Amherst School Committee: Open Meeting of Residents

February 4, 2021 at 6:00PM

Join online via Zoom or view on Amherst Media Channel 15

Share your comments, ask questions, and hear from the District, School Committee, and other community members at this open meeting on February 4.

Pursuant to Article 8, Section 1, of the Amherst Town Charter, the Amherst School Committee is hosting this open meeting at the request of 240 Amherst petitioners on the following subjects:

  1. Distance Learning Model Impacts
    • Is there evidence that remote learning is hurting our children?
    • How is remote learning failing to serve special needs students, low income and BIPOC students in particular, and how does the school system plan to redress the situation given its stated support for social justice?
  2. Health & Safety Plans for In-Person Learning
    • Is our district following best practices for in-person learning as evinced by healthcare professionals, neighboring and similar towns, and scientific evidence?
    • Has the school district taken appropriate safety measures to keep children and faculty safe during in-person learning?
  3. Decision Framework in MOA
    • Are the metrics that trigger schools returning to in-person learning appropriate?
    • Should agreements regarding in-person and other types of learning during COVID be flexible and able to be directly revised based on the latest scientific and public health data?

4. Phasing Plan for In-Person Learning

  • How should the grades be divided regarding the time-table for returning to in-person learning?
  • Is the phased, cascading system for returning to in-person learning appropriate?

5. Budget Impacts

  • What are the short and long-term financial implications to the town of having schools closed to in-person learning?
  • What are the short and long term repercussions of parents pulling children from the district?
  • Does the fact that the schools remain closed to in-person learning warrant a further reduction of the school budget for next year?
  • If the schools return to in-person learning while COVID is still a significant issue, can extra money be allocated to the school budget to address any concerns that the Superintendent, faculty and staff might have?

Agenda:

  1. Welcome & Meeting Norms – 6:00
  2. Presentation by Amherst School District – 6:05
  3. Open Comments & Questions – 6:15

Questions may also be submitted at any time through Wednesday, February 3 using this submission form. Questions collected before and during the open meeting will be responded to either during the open meeting or afterward via a published Q&A.

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