continue Going the Distance, Together.
[End of letter].