The William S. Hart Union High School District Board discussed an update to the district’s plans for the fall semester during a board meeting Wednesday night.
District officials gave an update on plans for the fall semester that comply with state and county mandates, which require online learning in counties on the state watchlist, including Los Angeles County.
Staff assembled 14 subcommittees, tackling topics such as special education, counseling, English as a Second Language, library access, and more, to work on an updated implementation plan.
“I want to say there’s been a lot of bumps, a lot of scrapes, a lot of sleepless nights, but we’ve all come together and I think we’re at a really, really good point because we have worked as a team,” said Kathy Hunter, assistant superintendent of educational services
The plans are designed to address three main points, according to the meeting agenda:
- To comply with L.A. County Health Order requirements as a means to keep students, staff, and families safe and to minimize the transmission of the COVID-19 virus
- To provide options for parents (Online or Blended)
- To bring students back to campus as quickly as it is deemed safe to do so.
“We’re supporting each other and we’re going to move through this semester extremely successfully because we are now prepared for it,” Hunter said. “I want to thank all of you for the support that you’ve given us during this planning time to get our implementation ready.”
Board members clarified some questions about the potential layout of chosen learning platforms that students would be using, which include Apex, Canvas and Google Classrooms. Canvas would be used primarily for AP Classes, while Apex and Google Classrooms would be used for all other subjects.
The exact hierarchy of whether Apex would take precedence with supplemental instruction via Google Classrooms or Zoom, or live instruction via Google Classrooms with supplemental materials offered by Apex during class time is at least partially up to teacher discretion, according to Hunter.
These three main platforms would then also be accompanied by additional applications to provide additional support for learning, such as Nearpod, a learning software often used for distance learning and hybrid school settings.
Dr. Cherise Moore expressed some concern about potential confusion or complications this might cause students, especially considering students could potentially have multiple platforms and online learning models to tackle within a school day, depending on placement and teacher preference for class organization.
“I don’t know how we are communicating with students so that they are successful in using all of these platforms,” Moore said. “I would like us to think about how we can make this the most friendly for students as we’re looking at all of the options that we’re providing them.”
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