West Side Story 2.0

Monday, April 6, 2020

Assuring learning excellence and readiness for a changing world.

First Week of School 2.0

8 days...teachers were given 8 days to flip teaching and learning to a whole new experience. The feedback I have received is amazing. The first week of Distance Learning has been a success. Teachers have shared that it is going better than they expected, and they are pleasantly surprised. Students have shared that it is better than what they thought it would be, but most shared they wouldn't want to "do school" this way all of the time.

Thank you to all of you who have offered your thanks to and shared kind words about our staff. I am incredibly proud of our Scarlet community. We often hear "it takes a village to raise a child" and our "village" is working together, staying focused on our children, and moving learning forward.

Information - Where Can I Find It?

Our office continues to be open from 7:30am - 3:30pm each school day, 507 387-3461.

Our school website is a good place to find information. Our front page has some frequently used links, such as our Mankato West Distance Learning site, and MAPS Family Technology Support. If your student is having trouble with his/her chromebook, the Family Technology Support site is where you will find information and support.

Our district has a MAPS Distance Learning page that has information about special education, attendance, English learners, broadband services, nutrition, and much more.

If you can't find the information you need, please feel free to email me, sblasi1@isd77.org, and I will do my best to get you the information you are looking for.

Important Reminders

Students need to be checking their email frequently, at minimum, daily.

Students should spend approximately 3 hours per day on school activities.

It is important to establish a routine, and have a designated work place at home.

If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. Our office is open on school days from 7:30am to 3:30pm to answer any phone calls. You can reach us at 507 387-3461.

There is no school this Thursday and Friday. Classes are back in session on Monday, April 13.

We miss our students and care about them. Please let us know if there is anything we can help with during this difficult time.

Tech Support

If you have trouble with technology, including your chromebook, please contact our District Family Tech Support:

Website: bit.ly/MAPSfamtech

Email: familytechhelp@isd77.org

MAPS Options for Reduced Internet Service

Testing Updates

Here is what we know about spring test:

AP Exams:

  • All exams will be administered online May 11 to May 22, with make-up exams administered June 1 to June 5. The CB designed the 2020ACT Testing: postponed, possibly a May date or a September date. Class of 2021 stay tuned!AP Exam Schedule to remove almost all conflicts between AP exams so all students should be able to test during the first two weeks.
  • All students worldwide will take exams simultaneously, so it is critical students understand when they will test based on their school’s time zone. Students in the Eastern Hemisphere will be taking exams in the middle of the night (early morning).
  • The College Board states, "We won’t charge anything for an exam that isn’t taken, including the base exam fee as well as any additional fees such as the late order fee and canceled/unused exam fee. Refund policies and procedures are determined by individual schools and test centers”, read it here.
  • Here is another helpful site for students.

ACT Testing: postponed, possibly a May date or a September date. Class of 2021 stay tuned!

MCA/NWEA: Cancelled

Beacon of Hope

Last Friday, we turned on the lights on Todnem Field at 8:20pm (20:20) for 77 minutes to honor our seniors and to let all of our students know, "We miss you and we care about you, Scarlets." We will continue to do this on Fridays as a beacon of hope during this crisis. Please do not come to the field, but show your support by turning on your outdoor light at home to show we are all in this together.

Last count, MSHSL share that 120 high schools in Minnesota are doing the same.

I hope you will join in and turn your porch light on Friday nights at 8:20pm. #BeTheLightMN

If you would like to help get the message out, take a picture of your student by your "porch light" and email it to me. I would love to see some Scarlets and would like to post more pictures on Twitter to show support for our Scarlets. sblasi1@isd77.org

Frequently Asked Questions

Thank you to those students who filled out the survey I sent last week. Below you will find the answers to the frequently asked questions in that survey. If a student hasn't filled out the survey, please encourage them to do so this week. Thank you!

Do you think we will go back to school at all this year?

We will continue to follow the governor's directives in regard to distance learning. At this time, May 5th is the day we would come back to school, but the governor has said that this is highly unlikely. As soon as we hear a definitive answer, we will share it with you.

Will we have finals?

We will not have finals this year.

If we go back to school, will we switch from pass/fail to a traditional grade?

No, all grades will be pass/fail this semester. The semester grade will be a culmination of all of the student's work during 2nd semester.

Will we meet graduation requirements with distance learning, or will we need to retake classes?

Yes, you will be meeting the graduation requirements with distance learning. As long as you earn a passing grade, you will not retake the class.

Will we have spring sports?

The MSHSL is making their decisions based on what the governor says. As of right now, the seasons would start May 4th, if we are able to come back to school. As decisions are made, we will get you the information as soon as possible.

Will we have graduation?

Graduation is still scheduled for June 4 at MSU. If we are not able to do graduation on this date, we will do some type of ceremony for our seniors. Possibilities include having the ceremony at a later date, possibly on the football field at West, doing a drive through ceremony, or a virtual ceremony online. Stay tuned! We are not going to let our seniors leave us without doing something.

Will we have Prom?

Prom was scheduled for April 25th and has been postponed. If we are able to return to school and it is safe to hold large events, we will do our best to reschedule for a later date.