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Questions and Answers

Please look through the information below. If you question is not answered, please email your question to

Updated 4.4.20

When will my child begin receiving school work?

Phase I of our Continuous Learning Plan is to connect with our students.  Our goal is to connect through emails, phone calls, or other technology with every single student in USD 4257.  We've made very good progress with this, and beginning Monday, March 30, you can expect to begin receiving information directly from teachers about what our new approach to teaching and learning will look like this spring.  Initial communication will feel a bit like "back to school" communication as new procedures and new expectations must be shared.  Our plan is to start slow, remain flexible, give lots of grace, and continue to put relationships first.

How will you support those who do not have internet access?

This is a big challenge for us, but we are going to accommodate all students, even if they do not currently have internet access.  We will work to facilitate hardcopy instructions and learning activities for those without internet access.  Elementary students’ work will all be completed by paper, middle school and high school will vary with paper work available for those that need it.

Is it too late to participate in the school lunch and breakfast program?

It is not too late and we encourage you to participate in the program.  Click here to see where food is avaialbe for pick up.  If you live in Gas, LaHarpe, or on our Rural bus route you can email Judy Baker ( to make arrangements for food to be delievered. Please keep in mind that we need to see your child to give him or her the food.  If you child is not present, we are not supposed to provide food under the food program guidelines.

Who qualifies for the daily lunch and breakfast program?

Anyone 18 years or under in the Iola community may receive a lunch and breakfast Monday-Friday. These meals are free, and will be available for pick-up each day from 11:00 am - 1:000 pm at the Iola High School Cafeteria, along with other locations. We will also offer delivery, please contact Judy Baker ( if you live in Gas, LaHarpe, or Rural bus route and need meals delivered.  

Do I need a device for each of my children and when will the school distribute devices?

You do not need a device for every child, but it might help to have multiple devices if you have three or more children in the house. Elementary students will not need a device to learn, however, we will provide additional online resources/websites if you are able to access them. If your middle schooler needs to check out a chromebook they can do this at supply pick up on Friday, March 27th.  High School students should have their Chromebooks from spring break. 

When will my child be able to pick up his or her belongings from school?

Elementary Pick Up Schedule
Middle School Pick Up Schedule
If your high schooler needs to pick something up from teh high school, please call the office to make arrangments. 620-365-4715

How does my child access his/her school email address?

Each student has a school issued email account, and the email address is: first name.last and the password is first initial, last intial – lunch code.  For example and js-04422.  If you have trouble accessing your child's email.

Will there be a prom or graduation this year?

We do not know what the next few weeks and months will bring, but we are committed to providing any and all opportunities for our kids in accordance with current safety guidelines, recommendations, and mandates. We know how disappointing the loss of spring activities is for everyone and want to support our kids and families through this challenging period of time. We will continue to follow federal, state, and local safety guidelines and mandates and will constantly review this information to plan future student and community opportunities and events.

What is the USD 257 Continuous Learning Plan (CLP)?

The CLP is something we had never heard of before the Coronavirus outbreak. Now it is standard language for all of us. Although the campus is closed, our teachers are going to give our very best effort to embrace a new approach to teaching and learning in Hesston Schools. All teachers will stay connected to their students. We are working to create authentic learning experiences for our students that focus on essential competencies for each grade level and content area. This plan will develop over time and will emphasize interaction, creativity, service, and family involvement. This is not simply moving everything online, and we will begin rolling out this plan end of March, beginning of April.

Will each child in my family receive a school-issued device and what will the device be?

Unfortunately, we do not have the means or devices to provide every student with a device. High School students should have their Chromebook. If a middle school student needs to check out a Chromebook they should check it out at supply pick up on March 27th. Elementary students do not need a device to complete their work. 

Will the Continuous Learning Plan mean my child is on a device all day?

We do not plan to structure our new model in a way that is going to require being on a computer or tablet for long periods of time. We will use online platforms such as Class Dojo and Google Classroom to share learning activities. There will likely be some activities involved that requires a device, but many learning activities will be offline too.

Do I need to find my own resources to teach my children since school is closed?

Over the next couple of weeks, we are going to have many resources available to you and your children that can assist in our implementation of the Continuous Learning Plan in USD 257. So, there is no reason, at this point, to purchase or acquire a lot of new resources. You are more than welcome to promote learning as you see fit, but your child’s teachers will have many resources and strategies at their disposal to engage students.

I’ve heard that kids might be able to come to school in small groups of less than 10. Is that going to happen in Iola?

We have no plans at this time to bring students into the building. Local Health Departments can determine if this is allowable, but our school district is not comfortable with students being in classrooms or buildings based on strict distancing guidelines.

As a parent, what should I do to help support my child in this new Continuous Learning Plan model?

The big thing right now is we need our kids to be receptive to this completely different style of teaching and learning. It is not going to be ideal, and we are going to learn a lot in the first few days and weeks. We need your feedback and will provide formal ways for you to share how things are going. We also will need you to pay attention to the activities we are asking your children to engage in and help us ensure the work is being done. Many of the activities will be project-based and service-oriented, while some might be more traditional type school work. As a parent or guardian, you are a critical part of this plan’s success.

Who do I contact if I have concerns or questions?

 As the new Continuous Learning Plan takes off in very early April, your child’s teacher will be a good resource. Your child’s teacher’s email is We always encourage you to reach out to your teacher first, then if you have follow up questions you can contact your building principal. Those emails can be found in our Continuous Learning Document. 

Will school building offices be open? What about the Central Office?

Right now, school buildings will not be open to the public and offices will not be operational. The central office will be open on a limited basis, but we are not currently operating on normal business hours. We will see how CDC guidelines change and that will dictate whether office hours are established or adjusted.