Fall Opening 2020

Fall Opening 2020
Posted on 10/15/2020


Health and Safety

·  We have an excellent health and safety team here at the Ephrata School District that meets at least weekly.

o Frank Cardwell, Director of HR & Safety, leads the team.  He is assisted by very experienced full-time registered nurses working for our district in Shellie Hansen and Pam Cleveringa. The district is very fortunate to have these two people working with our kids and staff everyday - not every district does.

o This team routinely works directly with the Grant County Health District on all matters related to COVID-19: from our teaching and learning implementation plans to how to handle positive COVID cases.

o This team is responsible for setting and evaluating the implementation of our health and safety protocols.

§ The team is working on creating a webpage on our website specifically for communicating our health and safety protocols.

·  District health and safety protocols that extend to every aspect, and department, of "doing school" in our district include, but are not limited to:

o Personal hygiene

o Cleaning and disinfecting (these are not the same thing)

o Social distancing (the major factor in contact tracing once a positive case is known)

o Wellness screening (required of every life that comes on our campus daily)

o Face coverings

o Cohorting both kids and adults to minimize potential spread and assists in contact tracing

·  COVID-19 in the Ephrata School District

o Our Health and Safety Team are working on creating a "dashboard" that will update the community - via our district's website - of our positive COVID-19 cases.  We expect this dashboard to be up and functioning next week.

o See the attached document for handling COVID cases in our schools.

Teaching and Learning

·  On Monday, 10/19/20, we began our K-5 hybrid model.  Kids and staff are happy to be back together again on a regular basis. As one teacher said to me Monday morning, "Having the kids back at school covers a lot of little problems."

·  We are still on track for 6th grade to begin on November 9th and November 30th for 7-12.  We will keep you up-to-date as this unfolds.

·  Our teaching and learning model will stay intact as we transition to our hybrid model.  If you would like more specifics regarding this model, please see my earlier messages/video.  A couple of highlights:

o Core 4: 

§ Google Meets

§ Google Sheets, Drive, Docs, Calendar, etc.

§ Google Classroom

§ ScreenCastify

o Teaching and Learning Model

o Using Video


·  Fowler Construction out of the TriCities has won the bid for remodeling/building new at Columbia Ridge and the Middle School.

o Work has begun at both Columbia Ridge and the Middle School sites

·  Please visit our website to see current renderings (pictures) of the finished product.

·  This winter we will begin design phase for Grant Elementary.

Food Services

·  The federal government has allowed every student to eat for free this school year.  Those that quality for Free and Reduced meals should still fill out the required form as this has an impact on state and federal funding.


·  Workout are beginning at the high school on Monday, October 26th.  Please contact the high school for specifics.

·  Continue to review WIAA's website for updates.  They have a COVID-19 webpage.

Take care,


Tim Payne, Superintendent

Click Here for information on Handling Suspected, Presumptive or Confirmed Cases of COVID-19


2020-21 School Calendar Updates



  1. November 2-5 will be regular (grades K-5 hybrid, grades 6-12 normal schedule) student days rather than half days as indicated on the calendar. Formal fall conferences have been removed. While conferences are considered to be a very important piece of our partnership with parents, we are aiming to provide consistency for students and families as we transition to a K-12 hybrid school program. The regular school schedule will continue without interruption. Teachers and staff have been communicating regularly with families during this distance learning start.  Schools will continue to meet with parents as needed or requested throughout the school year.


  1. November 25 is an early-release day for the Thanksgiving holiday.  This will be a DISTANCE LEARNING Day.  Students will not be on school campuses and will engage in remote learning on November 25.


Actualizaciones del Calendario Escolar 2020-21



  1. El 2 al 5 de noviembre serán días regulares de los estudiantes (grados K-5 híbrido, grados 6-12 horario normal) en lugar de medio día como se indica en el calendario. Se han eliminado las conferencias formales de otoño. Si bien las conferencias se consideran una pieza muy importante de nuestra asociación con los padres, nuestro objetivo es proporcionar consistencia para los estudiantes y las familias a medida que pasamos a un programa de escuela híbrida K-12. El horario escolar regular continuará sin interrupción. Los maestros y el personal se han estado comunicando regularmente con las familias durante este inicio de aprendizaje a distancia. Las escuelas continuarán reuniéndose con los padres según sea necesario o solicitado durante todo el año escolar.


