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TAPCo Blended Learning Handbook - STUDENTS & FAMILIES.docx
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TAPCo.

Blended Learning

HANDBOOK

For Students & Families

September 2020

2190 Folin Street.

Bronx, New York 10457

(718) 584-0832

Ron Link, Principal

Demetri Nicolopoulos, Assistant Principal

Mark Schaudt, Assistant Principal

Peter Volkert, Assistant Principal

Tips for Success 

  1. Create a workspace at home; try to find a quiet space for your virtual classes Use a planner or create a weekly schedule to plan out your week
  2. Review each of your teacher’s weekly calendars
  1. Write in assignments you have due each day of the week
  2. Write down meeting times for each day of the week
  1. Before entering your virtual classes, organize all your notebooks and folders in order to have access to your materials before the class begins
  2. Check your TAPCo Google email three times a day (8:00am; during lunch; 2:45pm)
  3. Visit www.tapconyc.org
  1. Directions to access Google Classroom, secure internet access and or a computer (Fedexed directly to your home).
  2. New York City Resources for Families
  3. Up-to-date information on Covid-19

 Academic Classes

  1. Students must join each Google Classroom for their classes
  2. Assignments must be submitted on time in order to prepare for the virtual classes
  3. Attendance will be taken by your teacher by:
  1. If you are struggling with material or need to speak with your teacher, you can reach out to them during posted office hours:
  1. Teacher office hours are indicated in the schedule below in addition to your Google Classroom course profile.
  2. Students can sign up for office hours using a system that your teacher determines.
  3. Students can also use PupilPath to send an email to their teachers.
  1. Below is the structure for our week of blended learning school days:

  1. Below is the daily schedule for students who attend in building classes:

Period

Start

End

Length

Student
Schedule

0

8:00 AM

8:30 AM

30 min

Grab-a-Breakfast

1

8:30 AM

9:17 AM

47 min

Class

2

9:17 AM

10:04 AM

47 min

Class

3

10:04 AM

10:51 AM

47 min

Class

4

10:51 AM

11:38 AM

47 min

Class

(with instructional lunch)*

5

11:38 AM

12:25 PM

47 min

Class

(with instructional lunch)*

6

12:25 PM

1:12 PM

47 min

Class

7

1:12 PM

1:59 PM

47 min

Class

*Students will only have 1 Instructional Lunch Period

Food Services

Grab-and-go meals will be available for breakfast and lunch each day, though students will also be permitted to bring their own lunch if preferred. Doing so will allow for more flexibility so students and physical distancing can be maintained during lunch time, a time when many students usually gather in one location.

Grading Guidelines 

  1. Each teacher will submit a grade for your assignments on Skedula by Monday by 9:00 am.
  2. Grading policies for formative and summative assessments still apply

 

Communication 

  1. Communicate with your teachers via email, PupilPath, or their Google Voice, Google number only
  2. Check your Tapco Google email three times a day (8:00am; lunch period; 2:45pm)

Social-Emotional Support

  1. Students and parents can contact their counselor via email to set up a conference via phone call or video chat. Please provide a working phone number and the times and days you are available. We will respond ASAP via email to confirm an appointment.
  1. Ms. Del Los Santos-Grades 9-12,  plus mandated counseling students, 8:00 a.m. to 3:20 p.m.- mdelossantos12@schools.nyc.gov
  2. Ms. Vargas - Grades 9-12,  academic counseling students, 8:00 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. - nvargas@schools.nyc.gov
  3. Mr. Acevedo - Grades 6-8, academic and  mandated counseling students, 8:00 a.m. to 3:15 - racevedo@schools.nyc.gov
  4. Ms. James-College Counselor-8:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. kjames@newyorkedge.org

 

