June 30, 2020

School Board Presentation and Overview

Last night, Superintendent Risner and District leaders presented an overview of the District’s Return to Learn (RTL) plan that is due to the Iowa Department of Education on July 1. 

The multi-faceted plan includes contingencies for the following conditions:

  • On-Site Delivery – A full return of students and staff to school buildings. This delivery model will be done in buildings with face to face delivery of instruction for all students given application of mitigation steps described in the plan. 
  • Required Continuous Learning – This delivery model will be done via remote learning, either online or packet-based, in the event that schools remain closed due to the pandemic. Opportunities to interact with staff and students would occur virtually.
  • Hybrid 1 Learning (state-mandated) – This delivery model will be done by alternating students between on-site and remote learning. Using appropriate mitigation steps while on-site, most students will attend school 2 days per week and engage in remote learning each week on other days. This model would be used if the state-mandated that schools operate at 50% capacity, for example.  
  • Hybrid 2 Learning (family choice) – This delivery model will closely mirror the on-site model for most students. However, some families may choose to have children remain in a required continuous learning model for personal safety reasons.

School Board Meeting and Document: If you did not have a chance to watch last night’s meeting, we have posted a link to it below. The Return to Learn conversation is quite lengthy and begins at the 17:45 mark. We are also providing a link to the document that was presented to the school board. The document answers common questions for each contingency. 

School Board Meeting, June 29 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bci_acHXm8c (17:45 mark)

Board Document – https://amescsd.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/RTL-Board-update-6.29.20.pdf

We know that there are a lot of questions around what school will look like in the fall.  The plan that we submit to the Department of Education on July 1 is just that, a plan. It does not answer every question regarding what school will look like in the fall. Many of those questions will be addressed as we begin implementation planning. 

What communication can you expect from us?

It is important to know that this plan is fluid and continually being developed based on the guidance and feedback we receive. Communication on Return to Learn will come in waves, but we fully expect periods where daily communication may be required. Here are some things that you can expect from the District:

  • Feedback – We want your questions. Soon, you will receive a survey where you can let us know what specific questions you have around Return to Learn.


  • Survey – To prepare building level teams to best create implementation plans for all students, a survey will be sent to students/families to gather information about basic needs, access to the internet, intentions of sending students to school, and other supports needed as students return to school. 


  • Website – We are developing a specific Return to Learn page where we will update information with our most frequently asked questions. 
  • Community Forums – Virtual Listen and Learn sessions will be set up where District leaders answer many questions related to RTL. 
  • Email / Social Media – As Return to Learn content is developed, we will continue to share through email, social media, and post the information on our website.