Kennewick schools to begin school year remotely due to virus

KENNEWICK, Wash. — The Kennewick School Board has decided that schools will begin classes remotely in September due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The board voted Wednesday to adopt two recommendations from Superintendent Traci Pierce.

The first recommendation involves three learning models: an online learning academy for families who do not wish for their children to be in classrooms during the 2020-21 school year, a remote learning model to be implemented this fall and stay in place when schools cannot open for in-person learning, and a hybrid learning model that includes both in-person and remote learning. This recommendation was approved unanimously by the board’s five members.

The second recommendation was for Kennewick School District to implement a “Safe Start KSD” phased reopening plan. The approach will vaguely mirror the state’s four-phase reopening plan; learning will transition from remote to hybrid based on metrics to be developed locally. After shifting to hybrid learning, schools can return to remote learning at any time if necessary. This recommendation was approved 3-2.

Criteria for how the schools will be able to transition from phase to phase will still need to be established.

Phased Approach 1
(Screenshot from the school board’s Zoom meeting)

The district promised to provide more details Thursday regarding the learning models. KSD will host a webinar for parents on August 11.