From the Principal

May 5, 2020

Remote Learning Update - Survey Results

I want to thank all the families that provided feedback on the Remote Learning Surveys. The response to the survey was historic. There were over 280 responses to the survey which represents about 59 percent of the students. The results of the survey and the hundreds of comments were shared with the staff last week. We will be using your comments and the data to refine the weekly plans.


The results showed that 51 percent of the families feel the current plans are manageable. On the other end of the results, 19 percent of respondents reported that the learning was not manageable. That left 20 percent of families feeling that Remote Learning is somewhere in between.


Families reported that online programs, teacher video meetings and teacher videos were the most meaningful and engaging activities for their child. 86 percent of the families felt they had the resources they need to complete Remote Learning activities.


Challenges:

  1. Competing Demands - Families

  2. Motivation/ Executive Functioning

  3. Technology


What stood out the most from the surveys was how challenging it is for families to find a balance in their home and schedules. Overwhelmingly the sentiment was expressed that there are many competing demands for families. It is clear that juggling school work, parents’ work and family needs is more than challenging.


Two other areas that consistently appeared on the survey were how difficult it is to motivate children and to keep them interested in doing their work. This along with organizational or executive function challenges makes it difficult for families to keep students on task.


The last area that was similar in many comments was challenges with technology. Whether it was managing passwords and log-ins, or having the proper devices to access online learning, technology was a challenge for many.


When parents were asked if their child has found something positive or benefited from during this Remote Learning time the top four responses were:

  1. Increased Independence

  2. Increase in technology skills

  3. Video connection with teacher and peers

  4. Family time


It is important to know that we recognize that Remote Learning is not the same as being in school. Learning at the elementary level is a very social event. Much of what we do as elementary educators is teach independence, executive functioning skills as well as academics. The relationships students have with teachers is vastly different from one parents have. This is why homework can be a challenge in some households. I know my children never wanted to listen to me. They always saw me as just dad not a third-grade teacher.


Our goal for the rest of the year is informed by your survey results, new State guidance and district expectations. The first goals for the next 6 weeks are to make more personal connections with students, deepen academic foundational skills, and increase student engagement.


Over the past two weeks, the number of Google Meets has increased. More teachers are holding “drop in” times for students for student support. Teachers are also finding new and creative ways for students to connect socially.


Additionally, we have a limited number of Chromebooks available for those families who listed technology as an impediment to accessing Remote Learning Activities. Please contact me directly if you need assistance. soshea@nrsd.net

Google Meet

Google Meet

As classes meet virtually, please keep the following in mind. For some students it is difficult to be on camera. It is okay for students to shut off the camera and listen if they are reluctant to join a class meeting.

  • Please make sure students are dressed like they would for school.

  • Teachers will not let unknown or unlabeled devices into a meeting. Please make sure your device has a name attached. If it just says, “iPhone”, a student may not be let in.

  • Please have the children mute themselves until the teacher calls on them.

  • It is against district policy and state law to take a video of a Google Meet.

  • No pictures should be taken of students in a Google Meet.

  • Try to stay in the same place and look at the camera when talking.

Specials

The specials of Art, Music, Library, Technology, Health and Physical Education have their own Remote Learning plan. Specialist Board for Remote Learning The specialists would enjoy hearing from students and seeing what they are doing in their areas.

End of Year Celebrations and Activities

We have started planning on how to have closure for this school year. There are many transitions that take place in the spring, such as the 5th-grade to middle school transition and welcoming new kindergarten students. We are in discussions on how we can still hold these types of activities virtually. We do plan to recognize the 5th-grade students and celebrate their time at MRE. We are also working to find a safe process to return student materials that were left in the classroom. More details will be passed along as they become available.

Census - Your response in critical!

Mary Rowlandson and Luther Burbank Schools receive a significant amount of money that is directly based on the US Census form. The schools may lose that funding without accurate census data. Please take a few minutes to complete the census form. 2020 Census This can be completed online and only takes about 5 minutes.

Mary Rowlandson Elementary

During the school closure, please send an email with any questions. The office is currently closed however we will respond to your message within 24 hours. Thank you.