Washington Governor Offers Guidelines For Fall School Instruction

Aug 6, 2020

Washington Governor Jay Inslee has issued guidance for school districts to consider as they decide how to teach students this fall.
Credit TVW

Washington Governor Jay Inslee has released what he calls a “decision tree” to help school districts decide how to teach students this fall.

The governor has three levels of recommendations, including for districts in counties with higher Covid spread rates.

“Schools in those counties are strongly recommended to use distance learning with the option for limited in-person instruction in smaller groups of students with the highest needs, such as students with disabilities," Inslee said. "We also strongly recommend canceling or postponing all in-person extracurricular activities, including sports or performing arts.”

The governor also announced measures for districts in moderate and low-spread activities. There only five counties, he says, that fall in that latter category.

Inslee says the state is not mandating the districts follow these guidelines. He says, in most cases, there’s no need. Districts that have made their decisions for fall are already doing it.

State school superintendent Chris Reykdal says Washington is spending federal CARES Act money to help teachers and students improve remote learning.

“Our goal here is to connect tens of thousands of free and reduced price lunch families who are in a serviceable area," Reykdal said. "So they’re in an area with connectivity, but due to their family’s financial limitations, they’ve not been able to access that kind of technology connection, therefore it really limits their ability to access their learning.”

The governor says the recommendations apply to private schools as well as public.