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    Parent Letter 7-15-2020

     

    Dear Green Elementary Families –

     

    First, let me say again how grateful we are for you and your family. We recognize that schools are an integral part of every community and we are honored to be in communion with you as we work to support students. I want to apologize for the length of this communication, but I believe every word of it is necessary for you to make an informed choice for your family in this unprecedented time. 

    Please read the entire document, then let us know if you have questions.

     

    What do we know for certain?

    *School will open for all students at Green on August 17, 2020; all cohorts AND Virtual Academy will follow the traditional calendar for 2020-2021

    *School hours will remain the same, doors open for students only (more later in this letter) at 8:45am. Instruction begins at 9:15am and the day ends at 4:00pm.

    *Only 1/3 of Plan B enrolled students will be in the building at any given time.

    *Currently, Green Elementary has 132 students enrolled in Virtual Academy, which represents just over 25% of our current enrollment.

    *Students can enroll in Virtual Academy for a semester OR for the entire year; ONLY guarantee for Virtual Academy in the spring is to enroll now for the entire year

    *Remaining student will be assigned to one of 3 different cohorts called Cohort A, Cohort B, and Cohort C.

    *Cohorts will rotate into school for one week of face to face, then out of school for two weeks of remote learning

    *To the degree possible, remote learning and Virtual Academy will mirror the experience of a regular school day, with instruction, lunch, play, specials classes and work time

    **(the degree to which this will mirror the school day will be driven by the numbers of student enrolled in Virtual Academy and staffing levels driven by HR processes for granting workplace accommodations or exemptions to instructional staff)

    *curriculum, assessment, grading, and attendance will be the same in all versions of school

    *Technology distributed in the spring will continue to be used when school opens. If you received a device in the spring, you should not need another one. Devices will be distributed by the district as needed.

    *Students enrolled in Cohorts A, B, and C will return to full in person learning if the Governor or WCPSS determine that it is safe to do so.

    *Virtual Academy students, if you chose the full year option, will remain in virtual learning for the entire 2020-2021 school year regardless of “return to school” decisions made by the Governor or WCPSS.

    PLAN B

    *Plan B has two components: Face to Face Instruction and Remote Learning

    Face to Face (one week at a time) (DRAFT)

    *English-Language Arts (ELA) and Mathematics will be taught exclusively during the Face to Face week of instruction, which support staff providing targeted support to special education, ELL, and AIG students during this week. Learning blocks for these subjects will be longer than traditionally experienced in order to maximize the effect of Face to Face instruction.

    *Science/Social Studies will be taught primarily via videotaped lessons during Remote Learning. SOME concepts will lend themselves to integration into the English-Languages Arts and Mathematics lessons during Face to Face instruction weeks.

    *Students will continue to receive Specials classes and World Language classes.

    *Students will be able to eat breakfast and lunch at school.

    Remote Learning (two weeks) (DRAFT)

    *English-Language Arts (ELA) and Mathematics instruction continues, with the addition of Science and Social Studies. Instruction will be daily.

    *Specials lessons and World Languages lessons continue, though they may be recorded for convenience and because teachers are still teaching Face to Face!

    *A schedule will be developed in order to provide routine in the day. K-2 mini lessons in ELA and Math will be 20 min live instruction each day (offered at 3 different times in the day to accommodate family schedules). 3-5 mini lessons in ELA and Math will be 40 min live instruction each day (offered at 2 different times in the day to accommodate family schedules). Goal is for 5 hours of live instruction each week.

    **IMPORTANT: Your child may be assigned to one Face to Face teacher but a different Remote Learning teacher, depending on staffing levels and the number of students enrolled in Virtual Academy. This cannot be determined until the following happens:

    1. HR processes staff requests for workplace or work from home accommodations

    2. Students are divided into Cohorts A, B, and C

     

    VIRTUAL ACADEMY

    *Enrollment required for a full semester OR for the full year (only guarantee for full year is to enroll for full year NOW)

    *Daily schedule will be developed to include ALL subject areas; instruction will be LIVE (synchronous) and recorded (asynchronous). Goal is for 2.5 hours of live instruction per day (adjusted for age, subject, etc.)

    *Students follow the regular school calendar

    *To the degree possible, students will be assigned to teachers from Green Elementary School. However, it is possible that, due to enrollment numbers and/or staffing levels, students will be assigned a teacher from a different school for specials, language, etc. Schools in the same regions will work closely together in order to support each other.

     

    What will be different at Green Elementary?

    Thank you in advance for your patience as we work through VERY challenging logistics and organizational challenges this school year. The following changes are necessary in order to protect, support, and maintain the health and safety of our children, our staff, and our community.

    Access to Building

    *All school-based events will be VIRTUAL. Parent conferences will be held by phone or via a virtual platform (Google Meet).

    *Building access will be granted for emergencies only.

    *Students have two ways to enter the building: BUSES and CARPOOL; we will not permit walk ups to the front door this year because we do not have the staff to supervise entry (with mandated health protocols) and social distancing – and if you are on our campus then we must monitor that.

    *Daily temperature checks and health assessment questions will be mandated for EVERY staff member and EVERY student, regardless of how they arrive to school. This process has the potential to make arrival challenging – again thank you for your patience.

    *Again, NO WALKERS this school year.

    *Carpool temperature checks and health questions will be conducted at the beginning of our carpool drive (near cul-de-sac) and will begin at 8:30am. Students who are cleared through the health check will be handed a pass token and they will place that in the basket at the cafeteria door when they get out of their vehicle.

    NOT be allowed to enter the building and the parent will be asked to take the child home.

    *Late check ins and early check outs will be handled at the front door. Parents will be required to give staff the name of the child, the teacher, the reason for being late/leaving early, and show your ID at the glass door. We will capture a photo of the ID for security purposes, just as we do with the kiosk in the building.

    *Staff will either allow the late student in or will escort the student to the door who is leaving early.

    In the Building

    *MASKS ARE REQUIRED OF ALL STUDENTS K-5 AND STAFF.

    *Students will eat breakfast and lunch in their classroom with their small cohort of students. Our understanding is that all meals will be prepackaged.

    *Specials classes, to the degree possible, will be conducted in the homeroom class of the cohort. If movement to a different space is required, students will be social distanced in the hallways.

    *Hallways and staircases will be labeled ONE WAY and either UP or DOWN – but not both.

    *Students will be specifically taught to wash their hands.

    *Students will not be allowed to drink from water fountains.

    *Students will dismiss to carpool and to buses from their classrooms and they will be escorted by staff to ensure social distancing.

    *A separate health room has been established in order to quarantine students with fevers and coughs if this becomes necessary.

    *Students will not be allowed to share any materials of any kind. Technology, manipulatives, and other materials will be cleaned at the end of each cohort week in order to prep for the next cohort.

    *Recess may involve only the track. We have not received guidance on allowing children from other classes to mix together for recess OR on whether we can allow access to equipment on the playground.

     

    Final Information (At least for now)

    Again, I know that there is a lot of information in this letter. I apologize again for sending so much at you all at once. However, I also know that you have some serious choices to make for your families and I want you to have as much information as you possible can in order to make those choices.

    I have unshakeable faith in the faculty and staff of Green Elementary School to educate your children and keep them safe. At the same time, we have to make sure that we are taking steps to keep the faculty and staff safe as well. We believe with this plan we have done so.

    As always, we are subject to the direction of the WCPSS School Board and district staff. As we receive additional information and guidelines, we will keep you informed.

    You are an amazing community. You are supportive of your children and of us. We are forever grateful for our association with you. Please reach out with questions and needs.