The Virgin Islands Department of Education's Guide to Safely Reopen Schools
School Year 2020-2021
Important Forms for Reopening of USVI Public Schools
Important Links & Resources
Additional Guidance from the Center of Disease Control (CDC):
- Preparing for a Safe Return to School lays out the evidence about kids’ infectivity and the impact of reopening schools in other countries. It also lays out the importance of school for students, with emphasis on mental, social, and emotional health.
- Cloth Face Coverings contains more detail about their use within school environments.
- Screening K-12 Students for Symptoms of COVID-19: Limitations and Considerations
- Deciding How to Go Back to School and Checklists for Families help prepare parents, caregivers, and families for decision making about the return to school.
- FAQ for School Administrators on Reopening Schools
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the first day of school for public school students for the 2020-2021 school year?
USVI public schools are scheduled to reopen after Labor Day, on September 8, 2020. However, these plans are flexible and can be changed, depending on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in the community.
Will my child have to go into the school building or can he learn from home?
The USVI’s Safe Reopening of Schools Plan for SY 2020-2021 is comprised of two options:
- “Learn from School” offers public school students a blend of in-person, classroom instruction along with distance learning
- “Learn from Home” offers public school students the option to learn exclusively through distance learning with the use of online educational platforms guided by a teacher.
Is the “Learn from Home” option the same as Home Instruction/Home School?
These are not the same. Parents who wish to provide Home Instruction for their children are required to unenroll the student from the USVI public-school system. Learn more about Home Instruction enrollment here.
My child currently receives Special Education or English Learner services when they are at school. Will they have these same services if I choose either of the learning options available?
Students with an IEP and those that are English Learners will receive the same services outlined in their plan during in-school instruction, and via video or tele-conference while at home.
My child has asthma. Will she have to wear a mask all day at school?
Yes, students with respiratory illnesses are some of the most vulnerable and are required to wear a mask or facial covering. There are scheduled breaks throughout the school day, and on an as-need basis, for the removal of masks.
How often will schools and classrooms be cleaned and sanitized?
All public schools will undergo a professional deep cleaning, in accordance with CDC guidelines, prior to the reopening of schools. Custodial staff will conduct routine cleaning throughout the school day; contracted cleaners will conduct cleaning in the evenings and on weekends.
How will you keep students six feet away from each other?
Signage will be placed around campuses reminding students to practice social distancing and indicating where to sit or stand. A “soft opening” of schools during the first two weeks will allow students and staff to practice all of the new procedures expected on campus.
Learn more about our “Soft Opening” Here: pdf Virgin Islands Department of Education's Guide to Safely Reopen Public Schools SY2020 2021 (1.07 MB)
Is it true that there will no longer be school bus service?
No, that is not true. In keeping with CDC guidelines for social distancing, school buses will carry less than half of their capacity at pick up locations. Thus, we are asking parents to assist by transporting their children to and from school. Parents who do not have private vehicles and are in need of bus transportation for their children should complete the “Pupil Transportation Application Form.”
If my child has a temperature, can I still take her to school?
No, if your child has a temperature, she should remain at home and be monitored by a parent and health professionals. Temperature checks will be taken each morning at the entrance of the school. Any student arriving by private vehicle who presents a temperature of 100 degrees or higher will not be allowed onto the school campus. Students who walk to school or ride the school bus and arrives with an elevated temperature will be placed in an isolation room and parents will be called to pick up the student.
If my child has a high temperature, does that mean he has COVID-19?
If you have concerns about your child contracting COVID-19, contact the V.I. Department of Health.