• 3 August, 2020


    Hello OUSD Parents, Guardians, and Families:


    We are excited to welcome you and your child back to instruction for the 2020-21 school year. Though we know these are difficult times and wish we could welcome you back to our classrooms in person, we have been planning to ensure a thoughtful and supportive start to the school year for each child. At this time, OUSD is opening our school year in distance learning for all students. This decision was required to align with requirements around safe access to in-person instruction put forth by the governor and guidance from our local county offices of education and public health.  

    Since we closed the 2019-20 school year, the state has issued two new pieces of legislation, AB77 and SB98. These laws require specific things from school districts, including live instruction for each student, every day, minimum instructional minutes and days, and a requirement for students to have access to the technology they need to participate. Relative to Special Education, the law requires a Distance Learning Plan for each child that describes how services, accommodations and supplementary aids will be provided when schools must close to in-person instruction due to an emergency situation. While we know some services are not possible to implement in the same way during distance learning, we are committed to aligning to IEPs to the maximum extent possible. 

    Our Special Education case managers will collaborate with families regarding Distance Learning Plans, which will be created during the first several weeks of the school year. IEP meetings will continue to be held for eligible students, as well. 

    The District takes our responsibility to conduct thorough and accurate testing seriously. At this time, we are unable to complete in-person assessments, including psychological and academic measures that must be completed in person based on test guidelines. In accordance with state law, requests for new Special Education evaluations are paused until we are able to return to in-person instruction at our schools.

    I feel so fortunate to work under the leadership of our superintendent, Dr. Kyla Johnson-Trammell, who has prioritized equity and access throughout this challenging time, and to be working in collaboration with the dedicated, creative and resilient group of over 1,000 Special Education staff. Finally, I am very thankful for the strong partnership we have in our families, who are truly the heart of the work we do each day. 

    At the time of this writing, our staff are back to work full-time and working remotely to support a successful launch to the 2020-21 school year. Should you need to connect with us, please do not hesitate to do so. 




    In Partnership,

    Jenn Blake

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