We know there have been a lot of questions surrounding Limited In-Person Instruction (LIPI). To help provide some clarity, we put together a list of answers to Frequently Asked Questions about LIPI. The FAQ's are listed below (or click here for a PDF):
Limited In-Person Instruction (LIPI)- Frequently Asked Questions
Since the start of the school year, the Oregon Department of Education (“ODE”) Guidelines has allowed “Limited In-Person Instruction” (LIPI) for any local school district that is offering a fully Comprehensive Distance Learning (CDL) model of instruction to offer some in-person supports for students. Because of our collective bargaining power, PAT was able to negotiate parameters under which LIPI must operate moving forward in PPS.
WHAT IS LIPI and WHERE DID IT COME FROM?
Q- What is LIPI?
A- LIPI stands for Limited In-Person Instruction. When a school district is in Comprehensive Distance Learning, LIPI includes any live interaction between school personnel and students, whether this is inside or outside a building.
Q- What are the state guidelines for LIPI?
A- You can read the full Guidance for Limited In-Person Instruction During CDL HERE, but here are the key points:
- LIPI cohort groups are limited to no more than 20 students.
- Students cannot be part of more than two cohorts (including transportation) in any given week.
- Any one staff member (even in multiple roles) cannot interact with more than three cohorts in a given day and five in a week.
- LIPI cannot take the place of any CDL instruction. You can read the full Guidance for Limited In-Person Instruction During CDL HERE
Q- When does LIPI start?
A- Governor Brown has stated that she expected all school districts to offer some in-person instruction by February 15. PPS is in the process of adding LIPI components and has stated that certain schools will be offering new LIPI opportunities as early as next week.
PPS has been participating in some LIPI all year. Any in-person offering for students while we are in CDL between March of 2020 until today falls under the LIPI category. The District has been offering the following ongoing in-person activities:
- Athletics workouts
- Lunch program
- Library book distribution
- Special Education evaluation centers
- Limited in-person assessments
Q- What kinds of activities count as LIPI?
A- According to ODE, LIPI could be provided to:
- Address connectivity issues (allow school-access for students with limited or no internet access)
- Provide academic support
- Access assessment (for instance, SpEd Testing Centers)
- Provide social, emotional, or mental health support (for instance, small affinity groups, outside social interaction, counseling groups)
- Build educator-to-student relationships
- Support live peer-to-peer interaction (for example, athletic workouts at high schools)
- Support ongoing engagement and attendance
- Build school community and culture
- Ensure culturally relevant and sustaining pedagogy
- Prepare for a return to in-person instruction
- Provide voluntary supplemental supports
Q- Who is in charge of designing the specific LIPI program at my school?
A- The District has charged building administrators with making LIPI plans.
Building administrators are obligated to develop and organize LIPI in a way that is compliant with all the terms of the signed agreement between PAT and PPS, and with guidance provided by the Oregon Department of Education.
OUR AGREEMENTS AROUND LIPI
Q- What did PAT negotiate regarding LIPI?
A- Your PAT bargaining team negotiated the terms of working conditions and safety protocols. Because the ODE has given all school districts the ability to conduct LIPI whenever a district believes it is necessary, PAT could only bargain the safety guidelines and working conditions under LIPI. You can read the signed agreement here. (More specific info is addressed later in this document)
Q- Do I have to teach LIPI?
A- No. It is at the discretion of every single educator whether or not they will volunteer to do LIPI. After volunteering, if an educator feels that conditions at their school are not safe enough, they can withdraw from volunteering by providing five (5) workdays’ notice to the District.
Q- If I volunteer to do LIPI, is this on top of my CDL work? If so, how will that work and when will it happen?
A- Educators who provide both LIPI and CDL, and who provide LIPI during teacher-directed time, can do an equivalent amount of teacher-directed time plus one hour per week to plan LIPI instruction outside of the work day. The additional time shall be compensated at their hourly rate.
Q- If we volunteer for LIPI and get COVID, do we have to use our own sick time for quarantine, etc.?
A: Not necessarily. If you need to quarantine due to exposure to COVID, you cannot teach LIPI. If you can still perform your work for CDL, you do not need to take any sick leave. If you are unable to work in CDL due to illness, you would use your sick leave.
Q- If I’m only doing CDL, do I have to plan for LIPI and/or meet with educators working with my students in LIPI?
A- No. If you are only doing CDL, then you only plan for CDL. The educators providing LIPI will plan for LIPI. At this time, PPS has not provided time for CDL and LIPI educators to meet, so this is NOT an expectation.
Q- How will LIPI impact those of us that have been teaching from our classrooms?
A- Our agreement requires the building administrator to prioritize you staying in your classroom, unless they cannot find adequate space for LIPI activities. Admin is obligated to make real efforts to find alternative space and is required to demonstrate that they did so before using the classroom of any educator that has been using the space for their CDL work.
Q- If I do not volunteer, will I suffer any negative consequences?
OTHER QUESTIONS ABOUT LIPI
Q- Do all students have to attend LIPI? Is it okay for me to help families understand that it is optional?
A- LIPI is optional for all students and does not replace CDL. If any families need help in understanding this, then you should provide as much clarification and accurate information as you can to them.
Q- How were school sites chosen for LIPI?
A- The District stated they "are beginning with schools that have child care on site as well as CSI schools and two high schools. The general timeline that we are working from at this time is that the next round to begin in early February will be TSI/Title schools, and everyone else will begin sometime in mid-February. Secondary schools are focusing on students who have not been engaging in CDL or are in need of credit recovery".
Q- Is there an expectation for any certain number of teachers to volunteer? What if no one volunteers?
A- No. Building administrators will prepare their LIPI plan based on student need. Then, they will ask educators at their school if they would like to volunteer. If not enough educators volunteer, the District may employ substitute educators.
Q- Do I have to be vaccinated to volunteer for LIPI?
A- No, this up to the discretion of the individual educator. As of January 21st, there are NO requirements that educators receive vaccinations in order to work.
Q- If my students are receiving reading or another academic area during LIPI, does that mean they do not need to do the CDL work for that academic area?
A- No, LIPI is supplemental to CDL. Students must still complete their CDL work.
Q- Do students have to wear masks if they are participating in LIPI?
A- Yes. According to the new ODE Ready Schools Safe Learners guidance, “Students who abstain from wearing a face covering, or students whose families determine the student will not wear a face covering during On-Site instruction must be provided access to instruction. Comprehensive Distance Learning can and should be provided when this decision is values-based. However, additional provisions do apply to students protected under ADA and IDEA.”
Q - I’m a substitute educator. What is my role in LIPI and what rights do I have?
A- LIPI jobs may be posted. As a substitute, you are able to accept or reject these jobs as you see fit. If you accept a job and change your mind, you are able to cancel the job per the procedures outlined in the Substitute Employee Handbook.
Q- My PFSP colleagues are asking if they will be required to do LIPI?
A- No. PFSP members have a similar agreement to the PAT, so participation in LIPI is voluntary.
Portland Association of Teachers