HSTA reaches agreement with HIDOE on end-of-year checkout procedures

You should NOT perform an inventory of materials, move furniture, or meet face to face

The announcement by Hawaii State Department of Education Superintendent Christina Kishimoto on Friday, April 17, of the continued closure of school buildings through the end of the school year 2019–20 resulted in the need for HSTA to engage the HIDOE in discussions regarding the many questions about what will not be a normal end-of-year.

The unprecedented statewide closure of facilities for the remainder of the school year has necessitated creative new ways to accomplish routine tasks, including the End-of-Year Checkout Procedures (EOYCP) for SY 2019–20. Normally, EOYCP involve activities such as closing up of classrooms, and students taking home their belongings, as well as returning books, equipment, and other resource materials.

The current agreement reached last month remains in place through the end of the school year. However, the HSTA and HIDOE have also finalized an addendum to the March 19 agreement, which was released on Friday, April 24. Classroom teachers will continue to work from remote locations and provide students learning and enrichment activities for the rest of SY 2019–20. Non-classroom teachers will continue to complete their essential work tasks in consultation with their administrators.   

This addendum is specific about the need for teachers to return to campuses for a short duration to complete tasks related to EOYCP. It outlines what tasks teachers can and can’t be asked to complete, how teachers will be scheduled to come to campus, guidance on entering campus and workspaces, safety precautions, and an exception process for those who may have health concerns related to COVID-19.

Administrators will be provided this addendum along with their own memo outlining their expectations.

Members should know that much of the agreement is formulated in a manner to keep our members, colleagues, students, and community safe. Here are some important highlights:

  • This is not meant to be the traditional EOYCP when educators have many days and hours to complete. Teachers should not linger on campus. EOYCP should be abbreviated and completed as quickly as possible. 
  • Pay close attention to the list of things you should NOT do, such as performing an inventory of materials, moving furniture, and meeting face to face. 
  • Teachers are not to have any direct contact or interact with parents and students while on campus, preventing students or parents wanting to provide a goodbye hug. 
  • If necessary, you may bring someone with you to help facilitate your checkout, but you must notify your administration and they must stay in your classroom area. 
  • Those with small children who can’t find childcare may also bring their children, but they must notify your administration and they must stay in your classroom area. 

In the next couple of weeks, administrators will announce schedules and activities related to EOYCP. Should you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact your HSTA school level leaders or HSTA UniServ Director for assistance.

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Author: Keoki Kerr