Prairie Families and Staff: The recent weather events in our area have wide-sweeping effects on our community and families in an already challenging time. The impact of this storm on our families and community are heartbreaking and recovery will be difficult for many.
While we did receive damage on campus, we are
lucky that the storms did not cause substantial or structural damage to our
buildings. However, the subsequent power loss and disruption to regular
district operations comes at a critical time in the weeks leading up to the
start of school. In addition to the extra needed work to address storm
damage, the power outage has impacted construction timelines, critical teacher
training, contracted services and stored food on campus. For our families
still without power or the ability to repair damage, the close approach of the
school year adds extra stress.
Due to the nature of this year with the extra
care and attention required to bring students back in a pandemic, we have arrived
at the necessity to delay the start of school by one week. This
difficult decision is based on the impact of this latest storm on critical
human and material resources in our schools and greater community.
Additionally, these storms greatly impact the additional time and focus needed
to gear up for what will already be an unusual and challenging
The NEW first day of school for the 20-21 school
year will be August 31.
To continue to have a soft-start to the year as we implement new procedures for COVID-19, we will still begin the first three weeks in a hybrid model. All students will attend in the hybrid model until September 22 and students in grades 7-12 will continue in the hybrid model for an additional three weeks until at least October 12. With all of the new dates, processes and programs, we have developed a CRITICAL DISTRICT DATE CHANGES document as a reference for families and staff.
We apologize for the impacts of these ongoing
changes as we respond to events beyond our control. We will continue to
communicate in the clearest way possible in these difficult circumstances. Our thoughts continue to be with our staff,
families and communities impacted by the recent storm.
Due to the continuing impacts of Monday’s storms, all College Community District and Building Offices will again be closed on Friday, August 14, 2020. Early Childhood Summer Programming is cancelled for Friday, August 14, 2020. Activities/Athletics practices are cancelled through the remainder of the week.
Due to the continuing impacts of Monday’s storms, all College Community District and Building Offices will again be closed on Thursday, August 13, 2020. All Activities/Athletics practices are cancelled through the remainder of the week. Early Childhood Summer Programming is also cancelled for Thursday, August 13, 2020.
Prairie Families: If you feel that your household may qualify for free and reduced price meals, you may apply at any point during the school year. The online version of the Free and Reduced Meal Application is now available. Click here for more information.
If you would prefer to complete a paper copy of the application, the forms can be printed by clicking on the following:
If you do not have access to a computer/printer and would like to have a paper copy of forms mailed to you, please contact Ginny School, Nutritional Services Director at 319-848-5337 or email@example.com.
Nutritional Services College Community Schools
The College Community School District is in the process of working on establishing cohorts for the hybrid model. Detailed information, including placement, will be shared Friday, August 7 via an email. With the complexity of the process, we cannot accept special scheduling requests at this time. After Friday, if parents have questions about their child’s cohort, parents will be directed to contact their child’s school.
Reminder, all previous COVID-19 related communications are located on our COVID-19 UPDATES page.
Virtual Remote Learning Extended to August 10: The opportunity to withdraw or sign up for the Temporary Virtual (Remote) Learning Option has been extended to August 10 at midnight.
Return to Learn Plan Final Version: A final version of our Return to Learn Plan is now complete. Click here for the final version.
Frequently Asked Questions: Click here for ALL frequently asked questions.
Questions Asked Most Often: Below you will find a few questions that were asked most often. Again, we would encourage you to click here for the complete list of our frequently asked questions.
How will the district handle situations where a student or staff member tests positive for COVID-19? During the first week of August, the Department of Education will be releasing specific guidance regarding how to respond to positive cases of COVID-19. We will finalize our protocols for responding to positive cases of COVID-19 following this guidance and collaborate with Linn County Public Health.
Due to a student’s right to confidentiality, we will not be able to release the names of individuals but will inform those who were in contact with the individual who tested positive. Current guidelines for contact tracing suggest that anyone in a classroom with an infected individual will be asked to quarantine for 14 days.
What type of learning experiences will my child have if they are required to quarantine for 14 days? During quarantine, students will either receive work from their teacher and be supported by another district staff member in the completion of that work OR receive instruction from the teacher using the Online Learning Model and schedule if the teacher and majority of the class are in quarantine. Students will not be reassigned to the Temporary Virtual Learning Option if placed in 14-day quarantine.
What percentage of the day will children have to wear face coverings? The Linn County Public Health Department recommends face coverings when interacting in larger groups, when physical distancing is not possible, or when moving within common areas. Students can remove their face covering or shield in the classroom if they are 6 feet apart from their classmates. Given the size of our schools, students should expect to wear face covering the majority of the school day.
How will you enforce wearing face coverings? The expectation is for all students to wear a face covering. If students refuse, a resolution will be implemented so that students meet the expectation of wearing their face covering.
Can we choose not to have our children wear face coverings? A medical reason is needed to waive the face covering requirements. If you are opposed to your child being required to wear a face covering and do not have a medical reason, consider enrolling your child in the Temporary Virtual Learning Option.
Will all children from the same household be assigned to the same cohort for the hybrid options? The District will assign primary households to the same cohort.
