A Note from Head of School Elaine Christensen

Dear Open Window School families,

As promised, here is a link to our Opening Plans for Fall 2020. This document outlines two modes of the overall school program. In Distance Program Mode (DPM), all instruction is online. In the Hybrid Program Mode (HPM), some instruction takes place on campus and some online. In both modes, teachers will deliver the academic program as intentionally and creatively as ever. In both modes, OWS will emphasize building and maintaining the joyful, connected community you love.

We closely track updates from various agencies, including but not limited to the CDC, OSPI, Washington State Department of Health, King County, as well as the decisions being made by various school districts and independent schools close by and the number of cases in the area. We also pay attention to the readiness of our constituency to come back to school in the fall through weekly surveys to faculty, staff, and parents. Based on careful consideration of all these factors, we have decided to begin the year in Distance Program Mode.

If, according to guidance from the CDC, OSPI, and Department of Health, we can bring small groups of students to campus regularly, we will. We cannot make any promises at this point, but know that we will put our best creative minds to work figuring out intentional ways for students to be in face-to-face community with safety protocols in place. This matters to all of us.

Making this decision to start school in DPM now allows our teachers to spend time getting ready to offer our academic program at a high level, both synchronously and asynchronously. We expect to be in Distance Program Mode through September and early October. We have set October 9, 2020 as our next evaluation date for reviewing if and when we might shift to Hybrid Program Mode.

As we designed the Distance and Hybrid program components, I have had you and your students constantly in mind. Your children are smart, curious, complicated, and energetic. They love to learn and they feel things with intensity. School provides them with opportunities to stretch their intellectual muscles and to develop strong social and emotional foundations. This pandemic hands us a challenging set of parameters, but our shared goal remains the same: To nurture and inspire students of high intellectual potential. 

I continue to be enthusiastic and optimistic about the year ahead. I have confidence in the teachers, confidence in the leadership of the school, and—most importantly—confidence in the kids and families for whom we do this work. Thank you for your entrusting your children to our care. 

We are #BobcatNimble!

All my best—

Elaine Christensen
Head of School
Open Window School provides a challenging academic curriculum blended with nurturing support from teachers that prepares students for long-term success.