Message to Our Community Partners
Posted on 04/29/2020
As a valued community partner, I want to thank you for your support, especially over the last few weeks. It’s been such an uncertain time, with so many rapid changes. Our community partners are as important as ever right now.

You provide services and support to our students and families, in our classrooms or at home. As we navigate new challenges, I welcome your input. We are all in this together, and I know, with your help, we can continue to serve our staff, families, and students.

I want to share some updates since my communication with you last month:

School and Building Closures 4/16 Update
On April 16 Wisconsin's Safer at Home Order was extended until May 26. School building closures were mandated by the Governor’s office to extend through the remainder of the school year. All of our AASD facilities will be closed to the public until further notice. This includes all rentals/use of our facilities. 

Distance Learning
Our Early Childhood - 12 Distance Learning (DL) Plans are in place for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year until June 5, 2020. These DL plans have been developed to provide students with equitable learning opportunities during the extended state-mandated school closure. DL plans for students in grades 7 - 12 are supported by one to one Chromebook devices, online materials, and online teacher support.

DL plans for students in grades EC - 6 are supported by learning activity packets, grade-appropriate reading materials and regularly scheduled direct teacher support via Google Meet. Our teachers, school counselors and social workers are also continuing to provide social and emotional learning and support for our students within the virtual environment. In addition, community partners are developing new ways to offer virtual therapy sessions to serve students and families. 

District Events
All district and school events are cancelled or postponed through the end of the school year. This includes all spring co-curricular sports and activities. Graduation ceremonies, awards assemblies, and other traditional year-end celebrations may be held in a virtual, online environment, as appropriate. 

Food Distribution
So far we've served 57,792 meals to children in Appleton. We would appreciate your support in promoting our food distribution program to the greatest extent possible. We are encouraging ALL families with children 18 and under and persons with disabilities, over age 18, who participate in school programs, to utilize this program.

No child in our area needs to go hungry. This includes children that do not qualify for free and reduced meals as we recognize that more families are enduring hardships during COVID-19. We understand that many students rely on the foodservice program at their school and are committed to continuing to meet the needs of all students. You can learn more here.

Technology
We are so proud of our staff who have stepped up to take on new duties in the face of this pandemic. This week we are featuring our Facilities and Operations staff who have been delivering technology to families who need it all over Appleton. We’ve distributed 1,490 Chromebooks to families who don’t have a device in grades K-6 and distributed over 410 hotspots to families without internet access in grades K-12.

During this dynamic and turbulent time, the Appleton Area School District is working hard to keep a consistent focus on providing continued learning for all students. I’d love to hear from you on how we can partner together to best serve our families in this “new normal”. Please feel free to contact me via email at:  basemanjudith@aasd.k12.wi.us

We do not know what is to come, but we will face it together.

Gratefully,

Judith M. Baseman
Superintendent of Schools
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