If we change our mind about the Temporary Virtual Learning Option, can we drop out? Changes can be made by midnight on Monday, August 10. Please contact Sheri Schulte at the District Office for assistance in dropping your child from the program. PHONE: 319-848-5228 EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org
information will be available in your Campus Portal account after August 16th. We will not be making any changes to any
busing from August 17th through September 6th. If you have not already submitted your
request for daycare or High School busing please do so by August 3rd
on the district website.
New procedures put in place for the
20-21 school year are listed below:
Students will be allowed one bus per household and this
transportation must be Monday through Friday.
We can no longer safely do multiple buses for students.
Masks will be required to be worn on the bus at all times.
We will do our best to assign
all students to a seat on the bus on the first day of school.
Students will be required to sit in that same seat every time that
they board the bus
Siblings will be assigned to sit together if they are on the same
Temporary bus passes will
not be allowed due to seating restrictions.
No open food or liquid containers will be allowed on the bus. You will be asked to throw it away. Please do not bring any food or drink to the
Hand sanitizer dispensers have been installed in every bus. They can be found to the left as you walk up
the stairs. Please encourage your
student(s) to use this when entering and exiting the bus.
Bus windows will be opened by transportation staff only. Students will not be allowed to open or close
Buses will be disinfected by transportation staff between every
route and after every shift.
If your student has not been on the bus for 10 consecutive days
and we have not heard from you, we will be removing them from transportation
If you will be transporting your student
for the 20-21 school year, please notify the Transportation Office at 848-5204.
We will remove your student from busing but will happily add them back
when you are ready.
your Campus Portal daily for busing updates during the first couple of weeks of
Thank you for
taking time to talk to your students and helping to ensure the safety of our
staff and students. We are looking
forward to having them back on the bus in the safest manner possible.
College Community Schools
Click here for information from Superintendent of Schools Dr. Doug Wheeler informing you of the learning model for the 2020-2021 school year. The announcement was previously scheduled for August 7 but based on the feedback from two parent surveys, we wanted to get this information to you as soon as possible.
Also, click here for our school start times that will be modified due to our Return to Learn Plan. The final updated Return to Learn Plan and a full list of FAQs gathered from our survey and questions received will be released Monday, August 3, 2020.
Thank you for your continued support, understanding, and patience during COVID-19 and the challenges and complexity it has caused our students, staff and families.
College Community Schools Back to school Registration is available online and onsite for all families. Please click here to review the important information regarding the online registration process. Regardless of the learning model selected with Return to Learn, all parents still need to register their child.
ONSITE REGISTRATION JULY 29 and, JULY 30: For those who need assistance or computer access, an in-person registration event will be held at Prairie High School July 29 (8am – Noon) and July 30 (3 pm – 7 pm). This information is also included in the registration document that has been sent.
First and foremost, thank you for your continued patience and understanding during this unprecedented time for our students and families. I want to take this opportunity to thank those who responding to our Return to Learn Survey. The response was amazing! We received 2,262 responses representing 4,058 students with equal participation across buildings. Click here for a summary of the parent survey results.
As many of you know, Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds called for all school districts to submit a “Return To Learn” plan by July 1 outlining how they will address learning during the pandemic. Over the last few months the district has been working hard to prepare and develop a Return to Learn Plan for the 2020-2021 school year. The plan is a result of months of preparation which includes feedback from our parents and staff.
Our Return to Learn Plan is based on the principle of flexibility. This plan is a fluid, guiding document that will continue to evolve and change based on needs for health and safety. To review the plan, click 2020-2021 Return to Learn Plan. The plan is also posted on our COVID-19 Updates Page. The plan includes three models; Onsite Learning (at school) including a Temporary Virtual Learning Option, Online learning (at home) and Hybrid Learning (at school and at home).
We welcome your questions and feedback regarding our Return to Learn Plan. After reviewing our Return to Learn Plan, please complete the Return to Learn Plan Follow up Survey. We are looking for all children to be represented in this survey to get the most accurate information we can. For children who reside in multiple households, we are asking for one parent/guardian to fill out the survey for the child/children impacted one time. This survey will need to be completed by Monday, July 27. The district will be using this survey to identify areas in the plan that need more clarity and to develop a Frequently Asked Questions document to accompany the plan.
A form to sign-up for the Temporary Virtual Learning Option will be shared on Thursday, July 23. The sign up window for the Temporary Virtual Learning Option will be from 7/23/20-8/5/20.
A final decision on which model we will use to start the school year will be announced on August 7. The first day of school is August 24 for all delivery models. Our goal is to restore in-person learning to the greatest extent possible but the selected model will be based on public health requirements along with parent and staff input.
If parents do not sign up the Temporary Virtual Learning Option by 8/5/20, their children will be automatically served in the model identified by the school district on 8/7/20.
We appreciate your ongoing support and patience and hope for a productive, healthy and safe start to the year.
Renovation work is in full swing at Prairie Heights Elementary School. The renovation project is part of the $49.5 million generated by the 2016 bond referendum. Work at Prairie Heights includes adding a fire sprinkler system and replacing and upgrading safety systems which includes fire alarms, intercoms.
The project also includes renovated classrooms, hallways and a new building entrance and parking lot. The majority of the work (phase I) will be completed this summer with phase II completion scheduled for the start of the 2021-2022 school year.