Educational Continuity Plan

Frequently Asked Questions - Staff

Below are answers to frequently asked questions regarding staff development and expectations to provide remote enrichment and review to students as part of SDoL’s Educational Continuity Plan during the prolonged closure of school. These FAQs are being updated regularly.

They are divided into five broad themes: Educational Continuity, Access/Devices, Professional Development, Expectations of Teachers/Staff and Other.

Educational Continuity

What phase in the ECP is the District currently in?

Our initial outline of the ECP falls into four phases:

Phase 1 – Task force implementation and design of an education continuity plan

Phase 2 – Professional learning for staff and students

Phase 3 – Resource deployment

Phase 4 – Online engagement

What is the meaning of Enrichment & Review?

At this time, and until further notice, the district will continue the provision of Enrichment and Review for all students K5-12.

  1. no new content (standards or skills) are addressed through Enrichment and Review
  2. no grading occurs during this time
  3. providing work packets, online resources, and/or virtual instruction
  4. resources may include formal activities to reinforce or extend students’ prior learning

How will elementary students receive their packets and have parents been notified?

Packets will be mailed to students’ homes. Mailing will allow an increased probability that all students will receive Enrichment and Review packets. Mailed packets can also better reflect accommodations a student may need. Parents were notified to look for packets the week of April 6.

How often are packets being mailed out to families?

The first packet is due to arrive to homes on April 6 and it contains two weeks’ worth of activities. Information about future elementary packets will be forthcoming.

Are packets being returned to schools?

Packets are not being returned to schools.

Will elementary teachers receive access to digital copies of the elementary packets?

Yes, elementary teachers will receive digital copies of the elementary packets.

Will teachers be given the right to assign a lower level packet to certain students even if they do not have an IEP; perhaps they are in the process or simply working below level?

This idea is currently under consideration.

Will there be separate packets for ELs and IEP students?

There are resources for ELs in the week 1 packet, and additional provisions for ELs and students with IEPs will be added in subsequent packets.

How will we accommodate English Learners?

Based on the district plan to provide enrichment and review, enrichment and review activities are being developed by PLCs for our ELs in line with deployment of activities at each level. ELD teachers will be utilized in various PLCs. Some ELD teachers will be a part of PLCs to collaborate on the development of language acquisition activities for our ELs. Other ELD teachers will be a part of the grade level and content PLCs to develop activities that are scaffolded for their needs. Teachers are also encouraged to visit the SDoL ELD Department website, www.sdolesl.weebly.com, to find techniques and strategies to use when planning the enrichment activities.

How are we to communicate with non-English speaking families?

The ELD Task Force is working on a communication plan that will provide more guidance on what to use and when.

Will all of the correspondence from the district regarding meal pick up, online resources and the ECP be available in all languages?

The district utilizes email which is translated into 13 different languages, based on the language information in Synergy. Our district website also has a translation tool that families can use to translate into our top languages. We also utilize social media, which have their own translation tools and present in the language of the user’s browser. In addition to these methods, we have been utilizing our community partners, the Refugee Center and Migrant Education, to help share information with families through their cultural navigators and caseworkers.

Access/Devices

Is the Office of Technology providing resources for support and access?

Yes! The Office of Technology has compile a resource for staff answering general questions, iPad care, Schoology, Synergy and more.

IT FAQs

Who will be providing the internet for those (staff) who don't have it?

If you do not have access to the internet at home, please check your local internet provider. Many are providing free access during these times, including Comcast through its Internet Essentials program:

Internet Essentials

How will students without the internet gain online access?

Families will have the opportunity to log on to XFINITY hotspots for no cost wi-fi access.

View Map

How will students receive our virtual learning?

Secondary Students

Secondary students will receive enrichment and review online using district-issued iPads and/or laptops. Device distribution to secondary students will occur the week of March 30. We will distribute to seniors first, followed by grades 6-8 and then grades 10-11.

Elementary Students

Elementary students will receive grade-level print materials. These materials will be distributed the week of April 6.

Will students have access to System 44/Read 180 through the intranet?

Students will not be using those programs at this time, as this would fall into the category of new instruction. Those teachers will collaborate with ELA teachers to offer accommodations for struggling readers.

Where can we find the Student Contact Log in Synergy?

See:

IT FAQs

Will the iPads continue to connect through the SDoL network/Securely?

During the time that students in grades 6-12 will borrow SDoL iPads and laptops for home use, the Securly Alerts will be turned off. Alerts will be reactivated once devices are returned to SDoL buildings.

What do we say to parents if they request technology for elementary students?

