Districts seek input from staff, families and students

As the Katonah-Lewisboro School District awaits guidance from the State Education Department regarding the possibility of reopening schools in September, it is seeking input from staff, students and parents through an online communications platform called Thoughtexchange.

What are some things we should consider as we continue to plan for reentry in Fall 2020?

This is the question posed on Thoughtexchange, an online tool that is helping school leaders across the region check in with district families, hear what's on their minds, and discover what’s most important to them.

The Regional Reentry Thoughtexchange opened on July 1 with an invite emailed to district staff, all parent email addresses in the district's system, and rising fifth to twelfth graders. The exchange is confidential--thoughts are shared but not identities. 

As of July 8, nearly 8,000 people from 13 districts in the region had contributed just under 12,000 thoughts. The Thoughtexchange will be open through midnight on Monday, July 13.

One of the novel things about the software tool is that it allows participants to react to the thoughts entered by others. Participants are also able to return as often as they wish to see how the thinking evolves.

On behalf of several school districts in the PNW BOCES Region, Dr. Ray Blanch, Superintendent of Somers CSD, and Dr. Ray Sanchez, Superintendent of Ossining UFSD, spearheaded the Regional Reentry Thoughtexchange initiative with BOCES support. Participating school districts include Bedford CSD, Brewster CSD, Carmel CSD, Chappaqua CSD, Croton-Harmon UFSD Garrison UFSD, Mahopac CSD, Katonah-Lewisboro CSD, Lakeland CSD, North Salem CSD, Ossining UFSD and Somers CSD. 

“Once the forum is complete, we’ll be able to see the results for our own District as well as those for our larger region,” said Superintendent Andrew Selesnick. “Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us and helping us plan for the fall."

Access the Thoughtexchange here.