Update from Superintendent Roby
COVID-19 Parent Handbook: Here is a link to the COVID-19 Parent Handbook. It is available in English, Spanish, Swahili, and Kinyarwanda.
Nutrition Services Update: We will be providing breakfast and lunch in school during the scheduled hybrid in-person days for Cohorts A and B. Meals will be provided in the cafeteria or gymnasium.
Grab and go meal sites will be Monday through Friday from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. at every school in the district except for Blandford, Museum Middle, Museum High, North Park at Wellerwood, and Zoo School.
Daily Student Health Screener Expectations: Parents and guardians with students attending school in-person are required to complete the daily health screener each day before students go to school. The links to the daily health screener are school-specific and will be sent as an email and text message to parents AND email to district-assigned student emails. We expanded this to include all student emails in PK-12 hybrid in-person due to the fact that we do not have emails or cell phones for all parents. If you have more than one child attending in-person school, you will need to complete the daily student health screener for each child using the link specific to their school.
The link will be sent at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, 6:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. on Monday, and 6:00 a.m. on Tuesday for students in Cohort A. It will be sent at 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, 6:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, and 6:00 a.m. on Friday for students in Cohort B.
Based on new data that show a significant increase in COVID-19 cases in Kent County and new guidance from state and county health officials, we are delaying the expansion to 4-days of hybrid in-person instruction for students in grades K through 8 until Monday, April 26. Please note this new start date is subject to change based on future data and guidance from state and county health officials.
All students in hybrid in-person in grades K through 8 will maintain their current schedule for the week of April 12 and the week of April 19. All students in virtual instruction and hybrid in-person preschool, ECSE, and grades 9 through 12 will maintain their current schedules as well.
View additional details, real-time updates, and a FAQ by following this link to the GRPS website.
For Spring 2021, the Grand Rapids Public Schools will continue to administer State tests and also maintain its commitment to the health and safety of our students, families and staff. Each school determines M-STEP and MI-Access testing session dates and times within these administration windows. All schools will follow COVID-related safety protocols including social distancing and masking during all testing sessions.
View additional details and schedules for grades 3-8 testing and grades 9-12 testing by following this link to the GRPS website.
The West Michigan Vaccine Clinic at DeVos Place, operated by Kent County, Spectrum Health and Mercy Health in collaboration with Vaccinate West Michigan is expanding vaccine availability to all 16 and older, immediately.
The clinic operates by appointment only. Patients can now self-schedule online. To set up an appointment for someone ages16 or 17 or for people who need special assistance, please call 833.755.0696. A parent or guardian must accompany minors.
To view more information, please follow this link.
In 2020, Grand Rapids experienced a significant increase in fire fatalities with nine lives lost in five fatal fires. Considering these fatalities, the GRFD is seeking to significantly increase its approach to fire prevention.
“This new educational approach aims to empower residents to create fire-safe environments through information on installing and maintaining smoke and carbon monoxide alarms for early detection and notification, as well as creating exit strategies in case of fire emergency,” said Fire Chief John Lehman, Grand Rapids Fire Department.
The Grand Rapids Public Schools is hosting the second Virtual School Choice Expo for all neighborhood and theme schools on Tuesday, April 20 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. There will be presentations about how to enroll in neighborhood schools, how to apply for a theme school, important information on the different programs and services, along with breakout sessions for every school in the district.
Click hereto visit expo.grps.org to register to attend the Virtual School Choice Expo and be entered to win a $50 or $100 Meijer gift card. Raffle winners will be drawn at the beginning and end of the event. You must register and be present (virtually) to win. The link to the virtual expo will also be posted to the district website at www.grps.org. The virtual expo will be recorded and available afterward for families who may not be able to attend.
The second round for theme school applications runs from March 19 – 30, 2021. Due to COVID-19, adjustments have been made to the theme school application selection criteria for test-in schools, and out-of-district testing. The theme school application is available on-line at apply.grps.org. Click here to apply!
Theme School Application Timeline and Rounds:
Round 2 Application Window: March 19 – April 30
For additional details and to read Frequently Asked Questions, please refer to the GRPS website.
COVID-19 testing site for Kent County school staff, students, and family member of staff and students
Grand Rapids Public Schools and Kent County Health Department are working together to provide COVID-19 testing for Kent County school staff, students, and family members of staff and students at Ken O Sha Park Elementary (1353 Van Auken St. SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49508, Door B). This testing is available to staff, students, and family members who are experiencing symptoms or have a known exposure to COVID-19.
Common symptoms associated with COVID-19 include:
Testing is available Monday through Friday 8:30 am – 10:00 am by appointment beginning February 22, 2021. To schedule an appointment click on the following link and follow the prompts to the GRPS Ken O Sha Elementary testing site: http://bit.ly/kentschoolscalendar
Kent County Health Department (KCHD) hearing and vision program and Vision To Learn (VTL) are resuming services for our GRPS families beginning in late February. Both organizations are committed to preventing the spread of COVID-19 and are adhering to safe practices for conducting their work. All KCHD and VTL employees working with students are in the process of getting vaccinated for COVID-19. For more information, please follow this link!
If you would like your child to participate in either KCHD or VTL services and you have not completed the GRPS consent form, please click on the following link to provide consent:
Based on feedback during our schools’ most recent listening sessions, we have heard that some families are still struggling with internet access and/or student technology devices.
GRPS is proudly offering one-to-one devices for all students. PK-1st grade students are eligible for an iPad and 2-12th grade students are eligible for a Chromebook.
The district is also providing families without internet access options to get online through either donor-sponsored Xfinity Internet Essentials or wireless hot spots.
If you need help with internet access and/or a device/repair of a device for your student, please contact your student’s school directly.
We’re planning for the remainder of the current school year as well as the 2021-2022 school year. The district is committed to meeting the needs of all students and families, now and in the future, and we want to hear from our parents and staff.
This survey will take less than 5 minutes and focuses on two main questions:
- As you think about next school year (2021-2022), with the uncertainty of the future status of the Covid-19 global pandemic, what instructional option do you prefer for your child(ren)?
- Do you believe GRPS should offer a 100% PK-12 Virtual Academy as a permanent school choice?
GRPS is seeking proposals from qualified consulting firms to facilitate the development and execution of a five to eight year strategic plan. For more information, please follow this link.
Given the current MHSAA guidelines, high school teams are tentatively allowed to begin practicing on Saturday, January 16. Not all our high school and/or middle school teams will begin on that day, and there will be very specific conditions under which practices can take place (COVID-19 protocols). Some sports teams may begin practicing on Tuesday, January 19. Your coaches will be in contact with you regarding practice and conditioning times, along with any other winter season requirements and expectations. All students must meet the sports physical, insurance fee and eligibility requirements. Please contact your coach or athletic office for more specific information.
Currently, elementary basketball has been canceled for this season and middle school winter 1 and 2 sports are to be determined.
Starting January 19, 2021, technology device distribution and repairs will be handled at the school buildings. Students who are hybrid in-person can trade in a device for repair or pick up a device when they are in-person at school. Parents of virtual-only students will need to contact their school to schedule an appointment to trade in a device for repair or pick up a device if their student has never had one. Hotspot distribution will be handled differently once hot spots are back in stock next week. We will have more information on hotspot distribution soon.
For all other technology-related issues and general questions, please contact the GRPS hotline at (616) 301-1111 or email email@example.com. Our office hours will remain the same from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.
We are pleased to provide you with our GRPS COVID-19 Handbook. This handbook is intended as a quick reference guide for all GRPS parents and guardians as we continue to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. This is a living document that will be updated as changes or new information emerges.