Subject: Resources for Programs during COVID-19

This COVID-19 UPDATE includes information on:
  • State of Afterschool Programs in Virginia
  • Worker Compensation
  • Meals and Nutrition Programs
  • 21st CCLC Updates
  • VDOE and DOE Updates
  • New Educational Resources page
Afterschool Programs in Virginia

VPOST has an open questionnaire to help us assess the current landscape of afterschool communities across Virginia. Feedback we have received so far shares many common themes. Most programs are non-operational. As a result, there is much concern over employees receiving pay, and children being unsupervised, in unsafe environments, or not receiving food. Last, there were concerns about meeting grant or educational requirements. Some of these concerns are addressed in the updates below.

VPOST brought these concerns to federal legislators on Wednesday, March 18th, during the Afterschool for All Challenge. Even though the challenge is over, we encourage you to complete the questionnaire, as we continue to reach out to leaders. In particular, we want to hear what solutions you have come up with in reaching out to families and staff. Last, thank you to all that have taken time to share your insights with us! 

Worker Compensation

Governor Northam announced several actions to protect working Virginians impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak. They include: no waiting for unemployment benefits, enhanced eligibility for unemployment, including potential eligibility for workers who's employer needs to temporarily slow or cease operations due to COVID-19. Check out the FAQ's here. 

Meals and Nutrition Programs

VDOE was approved to feed children under the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) and the Seamless Summer Option. The memo detailing the options to feed students, as well as a list of all approved meal service sites (as of March 20) can be found on the VDOE website. 

21st CCLC Updates

For current grantees: Grantees will not be penalized for failing to meet program hours or AWA due to Coronavirus-related closings and travel restrictions.  AWA will be calculated by using the program weeks that were not affected by the Coronavirus.  Grantees should continue to document their hours/days missed for reporting purposes, and should try to make up as many hours as possible when school divisions return to their normal schedules.
On-site monitoring may also be affected by school division closures. If a school division is closed for students and staff, the on-site visit will be rescheduled for a later date. If the school division is closed for only students, the on-site monitoring may become a virtual monitoring and monitors may reschedule or forgo the program walk-through. The monitors will collaborate with grantees to make decisions about dates and monitoring formats. If virtual monitoring is conducted, grantees will provide all documentation electronically to their monitor in advance of the date of the monitoring. The monitor will schedule a phone conference on the monitoring date to discuss the documentation. 
For those currently completing the grant application: Based on the closing of all Virginia schools for two weeks by the Governor, the deadline for the RFP application is now Friday, May 1, 2020. The grant application submission standards/format and delivery instructions still apply as written in the Guidelines, Instructions, Assurances document. 

VDOE and DOE Updates

As you are likely aware, Governor Ralph Northam ordered all K-12 schools in Virginia to close for a minimum of two weeks in response to the continued spread of novel coronavirus, or COVID-19. Schools will close from Monday, March 16, through Friday, March 27, at a minimum, with many local divisions closing through mid-April. 

The Virginia Department of Education has requested a federal waiver for students slated to take the SOL tests this spring. The US Department of Education has announced that they will grant a waiver to any state that properly requests a waiver. 

Educational Resources

We are seeing tons of free, web-based educational resources being shared. VPOST will be developing a special page on our Resource Exchange website with a curated list of resources relevant to VA's afterschool community. Be on the lookout for that shortly!

We will continue to send updates regularly during these unprecedented times. Please know we are here to support you during this time of uncertainty. Please don't hesitate to reach out to us with questions we might be able to help you answer and solutions you have for us to share with others.
Virginia Partnership for Out-of-School Time, 800 South Main Street/MSC6913, 22807, Harrisonburg, United States
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