LET'S GET BACK-TO-SCHOOL READY!
As we approach our first day of school on Tuesday, September 8th we are eager with anticipation to see all of our students!
For students who are beginning the school year online, it will be different than “Distance Learning” in the Spring of 2020.
Key differences include:
- Instruction will be live and aligned to a daily time schedule
- Grades will be given and count toward report cards
- Attendance will be required
- Assignments will be expected to be submitted
- Teachers will use new online learning platforms
The first week of school will be focused on relationships and community building and learning new online skills, rather than diving full force into the curriculum. Teachers will spend time getting to know their students, letting students get to know one another, and learning the new technology together. Establishing classroom communities is essential while we journey into online learning. This will vary by grade level, as teachers will be building on students’ prior knowledge and setting appropriate expectations.
What to Expect On the First Day of School
On Tuesday, September 8, in alignment with the student's daily schedule, students will join their teacher and classmates live on Teams! The best way to join is by selecting "Join" in their Teams meetings calendar, but much like past first days, we expect some uncertainty about how to make this happen. To that end, parents are highly encouraged to join the District's Tele-Town Hall on Thursday, September 3, to learn more about what this will look like. Attendees will hear from the Chief Strategy Officer who will address technology and the Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum & Instruction who will address your curriculum questions.
Students who participate in online learning will follow the same academic calendar and bell schedule they would if they were learning face-to-face. Students who are online also should not expect disruptions, like for example, Snow Days.
Set Up Your Learning Environment
While you prepare for the first day of school, it is important to establish a consistent learning space for your child. Whether you’re borrowing a device from the District, have a Connected Futures device, or have one of your own, it won’t be the only tool your child will need to complete their work. It is important for students to have a place where they can focus on their studies consistently. Here are some ideas that can help you guide your student's workspace:
- Set up a quiet, dedicated workspace that can be used consistently and is free of distractions
- Have school supplies on hand, and work to create a daily routine to help keep your child focused on learning.
- Establish a place to store the resources to stay organized
What You'll Need
- Learning Device
The District's K-12 students who were enrolled as of February 2020, can use their Connected Futures devices, which come with six months of mobile internet access. The District will also provide loaner devices at the start of the school year for students who are not eligible for the Connected Futures initiative. This includes pre-kindergarten, kindergarten, and newly enrolled students. For more information about picking up your child's instructional materials, visit their school website, or call 313-240-4377.
- Internet Access
Parents who chose online learning for their students will need access to the internet for learning. If your child does not have a Connected Futures device, and you require financial assistance to purchase access, we encourage you to visit the Department of Education's page about programs to support low-income families.
- Daily Schedules
The best way for families to access their student's classes each day are on Teams. Teachers schedule recurring meetings that make it easy for students to simply click "Join" from their calendar when it is time to get started. Parents who wish to download and print their student’s general class schedule and teacher assignments may also do so by logging into the PowerSchool Parent Portal.
- Learning Materials
Schools will provide physical materials including textbooks, novels, workbooks to online students during their first week of school. Picking up materials will require wearing masks and social distancing. You will receive details via email, text, and robocalls from your child’s school regarding the schedule for pickup, but may also check your child's school website for up-to-the-minute information. Only materials that are needed to support online platforms will be issued. Each quarter, any needed materials will be given to families based on their decision to do online or in-person instruction. Families will also receive a letter that indicates which materials may be kept and which materials must be returned to the school.
Learn to Use our Learning Platforms
Video: Click to View (E)
What to Expect for Elementary Instruction this Year
Video: Click to View (MS)
What to Expect for Middle School Instruction this Year
Video: Click to View (HS)
What to Expect for High School Instruction this Year