Student Code of Conduct 

  1. Academic Honor Code - Trust is the foundation of distance learning. The only way  for you to learn is by doing your own work, supported by your teachers. We expect you to conduct yourself with the utmost honor, integrity, and honesty. Your teachers will know immediately if the work you do is your own. Similarly, any exam that you take at home will be graded by your classroom teacher who knows your capability and work style. We hope you will give yourselves the opportunity to maximize your learning by adhering to this honor code. That will enable you to ensure you have the strongest academic foundation when classes resume at TAPCo. or in college.
  1. If a student violates the honor code, academic dishonesty policy will apply
  1. Appropriate Behavior in Virtual Classes
  1. Students must wear appropriate clothing and look presentable
  2. Students must use appropriate language
  3. Disciplinary action may be taken if you do not adhere to the above policies

For Parents -

For administrator support, please reach out to Parent Coordinator to Roque Bonilla, rbonilla@schools.nyc.gov who will directly relay your questions or concerns to Principal Link, Assistant Principal Demetri Nicolopoulos (Math, ELA, SS, Science, & ENL) Assistant Principal Mark Schaudt (Special Education, Guidance) or Assistant Principal Peter Volkert (Physical Education, Inappropriate Online Behaviors).

We adhere to the New York City Department of Education’s Parents’ Bill of Rights for Data Privacy and Security

Students Arriving at School on an Incorrect Day

When students arrive at school on an incorrect day, it causes a health risk, as capacity may be exceeded. In such an instance, parent contact will be made, and the school will use the blue card to contact parents to pick up the student or send the student home if prior permission has been obtained. Where there is no written consent from families, students may not be dismissed without a parent or guardian present and must remain at school. If arrival on the wrong day becomes a pattern for a student, schools will use their attendance escalation plan to address this.

Students who arrive on incorrect days will be placed in a non-instructional space or classroom and participate in remote learning. This space will allow for social distancing and follow other health and safety guidance.

School buses will NOT be available to transport students to/from school except on their designated days. Students who arrive at school on the incorrect day will be expected to return home using public transportation or other methods as appropriate.

To ensure that there is not a pattern of students arriving on incorrect days, as part of school opening, teachers will make the policy clear that students arriving on the wrong day will need to be picked up or will be sent home.

The permission slip allowing students to be dismissed may be obtained here

For your convenience, a copy of the permission slip can also be found on the next page.

COVID-19 School Health Policy -

Daily Health Screenings

Daily health screenings, including temperature checks, must be completed at home by families and by school-based staff. The DOE will launch a robust education campaign that makes clear to parents and school-based staff how important these daily health checks are to keeping school communities healthy and safe. The DOE is also committed to purchasing thermometers for at-home use for families who may need them.

School-based staff and students cannot report to school if they have:

Random Temperature Screenings

Every morning, prior to entering the school, specific staff will perform random samplings of temperatures for both students and school-based staff using non-touch thermometers. Additional guidance on random temperature screenings is forthcoming.

The DOE is also exploring enhanced at-school temperature check protocols and processes and will ensure such compliance with state health guidance.

Isolation Room

In order to accommodate a student who may exhibit symptoms of COVID-19, every building must designate space to be used as an Isolation Room. An Isolation Room is a place where a student with suspected COVID-19 symptoms can be safely isolated in the building until they can be picked up by a guardian.

Student Shows Symptoms of COVID-19 While at School

Criteria for Returning to School After Showing Symptoms

Any individual (student or staff member) showing signs of COVID-19 can only return to school when all the following conditions are met:

If DOHMH or NYC Test & Trace Corps determine the individual is considered a close contact of a positive case, the individual can only return to school when all the following are met:

Positive COVID-19 Case in School

Definitions:

 o For COVID-19 the infectious period is two days before symptom onset until ten days after illness onset, as long as the case has been at least three days fever-free without the use of medication. o For people with no symptoms (asymptomatic), the period is two days before through ten days after specimen collection.

o For COVID-19 the incubation period is two to 12 days.

Important to Note:

-The period of self-isolation may need to be longer if the case has fever or symptoms between days seven to ten, as the case must be symptom free for at least 24 hours without the use of medication.

Unconfirmed Case in a School 

Any student or staff member who self-reports an unconfirmed positive case of COVID-19 or is exhibiting COVID-like symptoms will be immediately removed from the classroom or school building, told to stay home, and encouraged to get tested.

