Superintendent's MESSAGE

R. Romero Rosa A. Romero Superintendent rromero@rsdshafter.org
Version en español November 3, 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

As we continue to prepare for the return to school in a hybrid model on November 16th, we have been monitoring the following to ensure our district’s preparedness: the health and safety guidelines, the number of students who are opting for virtual-only instruction, staffing, and, most importantly, the effectiveness of our current schedules. It is hard to believe that we will soon have students in our classrooms again who have not been inside a school for six months. Teachers and students will be adjusting to new procedures and protocols, while also adapting to a new model of instruction. Today we are reaching out to provide some additional information about the hybrid instructional model. You will notice many changes to ensure safety.  

The Hybrid Model of instruction will include both in-person and remote instruction on a rotating basis. Remote students will receive the same live instruction in real-time as the in-person students are receiving.
What is the hybrid model of instruction?

  • Students will continue to meet with their same teachers and classmates regardless of whether they participate from home or at school.
  • Live instruction will continue day-to-day using the same school schedules as our current Distance Learning only model. 
  • In TK-6th grade, schools are running a “traditional” 4.5-hour schedule, during which students meet with their teacher(s) and receive instruction across all subjects each day.
  • In middle school students attend half their schedule on one day and the second half of their schedule the next day. The schedule alternates each day. This allows for longer blocks of instructional time each day at the Junior High.
  • At all levels, one group of students will be present for in-person instruction while all other groups will follow the same schedule and attend live instruction from home through Zoom or Google Meet. 
  • Both the at-home students and the Distance Learning only students are expected to log on to their courses according to the regular bell schedule when they are not physically present in school.
  • What will the hybrid model look like for students once we meet the threshold of more than 12 students in grades TK-3 and 15 grades 4-8?
  • Some students will attend classes in-person at school on specific days. At all grade levels, students are in two cohorts, A and B. Students in A will attend in-person instruction on Mondays and Tuesdays while students in Cohort B and the Distance Learning only students are attending classes from home through Zoom and/or Google Meet. 
  • Students in the B cohort will attend in-person instruction on Thursdays and Fridays while students in Cohort A and Distance Learning only students are attending from home through Zoom and/or Google Meet.
  • All students in PreK-8 will attend in Distance Learning format only (just as they do currently) on Wednesdays.
Benefits of the hybrid model:
  • Students will not have a change in teacher when we transition from Distance Learning only to hybrid.
  • The schedule will remain the same, providing consistency for both staff and students.   
  • We can pivot back to Distance Learning only or to a traditional day without changing schedules or assignments.   
  • Students will continue to have access to accelerated and enriched classes at all levels.  
  • As we have started the 2020-21 school year in a Distance Learning only format, both students and teachers have had time to acclimate to this model before adding in the hybrid piece.

Overall, there will be a better consistency of programs for students and staff.

  • How will staff be prepared to instruct in this model?
Staff members continue to be provided with professional development specific to teaching in the Distance Learning only model. As we all become more secure in this model, we will now be working with staff to transition to the hybrid model of instruction by providing professional development specific to technology, lesson planning, and instruction.

Our goal is to have everyone feeling comfortable with this next phase so that we are ready to welcome students back into our buildings. Our teachers and staff have been working really hard to deliver the best instruction and services to our students, and we thank you for your continued support of their work. We will continue to build on what we have learned as we move to this next phase of our re-entry plan. Please know that, together with the support of our families and the community,  we will work to ensure a successful transition for all.  

Elementary Schools

TK-6th 

8:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Richland Junior High

Grades 7-8    

8:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Dismissals will be staggered, and each site will send a letter with dismissal times.