Education Migration 2020

  • July 9, 2020

    Dear Hawk Parents,

    I know you have many questions about how the beginning of school will look. This week, we received public health guidance from TEA regarding in-person instruction as well as instructional continuity planning materials for virtual learning in the fall. We are anxious to roll out the district plan for both in-person and virtual (asynchronous at-home) platforms with all safety guidelines and high-quality instruction. Asynchronous instruction allows at-home learners to access materials for reading, videos, or lectures, as well as assignments and exams within a flexible timeframe instead of simultaneous with the assigned class time. The platforms will mirror each other as far as curriculum, assignments, assessments, grades, and STAAR/EOC assessments. 

    Virtual (asynchronous at-home) instruction will be different than this past spring. Previously, instruction was provided through posted lessons and assignments with teacher support for at-home learning. This fall, teachers will be instructing your students while providing required assignments and assessments just as if students were in the regular classroom. In addition, attendance will be taken for virtual learners based on criteria from the state and will be a factor in promotion and/or credit for classes. This is required to receive funding for each virtual learner. Classroom teachers will be supported by at-home learning monitors to assure students are completing assignments and keeping pace with the class.

    In-person instruction will be as close to a normal school day as possible. According to current state guidelines, students 10 and older will be required to wear a mask. All teachers and staff will be required to wear a mask with few exceptions listed by the Governor. We expect class sizes to be smaller due to some students choosing at-home learning. We are also working through details for recess/PE, meals (likely in class or on a cafeteria rotation), hallway flow, extra-curricular programs, and much more.

    Our goal next week is to release the district’s back to school plan. We will still have some kinks to work out as we near the start of school, but the models will be laid out for the vast majority of our student instruction scenarios.

    We will be sending out a registration commitment to parents on Wednesday, July 29, which is the earliest date allowed by state guidelines. The commitment will be due back in by Friday, July 31. We are asking you to commit to in-school or virtual at-home learning for each of your students.

    This is vital for finalizing staffing and instructional plans. This commitment is for the first six weeks; however, it can be reviewed at the end of each grading period (each six weeks) should the need arise to change the commitment. We want you to make the best decision for your family and your students.

    We are continuing to order materials for the safety of our students, staff, and visitors and will soon be acquiring our state allotment of masks, gloves, face shields, thermometers, and hand sanitizer – 648 gallons! Our plan will include social distancing guidelines, use of PPE, scheduled cleanings, response procedures, and much more.  

    In general, ALL employees are expected to return to their position at their designated date unless they apply for and qualify for leave benefits. We will also have guidelines for visitors to the campus but will encourage parents to communicate by email or phone where possible to limit campus visits.

    We are excited about our staff and students returning. We are HAWKS - with keen eyesight, fiercely territorial, the most intelligent of birds. We can adapt to changing surroundings including this new Education Migration to students learning both at school and at home. But we can only do it together, unified.

    Please contact your campus principal if you have any questions, as they will continue to be part of the district planning. You may also send your questions or concerns to info@redoakisd.org.

    I appreciate your support and value each of our students, staff members, and every parent. Again, we want you to make the best decision for your family and your students. I truly believe together we will get through this. As always my ‘door is open’ – please feel free to reach out to me with any concerns.

    Sincerely,

     Brenda Sanford Signature

    Brenda Sanford, Superintendent
    Red Oak ISD


    June 25, 2020

    Dear Red Oak ISD staff,

    As we plan for the fall, I know there is frustration among some parents, staff, and students about what school will look like in the fall. We have been intentional in not releasing information prematurely until we know what we factually can and cannot offer. We are anxiously awaiting guidance from Commissioner Morath and the Texas Education Agency on what will be allowed and guidelines that must be in place.

    Please know we have been working around the clock and have contingency plans ready to put in action for in-person face-to-face, virtual, and blended learning models to ensure safety while meeting the many different needs of our students. We just simply cannot release the information/plans, until TEA releases the guidelines we will be required to follow.

    We are sensitive to the many different needs and views. We know some are anxious to have their students back in a “typical” in-class and in-person setting, while others are fearful of sending their students back and would like to continue virtual learning. With this knowledge, we also are looking at offering allowable options, but again, until we know from TEA what will be allowed, we cannot release these plans.

    Your student’s safety and education are our top priorities. We are listening, we do care, and we will work to meet your needs while protecting students and staff. Sincerely,

     Brenda Sanford signature

    Brenda Sanford, Superintendent
    Red Oak ISD