WUSD’s Latest Information about Novel Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19)

March 26, 2020

Dear Washington Unified Families,

I want to take this opportunity to update you regarding school closure. Unfortunately, Coronavirus 19 continues to spread throughout our county, state, nation, and world. Consequently, working in collaboration with Fresno County Superintendent of Schools and in consultation with Fresno County Department of Public Health the decision has been made to extend the school closure through May 1, 2020. At this time, school is scheduled to resume May 4, 2020. This step is being taken in a joint effort with Valley school districts to prevent the spread of the virus in our schools and community.

We know that this presents many hardships for the families in our community which is why Washington Unified will continue to provide our established meal service and distance learning activities for students.

We are committed to keeping you informed as we navigate school closure together. I encourage you to visit our district website at www.washingtonunified.org on a regular basis for the most up to date information. We will also continue to communicate through our app, on Twitter, and through our phone dialer.

Please continue to practice good hygiene, hand-washing, covering your coughs, and social distancing. Thank you for your patience and support!

Sincerely,

Randy R. Morris

Superintendent

Washington Unified School District

 

March 20, 2020

Meal Distribution Update

Attention Washington Unified families. Our meal service is offered weekdays from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at West Fresno Elementary School and Washington Union High School for all children 18 years old and younger.

March 19, 2020

Dear Washington Unified Families,

Our team has been working hard over these past few days to put together a plan for your child’s education during school closure.  I am impressed by the resilience of our community as we work to support each other during this unprecedented time. It is our goal to continue to provide you with the resources and support you need to make sure that your child is successful.  

Optional Educational Activities

Paper Packets Available for Pick-Up on Tuesdays: On Tuesday, March 24th, optional educational activity packets will be available for pick up at your child’s school site between 9:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.  Every child will be provided with grade-level appropriate activities so that they can continue to practice important academic skills while schools are closed.  Packets will be provided each Tuesday and will also be available to download on our website at www.washingtonunified.org.  All work is optional and will not be collected or graded at this time.

Online Educational Options:  Also, beginning Tuesday, March 24th, we will post online educational activities for your child on our website at www.washingtonunified.org

Meal Service for Children

Our meal service through the Seamless Summer program will continue to operate.  All children 18 and younger can pick up free meals at the following locations:

          Washington Union High School from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

          West Fresno Elementary School from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

A lunch and breakfast for the next day will be provided on a “grab and go” basis.  You do not have to attend a WUSD school to qualify for a meal. Any child, 18 and under, may pick up meals.  

Community Resources for Families

If you or someone you know is in need of community resources such as food, housing, or a list of mental health care providers, please visit the Community Resource link on our website at http://www.washingtonunified.org/community-resources/.  

Please continue to practice good hygiene, handwashing, covering your coughs, and social distancing. We will continue to evaluate the situation and keep you informed as soon as we have more information. Thank you for your patience and support! 

 

Sincerely,

Randy R. Morris

Superintendent

Washington Unified School District

March 17, 2020.

Beginning tomorrow, March 18, 2020, all campus offices and our district office will be closed to the public in an effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19.  If you need to contact our staff, please call (559) 495-5600.  Our school sites will continue to offer meals for students on a “grab and go” basis at the following locations:

Washington Union High School from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

West Fresno Elementary School from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Optional Educational Resources have been added to our website.  We will continue to update you as we get more information.

March 16, 2020, 3:15 p.m.

Modified District Office Hours

Washington Unified has made the difficult decision to close our schools in order to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.  All school campuses will be closed starting on Monday, March 16th, and will resume Tuesday, April 14th. Our district office will be open on a modified schedule from 9:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.  

Medication at School

If you were not able to pick up your child’s medication from your school site today, you may pick it up tomorrow, March 17, 2020 from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.  The district office is located at 7950 S. Elm Ave, Fresno, CA 93706.  If you have any questions about your child’s medication that is stored at school, please call our office at (559) 495-5600.

Washington Unified COVID-19 Update Letter for Families

Click here to read Washington Unified’s COVID-19 Update letter for families.  The letter, dated March 16, 2020, is provided in English and in Spanish and will be mailed home.

March 16, 2020

School Closure

All school campuses will be closed starting today, Monday, March 16th, and will resume Tuesday, April 14th, which is when our district is regularly scheduled to return from spring break. This includes all preschool and extra-curricular activities. We are hopeful that we will resume classroom instruction after spring break, but we will continue to evaluate what is best for our kids and community.  During this time of school closures, we highly recommend that students and families continue to practice health and safety measures such as handwashing and social distancing.

