Superintendent's Update - Dated September 16, 2020

Superintendent's Update - Dated September 16, 2020
Posted on 09/17/2020
Superintendent's Update - Dated September 16, 2020

September 16, 2020

Dear Medway families, 

I write at the end of our first Wednesday, a full day of remote learning for all of our students, faculty, and staff.  Many of our educators expressed excitement about seeing students and making these first new connections of the new school year - even if “virtually in person.”  Tomorrow will feel more like the first day of school with students learning from home virtually and with our classrooms filled to ½ capacity.  We are really looking forward to our traditional welcoming of buses in the morning and seeing our students return to the district.  We wanted to send a few reminders and updates as we prepare for tomorrow.  Please note an update to families with students in the Virtual School Learning Model will be sent out separately.

At Home Learning Days

Tomorrow we welcome all of our Grade K-2 learners and our Cohort B and Cohort C Hybrid Learning Model students to in person learning for the first time this school year.  Our educators have set up their schedules, their learning management systems, and their procedures with thought and care.  Classroom teachers have shared the necessary information with all of their students in all cohorts.  Students who are learning from home on Thursday and Friday should be engaged in this learning and work throughout Thursday and Friday. 

As we shared as part of our reopening planning and presentations, we have worked hard to support the development of our educators’ practice in an instructional framework called blended learning.  This framework employs the use of instructional videos, self pacing, work assignments and completion, assessments, and collaboration and engagement strategies all through a learning management system (PK-1= Clever/Seesaw and Grades 2-12=Google Classroom).  Starting tomorrow, our students who are learning from home will engage in mostly asynchronous (independent and self paced) learning through instructional videos, instructions, and assignments that teachers have provided within their LMS.  Teachers will monitor and provide feedback on work completion and use this information to focus their efforts and plans for the in person learning days.  The same will be the case for our at home learning students on Monday and Tuesday.  

Over the next several weeks, we will monitor and assess the implementation of this model. Please keep in mind that, within the hybrid learning model, while approximately one half of our grade 3-12 learners are learning from home on any given day, the other approximately one half of our learners will be in person.  We need to take the time to ensure that our in person structures and systems are safe, are working, and are solidly in place before beginning to amend these systems.  We are up to and committed to this work.

Transportation

Tomorrow is our first day with our new transportation protocols.  We expect that, like all else, there will be areas of improvement and learning that come out of our day 1 bus runs.  For access to our transportation routes, please click here.  As a reminder, if you need immediate attention, please contact 508-533-3222, ext. 3157 for transportation questions.  

Technology and Access to Zoom

As you know, we are awaiting a final order of additional student devices.  These have a longer than normal delivery timeline because of supply-chain issues.  Once these additional devices arrive, we will distribute them as quickly as possible.   

Also, we have put in place security procedures that are safe and have also employed a district domain to ensure only inside MPS access.  Even with these measures, there were some access challenges today.  We hope that the following information is supportive of you and your child in their learning over the next few days for “virtual in person” access times and will continue to adjust and adapt as needed. Please find information here:  Zoom Access Support.  After reviewing the material at this link, if you continue to have questions/challenges with technology, you are reminded to reach out to support@medwayschools.org.  When doing so please provide as much information as possible so that our technology staff can quickly assess and assist with the issue.

 

Sincerely,

  

Armand Pires, Ph.D.

Superintendent of Schools

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