Reopening and Reimagining for a Brighter Future - Reopening Plan

Community & Communication

The COVID-19 pandemic has created tremendous stress and trauma for our communities. Ulster BOCES is committed to a carefully crafted reopening plan, which will enable us to maintain trust and credibility through frequent and transparent, two-way communication. 

Research on risk communication shows that people are less able to comprehend information when under stress; furthermore, trust is determined when organizations demonstrate empathy and honesty during a crisis. Therefore, our comprehensive communication plans consider the perspectives of key stakeholders including staff, students, parents and caregivers, employees, and community members. This will enable us to effectively respond to community concerns through clear, consistent, and specific communication protocols, which in turn will allow everyone to safely engage and transition to reopening our schools. 

As we plan for reopening, Ulster BOCES will actively and authentically engage staff, parents and caregivers, families, and students in the decision-making process in order to build trust and credibility. Effective community engagement will:

  • Clearly communicate the organization’s objectives
  • Ensure stakeholders understand the tasks and their role in the process
  • Specify how and when feedback will be used in the decision-making process
  • Reflect back to stakeholders the feedback received
  • Strengthen credibility by communicating how feedback was acted upon

How Might We (HMW) questions use a variety of creative approaches to generate questions to drive a brainstorming process as our development continues. These questions are the result of emerging themes from our Phase 1 feedback.

  • HMW provide opportunities for gratitude and generosity?
  • HMW engage all stakeholder groups in frequent feedback sessions?
  • HMW increase the level of personal accountability one has for keeping everyone safe?
  • HMW keep the communication channels open and engaging?