SEPTEMBER 27, 2020

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A Message from the Superintendent

This week's message brings great news from the COVID-19 frontline. Riverside County transitioned from the Purple Tier (Widespread) to the Red Tier (Substantial) on September 22. Public schools all across Riverside County are cautiously optimistic that in-person instruction is a possibility for students and staff at some point during this first semester. Riverside County's Red Tier assignment is based on data ending September 12 and does not fully reflect data from Labor Day weekend, which takes a few weeks to materialize, according to public health officials. Nonetheless, it's encouraging that the County continues to trend in a positive direction. Restaurants, places of worship, movie theaters, zoos and aquariums are currently able to resume operations up to 25% capacity.

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) updates the COVID-19 status of every county in California weekly. Find the metrics used for the status report here. At a minimum, counties must remain in a tier for at least 3 weeks before moving forward. Data is reviewed weekly and tiers are updated on Tuesdays. To move forward, a county must meet the next tier’s criteria for two consecutive weeks. If a county’s metrics worsen for two consecutive weeks, it will be assigned a more restrictive tier. Public health officials are constantly monitoring data and can step in if necessary.

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We will continue to closely monitor the data specific to both the County and our local community in Western Riverside County as we plan next steps. Check Riverside County's Department of Public Health COVID-19 web page here for regular updates on the County's status. Below is Riverside County's relative status in the context of the State's 4-Tier system.

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Our next Regular Meeting of the Board of Education is on October 8. Among the agenda items, the Board will discuss a timeline for opening schools for in-person instruction for hybrid students and staff following the strict guidelines set forth by the CDPH. By October 8 we will know if we have met the 2-week requirement to remain in the Red Tier. Localized epidemiological data including cases per 100,000 population, rate of test positivity, and local preparedness to support a health care surge, vulnerable populations, contact tracing, and testing in our community are among the primary considerations for reopening. At this point in time, no date to reopen in-person has been determined. I will use this space to keep everyone informed. Next week, we will launch a Thought Exchange, our crowdsourcing platform, to collect thoughts on reopening from all stakeholder groups.

During our September 24 Regular Meeting of the Board of Education, Safety Officer Kevin Emenaker updated the Board and community on the status of all of the safety measures we have taken to meet the CDPH/CalOSHA reopening schools guidelines. Mr. Emenaker reported that we are near completion rearranging classroom configurations and other school spaces and installing the necessary barriers and shields and air scrubbers and filters and other measures to meet the strict reopening guidelines and social distancing requirement. He will provide another "readiness" update during the October 8 Board meeting. Board meetings are live streamed here.

Testing and contact tracing are among the conditions for safely reopening. Watch the 2-minute video on COVID testing from Riverside Public Director Kim Saruwatari below.

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Student-athletes competing in Football, Volleyball (girls/boys), Water Polo (girls/boys), Cross Country (girls/boys), Cheer and Marching Band will begin conditioning this coming week, beginning September 28, in organized cohorts, in highly structured environments following safety guidelines (see the guidelines here in English or Spanish). All other sports (Spring Season) will resume conditioning at a point to be determined based on conditions later in the Fall, 2020. Find the entire CIFSS sports-year calendar here.

All coaches and athletic program administrators have completed the course, Covid-19 for Coaches and Administrators, developed by the National Federation of State High School Associations and the Sports Medicine Advisory Committee. Find details on athletics on our FAQ for Just Athletics here.

Beginning this past Friday, we are now able to provide 7-days of meals for all children 18-years of age or younger until December 30, 2020 under a waiver from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), regardless of whether or not the student qualifies for the National School Lunch Program (NSLP). Find details below under Child Nutrition in the News section of this newsletter. But we still need our families to complete NSLP applications. Complete the applications on-line here. A variety of services in addition to meals are available for families who meet income eligibility guidelines. The State uses the percentage of students who qualify for the NSLP as part of the formula to fund schools.

Until the 7-day meal program went into effect, we relied on volunteer relief organizations like Alvord Cares to ensure our families did not go without food over the weekend. In fact, AUSD has provided meals, backpacks, cloths, shoes, school supplies, and even temporary shelter using a variety of internal and external programs coordinated by our Student Services department, under the direction of Sandy Fielding, who oversees the programs. Among the most impactful programs is Alvord Cares, a volunteer group of people committed to support Alvord families suffering from food-insecurity, home-insecurity, or who may be struggling as a result of unemployment or other adverse circumstances. Alvord Cares has existed for over five years and was founded by current Board President Carolyn Wilson and a team of employees and former employees who volunteer their time. They are supported by donations. At our September 24 Board meeting, our Education partners Kaiser Permanente donated 160 Backpacks to the Alvord Cares Program. You can donate to Alvord Cares through PayPal here.