  1. El 25 de noviembre es un día de salida temprana para las vacaciones de Acción de Gracias. Este será un día de APRENDIZAJE A DISTANCIA. Los estudiantes no estarán en los campus escolares y participarán en el aprendizaje remoto el 25 de noviembre.

10/12/2020 Hybrid Model Announcement Letter

Attached is a letter from Superintendent Payne regarding the opening of our Hybrid Models.  K-5 will begin on Monday, October 19, 2020.  Information regarding other grade levels is in the letter.

Click here for English and Spanish

Attached are visuals of what the hybrid learning model may look like once we are able to return students to on-site learning

9/21/20 Free Mask Distribution

The Ephrata Police Dept is partnering with Ephrata School District and Food Services.   
They will be at our lunch distribution sites to pass out cloth face masks to our families that come pick up meals.  
There will be a representative from the Ephrata Police Dept at the following lunch locations and times:
Lunch food distribution times: 11:00 am -12:15pm
Tuesday 9/22 - Columbia Ridge 
Wednesday 9/23 - Grant
Thursday 9/24 - Middle School
Evening food distribution times: 4:30 - 6:00 pm
Wednesday 9/23 - Middle School
Thursday 9/24 - Middle School
Please help get the word out!  
The Ephrata Police Dept will also be passing out cloth face coverings at Walmart on Saturday 9/26 from 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

9/11/20 Community Update
Greetings Ephrata School District community from the Superintendent's office.  Below is a quick UPDATE.

Bond UPDATE: Successful Bid Opening
  • We are happy to report that at Thursday afternoon's bid opening for Columbia Ridge, Ephrata Middle School, and Parkway Office Remodels, we received a bid that is within the budget!
    • What's next?
      • Friday, 9/11 - Review the numbers and make sure everything is in order
      • Monday, 9/14 - Bid result discussion and tuning
      • Thursday, 9/17 - Special School Board to approve the bid
      • By the end of this month you should see the general contractor, Fowler Construction, mobilizing!
School has started!  A couple of highlights
  • The school year is off and running.  The Ephrata School District staff are doing an excellent job!  In general, students and families are reporting positive experiences.  We aren't perfect, but we are doing well and getting better everyday.
  • All staff are reporting to work daily
  • Our 3 days of orientation to start the year were very successful; so successful that it's a practice we hope to continue.
  • Outdoor learning is occuring Monday thru Thursday.
    • We have received approval from the Grant County Health Department to move our morning outdoor learning for those kids without internet service into the building on days with poor air quality and/or weather.
    • Special education services are up and running in two ways:
      • In-person - indoors and/or outdoors depending on need.
      • Virtually
    • Our outdoor learning opportunities continue to improve with each passing day/week. We are very thankful that the Grant County Health Department worked with us to give us approval for this in-person model - we have kids and staff that NEED it.
    • It is still the School Board's and my goal to get kids back on campus for in-person teaching and learning as soon as safely possible.
  • We have ordered 130 T-Mobile hotspots for kids without internet services.  We expect to get these hotspots in the next 2-3 weeks.
    • As you know, access to the internet is critical for our students to be successful.
  • Food services
    • USDA has approved us to offer free meals to all kids.
    • Beginning Monday, Sept 14 Ephrata School District will add an additional meal pick-up opportunity to its existing program to better facilitate working families.
    • Families may pick-up lunch and breakfast meals at Ephrata Middle School from 4:30-6:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday.
      • Each meal bag will consist of one breakfast and one lunch.
      • These meals are intended for families whose children cannot get to one of our meal distribution locations during the day because they do not have transportation to town or their parent/guardian is working during the day.
      • Each child is allowed to receive one breakfast and one lunch per day. If a child has already received a school meal that day, they may not pick-up another one in the evening.
      • On Thursdays, the meal bags will contain 2 breakfasts and 2 lunches. One for Thursday and one for Friday.
    • If you have questions, please call the Food Service office at 754-4401.
  • Enrollment is down in comparison to last year at this time.
    • 9/2019 official count: 2575.80
    • 9/2020 official count: 2443.07
    • That's a decrease in revenue of approximately $1,400,000
Take care,
Tim Payne

9/9/20 Recording Google Meets
Please be advised that your student may be recorded during the google meets with their teachers.  Teachers will announce to the class prior to the recording beginning.

