Principal's Newsletter

September 14, 2020

Principal's Message

Dear Adelante Selby Spanish Immersion families,


I want to acknowledge everyone's "can do" and positive spirit as we face our latest challenge with the smokey and unhealthy air conditions due to the horrific wildfires. I have included some photos below from last Wednesday documenting how dark it got outside in the middle of the day from the smoke and ash during the distribution of yearbooks/white boards and school supplies. The best part of my days lately have been visiting classroom meetings virtually and reviewing some of the great student work that has been turned in via Google Classroom and Nearpod. Although it continues to be challenging to teach in a virtual format, our students are clearly eager to learn, engage, and try their best in two languages. I have observed a number of engaging lessons and creative projects teachers have designed. However, the daily schedule continues to be very stressful for our teachers with so many live Meetings back-to-back with different cohort groups. Each grade level is looking at making adjustments to their daily schedule to try and compromise the need for multiple live interactions with the teacher to less screen time for students. Currently, we are finishing up schedule adjustment recommendations that will then need to be submitted and approved by Superintendent Baker. Our teachers will keep you informed if there are any new schedule changes.


I am happy to report that all of our students private Zoom accounts(if they had one) have been successfully reconciled with the new District Zoom account. This is very important because our district account is secured and protects against the Zoom "bombing" that was reportedly happening last Spring on the free Zoom accounts. We expect that ZOOM will be the new normal for Classroom Meetings with teachers as it is a superior product to Google Meets. Teachers will now be able to limit distractions during Meetings by muting students, students can not randomly share their screens, the images on the screen will be clearer, and they can take advantage of the break out room features for small group interactions.


I want to bring your attention to the appropriate use of technology and online content of some of our apps which may be distracting students and objectionable for some families. Recently, a family let me know that their 2nd grader had been browsing the BrainPop app and accessed content on the history of World War II which is not appropriate for a 2nd grader. They were understandably upset as their child was too young to read about the atrocities of war by himself. We have removed the Brain Pop app from the K-2 devices and students can only access Brain Pop, Jr. now. I have also had parents concerned that their child was "surfing" on YouTube in lieu of doing their asynchronous work for their teacher. YouTube is not wide open for our students and is restricted through the district filter, but there still may be content that is objectionable to some families and also can distract students from completing their actual assignments. The best deterrent is for students to be monitored as much as possible when using the devices. Please set ground rules with your children's use of technology and remind them that they should only be accessing apps and doing work on district devices that is assigned by their teachers.


We will begin assessing(testing) students in Grades 1st-5th using a diagnostic test called i-Ready during the testing window of September 21-October 9th. Students in Grades 1st-5th will be assessed in Math in Spanish using i-Ready and Grades 3-5th will be assessed in Reading in English using i-Ready. Grade level teams will send out a more specific testing schedule. The assessment information will help teachers plan and design instruction. You can help us by reviewing this iReady video for parents. Please do your best to provide a quiet place with minimal interruptions for students during testing and obviously we do not want parents giving students answers or helping them during the test.


Please use this link to acknowledge that you will drive-through to pick up Library books for your students starting Wed, Sept 16th between 8:30-12:00 or 12:30- 3:00 in the front parking lot of our school. Kindergarten and 1st graders will have the books already selected by our Librarian, Diane Ocon. 2nd-5th graders will need to select their own books using the Alexandria App on their Chromebooks. Once they have selected/ordered the books, the parents will get an email sent to them about the book choice(and you know to come pick up the book(s). Our Librarian will then make sure the students books are ready to be picked up for Wednesday. We will be giving out Library books on a rotational basis every three weeks beginning this Wednesday, September 16th.


All of our teachers are trying their best to engage and teach students even as there are times when the technology is "glitchy" or not working at all. We know that it is stressful for everyone, but I want to ask for your support to please be patient with our teachers and also to be mindful of boundaries by not interrupting them during the Meets as it is distracting. We understand and appreciate the necessary and important partnership between teachers and parents. Teachers might not be able to answer your questions right away in the middle of teaching a class, but will try their best to help resolve specific questions during office hours or via email/Class Dojo. Parents can help partner with us to support students engagement during the Google Meetings by making sure:


  • your child has a learning space without a lot of distractions in the background
  • your child is prepared with their learning materials at the start of the Meet
  • your child has the iPad or Chromebook charged and ready for the Meet
  • your child keeps the video camera on during the Meet(unless there is a special circumstance)
  • your child keeps the microphone muted(until prompted to unmute by the teacher)
  • your child eats or goes to the bathroom during non Meeting times as much as possible
  • your child is appropriately dressed for the Meet


A reminder that the district has set up an informational resource for parents and the community on the district web page called the Roadmap to Reopening of Schools.The district has also included a Parent's Guide to Distance Learning and in Spanish: Guía de Aprendizaje a Distancia para Padres to help support families.


We know there continue to be some specific issues with devices and the school district has told us that if you have a device that does not function, you should go to the district office to exchange it between 8:00-4:00pm. If the device functions, but is missing an app or extension, please use the tech support forms below:


  • If parents need technical support for apps on iPads or extensions on Chromebooks, they can use the Tech Support Form to request assistance:



The first step is phone support. If the issue cannot be resolved over the phone, they will make an appointment for families to come to the district office for an exchange.


it is important that all families please visit the Unidos WebPage and take a few minutes to fill out the Membership Toolkit. Unidos supports a number of important programs at our school as well as coordinating volunteer efforts. They also provide communication to our community on a regular basis and need families updated information in the toolkit to do so.


I am happy to report that we will continue our partnership with the San Carlos Children's Theater this Fall, along with Maestra Rita Melton and Danny G, in order to provide opportunities for our students to participate in a play. Only students from Adelante Selby School may participate. The students in grades 3-5 will make up the main cast and the students in K-2 will make up the Chorus. Some of the songs will be pre-recorded by the cast and included in the live shows. The K-2 chorus numbers will be pre-recorded and shown at the beginning of the live shows.

REHEARSALS

Main Cast – Mondays & Wednesdays, September 30 – November 9, 3:00-5:00 pm
K-2 Chorus – Wednesdays, September 30 – October 29, 2:30-3:15pm


If you are interested, please register here:


Student breakfast and lunch drive through pickup here is now on Mondays and Thursdays 11:30-1:30, or at Roosevelt, Henry Ford or Taft from 2:30-4:30 Learn more here


Office Hours

Our school office is open to the public on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 8:00am-4:00pm. Please call to make an appointment if you need help. All staff and visitors to campus must:

  • wear a mask
  • use hand disinfectant when entering the office
  • have your temperature taken in the office at the kiosk so we can screen you
  • complete the visitor Wellness Screening From using the QR code in the office
  • keep 6 feet of social distancing at all times




Please note that the school playgrounds(including play structures and swings) and field are closed. The general public should not be on the school campus.


I have included a number of photos from the last few weeks of school below. Please send me an email of a photo of your child learning at home or a screen shot of their project and I will try to include it in upcoming newsletters.


Please visit our school website , Adelante Selby Facebook Page and our PTO/Unidos webpage and social media accounts: unidospto.org, Facebook and Instagram for more information.


Regards,

Director Warren

Important September Dates

  • September 16, School Library Book Pick up, 8:30-11:30; 12:00-3:00
  • September 16, School Site Council Meeting, 3:00pm
  • September 21, English Language Advisory Meeting, 3:00pm
  • September 21- October 9th, i-Ready Assessment window 2-5th grades
  • September 24 Food Distribution, 4:00pm