Message to Families: Important Information about 4-day In-person learning for 6th-12th graders - 04.05.21

Dear Sun Prairie 6th-12th Grade Families,

We have some exciting updates to learning options in the 4th quarter for our 6th-12th grade families. This communication includes the following topics:

  • Our Staff Have Been Vaccinated
  • Updated Physical Distancing Requirements for Schools
  • 4 Days per Week In-Person or Virtual Starting April 26
  • What Caregivers Need to Know and Do

Our Staff Have Been Vaccinated
It was nice to see so many of our faculty and staff for the second vaccine dose at the vaccination clinic at Sun Prairie High School on March 30.  We have appreciated our partnership with SSM Health to provide the vaccine to over 1,000 district employees.  

Updated Physical Distancing Requirements for Schools
In a communication in early March, we indicated secondary schools would remain in a two-day-a-week hybrid model for the remainder of the 2020-21 school year, anticipating no further modifications to the PHDMC orders. Then, on March 19, the CDC officially adopted a recommendation for 3 ft distancing in all schools across the country.  The state Department of Health Services also revised their guidance from 6 ft to 3 ft, and Public Health Madison & Dane County (PHMDC) has removed all strict requirements for distancing. This change was designed to give all schools (4K-12) flexibility to increase in-person instruction in light of:

  • Expansive vaccinations taking place across our community
  • Drastic reduction in cases within Dane County
  • Data that continues to show that schools across the state are not sources for community spread

It is important to note that the revisions to distancing guidelines do not change the definition of “close contact.”  Students who spend 15 minutes or more within 6 ft of someone who tests positive will need to be quarantined.  To the extent possible, we will maximize distancing in classrooms, in the cafeteria, and on bus transportation.  However, families with students attending in-person should anticipate and plan for the possibility of quarantine with short notice due to close contact.  

4 Days per Week In-Person or Virtual Starting April 26, 2021
The changes to the physical distancing guidelines afford us the opportunity to expand our instructional model for grades 6-12 to four days per week (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday) beginning Monday, April 26.  Caregivers interested in having their students remain in the entirely virtual option may still do so. (The two days per week hybrid option will no longer be available in grades 6-12 beginning April 26.) 

Wednesdays will remain an asynchronous learning day for the remainder of the 2020-21 school year to provide staff the time needed to collaborate and ensure cleaning and disinfection.

Given this impending change, all students at the secondary level will remain in their 4th quarter cohort starting (A, B, or virtual) until April 26, 2021.

What Caregivers Need to Know and Do
At the secondary level, we will assume families who have previously selected the two-day-a- week hybrid option will send their students four days a week starting on Monday, April 26, 2021.  We will assume secondary families who selected the virtual option for the fourth quarter will remain virtual.  If these assumptions are accurate for your family, no action is required.  

If caregivers want to change from in-person to virtual or from virtual to in-person based on this new information, click this link to indicate the change by Friday, April 9, 2021.  


Sarah Chaja-Clardy, Director of Secondary Teaching, Learning & Equity
Nick Reichhoff, Director of Student Policy and School Operations