Cavs Connected 2020–2021
Durham Academy’s Roadmap for a Return to Campus
Welcome to our first steps in an evolving plan for a return to campus this fall. Durham Academy’s approach and best practices have been shaped by:
our mission to prepare students for moral, happy, productive lives
the lessons we learned during our emergency response to COVID-19 this spring
the expertise of a community of health care, communicable disease and online learning professionals
the commitment to balance the shared desire to return to the best possible learning environment for our students, faculty and staff with the health and safety precautions that protect their well-being.
The 2020–2021 school year will require patience, flexibility, understanding and collaboration as we continue our commitment to academic excellence under circumstances that are difficult to predict.
Below you will find information outlining DA’s guiding principles, initial instructional models and health and safety precautions. More detailed information will be provided on July 24 and Aug. 10.
- July 24 — Back to School information available online
- Aug. 10 — Cavs Connected update
- Aug. 24 — First day of school
There will be no late-start days during the 2020–2021 school year.
In June, the Cavs Connected Planning Committee — including DA’s Administrative Team, directors of Extended Day, Security, DA Summer and DA’s Nurse Consultant — developed a set of principles to guide our work in the months ahead:
- Create exceptional, sustainable and equitable learning experiences in environments that prioritize the physical, developmental, emotional and social health and wellness of our students.
- Keep our mission in mind: preparing students for moral, happy, productive lives.
- Strengthen, support and sustain our school community — recognizing our shared vulnerability and mutual responsibility.
- Evolve, respond and build expertise and resiliency as circumstances change. Learn relentlessly.
- Maximize opportunities for on-campus learning and social engagement within the bounds of public health restrictions, for younger learners in particular.
- Equip families with the information and support needed for a successful educational experience through consistent, clear, transparent communications.
A set of fluid, flexible learning models will afford DA students a robust academic experience regardless of which learning environment is dictated by health and safety guidelines at any given time. DA faculty are training, planning and preparing for these scenarios, providing the school maximum flexibility to pivot without sacrificing instructional quality, compromising personal safety or interrupting educational continuity. Families or students who need or choose to remain at home are able to continue learning without interruption. Within each scenario, divisions are currently designing new daily/weekly schedules. More information will be provided about these schedules with back to school information on July 24.
- Campuses fully open
- All students on campus with safety protocols in place
- Campuses, classrooms, schedules and courses reimagined to support smaller groups and ensure social distancing.
- Designed to maximize on-campus access for younger students who require more academic, developmental and social support.
- May include rotations of students learning on campus and at home.
- Repurposed facilities (gymnasiums, libraries, common spaces, etc.) for student instruction.
- Remote learning for all students.
- Informed by our spring of emergency online learning and bolstered by a summer of intense faculty professional development.
Safety Precautions & Protocols
DA’s highest priority is the health and safety of our students, families, faculty and staff. Universal health and safety precautions for the 2020–2021 school year include behavioral and operational protocols to ensure the ongoing growth and learning of our students, to prevent COVID-19 exposure and transmission and to allow for rapid and effective responses to any outbreaks. In preparation for the mutual responsibility families will share in supporting the health and safety of the DA community, we encourage families to understand and practice these precautions — now and when we return to campus.
Verify medical and emergency contact information.
Wear masks on campus.
Practice social distancing as recommended by health agencies.
Be alert for signs of illness in your children. Keep them home if they are exhibiting signs or have symptoms of illness.
Campus Precautions and Preparations
The following procedures, campus adjustments, staffing changes and procurement of supplies are underway to make our campus SaferTogether.
- Personal protective equipment for all students, faculty and staff.
- Campus access restricted to essential personnel. Parents and visitors not permitted in buildings.
- Enhanced sanitizing and cleaning processes for high-contact surfaces and facilities throughout the day.
- Nightly cleaning and sanitizing of all classrooms and use areas.
- Flexible furniture and instructional space configurations for optimal social distancing and small class sizes.
- Physical distancing and navigational signage to minimize mixing of students.
- Large-group gatherings eliminated.
DA’s Office of Communications will keep families informed about announcements and information related to COVID-19 and the school's learning environments. You can sign up to receive updates via email alerts through our website or via RSS feed.