Natrona County School District Smart Start Communication Update – July 24, 2020

July 24th, 2020 

During the July 20th, 2020, Board of Trustees Work Session meeting, District staff presented a DRAFT version of Natrona County School District’s (NCSD) Smart Start Reopening Plan based on Wyoming Department of Education Smart Start Guidance, Governor’s Public Health Orders, and Casper-Natrona County Public Health Department. 

The intent of the Smart Start reopening plan is to open schools, keep them open, and provide a high-quality learning environment for all students to progress in their learning while maintaining our commitment to the safety and health of all students, staff, and the community. 

We want to ensure we are providing as many known details as possible so our school families can make informed decisions as they look toward the Fall semester. 

The first step as we move forward into the next academic year is the determination of learning options available for school families. The Learning Options for all school families are provided below: 

  • In-Person/Brick and Mortar/Traditional 
    • The Natrona County School District will open schools this fall. Proactive and precautionary safety measures will continue to be followed to ensure safe and healthy environments for all. The NCSD Smart Start Plan implements the proactive safety measures identified in the governor’s statewide public health orders. 
  • Natrona County Virtual Learning Program 
  • NCSD is committed to offering a virtual learning option for any student who is unable to return to in-person instruction for the academic year.
    • Natrona County’s Virtual Learning Program 
      • Established in 2014 
      • Offers students the opportunity to take core classes and limited elective classes to meet grade-level standards and progress toward graduation
      • Grades K- 12
      • Entirely online 
      • This is different from the virtual learning environment that was deployed for all students due to COVID-19 at the end of the Spring last year. 

In the case of COVID-19 within a classroom or school, NCSD will ensure we are prepared to effectively and efficiently transfer instruction, as applicable, for identified settings based on the guidance of the Casper-Natrona County Health Department. Every effort will be made to keep schools open while ensuring the safety of all students, staff, and school families. If an outbreak occurs, schools could be closed by state or local public health officers’ directive or order for a 2-5 day period (or longer if conditions warrant) to conduct contact tracing and allow NCSD to disinfect the facility.   

In alignment with the statewide public health orders, the NCSD will provide face coverings for students, however, students may bring their own as well. Currently, the Governor’s order, which runs through July 31st, 2020, requires face coverings to be worn during in-person instruction, and on NCSD transportation, when social distancing cannot be maintained. NCSD will continue to align with the Governor’s health orders. 

What’s Next? 

  • Information about Natrona County Virtual Learning Program and how to enroll will be forthcoming the week of July 27th, 2020 
  • Coming Soon – check your Parent News, Staff News, NCSD Social Media and NCSD website the week of July 27th, 2020 as we are working to create videos and FAQ documents to provide answers to commonly asked questions from parents and staff members
    • Click on the NCSD Smart Start Reopening Plan Logo on the homepage of the website for an easy to find archive of updates and information. 

We want to thank our students, staff, parents, school families, and the entire community for your support, dedication, and hard work. Last spring, we faced a lot of challenges together, and there certainly were some difficulties, frustrations, and tears. We are incredibly proud of the way our students, parents, and staff responded. 

The first day of school in Natrona County is September 2nd, 2020. While this upcoming year has some unknowns and certain challenges, we are confident in the exceptional abilities and dedication of our students, staff, school families, and community to come together and make it a great year for all. 

Thank you for your patience and understanding as we work together in our shared goal of continuing educational excellence in Natrona County.



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