One Confirmed Case in a School 

Two Confirmed Case in a School 

-Please see additional guidance regarding the Building Response Team during COVID-19.

-Building Response Team notifies Borough Safety Director. o Additional guidance on notifying other Borough Citywide Office points is forthcoming.

FAQs for Reopening

Facilities

How frequently will schools and offices be cleaned and disinfected?

Custodial Engineers will implement nightly disinfecting of all exposed surfaces. All non-porous, frequently contacted surfaces will be wiped down and disinfected throughout the day.

What products will be used to clean and disinfect school spaces?

School spaces will be cleaned using anti-viral disinfectant and cleaning products, following the respective cleaning product’s labels. A standard 2% bleach solution is also acceptable. Custodial staff will also utilize electrostatic backpack sprayers with the approved disinfectant.

How will schools ensure they have enough cleaning supplies and PPE?

All Custodian Engineers must ensure that all buildings under their care have at least a 30-day supply of cleaning/disinfectant supplies and PPE. School staff should contact their Custodian Engineer if they need additional supplies.

What guidance is in place around ventilation, windows, and air filters?

DOE completed a survey of HVAC systems and window operability to identify necessary repairs. We are working with the New York City School Construction Authority (SCA) to complete repairs and ensure air circulation before start of school. We are also upgrading central HVAC system filters from MERV 8 to MERV 13 where appropriate.

What is the guidance around bathroom usage?

Schools may adjust how bathrooms are used to accommodate for physical distancing requirements, e.g., use of alternate stalls and/or sinks. Appropriate signage regarding hand washing and physical distancing must be displayed. Where feasible, co-located schools should have designated bathrooms.

What is the guidance on using public assembly spaces? What about using shared spaces such as elevators and stairwells?

Use of large assembly spaces (e.g. cafeterias, auditoriums, libraries, and gymnasiums) must comply with physical distancing guidelines. These areas may be used as additional classroom spaces in lieu of their traditional use.

School leaders must also create plans to support movement that upholds physical distancing throughout the building, e.g. the use of one directional stairwells and single file travel patterns. Elevator use should be limited to individuals with special needs or in high-rise buildings and should be operated at limited capacity as per current DOHMH guidance (2 persons per elevator), and face coverings must be worn at all times. Additional guidance about public assembly spaces and student circulation can be found in the Guidance for Entry, Dismissal, Circulation and Use of Public Assembly Spaces in School Buildings

Where can physical education take place?

PE can occur in any of the following spaces: any outdoor field, court or open space; gymnasiums, multi-purpose rooms, dance rooms, fitness rooms, cafeterias, auditoriums, and classrooms, provided the space is well-ventilated and teachers adhere to physical distancing protocols appropriate to the activity level.

Outdoor space is strongly recommended for PE; schools that do not have available outdoor space should consider nearby Parks, new Open Streets, and/or community help with School Play Streets. Additional guidance can be found in the Physical Education Expectations for In-Person and Remote Instruction

Instruction

What curriculum programs and resources are recommended for blended-learning?

Shared and inclusive curriculum provides the foundation for strong core instruction and shared instructional decision-making across a school. As we plan for re-entry into a blended-learning model that combines in-person and remote learning, it is important to look at shared and inclusive curriculum through a digital lens.

Based on the survey results of frequently used curriculum programs and resources by schools, the DOE, in collaboration with the CSA and UFT, has identified those with digital-learning options to support blended-learning models. These digital curricular options are potential choices for schools to explore as they are making purchasing decisions for the upcoming academic year. The DOE will develop supports for effective instructional planning, using digital and in-person curricular resources to support robust blended learning in the upcoming academic year.

Please note, schools may choose to continue to use existing curricula and are not expected to adopt any new curriculum in the fall. As is the case with all curriculum choices, schools are responsible for ensuring instructional coherence across grades, alignment to NYS learning standards, and appropriate curricular resources to support the school’s blended-learning model. The DOE will continuously review digitally accessible curricular resources for quality and alignment to NGLS and CR-SE Framework.

