Illinois Governor J.B Pritzker today, June 4, signed an executive order allowing all Illinois schools to reopen, including summer school programs.
The executive order states that schools can reopen for limited, in-person education, and food distribution will be allowed.
Although schools are reopening, all students and staff will be required to wear a face mask if they are over two years old.
Currently, capacity per room will be limited to 10, and 6 feet social distancing rules will be mandatory. Schools are also strongly recommended to provide students and staff with personal protective equipment.
- Prohibit more than 10 individuals from gathering in one space;
- Require social distancing policies; and,
- Require use of appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE).
- Behind-the-Wheel Instruction — Students may participate in behind-the-wheel instruction. Vehicles must be cleaned and sanitized between each use and only two students and one instructor may be in a vehicle at a time.
- Child Find — Districts may conduct activities pertaining to the legal requirement that schools find all children who have disabilities and who may be entitled to special education services.
- Early Childhood, Special Education, and English Learner Screenings — Schools and districts may conduct in-person early childhood, special education, and English Learner screenings.
- Extended School Year — Districts may offer extended school year services, as appropriate, to students whose Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) require the service.
- Host Summer Camps and Other Programs — Schools and districts may allow buildings to be used for summer camps and other programs sponsored by third parties. Playgrounds may not be used.
- Individualized Education Program Meetings — Districts may conduct IEP meetings for families who have been unable to engage in virtual IEP meetings. These meetings should still be held virtually, to the greatest extent possible.
- Mediation and Due Process Hearings — Mediations and due process hearings may take place in person. However, it is recommended that mediation and due process hearings still be conducted virtually, if all parties agree to do so.
- School Registration — Staff may provide in-person registration for students and families, when necessary. Schools and districts should also provide remote registration opportunities.
- Special Education Evaluations — Districts may conduct evaluations that could not be completed virtually. Evaluations should still be held virtually, to the greatest extent possible.
- Staff Meetings and Professional Development — Districts may convene staff members for any appropriate training, planning, and professional development purposes.
- Summer Meals Distribution — ISBE highly encourages school districts to evaluate the needs of their students and community as they transition into the different phases of opening the state and continue to provide meals through the summer to meet the needs of their communities. The required Summer Food Service trainings can be conducted virtually. The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently extended several key flexibilities through Aug. 31, 2020, to allow school districts to continue to provide non-congregate meals to meet the needs of their communities. Further, Public Act 096-0734 requires every public school in which at least 50 percent of the students were eligible for free and reduced-price lunches and has a summer school program must provide a summer breakfast and/or lunch to the students in the summer school and children in that community.
- Summer School — Schools and districts may conduct in-person summer school. Special populations, which may include students with IEPs, English Learners, and students who received incompletes during remote instruction, should receive priority consideration for services.
- Testing Centers — Schools may serve as testing sites for students.
More details will be released as the 2020-21 school year approaches.