September 14, 2021
Update on Onalaska Schools
As of this writing, we are in our third week of school. We are excited to have our students back for face-to-face learning. Even though we still have public health measures we are dealing with, our staff have embraced having all of our students back in the classrooms.
We have all been through a lot since March 13, 2020, when schools were shut down and we went to remote learning. Since that time, we have learned how to provide learning opportunities under some pretty difficult situations. I am proud of the work our staff has done since that time in trying to provide a semblance of educational opportunities for our students. It has not been easy, but here we are, our doors are open and students are glad to be back with their peers and their teachers and support staff.
Our current challenge is getting all of our staff either fully vaccinated by October 18th or qualifying for a medical or religious exemption. To date, we have 47% of our staff who have turned in their vaccination verification. There are more of our staff who have been fully vaccinated, but need to turn in verification. This certainly has been a challenge for all of us. We will be working on contingency plans if we cannot retain 100% of our current staff. I am confident that our doors will remain open after October 18th and we will continue to provide an education to all of our students who are on campus. We have about a month to get this done.
After our first few weeks of school, our enrollment is holding steady. We are 33 students under our budgeted enrollment. By comparison, last September, we started the year 37 students under budget. By the time we include our Running Start students, we will drop that number to about 28 under budgeted enrollment. We anticipate reaching our budgeted enrollment number in the coming months. Last year, we finished the year with an average enrollment that was 24 FTE (full-time equivalent) above our budgeted amount. We continue to see growth in our schools as families are still moving to Onalaska.
I want to thank all of our families who are assisting us in making school work under these circumstances. Our staff appreciates the support from our parents and guardians who continue to send students to our schools. I am very proud of our staff and the work that they all have done to create a safe and secure environment for all students who come to our schools. It hasn’t been easy, but if we continue to work together and support each other, we can make this work.
Please feel free to contact me or any of our staff or administrative team if you have questions.
Again, thanks to all of you for your support of Onalaska Schools.