At this time, our academic priority is to ensure our high school students are earning necessary credits to graduate. Our students in grades 6-12 will receive enrichment and review instruction online, using school-issued electronic devices. Kindergarten through fifth grade will be provided printed materials beginning April 6.

When I go to sign up for Zoom, I receive a message about setting up a Business account. Should I join the SDoL account?

Yes! Choose to join the business account with the School District of Lancaster. You will be given a basic user license at that time.

Is Zoom safe to use?

In light of the prior concerns with using Zoom and the referenced meeting bombings from other school districts,
we made it a priority to review our current setup and modify as needed to make a more stable, safe, and secure
environment for our SDoL students and staff. See more information from the Office of Technology:

Zoom Security

What is Synergy Mail?

Please keep watch for exciting news about the launch of Synergy Mail. Synergy Mail provides the ability for teachers, staff, students and parents/guardians to communicate in a secure way. Anticipated Launch date is Wednesday, April 1, 2020 –Additional information will be posted in the SDoL Knowledge Base.

Professional Development

I'm not tech savvy, who is going to support me?

As we work from home or other locations, please know that the Office of Technology continues to monitor the SDoL IT Helpdesk. Please continue to enter a ticket or call 717-291-6137 and leave a voicemail message. Please include as much information as possible for us to troubleshoot as well as a phone number to contact you and the best time to call. We are working M-F, 7:30am – 4:00pm

What timeframes should be dedicated to Planning, Collaboration, and PD on Fridays?

The expectations for Fridays are still being developed in collaboration with the LEA. We will communicate this information as soon as we are able.

What resources will teachers need and will we be able to share our resources with other teachers?

During the closure, teachers will need their district-issued devices and an internet connection to engage in professional development (PD), collaborate with colleagues, engage with students including check-in meetings or calls, and deliver or support content instruction in accordance with the Enrichment and Review provisions

Expectations of Teachers and Staff

What are the expectations of teachers during this time?

See the Educational Continuity Plan General Expectations for Students & Instructional Staff.

View Document

What are the expectations for specialists contacting students?

Specialists will not be expected to contact all of their students. They may be asked to help connect with students for teachers who are unable to or work with classroom teachers.

In the event that I am sick or there is an emergency of some sort with a family member that I need to attend to and I will not be able to participate, how would I report that?

Enter your request for absence in AESOP. If you do not have time available, use the Benefit Time Exhausted leave type. If you need to apply for an extended leave, contact your HR Generalist for guidance on how to apply for FMLA.

What if a teacher has childcare issues at home and is unable to teach?

Contact your HR Generalist for guidance on how to apply for FMLA through Mutual of Omaha.

What is my role as a Home School Visitor?

Home School Visitors will work with their supervisor on ways to connect with families/students that have shown truancy in 19-20 or other attendance matters as necessary.

What resources are teachers expected to use?

Resources can be found at the SDoL Remote Learning site:

Click here

Are we directed to use Remind or other apps to contact and reach families if that is what we have previously used?

Yes! Use whatever communication tool you have been using. You can check out the SDoL Remote Learning site—under Resources, Communication Tools:

view

How are we to reach all students/families when not all students or families are on apps such as Class Dojo or use email (or have emails listed in Synergy)?

The general expectation is to contact via letter, phone, email, Class Dojo, Seesaw, or Zoom- if you are unable to contact the family after 3 attempts, teachers should contact the building designee (please consult with your building principal to determine who has been identified as your building designee)

For families who do not use classroom apps or email, should we use Google Voice, by using a personal Gmail account, to contact families?

Check out the SDoL Remote Learning site —under Resources, Communication Tools:

view

Where do I locate the Teacher Choice Board?

Check out the Enrichment Ideas on the SDoL Remote Learning site!

view

Other

How should we respond when families ask us questions we do not currently have answers to?

Parents may submit question by using this form:

Coronavirus Questions

How can we connect kids to those who can support their mental health?

More information will be forthcoming. Psychologists, SFRS, Special Education Social Workers and Counselors are working to supply resources to families and determine how they will be connecting with their students and families. The district website also has a link for families to connect with counselors and SFRS when they have a question.

Connect with a Counselor

Connect with an SFRS

Students receiving School-Based Therapy have been offered TeleHealth appointments.

When and how should we collect and inventory district-owned items such as musical instruments, library books, sports uniforms, etc.?

A process for the collection of district-owned resources and equipment will be communicated in the event that the closure order is extended.

What is the plan if the closure order is extended? Will we be required to make up time that is lost?

We will wait to receive direction from the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

Where do I go if I have questions not answered here?

Please submit questions, comments and/or concerns at the link below. As appropriate, we will populate responses on this page.

Ask a question