Medication at School

School offices will be closed, except for families who need to pick up medications stored at school.  If your child needs medication that is stored at school, you may pick it up today between 8:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. 

Meals for Students

 Starting tomorrow, March 17, 2020, Washington Unified will provide meals through the “Seamless Summer” Program on weekdays only.  All children 18 and younger can pick up free meals at the following locations:

Washington Union High School from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

West Fresno Elementary School from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

A lunch and breakfast for the next day will be provided on a “grab and go” basis.  You do not have to attend a WUSD school to qualify for a meal. Any child, 18 and under, may pick up meals.  

 

Educational Resources

Staff are meeting today to continue to put together a plan to provide optional educational resources for our students during the closure.  We will update you by auto-dialer and on our website once we know more.  

 

Communication

Finally, we will be mailing an informational letter home to families this week that will provide important information for you.  We will also continue to use our auto-dialer system and our website to provide up to date information.

March 15, 2020

Dear Washington Unified Families, 

As many of you know, Washington Unified has made the difficult decision to close our schools in order to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.  We realize the significant impact of this decision on our students, their families, and our community, however, out of an abundance of caution we believe this to be the best course of action to help reduce the impact of any potential spread of the virus.

School Closure

All school campuses will be closed starting Monday, March 16th and will resume Tuesday, April 14th, which is when our district is regularly scheduled to return from spring break. This includes all preschool and extra-curricular activities. We are hopeful that we will resume classroom instruction after spring break, but we will continue to evaluate what is best for our kids and community.  During this time of school closures, we highly recommend that students and families continue to practice health and safety measures such as handwashing and social distancing.

Medication at School

School offices will be closed, except for families who need to pick up medications stored at school.  If your child needs medication that is stored at school, you may pick it up between 8:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. 

Meals and Educational Resources

Staff will meet Monday to continue to put together a plan to provide meals and educational options for our students during the closure.  We will update you by auto-dialer and on our website once we know more.  

Communication

Finally, we will be mailing an informational letter home to families this week that will provide important information for you.  We will also continue to use our auto-dialer system and our website to provide up to date information.

March 13, 2020, 3:35 p.m.

Dear Washington Unified Families, in an effort to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and in a joint effort with our neighboring school districts, Washington Unified schools will be closed effective immediately and school will resume on April 14th.  We did not make this decision lightly and know that this has a significant impact on every member of the community. Please continue to check our website at www.washingtonunified.org for more information. We will continue to communicate with families via auto-dialer and through our website.

Afterschool program is still fully staffed today.  Parents can pick up their child at normal times and buses will continue to run this evening.

March 13, 2020, 11:22 a.m.

This is a reminder that school is in session today. We are aware of false reports that WUSD schools have been canceled.  All WUSD schools are in session at this time.  Please visit our website for the most up to date and accurate information.

 

March 13, 2020, 10:00 a.m.

This is an important update from Washington Unified School District to update our community about the District’s response to the Governor’s statewide directive to cancel non-essential gatherings or functions of more than 250 people.  As indicated in this directive, schools will remain open. We are defining essential functions as anything that is essential to the operation of a school site, student learning and/or governance of our district. Most importantly, we will continue to be in close and frequent communication with Fresno County’s Public Health Department and follow their best practices, act calmly and thoughtfully, and keep the best interest of our students and staff at the forefront.  

 With numerous events on our campuses each day, the following steps have been taken to follow the Governor’s directive and to continue to reflect recommended best-practices for schools.

 

  • School remains in session.  Our school-age population remains at a low risk for contracting COVID-19. We will continue our daily cleaning and disinfecting routines, encourage and remind students of good hand hygiene and proper procedures to cover coughs and sneezes, etc. It is important for us to recognize the low risk to students and the need to carry on critical functions such as classroom learning should go on. What is currently proven about the COVID-19 virus – that it presents a low risk to students and healthy adults – should provide encouragement that holding school is the right choice at this time.
  • Through Monday, April 13, all activities, competitions, and events have been postponed.  Decisions about possible rescheduling will be made as more information and guidance becomes available. While student-aged individuals and healthy adults are at low risk in this outbreak, we recognize that the elderly or those with underlying health conditions may attend non-essential community events held by Washington Unified.
    • A partial list of these postponements through April 13 include:
      • Parent-teacher conferences will be held by phone or scheduled by teacher individually
      • All school and club athletic competitions
      • All Open House Events scheduled before April 13
      • All visual and performing arts music festivals and concerts/plays
      • All student rallies, assemblies, dances
      • Fundraising dinners and events held by school booster groups
      • ELAC, DELAC, LCAP, and other large parent and community gatherings
      • Outside organizations requesting to use Washington Unified facilities may also be notified that the district is unable to accommodate their rental given the Governor’s directive
      • For more information about specific site events please check the school websites
      • Field trips
      • Off campus staff trainings and meetings
  • Normal school co-curricular practices will still be permitted.  Please consult school websites and coaches/advisors for regular updates.

