VALLEY PARK SCHOOL DISTRICT DISTANCE LEARNING GUIDELINES
The purpose of our Distance Learning Plan is to maintain relationships with students and families and provide a level of instruction and care that maintains the students’ current skills while providing reasonable learning opportunities for deeper depth of learning in essential content and exploratory and experiential opportunities in the arts and elective programming. Together we will continue to provide a supportive, personalized environment in which students will grow strong socially, emotionally, physically, and intellectually, today in preparation for tomorrow.
TRANSITION TO DISTANCE LEARNING:
Learning opportunities will be distributed on Wednesday, March 25th and Monday, March 30th from classroom teachers (and every Monday until school resumes) and through the district’s infinite campus system. Please check your email accounts, infinite campus accounts and student accounts.
The transition to distance learning may be challenging for students and families. Families will need to think differently about how to support their students and how to create structures and routines that allow their children to function successfully in this learning format. Below are some suggestions, roles, and responsibilities we encourage students and parents/guardians to consider during this new learning experience.
STUDENT ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
- Follow appropriate online “netiquette” expectations, outlined in the Student Acceptable Usage Policy and in the paperwork shared during the technology device deployment this week.
- Stay informed by checking your school district email and having your parents check their email frequently.
- Establish your learning routine and prepare a quiet, designated space where you can work effectively and successfully.
- Prepare a daily schedule and routine.
- Be an active learner, proactively communicating with teachers if you need additional support.
- Whenever possible, create balance in your day so that you’re not sitting and/or online for hours at a time. Get outside, find time for physical activity.
- If you’re going to participate in a Zoom video session, please dress appropriately for school and make sure there is nothing behind you that you don’t want others to see.
- Engage in all learning with academic honesty and integrity. Do not falsify information about yourself or impersonate others online.
- Ask questions, be persistent, and work to solve problems that may occur.
- Nothing about this experience is normal, so we must be patient and accept there will be challenges and missteps along the way. Be kind to your teachers and your family members. Don’t be afraid to tell others when you’re frustrated or upset, but know that you can’t simply give up, either. We will be better when we support each other.
PARENT/GUARDIAN ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
- Stay actively informed and engaged by regularly checking your email and infinite campus account.
- Establish routines and expectations. We encourage families to set regular hours for their children to work on school assignments that best meets the needs of your family.
- We suggest parents keep regular meal and bedtime routines for children.
- Children should be encouraged to take periodic breaks.
- Establish active time for movement/physical exercise and quiet time for reflection, away from technology. This is vitally important to their health and even to the learning process. This is a great time, also, to have students pitch in around the house with daily chores.
- Help your child prepare a space for effective learning. When your student's learning space is separate from the bedroom and distanced from a television or gaming area, it sets the expectation and tone that the space is for work and not play. In addition, learning in shared areas allows parents/guardians to readily support students, as needed, while also monitoring online activity. This may not always be possible, but it’s worth considering.
- Monitor your child’s online activity (amount of time and exposure to content).
- Ensure that your child has the necessary learning materials and tools, recognizing that not all tasks/assignments will be completed online.
- Review appropriate online “netiquette”expectations, outlined in the Student Acceptable Usage Policy and in the paperwork shared during the technology device deployment this week.
- Proactively communicate with school staff if there are academic or technology concerns/needs.
- Remain mindful of your child’s stress and/or social-emotional wellness, recognizing that varied levels of worry/anxiety are likely in this unprecedented time. Even if students seem excited about online learning at first, the novelty will likely subside as many students mourn the loss of “normal” school experiences. These losses will be especially difficult for fifth/eighth graders and seniors, who may worry about missing key events or experiences in the coming months. Never hesitate to reach out to building resources if there are needs.
Key Reminders Regarding Staff-Student Communication & Mandated Reporting
Online teaching and learning is a new process for our staff. Nevertheless, the same policies regarding boundaries and communication apply.
During this school closure period, we are also implementing these additional guidelines:
- Staff members will only communicate with students electronically for educational purposes between the hours of 8:00 am and 8:00pm
- Staff members may only use one of these district approved forms of communication:
- District email
- Infinite Campus
- Microsoft Teams
- Zoom account linked to district email, with video recorded and archived appropriately.
- TextNow (For phone calls and texts) linked to district email.
- Staff are prohibited from communicating with students through their personal devices.
All staff members are mandated reporters even while working remotely. It is the employee’s responsibility to report concerns if they suspect child abuse or neglect. The Children’s Division contact number is 1-800-392-3738. For more information on the definitions of abuse and neglect, you can review the guideline here beginning on page 10.
QUESTIONS/ CONCERNS OR ADDITIONAL SUPPORTS
FOR QUESTIONS ABOUT...
a course, assignment, or resource
the teacher who assigned the work:
Valley Park’s Distance Learn Page:
a technology-related problem or issue
Valley Park School District’s Technology Team is available:
a personal, academic, or social-emotional concern
Counselors and Social workers are available:
FREE Student Meals
Assistant Superintendent-- Dr. Tad Savage
other issues related to online learning
Valley Park High School(9-12)--Dr. Ryan Luhning
Valley Park Middle School(6-8)--Dr. Kelly Muzzey
Valley Park Elementary School (prek-5)--Dr. Jan Monroe firstname.lastname@example.org
Valley Park Early Childhood Center--Amy Hopper
Special School District--Julie Schroeder
- Teachers will begin distributing learning opportunities through email on Wednesday, March 25th
- The district has created a distance learning webpage where all grade level assignments can be found. It will be updated March 25th and March 30th (and every Monday until school resumes) and distributed through infinite campus messaging.
- Each classroom teacher will commit 90-120 minutes of virtual office hours for academic support three days a week.
- Those hours will be shared with you by the classroom teachers.
- Teachers are expected to check-in with students once a week using district approved communication methods.
- Teachers will check their emails daily.
We recognize and understand that many students will have access to technology, but some students may not have access to WiFi. We also are empathetic that many families may be experiencing different hardships and challenges at this time. Our faculty, staff, and administration are here for you and we aim to be flexible during this school closure period. Therefore, it is the district decision at this time that grades will only improve, not hinder a student’s grade. The goal during the next two weeks is to provide both enrichment as well as experiential opportunities for students to complete at home.
FINAL NOTE TO FAMILIES AND STUDENTS
We know this is a huge learning leap, not only for all of you, but for us as well. These are uncharted waters and we are committed to working with you to make this successful for all of us. Please be patient and let us know what is working and where you need assistance. We acknowledge that things will not be perfect, but they will be purposeful and as personalized as we can make them. We will embrace the imperfections and learn as we go. Thank you for your patience and support as we remain committed to providing a supportive, personalized environment in which students will grow strong intellectually, emotionally, physically, and socially today in preparation for tomorrow.
Dr. Tim Dilg