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This past week's virtual workshop on the parent's role in assessment was well attended. If you missed it, find the link to the English recording here and the Spanish recording here. Assessment drives instruction and is critical now more than ever as we identify learning loss and develop learning loss plans, both for the short-term and long-term. The i-Ready Diagnostic tool we use is an adaptive assessment that provides us actionable insight into individual needs and groups of student needs. For the individual student, i-Ready Diagnostic supports personalized learning paths for each student. For groups of students it supports instructional strategies.

Please read the remainder of the newsletter. You will find The News section filled with a variety of resources to keep you informed and help you support your child. Here's a preview of the featured sections below:

Past & Present Parent Virtual Workshops

Celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month

September is Suicide Prevention Month

Election Day is Tuesday, November 3, 2020

AUSD 2019-20 Financial Report to the Community

AUSD Learning Continuity Plan

COVID-19 Reopening Monitoring Update

The College & Career Fair is October 1

Child Nutrition Services Update

Learn How to Participate in Market Watch

GOOGLE classroom and Technology Support Info

Learn More About After School Programs

See What's New on Peachjar

On behalf of the Board of Education, thank you for your continued support and for being great partners in our children's education journey.

We strive to make everyday the best day ever.

Stay healthy. Be well.


Allan Mucerino

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Click on the image below to access the webinar.

The Riverside County Department of Education (RCOE) also provides many services for school-age children and their families. Click on the image below or here to visit the RCOE Parent Portal. To browse by topic, click on the links below for detailed information.

  • Child Care for Essential Workers
  • Child Care Assistance and Resources
  • Child Care Finder
  • Head Start
  • Migrant Head Start
  • State Preschool
  • Teen Parent Program
  • Infant/Toddler Special Education Programs

    Honoring the cultures and contributions of Hispanic and Latino Americans.

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    This past Wednesday, when the California State University (CSU) Board of Trustees named Joseph I. Castro the next chancellor of the largest public university system in the United States, he became the first chancellor of color and first native Californian to hold the position. His appointment was also the first time in California history that the leaders of all three public higher education systems are people of color. Dr. Castro joins California Community Colleges President Eloy Ortiz Oakley and University of California President Michael Drake.

    Dr. Castro is the grandson of Mexican immigrants. His grandparents came to California about 100 years ago to work on the railroad in the San Joaquin Valley. He describes his grandfather as a “dreamer,” who grew up in tents alongside the railroad. Castro went on to become the first in his family to graduate from college. He earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and a master’s in public policy at UC Berkeley and a Ph.D. in higher education policy and leadership at Stanford University.

    Dr. Castro will lead a diverse higher education system with almost half a million students. Latino students make up the largest ethnic group at 43%.

    Our upcoming virtual workshop is titled, Día de los Muertos, Altar Drawing. This project is another celebration of our rich Hispanic heritage. The Riverside Art Museum (RAM) sponsors this project and many other projects that offer many opportunities for children and their families to participate in the arts. Visit the RAM website for information.

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    The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline [Call 800-273-8255 (TALK)] offers free, confidential crisis counseling 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. People do not have to be in crisis to call. Or text NAMI to 741-741. NAMI is the National Alliance on Mental Illness, among the numerous organizations we work closely with to prevent suicide. Another great resource is CareSolace, an online resource with a live 24/7 Help Line designed to assist individuals in finding local mental health related programs and counseling services. Email CareSolace at or call 888-515-0595. Their counselors speak English, Spanish, Mandarin, Vietnamese, Cantonese, Tagalog and Korean.


    Click on the image below for election tools, deadlines, dates, rules, and links. Deadline to register online to vote is 10/19/20. Deadline for registering by mail to vote is (postmarked by) 10/19/20.

    The Story of Alvord's 2019-2020 Financial Report
    Learning Continuity and Attendance Plan

    We transitioned to Tier 2 on September 22, 2020. Click on the image for regular updates on the County's reopening status every Tuesday.


    Click on the button or the images below to join the event. It's free.


    Contact your school's principal for details.

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    Contact Child Nutrition Services for more details.

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    For more details click above to visit the FAQ and choose Just Technology.


    Call (951) 358-1682. Or contact your school and ask for the Expanded Learning Coordinator

    Alvord's Expanded Learning Program
    Ampliación de Aprendizaje Virtual de Alvord
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    We use Peachjar's digital flyer management solution to deliver important school and community resources to our students and their families.


    Find contact information and connect to each school's web site

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