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Special education during shutdown on tap at special Spokane Schools meeting

UPDATED: Mon., March 23, 2020

Spokane Public Schools will hold a virtual question-and-answer session Wednesday to address the issue of special education during the coronavirus-related closure.

The session will be held from 2-3 p.m., and a link will be provided before the meeting on the district’s website.

Families who would like to check out a laptop should fill out the form at The laptops will be distributed as they become available.

For those without internet access, the district has set up wireless access in the parking lots of eight buildings across the city. They include Arlington, Franklin, Bemiss, Holmes and Sheridan elementary schools; North Central and Rogers high schools and the NEWTECH Skills Center.

All districts in the area continue to issue regular updates during the closures, via their websites, social media or direct emails to families.

Here is a district-by-district rundown of plans as of Monday afternoon:

  • The Central Valley School District is moving ahead with plans for child care and academic support. The next priority is to create last-resort child care for health care workers and first responders. On Monday, the district opened school buildings to provide child care for health care workers and first responders. Information and a registration form are posted on the district website, along with details and locations. The district is providing meals to students at sites around the district.
  • In the Mead School District, food distribution began Monday at selected sites. For families of health service workers and first responders, day care was in place Monday. Next week, the district will make a determination on whether or not it has the capacity and available staff to expand childcare for other families.
  • In the Coeur d’Alene School District, food pickup for school-age children is now available, with distribution via buses from 11 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the following locations: Fernan STEM Academy, Bryan and Skyway elementary schools, Lakes Middle School (front parking lot) and Ramsey Magnet School of Science (west parking lot). Emergency K-5 child care is now available at Ramsey Magnet School and will be limited to district students whose parents or guardians work in health care or emergency services. The hours are 6:45 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays.
  • The West Valley School District is in the process of refining plans for child care for the children of first responders and health care providers. YMCA child care at Pasadena or Seth Woodard elementary schools will continue for those already enrolled. Grab-and-go breakfasts and lunches are available at Pasadena Park, Seth Woodard, Ness and Orchard Center elementary schools. Children must be present to receive meals. The district also has released online learning resources.
  • On Tuesday, the East Valley School District finalized details for food distribution at sites throughout the district, beginning immediately. To receive child care, families of first responders and medical workers must fill out an online form. Child care began Monday, as did educational resources for parents.
  • In Cheney Public Schools, plans have been finalized for breakfast and lunch, which began Wednesday. The district also has posted at-home learning materials.
  • In the Medical Lake School District, meal distribution began Monday. These will be grab-and-go lunches that include provisions for the following day’s breakfast, and will be delivered by bus. The district has created a survey with distribution locations to identify the number of meals needed. The district is still working on a plan to provide child care.
  • The Deer Park School District plans to offer child care for children, ages 3-13, of health services personnel and first responders, but a questionnaire must be completed first. Free grab-and-go lunches are being provided from 11 a.m. to noon, the district said. Academic options are still being weighed, the district said Saturday.
  • In the Riverside School District, free child care is now being provided for preschool through fifth-graders in families of medical field workers and first responders. Sack breakfasts and lunches are now available at off-school sites.
  • The Freeman School District is offering free sack breakfasts and lunches but requires applicants to fill out a form.
  • In the Nine Mile Falls School District, families are asked to fill out a form that covers food as well as child care.
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