Oklahoma City Public Schools has established a plan for delivering meals to be picked up for students in a number of neighborhoods across the expansive district.
The district was poised to extend its spring break when the Oklahoma State Board of Education ordered all public schools closed until April 6th, thus setting the district in motion immediately to make plans for students who need school meals for nutrition.
Neither OKCPS or the state BOE are certain if April 6th will be long enough to help contain the coronavirus named COVID-19. Some states have already canceled classes for the remainder of their school year.
OKCPS Superintendent Sean McDaniel notified parents and guardians of the plans Thursday.
“This is an unprecedented situation that is changing by the hour,” wrote McDaniel. “As we receive additional guidance and support, we will notify you as soon as possible by using all of the communication methods available to us.”
He wrote that the concern at present was to make sure students were getting the nutrition support that they need.
The plan for providing support for students and employees was then laid out in the message in detail.
- Beginning Monday, March 23rd, OKCPS will provide free meals to students at 42 sites around the district, including elementary school campuses and several city parks. Grab-&-Go breakfast and lunches will be available to any child 0-18 years of age from Monday – Friday. (Applications, ID, and proof of income are not required.) Click here for a list of feeding locations and times.
- During the closure that runs until April 6, there will be no instruction, no grading, no extracurricular activities, events, or practices, no professional development for staff, and no staff attendance at conferences. ‘No instruction’ includes home-based, on-line, and digital learning.
- The district will be providing links to instructional resources that students and families can use from home. These resources are optional.
- Based upon information we have at this time, we do not believe students or employees will be required to make-up missed days due to COVID-19.
- All OKCPS employees (except substitutes) will continue to be paid for the duration of the current state-mandated school closure.
- For the duration of this closure, district operations will be significantly modified. The majority of district employees will be working remotely. All offices and school buildings will be closed to the public. Any urgent concerns or questions you may have would be best and most effectively conveyed to us via email. For school-related questions or concerns, please use the email assigned to the school principal which can be found on each school’s website. For district-related questions, please use firstname.lastname@example.org. Emails will be monitored daily and responses will be provided as soon as possible.
- OKCPS is grateful to our staff and community partners and volunteers and the work you do to help our students regularly. We know many of you are anxious to help. However, with the current CDC and state/city-level restrictions in place, we are trying to be thoughtful about how to engage you. Our Community Relations team is working closely with our Foundation and our community contacts to determine our current needs. In order to receive volunteer opportunities, please fill out our volunteer application here: okcps.org/volunteerapp. This is how we will communicate with current/new OKCPS volunteers. Thank you in advance for raising your hand to support our students.
Mental health support
The communication closed with information about how to get support during these tough times of whole families staying at home 24 hours per day and perhaps losing employment in the process.
Heartline is a suicide prevention and youth crisis response organization. It is available to anyone in Oklahoma City by dialing 2-1-1 (two, one, one), a new feature of the emergency phone system.
The Heartline website is https://heartlineoklahoma.org/.
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