School Reopening Update, August 14

August 14, 2020

We hope that you’re enjoying the last few weeks of summer. The Souderton Area School District staff has been working extremely hard to prepare for a school year like no other. At the heart of this planning is creating the safest and most educationally effective environment for all.

We firmly believe in the value of in-person education and we also remain committed to providing our community a virtual option so that all students can be successful. We continue to finalize our plans for both in-person and virtual instruction in accordance with up-to-date state and local guidance. We have been planning for a variety of pandemic contingency scenarios and models, developing new schedules, purchasing protective equipment, employing staff members and substitutes, reviewing policies and procedures, and conducting faculty and staff training. Much of this work could only be quantified in these final weeks before school starts. The administration and School Board, along with our staff, are working tirelessly to safely reopen our schools and we are excited for the return of our students.

As of today, approximately a quarter of our students (about 1,600 out of roughly 6,200 students) have selected the Souderton Area Online Academy (SAOA) as their choice of instruction for the school year. We are asking any parents who were not able to complete an online selection form to please contact their child’s school principal as soon as possible.

SAOA Updates:

  • At the elementary level, each grade level at each of our elementary schools will have a teacher dedicated to SAOA. This will allow our youngest online students and their families to maintain an important connection with their local school community.

  • At the middle school level, our SAOA teachers will operate in teams the way they do in our brick and mortar middle schools to provide the small school feel critical to the success of middle school.

  • At the high school, schedules are being developed based on course selections. These may be delayed for distribution because the addition of SAOA has made our scheduling more complex. We appreciate your patience as we complete the scheduling process.

As we get closer to the start of school, you can expect to receive a number of updates both from the District and from your child’s school. We understand this is an anxious and challenging time for schools, parents, and students - across our region and country. As always, we are appreciative of your patience and support as we work together to provide the high-quality education that our District is known for.

Sincerely,

Frank Gallagher 

Frank T. Gallagher, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools