May 15, 2020
Dear MUSD Staff and Community,
Stay strong, we’ve got two more weeks to push through the challenges of teaching and learning during a pandemic. While the arrival of summer won’t bring the normal sense of joy and relaxation, it will provide an opportunity for students to have a break from their academic workload. Additionally, it will provide a much-deserved break for our incredible school site staff who have been working so hard to educate our students. It will also bring a break for all our parents/guardians who have become new homeschool instructors!
As we move toward the end of this year, our school sites are working hard to honor and recognize, to the best extent possible given COVID-19, our 5th, 8th, and 12th-grade students. As such, please keep your eye out for updated information from your school site for a “drive-through” type celebration. We will still hold the dates previously listed in hopes of in-person ceremonies for our 8th and 12th graders.
We all understand that the work must continue over the summer and our amazing staff will certainly be thinking about their students and planning for their future students. With that focus, I’d like to give our community an update on how MUSD is preparing for the 2020-2021 school year.
MUSD has a Task Force working intensely on this planning. This week, our Task Force met twice with the sole focus of how we can build plans for safely reopening schools in MUSD for the 2020-2021 school year. Our Task Force includes 28 staff members ranging from preschool through secondary school, covering jobs from all facets of our school district. The discussions have been very thoughtful and there is a clear recognition that we are attempting to solve a problem without knowing all the variables of what the next two months will hold. Nonetheless, this group is committed to identifying the best ways we can reopen our schools if provided the opportunity.
The three priorities driving our discussions as a Task Force include the following, in order:
Priority #1 - Health, safety, and security of our students and staff
Priority #2 - Social and emotional wellbeing of our students and staff
Priority #3 - Teaching and Learning
We would also like to hear your thoughts regarding safely reopening schools in the 2020-21 school year & the things we need to consider as we plan to best meet the needs of students, families, and staff. With that in mind, we are using a new online platform, Thoughtexchange, a safe space for respectful and productive conversation, to gather feedback. The link is provided at the bottom of this message.
Please take five minutes today and five minutes tomorrow to confidentially share your thoughts and then rate the thoughts of others. 5 stars = high agreement, 1 star = low agreement. Some quick tips:
This exchange is confidential. Your thoughts will be shared with other participants, but not your identity.
You will see and rate the thoughts that others have provided based on how much you agree/disagree or how important you feel the ideas are.
Please be polite and respectful as you share and rate thoughts. Thoughts that are rude or hurtful may be removed from the conversation. Please do not mention anyone by name.
You do not need to rate all thoughts in this exchange. It is appreciated and recommended to rate around 30 over the time the exchange is open. Feel free to share more than one thought.
We will use the feedback you provide to inform our planning for the new school year.
Furthermore, it should be noted that our Task Force is focused on identifying solutions for multiple possibilities in the future. As I’ve shared before, MUSD will be bound by the requirements and/or restrictions set forward by the state and/or our local County Health Department. It is uniquely challenging to create solutions for school operations when we expect restrictions and regulations to change in many ways over the next two months. Nonetheless, our work is targeted towards responding to the following areas:
If we are not permitted to reopen due to county and/or state restrictions, how can we best support the academic and social needs of students through Distance Learning?
If we are permitted to reopen but are required to maintain specific physical distancing requirements, what is the best model for serving students, supporting our community, and our staff, all while ensuring their safety? What models would be best if only a percentage of students could be at school to ensure physical distancing? (It is understood that any model where all students are not at school together creates significant negative impacts on child-care and work demands for families)
If we are permitted to reopen and there is a need to temporarily close again, how can we best support the academic and social needs of students through Distance Learning?
If we are permitted to return all kids to school with modifications and restrictions how can we best ensure the safety and wellbeing of staff and students?
In the coming weeks, we will update our staff and community with developments from this Task Force. In addition, we’ll be sharing updates with our Board of Education in their remaining meetings for this year. I recognize that all members of our district staff and community desire to know the exact plans for moving into the next school year. Please know, we will be working on this continuously and we will provide regular updates. The return of our students and staff will be in alignment with state and county requirements with a focus on our Priority #1, the safety and security of our students and staff.
Please participate in our ThoughtExchange (https://my.thoughtexchange.com/958647334)
CJ Cammack, Superintendent
Martinez Unified School District
Martinez Adult Education Summer Programs
Martinez Adult Education will be providing many classes online this summer. We are accepting new and returning students for our summer program. Although our school is still currently closed to face-to-face instruction, our teachers and staff are well prepared to deliver instruction using a variety of online resources. The summer program starts on June 8th, 2020.
Please see below about enrolling in the programs. If you are new or a continuing student please start by emailing the person below associated with the program you are interested in.
Suzanne Murphy, Director
Martinez Adult Education
Career Training Programs- All Business Training Programs, Medical Careers & Optical Assistant Training Program
English as a Second Language
High School Diploma & High School Equivalency
Digital Arts and Media, CAD, Revit
For general inquiries, please email