Required Updates to District Public Health Related School Closure Plan
Benway School – October 28th 2021
Benway School is committed to the constancy of instruction, especially when faced with the current situations where the safety of all involved require alternate plans. In the event of Benway or your child’s home district closing, Benway will implement a home instruction school platform, which is a way for instruction to continue while students are unable to attend school due to either school and district closures. While the home instruction plan is not intended to replace the customary classroom environment, teachers have prepared and are able to deliver standards-based instruction to students in a home utilizing online technology until the normal school schedule can resume. The purpose of this plan is to outline how Benway will continue to provide instruction in a Virtual Instruction format while a conventional school setting is not recommended. The plan outlines roles and responsibilities for all stakeholders, as the success of the Virtual Instruction model will be dependent upon the dedication of faculty/staff, students, parents, and administration.
Due to the circumstances surrounding COVID-19, districts and schools have been asked to update alternative School Closure plans for their students due to school closings. This plan was developed in accordance with the NJ Department of Education Broadcast on Spetember 1st, 2021. As a private school for students with disabilities, Benway School has developed an action plan to ensure students’ continued exposure to educational material for a period of time where they are not physically attending school. This plan includes resources for instruction during this time period, ongoing consultation and support from Benway staff, and an overall structure to support the organization of students’ days.
As per the Local Educational Agency Guidance for Chapter 27 Emergency Virtual or Remote Instruction Programs for the 2021-2022 School Year sent by the New Jersey Department of Education (NJDOE), Benway School has worked tirelessly to plan and prepare for the necessity to pivot to Remote Instruction at any point in the 2021-2022 School Year. Our goal is to provide the most substantive education, including related services, to our students in the event of an emergency pivot to Virtual Instruction.
Benway’s Emergency Virtual Instruction Program will be effective September 8th and will follow the same schedule as the 5 days of week of in-person learning. Instructional time will be 4 hours and 30 minutes. Our number one priority is the health and safety of our students and staff and we will rely heavily on the advice and expertise of our public health officials and health care professionals. Our main goal is to have students safely access a comprehensive education. Additionally, as an integral part of our planning process we will be designing guidelines and plans for enhanced Virtual Learning, in the event that we need to utilize this platform again in the future. We are all aware of the need to be flexible and the need to continuously monitor any changes in all of our community’s health status.
Virtual Plan for Benway School
Benway School is committed to the constancy of instruction, especially when faced with the current situations where the safety of all involved require alternate plans. In the event of Benway, a student’s home district closing, or parent/student choice, Benway will implement a Virtual Instruction school platform, which is a way for instruction to continue while students are unable to attend school due to circumstances surrounding COVID-19. While the Virtual Instruction plan is not intended to replace the customary classroom environment, teachers have prepared and are able to deliver standards-based instruction to students in a home utilizing online technology until the normal school schedule can resume. The plan outlines roles and responsibilities for all stakeholders, as the success of the Virtual Instruction model will be dependent upon the dedication of faculty/staff, students, parents, and administration. Due to the circumstances surrounding COVID-19, districts and schools have been asked to update alternative School Closure plans for
their students due to school closings. This plan was developed in accordance with the NJ Department of Education Broadcast on May 5, 2020, and is now being adjusted to meet the needs of our students for the 2021-2022 School Year.
Length of School Day: Benway School’s Virtual Instruction day will consist of 4 hours and 30 minutes of instruction. This will include 6 academic classes, excluding a lunch break, recess, and transitions between Virtual classes.
Equitable Access to Instruction Plan
Students and parents completed a Technology Inventory Survey in July 2020, for the 2020-2021 School Year. All students enrolled at Benway School will be provided a device shall the need arise to participate in Virtual Learning. In an extenuating circumstance, that prevents a student the ability to utilize technology, or there is a safety concern, other learning modes will be provided and communication and support will be planned accordingly. Access to WiFi will be coordinated in conjunction with student’s home districts to ensure equitable access to Virtual Instruction.
