March 20, 2020
I hope this email finds you well and healthy and you are getting through this difficult time. I know you probably have a lot of questions about school. Hopefully, between this email and the communications you have been receiving from the Superintendent, many of your questions will be answered. Please know that all building level administrators are deferring to district communication on the Barrington Schools website, under, “News” as our leadership team has the most accurate and up to date information to share. Below is some information for you:
Distance learning will start on Wednesday, March 25, 2020. For now, we know this will be in place through April 3, 2020. If distance-learning goes beyond this date, you will be notified. Monday and Tuesday, the 23rd and 24th are banked as snow days so these do not count against students.
When we start distance learning, teachers will be using a combination of Google Classroom and Zoom. Teachers will also be using other tools that we use at school, including Freckle Math, Zearn, No Red Ink and resources on our library webpages.
Zoom is being used for face to face or audio contact between teachers and students. This will be during morning meetings, introductions to lessons, and lesson debriefs. When students click on a Zoom link, they will be placed on hold, until the teacher arrives. The teacher will leave them on mute until the teacher is ready for them to interact.
Google Classroom will be used for various documents teachers would like students to have, links to other sites, and uploaded materials from students. Here is a quick one-page wonder for those of you who need a quick Google Classroom Tutorial.
Google Classrooms can be accessed from the Google Apps and choose “Classroom”. To join the various classrooms, you would use the code provided by teachers, which will be sent to you if you have not already received it.
Since we are using Google Classroom, student emails have been turned on for internal use only. Currently, students in our building will now have access to email. With that said, we will not be using email with students. It has been activated for Google Classroom use only. Teachers will email parents information, not students.
Teachers will send home information on how to access Google Classroom. You will receive emails from various teachers your child has at school. Along with their classroom teacher, you will also receive access codes from Special Subject Teachers. Special Subject teachers are Art, Library, PE/Health, and Music.
Reading specialists, math specialists, special education teachers, speech-language pathologists, social workers, and school psychologists will also send home information to specific parents about the services they will be providing. Please respond to an email they will be sending asking permission for your children to take part in group sessions for small group intervention.
A schedule of your child’s day will be placed in Google Classroom by each teacher. It will be important that you know what time your child will need to be on Zoom or in Google Classroom. Attendance will be taken daily at the start of the student’s first class. All children will sign into Zoom at 7:45 and meet with their first-period teacher. Students will submit an Attendance form that the teacher will post in Google Classroom. Teachers will be taking attendance for all other classes/subjects throughout the day.
To meet the expectations of the State’s approval of our distance learning program, attendance and participation are extremely important. If your child is not going to participate on a certain day, please email Mrs. Dwyer and Mrs. Levesque. firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
If they are completing work, but cannot log in, we will consider them as in attendance for the day. If they are ill or are not completing work, we will consider them absent. We understand that there may be times when a student is engaged in learning, but unable to login to live sessions. As long as we receive an email from the parent, we will mark the student present.
Certain supplies would be helpful to have on hand for your child’s school day. Please give them time before Wednesday to set up their own home office! Some items may include:
Headphones, pencil, eraser, crayons/markers/colored pencils, paper
Other supplies may be needed for the art class. Mrs. Kulis will be listing those for each grade level lesson.
Recorders and instruments should be available for instrumental music/band classes.
Age of Learning is a free online source that is being made available to our families. Directions on signing up may be found here.
We know you are going to have to assist your child with our distance learning. Please do not interact with the teacher during instructional times as this will be disruptive to all students in the class. If you have questions or concerns, privately email the teacher or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to have a discussion/meeting at a set time.
If you are struggling with the schedule provided, please contact your classroom teacher for solutions.
This is going to be a learning curve for all of us. We understand there will be bumps that will need to be worked out and we will do our best to quickly resolve these bumps. We will be monitoring progress, meeting virtually with teachers, and regrouping regularly to best support students, staff, and families. Please feel free to email me any questions you may have.
Ms. Tracey A. McGee
Hampden Meadows School - Principal