Additional instructional resources (e.g., updated pacing guides, resources for parents, video supports) for blended learning and the transition to the Next Generation Learning Standards are being developed for many Core Curriculum programs. These will vary by program; specific updates will be shared as soon as possible on the Core Curriculum InfoHub page.

Operations

What are entry and dismissal procedures?

Detailed guidance on entry and dismissal procedures can be found in the Guidance for Entry, Dismissal, Circulation and Use of Public Assembly Spaces in School Buildings.

Will there be morning temperature checks as students arrive at school?

Daily health screenings, including temperature checks, must be completed at home by families and by school-based staff. The DOE will launch a robust education campaign that makes clear to parents and school-based staff how important these daily health checks are to keeping school communities healthy and safe. The DOE is also committed to purchasing thermometers for at-home use for families who may need them. Full guidance can be found in the COVID-19 School Health Policy Guidance.

What is the policy on visitors entering the building? How will families be able to connect with school administration/staff with questions?

Detailed guidance on school visitor protocols can be found in the Guidance for Entry, Dismissal, Circulation and Use of Public Assembly Spaces in School Buildings.

In an effort to limit the number of visitors in a school at any given time, schools are encouraged, where possible, to address all visitor and parent concerns by phone or computer. Principals and designated staff should conduct meetings remotely where possible (e.g. Zoom, MS Teams, Google Meets). When it is necessary to hold a meeting in person, all visitors are required to follow the visitor control protocols, including complying with physical distancing requirements and wearing a face covering. Additional guidance regarding school visitors can be found in the Guidance for Entry, Dismissal, Circulation and Use of Public Assembly Spaces in School Buildings.

When and how can principals view data on staff reasonable accommodation requests?

Beginning July 23, principals can use the Principals Dashboard to view a roster of employees in their school who have applied for this accommodation, as well as the status of the application for every employee, including whether an employee’s application has been approved. To access the roster, principals or a designee should log in to the Principals Dashboard, select their school, and click the link labeled “Reasonable Accommodations Roster.”

What will breakfast/lunch look like? Who will disinfect spaces following lunch?

Grab-and-go meals will be available for breakfast and lunch each day, though students will also be permitted to bring their own lunch if preferred. Lunch will likely be in classrooms to minimize interaction between groups of students. Grab-and-go meals will be delivered to students in 3K to K classrooms, and pickup points within the school will be designated for grades 1-12. Signage will be provided to direct students to pick up points within the school for grades 1-12. After eating, students and staff will wipe down the area where they ate their meal. Every evening, Division of School Facilities staff will be cleaning the entire building with COVID-19 approved disinfectant.

What is the protocol around students with food allergies?

The DOE takes allergies, food safety, and student health very seriously. We cannot guarantee a nut, milk or “allergen-free” environment, but we do have an “allergen aware” policy. The DOE has an existing “allergy aware” policy, which empowers everyone. Children with allergies become aware of what they can and cannot eat, and school staff are alert and careful about each student’s allergies.

Will schools have funding for substitutes?

Schools will continue to be responsible for budgeting for the anticipated use of substitute teachers and substitute paraprofessionals within their regular allocations.

What are social distancing requirements on school buses?

Social distancing requirements will reduce the typical school bus capacity to approximately 25% of its normal operating passenger capacity. The only exception to this will be students from the same household who will be seated with each other and will still be required to wear face masks. Seating on the bus will be clearly marked to designate which seats may be used and which seats will be blocked off for social distancing. Families will be notified prior to the start of school as to what the seat designators will look like so that they can instruct their children prior to boarding the bus. Wherever possible, individual bus route rosters will be scrutinized to attempt to seat individuals in proximity to the rear emergency exit that are capable of operating it. Additional busing guidance is forthcoming.

What is the guidance for emergency procedures and drills given social distancing requirements?

Please refer to the guidance released on Building Response Teams (BRTs) During COVID-19 for updated information, including guidance around conducting emergency drills. The DOE will facilitate trainings for all BRT members to educate them on the enhanced COVID-19 response protocols.

