July 17th, 2020 | Posted in News

Dear Concordia Prep Parents and Guardians,
 
I pray you are having a safe and restful summer. Our Administrative Team has been working very hard over the summer to plan for the successful start of the 2020-2021 school year. Concordia Prep is aware of Baltimore County’s announcement that the first semester for Baltimore County Schools will be held virtually. Concordia Prep is continuing to evaluate the situation and the administrative team is working on developing the best course of action with the primary responsibility of maintaining the health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff. The school has already prepared for several scenarios. We know that the pandemic will require extra planning, training, precautions, and flexibility.
 
While working on our plan to provide an in-tact educational experience for our students, we have focused on the guiding principles that first and foremost our priority is the health and safety of our students. We also must consider the health and safety of our faculty and staff, our families, and the community at large. 
 
Here are the scenarios that we are planning to implement this fall based upon the latest guidance from the Maryland State Board of Education and Baltimore County. Please note, we reserve the right to update these scenarios as state and local mandates dictate.

Scenario #1: On-Campus Learning with Modifications

Students will return to school with enhanced health and safety procedures: 

  • Masks will be required for students, faculty, and staff in all indoor locations on campus (classrooms, offices, bathrooms, and hallways).
  • Temperature checks will be required for students, faculty, and staff upon entering the campus.
  • Handwashing with soap and water will be encouraged and hand sanitizer will be available throughout campus.
  • Desks will be arranged to maintain social distancing guidelines.
  • Middle School students will be organized into cohorts to contain their exposure to larger groups.
  • Lockers will not be used to avoid crowding in small areas.
  • All students will be required to have their own personal device—either their own device based upon the guidelines from our Director of Technology or a device provided by the school. (complete details can be found here).
  • Each teacher will have access to an iPad, which will serve as a mobile webcam and digital whiteboard to support a hybrid learning environment.
  • Outdoor spaces will be utilized for learning and other activities.
  • Extensive cleaning and disinfecting will occur during the school day and every night.
  • Parents and non-essential visitors will not be permitted on campus except for student drop-off and pick-up.
  • Students will eat their lunches in classrooms.

Scenario #2: On-Campus Learning with Distributed Attendance

Students will return to school but be designated for A/B days. While “A” students attend in-person classes, “B” students at home will be able to synchronously participate in classes in real-time. All the health and safety guidelines above will be implemented, however, we will provide a space for students to be on campus, but socially distanced, in the event they must attend school on a given day.

Scenario #3: Virtual School

Unfortunately, distance learning remains a possibility throughout the year. Last March, we were able to quickly transition to an online learning environment for all students. Our Technology Committee crafted the plan and held training for our teachers so that we were able to effectively make this transition. 
 
Beginning on March 19, 2020, Concordia Prep began Virtual School for students using our online learning platform OnCampus where students attended classes with their teachers via Zoom daily. The Virtual School schedule began at 8:00 am and ended synchronous learning at 1:30 pm. Teachers were then available to support students with asynchronous learning until 3:30 pm. Our OnCampus learning system eliminated any confusion for students by directing them to the proper classes. 
 
Over the summer, we have continued to refine our Virtual School learning platform and programs to ensure that we are ready to transition back to distance learning at any time.

Athletics

Concordia Prep is a member of the IAAM and MIAA leagues for upper school sports. Our Director of Athletics, Mrs. Fredrica Newman, has been working with members of both leagues, Towson Sports Medicine, and Dr. McCambridge of Governor Hogan’s task force for guidance on how and when sports will safely resume. We will clearly communicate that information to you when it is available.

Guidance and College Counseling

Under Scenarios #1 and #2, Mrs. Grill will meet with students for college counseling and personal counseling matters. These meetings will be scheduled in advance, when possible so that students are able to maintain social distancing guidelines. All school COVID-19 procedures will be observed during these meetings. On days that students are not on campus, Mrs. Grill will meet with students for college counseling and personal counseling via Zoom. Should Concordia Prep adopt Scenario #3, all college counseling, and personal counseling will be via Zoom. Resources will also be available to students and families through the OnCampus College Counseling and School Counseling pages.
 
I want to thank our Administrative Team and Technology Committee for all their hard work planning for these unprecedented and challenging times. I also would like to thank you for taking the time to fill out surveys, provide feedback, attend our Virtual Town Hall, and review the many communications we have sent home. 
 
We plan to have another Virtual Town Hall meeting and provide additional updates during the week of August 3, 2020.  
 
In Christ
 
Mr. Brent Johnson
Headmaster
brentjohnson@concordiaprepschool.org