SPOKANE, Wash. - Fall is creeping ever closer and for school districts in the Inland Northwest, the upcoming school year is going to be one unlike any other. 

Here are the current tentative plans laid out by school districts in Spokane County and the surrounding areas (Note: this list will be updated as more plans become available):

Spokane Public Schools:

  • SPS will be opening the 2020-21 school year with a real-time distance learning model. Learning will involve a plan for all K-12 students to learn from home with a schedule emulating a normal instruction day with teacher guided instructions, meetings, breaks and more. 
  • The model will include
    • Real-time school day with teacher(s)
    • Identified school start and dismissal times
    • Specific times scheduled for each period/subject 
    • Blend of live instruction, group work and independent activities
    • Specialist and elective experiences
    • Set times for intervention support and contacting teachers
    • Use of Microsoft Teams as the district-wide digital platform
    • Laptop check-out for all students
    • Limited in-person instruction provided for small groups of students

Mead School District 

  • The district will offer daily in-person learning for grades K-5 and a rotating in-person schedule for grades 6-12.
  • Additionally, a full online-learning option is available for all grades

East Valley School District

  • School will begin on September 14th 
  • Parents have three learning models to choose from 
    • Hybrid Learning where students attend school 2 days a week in cohorts
    • Distance Learning 2.0 where students attend virtually Monday - Friday *Not available for High School 
    • Alternative Learning Education where students EVSD Alternative Program.

Gonzaga University:

  • Students should expect that many courses will be taught dynamically and remotely, via technology. Some courses will be offered face-to-face and others partially in-person and partly via remote technology (in other words, a hybrid format)
  • Faculty have been asked to prepare to offer courses in an interactive remote-delivery mode where possible, even if they have also chosen a face-to-face, in-person or hybrid teaching approach. This has been done in order to maximize options and flexibility for students who care unable to return to campus, become exposed/ill and need to quarantine or self-isolate or don't feel safe in the classroom environment. It will be possible for most students who wish to do so to pursue their studies via remote technology for fall semester. 
  • Courses involving intensive lab, studio, clinical or similar work are planning to be offered on campus and face-to-face where it can safely be done. 

Washington State University: 

  • All undergraduate courses at WSU's Pullman campus will be delivered at a distance and will be completed remotely, with extremely limited exceptions for in-person instruction. 

University of Idaho: 

  • Committed to in-person classes in the fall.
  • Implementing safety measures such as requiring COVID-19 testing for all students. 

Post Falls School District:

  • Plans in place for various levels of operation in the event of various levels of virus spread in the community.
  • Included in those plans are various district-wide practices such as:
    • Regular district calendar and school schedules with late start Mondays
    • District and school emergency management plan is reviewed, updated and implemented
    • Parents monitor students' health, ensuring students stay home if sick or show symptoms
    • Buildings routinely cleaned and disinfected according to CDC guidelines with special focus on high-traffic areas
    • Handwashing integrated throughout the day
    • Hand sanitizer available throughout buildings
  • Plans and protocol will change if virus transmission worsens in the community. The full list of plans can be found HERE.

Central Valley School District: 

  • Following guidance from the Spokane Regional Health District, CVSD will be starting the new school year with a full virtual learning environment for all grade levels. 
  • Families will chose between three virtual learning options for students by August 21. These options include:
  • The first option is school-paced virtual learning with a preference to transition to in-person when schools are able to re-open. It will be led by CVSD teachers and allow students to have an easier transition to in-person learning when it becomes available.
  • Another option is school-paced virtual learning with a preference to stay virtual for the full school year, which allows students to keep the same teachers throughout the year.
  • Self-paced virtual learning will also be available for families. This option allows students to work at their own pace to complete assignments over the course of the school year, guided by CVSD teachers.

Coeur d'Alene Public Schools (proposed plan):

  • Students will attend school in person as long as it is safe to do so. 
  • The status of COVID-19 safety in the community will be evaluated and categorized into the following groups:
    • Green (minimal risk): In person learning. Buildings will be open and social distancing will be practiced. Masks will be encouraged for students and adults.
    • Yellow (moderate risk): In person learning. Buildings will be open but schools will be using outdoor learning spaces and large spaces like gyms and cafeterias as much as possible. Social distancing will continue to be practiced and masks will be required for everyone, including on school buses. 
    • Orange (substantial risk): Buildings will be open and half of students will attend classes in person Monday - Tuesday and the other half will attend Thursday - Friday to ensure social distancing. Masks will be required for everyone at all times during school hours including on buses.
    • Red (critical risk): Buildings are closed to students for extended periods. Teachers will work from their classrooms or remotely. Students will participate in classes online.
  • The district expects to announce the current risk category and learning model that will be in place for the first day of school by the week of August 17.

Cheney Public Schools:

  • Based on guidance from the Spokane Regional Health District, Cheney Public Schools will be beginning the 2020-21 school year under Stage Three of the district's reopening plan, which implements hybrid learning. 
  • Under Stage Three, all students will participate in distance learning. Students in the greatest need of additional support (furthest from educational justice) as identified through an agreed upon set of criteria to participate onsite with some in-person instruction.

Medical Lake School District

The Medical Lake School District will begin the 2020 - 2021 school year online. 

MSLD said parents will be able to pick from two online learning options:

  • School paced learning
    • Led by teacher
  • Self-paced learning 
    • Partnered with a teacher to help guide the learning process

Freeman School District: 

The Freeman School District announced students learning will be predominantly virtual this fall. 

  • P-2 small group of students on campus
  • Possibility of small group for students with special needs and high-risk students on campus
  • Grades 3-12 would begin virtually

Whitworth Universty 

Whitworth University students are heading back to the classroom September 9

  • Students will be required to self-quarantine for seven days before they arrive back on campus.  
  • The university is also asking family members who will be helping students move back in to also self-quarantine.
  • After returning to campus, students will also be required to complete a health check each day using a smartphone app before beginning their campus activities.

Gonzaga Prep

In order to meet the needs of our students, the school has developed a phased approach for returning to in-person instruction, and is offering parents the option for their students to begin the school year receiving in-person instruction one day per week, or fully online instruction. Our modified planning for starting the school year adds resiliency to our existing health and safety measures by:
  • Decreasing the number of students on campus each day to a maximum of 25% of our student body, and reducing class sizes to an average of six students. 
  • Dividing each grade level into four cohorts, in order to decrease the potential exposure and/or spread of COVID, while minimizing the impact of any required quarantine measures.
  • Enhancing the school’s ability to teach and enforce the required safety protocols, while developing a body of evidence that will support the school’s continued improvement