Thank you for your patience as we work towards opening school. This has been frustrating for me and I am sure for you as well because I usually have more information in your hands by now. This letter will outline the first week and start of school.
The high school will begin using the all remote schedule during the week of September 14th. This will allow teachers to begin building relationships and connections with all of their students before the shift to the hybrid model. In addition, students will have the opportunity to meet their teachers, get back into “school mode”, and obtain the work necessary to transition to the hybrid schedule in a week or two. All scheduled classes will meet via Zoom during the week of September 14th.
During the past two weeks and into this week, our staff and faculty have been at the high school working on the development of lessons, units, and learning opportunities for our students. They have participated in professional development to help them to redeploy their own knowledge as it pertains to hybrid and remote learning situations. To say the least, they are doing an amazing job honing their tech skills!
Student schedules are nearing completion and will be available in Aspen by the end of the day on Wednesday. School counselors will be available to meet with students by phone, virtual appointments, or email to discuss any schedule changes. The only changes that will be allowed are those that will fill in missing classes in a student’s schedule at this time no other changes can be made. Please access the counselor scheduling link here.
Remote Attendance Policy
- Attendance will be taken each day at approximately 7:40 AM by the first-period teachers, as well as in other synchronous classes.
- Attendance will be taken during all synchronous classes.
- All absences, whether virtual or in-person, will be managed in accordance with the school’s attendance protocols.
- Students must show their full faces while on remote learning. Teachers may, at their discretion, allow modifications to this requirement.
- Students will attend a remote learning class in an environment that is appropriate for learning. (ex: not in bed/ bathroom)
- Students will be dressed appropriately, according to the clothing guidelines found in the student handbook.
All teachers will use Google Classroom to share information and class materials with their students. Students will need to check their school email accounts at the end of this week to access class codes sent by their teachers. Students who are new to the district can expect to receive email access information this week.
Similar to a normal school year, all assignments will be graded. Students can expect to see letter grades (A-F) on their report cards. The grade book in Aspen will be updated at least every fifteen school days, as it was previously. Here is a link to important dates for the high school that contains the current marking period dates.
One thing I have learned throughout the pandemic is that all learning doesn’t necessarily happen in the classroom with a teacher. As human beings, we are finely tuned to continue to be curious and to grow and learn by all of our experiences, not just certain ones. Our kids are curious and have continued their own learning throughout the last few months, even without our help. We are working on ways to take advantage of this by developing longer-term projects and group opportunities for problem-solving while fully integrating the technologies we have available.
It will be important to support our students in some of the usual ways, but also in new ways as we proceed through the ups and downs of this school year. It didn’t take us long in the spring to learn how important school relationships can be for our kids. This year we have designed an advisory that places approximately 10-12 students with an adult in our building. These small group meetings will open the doors to strong personal connections and give us opportunities to identify when someone may need some assistance.
After the decision to pivot to remote was made, I have been told that the boards of health may be revisiting their metrics this week. Although we are starting the school year in a remote model, we will more than likely shift in a week or two to the hybrid model. Flexibility will be an important behavior to model as we move forward. As I wrote the fourth version of this letter, due to adjustments and changes over the last couple of weeks, I realized just how flexible we will need to be. I am confident that our staff, students, and families will come together to be sure that we have and maintain a safe school year for everyone.
Thank you for your support throughout the last few months! Together we can make this a great school year for our kids!