How will the DOE address any bandwidth issues?

DIIT automatically reviews all schools’ internet consumption every 14 days, and any school that consumes 60% or more of their bandwidth will be provided an additional 100MB without any intervention required from the school.

Schools can contact the DIIT Help Desk at 718-935-5100 or open a ticket online if they experience internet connectivity issues with their school network, or their school requires wireless coverage in new instructional areas.

If students experience internet connectivity issues with their iPads, they can request help through the Technical Support for Families Form

Programming

Can information regarding the exception process be shared with Principals?

All information regarding exceptions was posted on the InfoHub found here: https://infohub.nyced.org/school-year-2020-21/return-to-school-2020/student-schedules-building-programming/school-program-exceptions-guidance.

How should I program students whose families do not submit the Learning Preference online form?

Families have the option of choosing to have their child attend school solely through remote learning. Schools should assume that students will be attending school in-person as set forth in the school’s selected programming model unless families choose to enroll their child into full-time remote learning.

Can families change their minds about their remote learning preference?

Families who choose full-time remote learning will be able to reevaluate their choice during certain set time periods to change their preference and have their child to receive in-person instruction instead. These set time periods will be communicated to schools and families at the beginning of the school year.

Will incoming 3-K and pre-K families have the opportunity to submit the Learning Preference online form?

Incoming 3-K and pre-K families can choose full-time remote learning using the Learning Preference online form. To ensure as many families as possible are aware of this form, schools will make best efforts to inform families through their communication channels (including email, social media, phone calls). The DOE will support these efforts by promoting the form through media channels.

What weight does the SLT have in affirming an exception when coupled with data which informed their decision?

The SLT has the same weight and level of input within this matter as it does with other school related SLT matters.

Does a school have discretion over which students are placed in each cohort, for example: Model 3 includes groups A and B are cohorts; Cohort C is a combination of A and B. What is our process for programming students who may need additional support?

As long as all Students with Disabilities’ needs are met, other groups can be prioritized over the general population, as long as no other group could be prioritized in a way that was to the detriment of Students with Disabilities.

What role does student data play in reviewing exceptions?

In reviewing student data, schools should prioritize Students with Disabilities for in-person learning. If after Students with Disabilities have been served, and there is capacity to accommodate this select groups of students, schools may submit an exception as your programming choice for review. DRTs can submit any exception they feel meets the criteria for an exception for final review to the Central Review Team (CRT)

If a school opts to use a model other than the recommended models, will this be approvable?

 This school should submit an exception, which will be reviewed by the DRT. If the DRT believes it meets the exception criteria, the DRT will submit to the Central Review Team for Review

Does the DRT have final say on exceptions?

No, the DRT can recommend a school’s exception to the Central Review Team (CRT). The CRT has final approval of the exception.

When considering an exception, how should DRT’s consider co-located campus’s and the impact that the exception might have on both populations?

The DRT should consider co-locations as part of their exceptions review.

How impactful is the desire of the parent community specific to a school for an exception?

Schools should share intended submissions with families and may indicate community preference in an exception application. Presuming the exception meets the criteria for an exception; both the DRT and CRT can consider this as part of their decision-making process.

School Health Policy

When must a student be escorted to the Isolation Room?

An Isolation Room is a place where a student with suspected COVID-19 symptoms can be safely isolated in the building until they can be picked up by a guardian. Students showing symptoms of COVID-19 will be escorted to the nurse’s office or Isolation Room by a designated staff member wearing appropriate PPE. Full guidance can be found in the COVID-19 School Health Policy Guidance.

Will students be permitted to move classrooms throughout the day?

To reduce movement throughout the building, teachers should travel from class to class, with students remaining in the same room throughout the day to the extent possible. If students have to travel, proper social distancing protocols should be followed. Where possible, students should remain with the same group of students, in a cohort, throughout the day. DOE is developing additional guidance as it relates to cohorts and grades. DOE will support creation of cohorts wherever possible.