August 14, 2020 - With the start of the 2020-2021 school year quickly approaching, we wanted to provide answers to a few of the questions your family may be asking at this time.
Is there any chance the District will change its plans for the start of school?
No. As shared on July 16, all students will start the school year on Tuesday, August 25, with Distance Learning 2.0. Our plan to start this school year with students learning from home and a Phased School Reopening has not changed.
Has a Health and Safety Plan been adopted or a decision been made to continue Distance Learning 2.0 in Phase 2?
During last night’s Board meeting, a draft of the Health and Safety Plan was presented to the Board and the community. The Board is scheduled to vote on an updated draft of our Plan at its meeting next Thursday, August 20.
During the presentation, we also shared that we are exploring the option to continue Distance Learning 2.0 after students and staff begin to return for in person instruction. Thank you to all who participated in our August survey and indicated your interest in this approach.
Parents who did not join us online for the Board meeting are strongly encouraged to view the Health and Safety Plan information posted on our Return to School website. There you will find the presentations made to the Board, links to the Board meetings where detailed explanations are provided about our Phased School Reopening Plans, and a copy of our Draft Health and Safety Plan.
Will there be Learning Plans like we received in the spring?
Yes. Our intent is to mirror, as much as possible, the school day. K-5 teachers will post learning plans for the week by 7 p.m. on Sunday in Seesaw. Grade 6-12 teachers will populate their Schoology Calendar with weekly assignments by Sunday at 7 p.m. Please contact your child’s teacher(s) if you need additional support.
How will attendance be taken during Distance Learning 2.0?
Attendance will be taken during period/mod 1 for secondary or during the morning meeting for elementary. Students should be present on screen and dressed for school during Zoom meetings with their teachers.
If a parent believes they have extenuating circumstances that prohibit their child from meeting daily attendance expectations, they must contact their building principal by 9 a.m. on Wednesday, August 19. Principals will schedule a Zoom meeting with you and a team of educators (principal, counselor, teacher, etc.) to discuss your unique situation. Email addresses for each principal can be found on the District website on the Contact Us page.
Do I need to report absences during Distance Learning 2.0?
Yes. We will follow regular attendance procedures and policies during Distance Learning 2.0. Parents should notify the school if their child will miss school for doctors’ appointments, educational trips, etc. In instances when your family may be traveling, if your child is still able to attend Zoom meetings and complete their work for the day, an educational trip request is not needed. Schools will be providing additional information on ways to submit doctor notes and excuses electronically while we are in Distance Learning 2.0.
Do I need to pick-up a device if my child has their own device at home?
Yes. The District is only able to share educational software with District owned iPads and Chromebooks. For this reason, it is very important all students have and use a District device.
Device distribution will be taking place August 17 and August 18 along with materials and textbook distribution. An email from your principal with specific times was sent on August 7. If you did not receive the email or need to make alternate arrangements, please contact your child’s school.
How will my student log in to Schoology, Seesaw, and Zoom?
Quick Start Guides have been developed to assist students in signing on to their computer and platform (i.e., Schoology for Grades 6-12 or Seesaw in Grades K-5). These guides will be given out at device distribution and are available on the Student Devices and Technology Support website along with directions on how to request technology support for your student’s device if it is needed. Additionally, we have developed a digital Schoology Boot Camp for students in Grade 6 or others who are new to the platform. We recommend all students test their log in to Schoology/Seesaw on Monday, August 24.
For students attending Cumberland Perry Area Vocational Technical School (CPAVTS), has a decision been made about their schedule?
Yes. Students enrolled at CPAVTS will return for their morning only classes at Vo-Tech beginning August 26. Cedar Cliff students will attend A days (Monday and Wednesday) and Red Land students will attend B days (Tuesday and Thursday). Transportation for vo-tech students will be provided to and from each student’s home. Vo-tech students and families will receive additional details about transportation, bus pick up times, etc. next week.
Can CPAVTS students use their West Shore School District issued Chromebook to complete their vo-tech assignments?
Can you provide assistance with internet for my child’s device?
Below you’ll find a list of free or low-cost Internet and WiFi access options that are currently available.
- Internet Essentials through Comcast
For information call 1-855-846-8376 or visit their website.
For a listing of providers by zip code, please visit their website.
- District Hot Spots
The District does have a limited supply of hot spots available for low-income families who do not qualify for free internet through another provider. These hot spots are limited and are intended to help those families who will not have internet access otherwise. Please email Mr. Vogelsong for information at [email protected].
Will you continue to provide Grab-and-Go Bagged Meals?
Yes. We are pleased to continue to offer meals through August 31. Beginning September 1, the National School Breakfast and National School Lunch Programs will have new rules for us to follow. Additional details to come as we adjust our program to meet changes in regulations.
On behalf of the entire administrative team, thank you for your patience and support. Please continue to share your feedback and ask questions via email or by using the Contact Us page on the District website.
Todd B. Stoltz, Ed.D.
Jamie A. Whye, Ed.D.