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School Update for this Fall (07-31-2020)

School Update for this Fall (07-31-2020)

Hello Centurions, yesterday we learned an agreement has been reached between San Diego Unified School District and the San Diego Education Association as to the parameters for the start-up of school. 

Some of the highlights from this agreement are:

·       There will be a six-hour school day 

·       At least three of these hours will be live teaching 

·       The other time will be used for groups and individual learning experiences 

·       Students will be graded for their course progress

·       Each student will be given access to a computer tablet with Wi-Fi service for schooling

·       Students will be brought back to campus when it is safe to do so 

More information will be available to students and parents when they receive their School Choice Survey after August 10th.  This survey, on or after August 10th, will ask parents to decide whether they want in-person schooling or online learning for their student if and when students are able to come back on campus. 

The agreement reached yesterday will now allow us to figure out how we schedule our classes this fall.  Please know we do not have a lot of time to make decisions, but I will be reaching out to our staff Instructional Council Team and our School Site Governance Team to help us decide what schedule makes the most sense given the parameters and guidelines.  Please know that the guidelines will requires us to operate or structure our school day differently from what we have done in the past.  It is required that we develop a school schedule that will be used for both online learning as well as for when we return back to in-school learning.

One major aspect of this is to reduce the risk and increase student and staff safety.  This means developing a schedule that limits students’ movement on campus, i.e., multiple passing periods, schedule lunch after school which would allow students to go home or take a grab and go lunch, and reduce the number of classes a student has with other students during a given day/week.  I know this may sound confusing without a visual, but I will provide a visual once we get into conversations with staff/student/parent leadership groups. 

School this fall will start at 8:50 AM.       

In looking at the parameters for instructional minutes required by the state, the number of minutes agreed upon by the district, it is going to require strategic placing of classes to reduce the number of students impacted by the necessary changes.  For instance, all community college classes are online this fall and professors have been hired based on the hours we had set prior to the pandemic.  These hours may now change and we are uncertain whether the community college professors are going to be able to adjust their schedules. It could be that some can and some can’t. If they can’t, some students would need to find a new class to take.  The state also will only allow a student take one community college course for the school to count it for instructional minutes for the school.  This means if students had planned to take two community college classes, the student may have to take the second class after school hours.  Again though, only if the professor is available at this time.  The bottom line is we have a lot to figure out now that we know the parameters. 

We will try to update folks along the way and I will also hold a few Zoom meetings to try to answer questions.  Until then, please continue to check the school website under School Newsfor updates.  You can help by getting your student registered for school.  Please go to the UCHS website and get this done. 

Have a good weekend, Mr. O.