Virtual Learning Resources
Original Announcement - Virtual Learning in the Fall
June 18th Announcement
We are grateful for your partnership, especially over the last several months, and we appreciate your continued partnership as we look to the 2020-21 school year. Over and over again, Kauffman School students, families, and staff prove that nothing will get in the way of ensuring our students have access to a quality education and all of the opportunities that quality education affords. And as we all do our part to work toward an equitable, just, and anti-racist world, education has never been more important to our students’ and our community’s future.
We also want to thank the over 600 Kauffman School families who participated in family surveys and follow-up conversations in recent weeks. Your feedback is valuable to us and has greatly informed decisions we’ve made. In addition to your surveys, we have remained engaged with state and local government and public health officials and education leaders throughout our city and state. In this letter, we will provide you information about decisions for Fall 2020 and will define the next steps you will need to take in the coming days.
Our primary goal is to provide all Kauffman School students with a safe, equitable, and high-quality learning environment. While the COVID-19 pandemic has created challenges, we are proud that over 90% of families indicated they were satisfied with the virtual learning program we implemented once schools were forced to close.
We are all eager for a return to normalcy, but we know any return to in-person school would be impacted by the significant restrictions we would need to put in place for safety -- such as masks, temperature checks, and social distancing. With this in mind, we have done extensive research into our options for Fall 2020, including a hybrid option where some students are 100% virtual while others split their time between virtual and in-person school. A hybrid model would require us to split our staff’s focus across two school models, which we think would negatively impact the quality of each, and would require families to constantly adjust their routines on alternating days or weeks. Ultimately, we decided that the risks of this hybrid model do not outweigh the benefits.
Therefore, the Kauffman School will implement a 100% virtual school model in Fall 2020.
We did not come to this decision lightly. But based on your feedback, CDC guidelines, reflections on the initial success of our virtual school model this spring, extensive research into other options, and interactions with public officials and education leaders, we believe this option will allow us to provide the highest quality education to all Kauffman School students in the short-term while keeping our students, staff, and families healthy and safe.
As we look to Fall 2020, the Kauffman School commits to the following:
- Repeating the procedure of providing 100% of Kauffman School students with a Chromebook and supporting families to secure home Internet access if they do not already have it.
- Offering training opportunities for students and families to ensure students and families have the skills they need to fully access the virtual learning model.
- Improving our technology help desk procedures to ensure students and families can access in-the-moment support to address any technology challenges.
- Improving our attendance tracking and family communication procedures around attendance.
- Identifying opportunities for students to engage socially with their peers as well as opportunities to recognize, celebrate, and incentivize student success.
- Exploring opportunities to safely continue athletics and extracurricular activities even while school is virtual.
- Communicate frequently as we get closer to the first day of virtual school.
- Constantly monitor and evaluate conditions that might warrant a shift back to in-person school.
While the COVID-19 pandemic has created uncertainty and has required tremendous flexibility, one thing has remained constant: The Kauffman School's mission to "Create College Graduates." We are confident that any changes that we need to make due to COVID-19 will have short-term impacts, and we are confident we can provide students a quality education in 2020-2021 that will not interfere with this long-term goal. We are proud that 90% of Kauffman families indicated they share this perspective, and have said they would enroll their child at the Kauffman School regardless of whether we were in-person or virtual in Fall 2020.
To reaffirm your intentions for 2020-2021 given this new information and to officially save your child’s seat at the Kauffman School in 2020-21, please complete the survey at the link below. You will also have the opportunity to give additional feedback or ask questions as part of the survey.
Intent to Enroll Survey: https://forms.gle/7GtJrEVJwUiCBfen7
We are committed to our students' health, safety, and academic success in both the short-term and long-term. We thank you for your continued partnership as we look to the 2020-21 school year.
Beginning of Year Conferences
As we’ve been sharing in our Back to School Nights and New Student Orientations, strong communication between families and school this year is especially critical as we start the year remotely. With that in mind, we are scheduling 1-on-1 Zoom meetings for all families with their students’ PREP/Seminar teachers. These conferences are so you can meet the teacher who will be your primary contact for your student for the year, share about your family and student, and hear about your teacher’s expectations and goals for the year.
- Conferences will be held over Zoom, either on your student’s device or a personal device like a phone or tablet.
- Conferences will be scheduled during the week of August 17 (the first week of school).
- Conferences will be about 15 minutes long.
- Family members must complete a brief online form to let us know what times work best to schedule this conversation. If you are a current family and have not already done so, please click this link and complete the form by the end of the day on Thursday, August 13.
- We will confirm with families their conference time and Zoom location by August 16.
Student Chromebooks and Supplies
New Students: You will receive your supplies on the first day of school. Stay tuned for more information!
Returning Students: If you have not yet picked up supplies, please reach out to us right away at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up or confirm your alternate supply pickup plan.
- Families will pick up the computer, along with other school supplies and curriculum materials, from the Kauffman School. A full list of supplies your student will receive is here.
- Families picking up outside of scheduled pickups will go to the South front office to collect student materials.
- New 5th grade students will receive their supplies at a later date.
- If you ordered a 2020 yearbook, your yearbook will be given to you along with your student’s supplies.
Virtual Learning Resources