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Parents of girl with special needs worry about continued remote learning

Poudre School District is still weighing its options for returning in the fall.

FORT COLLINS, Colo. — Remote learning at home this spring was a challenge for Kris and Jennifer Hoglin and their sixth-grade daughter Avalyn.

"She wouldn't engage," Kris Hoglin said. "It wasn't a good resource for her."

The Hoglins said their daughter has special needs

"She has autism and ADHD," Jennifer Hoglin said.

They said Avalyn needs to attend in-person classes this fall at Boltz Middle School in Fort Collins.

"We're asking for Ava to go into school a couple days a week for a few hours to get her special services, or [occupational therapy], her speech [therapy], the stuff we're not specialized in to give her," Jennifer Hoglin said.

Madeline Noblett, executive director of communications for the Poudre School District, said the school board is still formulating return-to-school plans, with four different phases as options.

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"We've prepared these phases so that we can deliver education in a high-quality way no matter what this world has in store for us," Noblett said.

But, the Hoglins said the uncertainty is uncomfortable for Avalyn's academics.

"She digresses with her learning very swiftly, and that's why she's actually been in year-round schools since she was 3 years old," Kris Hoglin said. "She's now 11."

Noblett said the district is dedicated to improving learning in the fall no matter the form.

"That honus is on us to make sure that we are looking at all of our learners to say what went well and what didn't," Noblett said.

The Hoglins said they feel parents of kids with special needs across the Fort Collins area are being ignored.

"If they're not going to do their job, we shouldn't have to pay our taxes to the school," Jennifer Hoglin said. "That's how I feel."

As summer goes on and fall approaches, the Hoglins said they want some assurance that their daughter can receive some in-person learning as opposed to remaining at home.

"There are a lot of kids that are getting left behind, and a ton of special needs parents all feel this way," Jennifer Hoglin said.

The Poudre School District plans to provide another update on fall plans on June 24, but a final decision will not be made until August.

"We hear those concerns," Noblett said. "We have talked and emailed with many of those families and we want them to know that we're listening."

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