- Demographic profile: All 75 students currently enrolled at Benway have an Individualized Educational Plan (IEP) are sent as out-of-district placements.
- This plan applies to all our students that are between the ages of 7 and 21 with varying levels of need.
- All components of this plan are individualized based on student/family needs.
- 95% of the families are known to speak/read English.
- 90% of the families are known to have access to computing technology which includes internet access.
-Any difficulties with access will be addressed on an individualized need by the school’s Administration and Technology Department.
Addressing Special Education Needs Plan
During the period of public health-related school closures, Benway School’s special education staff (which includes Special Education Teachers, Social Workers, Paraprofessionals, 1:1 Aides, and Related Service Providers) are providing special education services using a variety of strategies and online platforms.
Special Education Teachers collaborate with the Administration and Social Workers regarding each student’s progress. Progress is reported quarterly for grades 1-12. Special education teachers provide feedback on student work that is submitted and review student progress and provide additional support and materials as needed. Necessary accommodations and modifications are consistently being evaluated.
Implementation of Educational Programming
● Goals and objectives in the students’ IEPs are implemented to the maximum extent possible given the remote learning environment.
● Special education teachers are providing instruction as aligned to the student’s IEP that best meets each student’s individual level.
● Supports for the organization provided in order to simulate a regular school day include utilizing the following tools for Virtual Instruction:
● Google Hangout Google Meet
- Related Services are scheduled to accurately reflect those required in the student’s IEP. This includes, OT, PT, Speech and Language, and Counseling. Sessions are conducted through online platforms (Zoom, Google Hangout, Google Classroom) and dispersed hardcopies when necessary. All sessions are logged and follow necessary SEMI procedures.
- Paraprofessional and 1:1 aides work closely with students to provide academic, emotional, and social support. All correspondences with students are logged on a daily basis.
Collaboration with Sending School Districts
Student progress will be shared on a consistent basis with sending District Case Managers to update student progress. Administration, Social Workers, and Teachers will be in communication with parents to collaborate and address any concerns.
- Benway staff are in communication and collaborate with the student’s District Case Manager on a regular basis to provide updates, as well as work together to engage and motivate students who may be struggling.
- This has included, meeting through Google Meet to brainstorm ideas to motivate a student, collaborate to provide extra in- home support for students and families, and work with the District Case Manager to follow up with families to support our requests and needs.
Virtual IEP Meetings
For Virtual annual review meetings held during this time of remote instruction, the following procedures will be used to
develop new goals and objectives.
- Any IEP meeting will be held in the mode preferred by the District Case Manager.
- For any skill areas that either no longer have goals/objectives or are not sufficiently rigorous, the previous year’s assessmentand aligned to the New Jersey State Learning Standards will be referenced, taking into account progress that has been madeduring this academic year.
- Input regarding additional goals/objectives desired by family members will be solicited in the form of discussions withfamilies.
- When in-person instruction resumes, additional assessments may be conducted and the student’s goals and objectives will beamended as necessary to ensure that appropriate goals and objectives are being implemented.
Administration work with Special Education Teachers to monitor student academic progress and determine if accommodations or modifications need to be adjusted. Administration collaborates with Related Service providers and determines if services need to be adjusted. Administration and Social Workers communicate with parents and District Case Managers to discuss student progress and any adjustments to the student’s IEP. Student accessibility to technology and learning platforms is consistently evaluated.
ELL Bilingual Needs Plan
English Language Learners/ Bilingual Plan
- All plans, updates, and written correspondence will be translated from English to address language barriers.
- When necessary, a translator assists in communicating and assisting with parents via phone conversations.
There are no students at Benway School who are English Language Learners (ELLs).
Safe Delivery of Meals Plan
Students who receive free and reduced meals are still entitled to this service. As a “receiving school,” we have students from many different districts.
- We have and will provide our families with their home districts meal information and designated community sites.
- This information is shared with families on an individual basis and is posted on our school’s website.- www.benwayschool.org