Messages from the Superintendent

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FMS Superintendent Dr. Eugene Schmidt aims to update students, staff, families and the Farmington community regularly during this school closure due to Coronavirus (COVID-19). Dr. Schmidt's most recent message is displayed below. Updated messages are emailed to parents and then posted here. 

 

Superintendent's Letterhead

February 1, 2021 

Farmington Municipal Schools students, staff, families and community, 


It has been only days since Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham’s welcomed announcement that Farmington secondary schools could finalize planning for the shift to in-person learning. I am pleased to share that over this past week our secondary school leaders and their staffs responded to the Governor’s invite. As such, I write to extend a welcome to middle schools and high school students, who selected in-person at-school learning to begin preparing for a return to school. Students who selected at-home learning will continue to learn remotely. 


Based on preliminary information from student/family surveys sent out by secondary principals, the number of middle school and high school students intending to return to At-School, in-person learning is higher than the 50% teacher roster limits set by the New Mexico Public Education Department. As such, all middle school and high school students, who selected in-person, at-school learning, will be invited to return to learn on an A/B cohort hybrid model. 


This graphic that follows outlines the schedule of Cohort A and Cohort B students, who will be invited to shift to in-person, at-school learning. Independent Learning Mondays will remain in place for all students. It’s important to note there is no change to any elementary school student schedule at this time. 


Secondary Cohort A students will attend At-School, in-person instruction on Tuesday and Wednesday, while Cohort B students will attend At-School, in-person instruction on Thursday and Friday. At-Home students who wish to continue with virtual learning from home will be able to continue remote learning. Both secondary Cohort A and Cohort B students will be required to log in for instruction and class time on the days of virtual learning. 

 

(Mobile users can view this graphic in full here.)

Secondary Return to Learn Graphic 


Principals, counselors, registrars and district staff are working to assign students into cohorts as quickly as possible and schools expect to make cohort announcements by the end of week for 6th and 9th graders and shortly thereafter for all remaining students. 


This schedule will begin on the week of February 8, 2021, for 6th and 9th graders and during the week of February 15, 2021, for 7th, 8th, 10th, 11th and 12th graders. While this pandemic has affected us all with consequences both large and small, allowing 6th and 9th graders to shift to in-person, at-school learning prior to older peers has two-fold benefits. First, these students will have time to properly acclimate to their new school environments. This is an important step we can take to support the social-emotional wellbeing of students who would normally benefit greatly from Open Houses experience or a start of the school year orientation event. Secondly, it allows our district departments and school staff and a smaller student population to troubleshoot challenges that could arise as student groups return to in-person learning.


Our district and others around the state are also happy to hear about a proposed start date for athletics and activities of February 22. There are still many details to work through for our athletic directors and coaches. As we learn more about game schedules, state tournaments and other competitions, we will pass word along to our students and families.  


In the meantime, take the time to review the Dos and Don’ts of Return to Learn. More communication will come from the district and schools soon. Much has changed about school procedures since the last time all our schools have been allowed students inside. This list lays out new procedures and expectations for students and families. 


Finally, I’d like to thank the special community of Farmington. Each time a new announcement, a new surprise or a new challenge comes up, I am in constant awe of how we all, students, teachers, staff and community alike, are able to rise together. #Risingtoexcellenceineverypursuit is a mantra that will continue to guide us. 

 

Respectfully, 

Dr. Schmidt signature

Dr. Eugene Schmidt FMS Superintendent