The Unfortunate Impacts of Covid 19
Nearly all Foudation events were cancelled for safety purpposes unless they could be completed in the virtual online world with the given Washington State COVID - 19 operational guidelines. The inability to conduct charity events has had a significant impact on our fundraising but it has not altered our goal of offering scholarships to Highline students through the epidemic. We want to sincerely thank many of our annual and new contributors for making contributions online in 2020 and 2021 to help support HHSAF scholarships. Our misfortune pales in comparison to those that have lost loved ones, became unemployed, or were financially impacted by this epidemic! To all the students that could not attend school and shifted to remote learning and the senior's that were unable to have their traditional graduation celebration togetherw., we all wish you an incrediblee future!
It was most unfortunate that the Foundation was unable to sponsor live June Alumni Scholarship Celebration's as this event provides an incredible opportunity to recognize our HHS students for their efforts and acknowledge their outstanding academic achievements in a public setting shared by their support network of educators, friends, and families.
We wish to especially thank our Foundation nominating committee of Trish Anderson and Patti (Stewart) Burgess for working during the state and school closures in partnership with Highline high school and district staffs on the selection of scholarship recipients. Please click on the video below from Trish for an update on this years scholarship recipients.
HHS Students Will Commence School Via Distance Learning from B Town Blog July 22nd
The news was shared via a message sent out to families from Superintendent Susan Enfield.
“I have been talking daily with the superintendents of Kent, Federal Way, Auburn, Renton and Seattle,” Enfield said. “After reviewing all the data and feedback, we all believe that the best course of action is to begin the school year in full distance learning.
“I realize this decision is a relief to some and a hardship for others. It is not a decision I wanted to make, but I feel compelled to do so based on a number of factors, including:
“Infection rates in King County are predicted to get worse before they get better.“Over 35% percent of our staff identify as being in a high-risk group for COVID infection.“Nearly 29% percent of teachers live with someone in a high-risk group.“As the person who ultimately bears responsibility for the health and safety of our students and staff in our schools, I cannot in good conscience open schools for in-person instruction in September.”
Here’s the full text of Enfield’s announcement:
As we get closer to fall, I know you are anxious about what school will be like come September. I have been fiercely hoping to have our students back in our schools this fall. We know our students miss school, and we miss them.
I know that each of you faces a unique set of circumstances. If I could, I would make a plan that addresses each of your individual situations. In reality, that is not possible. As the leader faced with many diverse and competing interests, the very best I can do is find a way forward that has the least negative impacts on the most–and most vulnerable–people.
I have been talking daily with the superintendents of Kent, Federal Way, Auburn, Renton and Seattle. After reviewing all the data and feedback, we all believe that the best course of action is to begin the school year in full distance learning.
I realize this decision is a relief to some and a hardship for others. It is not a decision I wanted to make, but I feel compelled to do so based on a number of factors, including:
Infection rates in King County are predicted to get worse before they get better.Over 35% percent of our staff identify as being in a high-risk group for COVID infection.Nearly 29% percent of teachers live with someone in a high-risk group.As the person who ultimately bears responsibility for the health and safety of our students and staff in our schools, I cannot in good conscience open schools for in-person instruction in September.
It is too early to predict how long we will remain in distance learning. We will monitor infection rates and rely on public health guidance to determine when we can safely reopen school buildings. When we can, we will move into our hybrid model.
We have learned from your feedback and our experience last spring, and our Academics workgroup is developing an improved distance learning program that includes:
Live instructionVirtual small group supportBroadband internet access to more families, with the support of our city governmentsA digital device for every individual studentWe recognize that distance learning cannot fully meet the needs of some students with special needs, and we are evaluating the extent to which we can safely provide therapeutic services to students who need them.
Since we will offer distance learning as an option after hybrid learning starts, we have decided to postpone the opening of Highline Virtual Academy until Fall 2021. This allows us to fully focus on refining our distance learning program now and gives us the opportunity to thoughtfully develop a permanent high-quality, challenging online school for Highline students who thrive in this environment.
I know you have many more questions. We may not have the answers to them all at this moment, but know that we are working on it—working extremely hard, with a deep sense of responsibility to you and your children.
We continue to post updates to our FAQs. We will also host two webinars on August 11 and hope to have answers to many of your questions then. We will send invitations and links in a Family Update this week.
We all hoped this pandemic would be under control by fall. No one is more frustrated by that than I am. I want to assure you, though, that nothing will dampen our commitment to know every student by name, strength and need, whether we are face-to-face or at a distance.
After reviewing all the data and feedback, we believe the best course of action is to begin the school year in full distance learning. Read this update from @SuptEnfield to learn more: https://t.co/2lqnxRGcjP pic.twitter.com/emMCCKB19C
— Highline Schools (@HighlineSchools) July 22, 2020