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Auburn School District Prepares to Return to In-Person Learning

The Auburn School District has begun the process of returning to in-person instruction.  In a letter sent home to district families, ASD Superintendent Dr. Alan Spicciati outlined the district’s plan for easing into the hybrid learning format.

In his letter to families, Spicciati explains that “we have not determined a timeline for when we begin the hybrid model. We are making all of the preparations to be ready once the health department advises.”

The district plans to have its youngest students return first. After measuring the success of grades pre-kindergarten to second, the next group of grades (third through fifth) will return. This pattern will continue until all students have returned in a hybrid schedule.

The district is offering families two models to choose from for their students. All students will learn from home on Mondays. Students will attend in person Tuesday/Thursday or Wednesday/Friday, continuing distance learning the alternating days.

Those families that do not wish to have their children return in person may opt-out of the hybrid model, and continue the distance learning format. The elementary evening program will remain available based on enrollment.

Letter from ASD Superintendent Spicciati

Dear ASD Families,

As mentioned a couple of weeks ago, the district is planning for our gradual return to in-person instruction. King County infection rates continue to be in the moderate range and per Public Health-Seattle & King County (PHSKC), we can start bringing the youngest learners back in the coming weeks and then gradually return all students to a hybrid model of in-person instruction.  

When we return to in-person instruction, ASD students and staff will follow Washington State Department of Health guidelines for face coverings, physical distancing, personal hygiene, COVID response, cleaning protocols, and a required daily wellness screening. All students and staff will be required to wear face coverings at all times indoors and on school buses.

We are designing a hybrid model based on data we received in the summer and patterns of attendance seen around the country. This model is subject to change based on the commitments ASD families make. We have not determined a timeline for when we begin the hybrid model. We are making all of the preparations to be ready once the health department advises.

At this time, we are planning for our youngest learners, grades PK-2 to return first. We will monitor the success and infection rate and if the data continues to meet the PHSKC guidelines, we will bring grades 3-5 back in a hybrid schedule a few weeks after grades PK-2. After the elementary implementation, we will monitor the infection rates and then create a timeline to add secondary students back in a hybrid schedule.

The plans are subject to change, based on health and safety guidance from PHSKC. 

Families will need to choose one of these models:

Hybrid-available at elementary and secondary

The hybrid model will be one group of students attending in-person Tuesday/Thursday and another group on Wednesday/ Friday. Monday will be a student at-home day. Students will continue learning at home on the days they do not attend in-person.

Full-time Distance Learning-available at elementary and secondary

We expect there will be families who are not comfortable returning to any in-person instruction, so we are planning to continue a full-time Distance Learning schedule.

Elementary PM Program-available at elementary only

The Elementary PM program (4:30-7:45 p.m.) may continue in full-time Distance Learning if there is sufficient enrollment. The Elementary PM program will not be available in-person.

As we plan for the gradual return of students, we need to understand what program you are most comfortable with for your student. Below are key points you need to know as you make a decision about which program you will choose for your student:

  • Because we are designing the program based on a response for every student, we are asking you to commit to your choice through the end of January. Changes to your choice may be addressed on a space-available basis. As January approaches, we will revisit the various programs to see if we can accommodate changes.
  • DOH guidelines do not require physical distancing on school buses. While the district will make every effort to keep students safe, families need to know physical distancing may not be possible on ASD school buses.
  • We will make every effort to keep students with their current teacher, but it may not be possible.
  • Some classes might not be available in Distance Learning for grades 6-12. School counselors will work with students to find equivalent courses or make schedule changes.
  • The hybrid model is students attend two days per week in-person and participate in Distance Learning the other three days of the week.
  • The days students attend in-person is based on where students live, families will not choose which two days to attend. (It will be either Tuesday/Thursday or Wednesday/Friday.)
  • All students will be at home on Mondays.
  • The days your student does not attend in-person will be mostly independent learning.
  • Every family will need to commit to either the hybrid program, remaining in full-time distance learning, or continue in the Elementary PM program.

We will host three Family Town Hall meetings to present our current plan and answer your questions. Because changes in your choice of programs will be limited, we want to make sure you have the information you need to make a decision. The Family Town Hall meetings will be on October 8 at 8 a.m., 12 p.m. and 7 p.m. Information regarding the Zoom Family Town Hall login information will be sent next week.

Commitment to Learning Form

Once you choose a program for your student, login to Family Access to submit your choice via the Family Commitment Form. The commitment form can only be completed via a computer or tablet, it cannot be done via a mobile phone. You may use your student’s Chromebook to complete it.

Please complete one form for each of your students by Friday, October 9 at noon.

We are excited for the opportunity to take the next steps in returning students and staff to school. In order to effectively plan for the needs of all families, it is critical we have information for every student.  

Logging into Family Access:

Click here to login to Family Access. If you don’t know your login/password, click Forgot Login/Password to retrieve the information. For additional assistance with logging in, contact your student’s school office. 

To select the program for your student, click Online Form from the left menu then choose Family Commitment under each student. Family Access can be translated into multiple languages using the Google Chrome browser. Information on using Family Access, including language translation instructions, is available in multiple languages here.

Dr. Alan Spicciati


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