Reopening Plan - Presentation SUPERINTENDENT DR. JESUS F. JARA’S OPENING STATEMENT
CCSD Guide to Reopening Schools Proposal
The job of a parent is one of the most challenging and rewarding jobs anyone can take
on during the course of their life. The desire to keep your children safe, happy and
healthy moves into the core of your very existence the moment you hold that little one in
your arms for the first time. And, it changes your perspective on what it means to be a
protector of all children. A reality that truly hits home as I stand with the care of 320,000
children entrusted to me by thousands of parents and guardians in our Valley.
I want to thank our students, families, educators, Board of School Trustees, and
members of our community regarding our collective efforts to educate our students
during school closures as a result of COVID-19. As a community, we have faced
immense challenges and obstacles and have proven to be a stronger, united team by
defying these obstacles together.
For the past few months, this district, alongside the rest of the global community
affected by COVID-19, has faced one of the toughest ordeals ever. The sudden
shutdown of almost every facet of life - retail, banking, entertainment, some medical
facilities, and yes, school - all over the world, has shaken the foundation of our lives.
Getting back to a place of normalcy will not be an easy process, but it's one we have to
work towards with thoughtfulness and patience. My focus is getting our children back on
track with their educational goals and we need the help of the entire community to get
there. Goals that we cannot ignore even as we continue to try to understand what this
virus means for our lives well into the future. But the safety of our children and staff is of
the utmost importance.
The plan that our team will be sharing tonight is not optimal, but it is sound. In January,
an entire country was brought to a standstill due to a virus that wreaked havoc across
our world, so this unconventional plan isn’t an educational structure that is conducive to
long term positive outcomes, but it is a plan that will ensure our students have an
educational future. Now, let me be clear, urban public education was already in a crisis!
The world just ignored the harsh truth and this unfortunate pandemic pulled back the
veil on the bleak and dire issues our students face and the inequities that we faced in
our urban schools. Our plan was guided by educational experts and we used mandatory
guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and follows the guidelines and
restrictions of Nevada’s Phase 2 requirements. The reopening of schools plan takes all
learners into consideration, especially our students with special needs and ELL
students, and it takes into account the health and safety of our staff at school sites. I
value the input of the Board of Trustees and the input of the community. Therefore, I pushed the team to bring our recommendation forward as soon as possible to provide
everyone time to process and refine our thinking. Returning our students to schools is a
community challenge; it will take all of us to do what is best for our students.
None of us could have ever imagined that this is the world in which we would currently
live. As businesses are reopening and getting people back to work, we understand that
the approach that we’ve chosen will make it tough on parents who don’t have child care
options during the day. We live in a community that operates 24 hours and I understand
the challenges that we are facing. I want to assure our parents that we understand your
concerns and we are working with our partners to try to find solutions.
Time is of the essence! Our principals need information ASAP! As a matter of fact,
today is too late - but we have been waiting for decisions to be made that are out of our
control! Our school leaders are already under an intense amount of pressure with a
nearly impossible timeline to plan, prepare, and implement a plan for instruction to serve
our students. At this time, we still do not have any information from the State regarding
our budget; therefore, we are building plans of which we have definitive information
regarding our potential budget. We must lead with a sense of urgency. Our students are
depending on us.