Full-Year Distance Learning (FYDL)

Wednesday Newsletter #14 November 10, 2020

NO SCHOOL on Wednesday, November 11th.

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Have you ever met a veteran?

The second-grade FYDL students had an opportunity to meet a Veteran today. Ms. Yee's dad, Navy Chief David C. Sullivan, Retired, sat down for a Zoom interview. The students were eager to ask questions such as:

  • "Why is Veteran's Day on Wednesday?"
  • "Was Bootcamp hard?"
  • "What war were you in?"

The second-grade students learned a lot about why we have a day dedicated to Veterans....and Ms. Yee's dad was thrilled to meet all the students. He said it made his whole year!

Supporting Learning at Home: Resource for Parents, Guardians and Caregivers

Earlier this fall a short-term Parent Education/Advisory Committee engaged in dialogue around what would be helpful to parents for supporting learning and wellness at home. The committee, which included parents and teachers on special assignment (TOSAs), discussed the following guiding questions:

  • What support is needed for families to use Schoology, Seesaw, and Zoom?
  • What support is needed to help your student in distance learning?
  • What support is needed to help students become independent learners?

The parent group provided feedback and recommendations that informed the development of a new resource for parents, the Supporting Learning at Home website. The website houses videos, articles, and information related to educational technology “how-tos”; instruction; affective impacts of learning; social and emotional resources; and strategies for fostering independence. Resources on the website are aligned with the professional learning provided to teachers, the SEL summer course for students, and ongoing work to support parents with educational technology.

Feel free to explore the website and watch for information about each section in future newsletters!


Dear FYDL Families,

Palo Alto Partners in Education (PiE) is an incredible partner of our schools. Funding from PiE allows sites to provide much more staff than our budget would otherwise allow. Because of donations to PiE, we can have our vital classroom aides and counseling program. PiE’s funding provides specialized art and music programs that enhance the academics for each student. The difference in the school with PiE’s support is remarkable. It would be a very different place without this additional funding. FYDL does receive the benefits of PiE.

If you have already donated to PiE this year, we all = appreciate your support. If you have not, I ask you to please consider donating now. If you donate or pledge by November 16th, your donation may be matched by a Challenge Grant.

A donation, in any amount that is meaningful for your family, makes a difference to our community and our school.

You can find out all the ways to contribute to PiE at https://papie.org/donate/.

Thank you!

Trimester Progress Reports will be available on 11/20

FYDL has Spirit!

Our program's first Spirit Day will be on November 20th. From the student survey, Stuffed Animal Day was the overwhelming winner. Students can bring a stuffed animal to class with them on November 20th. If they do not have a stuffed animal, please be creative. Suggestions from students have ranged from bringing pillows to creating hand-drawn puppets.

Thanksgiving Break November 23rd-27th.

Enjoy the week off!

Welcome New Friends to FYDL

Dear New Families,

Welcome to Full-Year Distance Learning! I want to express my excitement to everyone reading this newsletter that we are welcoming new students and families to the PAUSD's FYDL program. As I mentioned before, we are in a unique position to make friends with people from all around Palo Alto. While learning in FYDL, students will have an opportunity to meet peers and teachers from all over PAUSD that they would not have a chance to ever work with in a classroom or school setting.

We all realize that these changes might be difficult for some, but we are living in a year of challenges and transformations. This opportunity presents an occasion to encourage our students to practice the life skill of perseverance and resilience. With that said, I want to remind you that building a new community takes time. Please allow time for you and your child(ren) to make this adjustment.

Additionally, I would like to remind all parents of the Zoom guidelines. We must allow our children to experience online school as close to their "brick and mortar" experience to develop independence, responsibility, flexibility, and perseverance. Please allow the students to "take the reigns of their learning."

PAUSD Parent ZOOM Guidelines

  • Once your child is set up for their Zoom meeting, please allow them to attend the session by themselves, as would happen with a classroom session. Avoid comments to your child while instruction is occurring.
  • Please try to have your child set up for the meeting in a space where there will be minimum disruptions.
  • Please do not use photography or any recording equipment (including Zoom recording) during the Zoom session.
  • Student online safety is important to us, and we need your support to ensure these online tools are used appropriately.
  • Please do not allow your child to host Zoom chats with friends. This is a tool for adults, and our students are not always able to make the best choices to support the well-being of their peers.

Palo Alto November Edition of School News.

I have attached the PDF of the recent publication of Palo Alto School News. Inside you can read a short message from each principal in PAUSD. Enjoy!

Got a PAUSD Chromebook?

Important Update:

This is an important update regarding PAUSD student Chromebooks. The IT department is going to be enforcing updates in all PAUSD Chromebooks in the coming weeks. This update will support a better Zoom experience for students. Unfortunately, we cannot control the day and time these updates are pushed to devices, as they come directly from Google.

When the PAUSD Chromebook receives notice that the update is ready to be installed, students will see a small popup on the bottom right of the device notifying the student the update is ready to be installed. Students can simply close the lid of the Chromebook to turn off the device and install the updates.

If students do not close the lid, the Chromebook will automatically shut off and update anywhere from 5-17 days after the popup notification appears.

Please encourage your students to shut the lid of their Chromebooks at the end of the school day once the popup is visible.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Thank you,

Emily Garrison

Coordinator of Educational Technology

Reminder! Greendell for Attendance

The attendance email is greendellattendance@pausd.org. This is the best way for a parent to report an absence.

The office phone is (650) 856-0833. Voicemails left on this phone number will be forwarded to the Greendell office staff.

FDL What'sApp Group

One thing that came up at our Parent Coffee last Friday was a desire to create an FDL communication resource. Some of the families immediately created a WhatsApp FDL group. To join, please select the following link: https://chat.whatsapp.com/C8VDj4cbM79IA4PFZHTS4d

FDL on Facebook!

Another great way to meet other FDL families is by joining the parent sponsored FDL Facebook group called "FDL parents community." Contact Corinne Haböck at corinne.haboeck@swissonline.ch or for more information.

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