The decision to take these steps was difficult but made with heartfelt consideration of the health and safety of our students, staff and community. We are saddened that some of the impacted events may not be able to be rescheduled before the end of the school year. We will be re-evaluating events currently scheduled for after Spring Break and updating our community accordingly according to guidelines provided by the State of California and Fresno County Health Department.  Individual coaches, directors and advisors will provide additional information to families about specific events and activities.

March 12, 2020, 6:20 p.m.

Effective tomorrow, March 13th, all school and club athletic competitions are canceled until April 13th. As we get closer to April 13th a decision will be made as to whether or not games can be rescheduled or made up. During this time, teams can continue to practice.  This decision is based on a number of factors including the Governor’s mandate regarding group gatherings, Fresno County Department of Public Health recommendations for group gatherings, and most importantly, to protect the health and safety of our students, staff, families, and community.

 

March 12, 2020

Click here to read the Updated WUSD Field Trip Policy and Procedures.  

Updated FAQs

Q). Are schools being closed because of the coronavirus? 

A). Not at this time. Public health officials do not recommend the cancellation of classes as an effective action in this situation at this time. We are in contact with the Fresno County Superintendent of Schools (FCSS) Health Department and the Fresno County Department of Public Health on a daily basis and will continue to follow the advice of health officials to ensure we respond appropriately based on the facts we have. 

 

Washington Unified urges all staff and families to take common-sense precautions to prevent the spread of infectious germs:

  • If you are sick, stay home.  
  • Avoid close contact with those who are already sick. 
  • Cover your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing with a tissue or the crook of your arm. Throw used tissues into the trash.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If you don’t have access to soap and water, hand sanitizer with an alcohol content of 60% or more is a great alternative.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth. 
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects or surfaces.

 

 

Q). What about field trips and conferences? Are they being canceled? 

A). WUSD Field Trip Policy and Procedures.

 

Q). Is WUSD canceling activities?
A). At this time, all school and club athletic competitions are canceled until April 13th. As we get closer to April 13th a decision will be made as to whether or not games can be rescheduled or made up. During this time, teams can continue to practice. We are in contact with the Fresno County Superintendent of Schools (FCSS) Health Department and the Fresno County Department of Public Health on a daily basis and will continue to follow the advice of health officials to ensure we respond appropriately based on the facts we have.   We will comply with the Governor’s directive to postpone or cancel community events in California of more than 250 people.  Schools remain in session and do not fall under the Governor’s current directive. Additional information about specific events and about plans for the coming weeks will be posted online and delivered directly to parents via auto-dialer.  If you are not sure about an event or activity, please contact your school site for more information.

 

Q). Should students and staff wear masks at school? 

A). Health professionals continue to tell us that wearing a mask if you are not experiencing symptoms is not an effective plan for avoiding a virus. Masks should only be worn if you are sick and showing signs of respiratory challenges, much like you would if you were coughing and sitting in the doctor’s office waiting to be seen. 

 

Q). What is the district doing to address COVID-19? 

A). The District Cabinet is holding daily briefings in an effort to assess the situation and is communicating multiple times a day with site administrators regarding important updates. The district will continue to work closely with the Fresno County Superintendent of Schools and the County of Fresno Department of Public Health to create plans of action. We will be continuing to provide supplies to help sites sanitize frequently used surfaces like laptops, tablets, phones, counters and doorknobs. Washington Unified staff will continue to monitor and communicate regularly to students, staff and parents through our usual district communication tools, including auto-dialers, emails, and on our website.

 

Q). Where can we go for more information? 

A). CDC, California Department of Public Health, and County of Fresno Department of Public Health websites are all great resources for up to date facts about COVID19. You can also find information on our district website at www.washingtonunified.org.

March 8, 2020

Click here to read a Letter to Washington Unified Families dated February 28, 2020