8/17/20 Chromebook Check-Out Plans

Ephrata families, we are happy to announce that we have developed a safe and healthy Chromebook distribution process that meets Grant County Health District requirements for all currently enrolled students.   This distribution will occur prior to your student's scheduled orientation conference. All buildings will have a "drive-by" Chromebook and document pickup as follows:

·  Friday, August 21st from 12:00-7:00pm

·  Monday, August 24th from 7:00-9:00am, 11:00-1:00pm and 5:00-7:00pm  

·  Tuesday August 25th from 7:00-9:00am, 11:00-1:00pm and 5:00-7:00pm. 

If you do not have internet access, we still want you to come and get a Chromebook. The district is working on problem-solving access solutions. 


If you have ANY COVID-like symptoms, or have been recently exposed to COVID, please contact your student's building to make other arrangements to pick up their Chromebook. 


When you drive to the school, please remain in your car and wear a face covering. A staff member will bring the Chromebook and documents to you. Thank you for your patience while we navigate these difficult times.

Familias de Ephrata, nos complace anunciar que hemos desarrollado un proceso de distribución de Chromebooks seguro y sano que cumple con los requisitos del Distrito de Salud del Condado de Grant para todos los estudiantes actualmente inscritos. Esta distribución se realizará antes de la conferencia de orientación programada para su estudiante. Todos los edificios tendrán una distribución de Chromebooks “drive-by” y recogida de documentos por el carro, de la siguiente manera:

·         Viernes, 21 de agosto de 12:00 a 7:00 p.m.

·         Lunes, 24 de agosto de 7:00 a 9:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m. a 1:00 p.m. y 5:00 a 7:00 p.m. 

·         Martes, 25 de agosto de 7:00 a 9:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m. a 1:00 p.m. y 5:00 a 7:00 p.m.

Si usted no tiene acceso a internet, todavía queremos que venga y obtenga un Chromebook. El distrito está trabajando en soluciones de acceso para resolver problemas. 

Si usted tiene CUALQUIER síntoma similar al COVID, o ha estado expuesto recientemente a COVID, por favor, comuníquese con el edificio de su estudiante para hacer otros arreglos para recoger su Chromebook. 

Cuando conduzca a la escuela, por favor, permanezca en su automóvil y use una cubierta facial. Un miembro del personal le traerá el Chromebook y los documentos. Gracias por su paciencia mientras navegamos por estos tiempos difíciles

8/11/2020 Board Approved 2020/21 Opening Plan
Ephrata 2020 Reopening Plan   Spanish

Fall Opening 2020 Addendum A   Spanish

Adopted 2020/21 School Calendar   Spanish

Draft of K-4 Class Schedules for the 2020/21 school year

Draft of Parkway Class Schedules for the 2020/21 school year

Draft of EMS Class Schedules for the 2020/21 school year

Draft of EHS Class Schedules for the 2020/21 school year

8/7/2020 Fall Opening Framework
English  Spanish

Superintendent Tim Payne & EEA President Charlie Kocan Video
Click Here

7/31/2020 Update
English   Spanish

Using Videos in Teaching and Learning 
Click here
Updated WIAA News  Click Here

7/24/2020 Ephrata Teaching and Learning Model

Click here to view a video regarding the Teaching and Learning Model for the 2020/21 school year.

7/24/20 Sports Update

WIAA Tentative Calendar - July 21, 2020

Superintendent's Update - July 17, 2020
English    Spanish

Video Message from Superintendent Payne  7/13/2020

Superintendent's UPDATE - July 3, 2020
English   Spanish

Board/Superintendent Letter to Families - June 30, 2020
English    Spanish

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