Reopening Update 6/25

Doss Owls

Reopening Schools Update

I conducted an optional staff meeting yesterday to provide our team with an update on reopening schools for the fall. I, as many in AISD, eagerly awaited information from TEA regarding specifics on reopening schools for the 2020-2021 school.  Unfortunately this announcement was delayed but we did, however, receive information regarding how schools might be funded next year considering a virtual environment.  You can read that information below:

TEA Funding Virtual Education

The primary goal of yesterday’s meeting was the set some direction for our teachers as they continue to prepare.  I asked that they spend time learning more about using Seesaw (Pre–2), Blend (3-5) and how to teach within a synchronous learning environment.  Synchronous learning environment come with their own complexities so I wanted to ensure, if they were engaging in summer professional learning, teachers spent that time researching best practices within that mode of instructional delivery.  AISD and Doss will also both offer sessions to be able to support implementation of this practice.  Additionally, I also stressed the importance of continued teamwork and aligned schedules and systems to support the work we do at school and at home.

I also received various draft sample schedules from our administration that we may use to support in 100% in person, partial (% of students at a time), or 100% virtual instruction.  I expect to meet with teams of teachers when I return on the week of July 13th to begin tailoring these schedules to our grade level expectations.  As I stated before, we must have systems created to be deployed at a moments notice.  It will be complex, but we have the staff to do it!  🙂  Many families have also inquired about the MCI program and what this will look like in the fall.  I am currently working with the AISD multilingual department and our wonderful Doss MCI teachers to develop a plan.  Like other grade level schedules, it will take time to develop them to ensure the instructional rigor of this program.  I hope to update you all more as we move into July

If we do open Doss with a partial student capacity model, know that we will be working with our after school providers (iKids, 3rd Base, and My Friend’s House Child Care Center) to support families that need child care while not in the classrooms.  I understand that many of you work and need this support in order to continue to work and provide education for your children.  While these services are not guaranteed at this point I feel comfortable saying we should have options for you.  I hope to update you all sometime in July.

AISD sent out a survey recently to families to understand, if schools do open in the fall, how many might actually return.  I understand there were some technical difficulties with this survey that have now been fixed.  If your student is incoming into AISD it will not work for you at this time.  I also understand that newly registered families also do not have access to Blend or Living Tree to receive updates from me.  Please have them check the Doss PTA web page as I am adding my updates to this site.

Doss Community Virtual Instruction Survey Results

I asked and ya’ll exceeded my expectations!  We received over 300 responses to this survey!  Thank you so much for your participation and I know there are many surveys going around on a regular basis.  I am linking in the results below.  This information will be used to help us plan for next year.

Doss Community Virtual Survey

Key Points

1.) The need to have teaching consistency in the grade level and school (Blend required for 3-5 and Seesaw for K-2).
2.) Live, online teaching sessions (synchronous learning).
3.) Teachers having video lessons to show parents/students how to get started (good idea is to start the first week of school just practicing online environment…on boarding process).
4.) Weekly schedule, clickable links, and having required/optional teaching was helpful.
5.) Typically younger student parents preferred more face time with teachers for support.
6.) Overwhelming preference for synchronous learning.
7.) Many parents want students to return to school (4:1 ratio).
8.) Have a way to know grades or when an assignment is complete (mini quizzes, etc.).

I will be taking some time off from 6/26-July 12 but will be checking emails and sending out campus/community news if any news is available.  Please let me know if you have any questions.

Be safe everyone.

-Nathan