Mustang Round-Up

Be Safe ~ Be Respectful ~ Be Responsible ~ Be a Mustang

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2020/2021 School Year Is Here!

Even though it's not a traditional start of a school year, we still cannot contain our excitement to see and meet our students.

Principal's Message

Dear TES Families,


I hope this letter finds you well and that your family has been able to enjoy the sunny summer weather. My family has been getting out to camp as much as possible. A little fun in the sun can brighten any day, right?!


I wanted to reach out to: 1) Remind you to register your student, and 2) update you on some progress we have made with regards to starting school this fall. I hope you have been receiving the weekly Family Bulletin that is sent out on Fridays. These notes contain many answers to the questions that might be running through your mind as we get closer to the start of school. If you have not seen the Family Bulletin, you can find it here. You will also find our TES Operational Blueprint Plan on the same page as the Family Bulletin. Our building-level plan closely mirrors the district plan to ensure safety and consistency in expectations and protocols.


Though it deeply saddens me that we will not be able to open our doors for regular in-person class in September, due to outbreak metric data in our county, our building level team has been busy planning for when we are able to open for in-person learning. The team met 6 times over the summer and has been focused on ironing out the logistics of getting our students back in school in the safest way possible when it is allowable:

  • All students are eligible to choose to attend school in our new online Virtual Academy. See below for more information.

  • When we are able to return to in-person instruction, we will adhere to the strict guidelines set forth by the State to ensure safety for all. These include:

    • Cohorting students in small, stable groups who do not interact with outside cohort groups

    • Maintaining social distancing in all settings

    • Wearing facial coverings (all students and staff)

    • Implementing regular disinfecting protocols

    • Conducting daily health screening processes upon entering a bus and school

    • Maintaining daily contact logs for each cohort

    • Redesigning our student drop off/pick up and bus procedures to keep large groups of students from gathering in one location

    • Redesigning recess so that students can safely play while only interacting with their own cohort


We are currently in the process of planning for how we will distribute chromebooks to all students and allow our students to hopefully meet their teacher in person during the week of September 8th-11th. Stay tuned for details on this! Also, we will be rolling out information on a Kick Off to Kindergarten initiative starting the week of August 17th. Please encourage anyone you know with kindergarten aged children to get registered.


Thank you for your time and patience as we tighten up our reopening plans. I cannot wait to kick off a unique year with you and your family!


Warmly,

Heather Lowe Rogers
Principal, Talent Elementary

Distance Learning vs. Virtual Academy ~ What's the Difference?

Trying to decide what is best for your student(s)? We hope the following will help in understanding your choices.

All students in Phoenix Talent Schools will begin school online this fall. This model of instruction is referred to as Comprehensive Distance Learning (CDL). CDL can best be described in the following way:


  • Students will receive instruction in Language Arts and Math, along with enrichment opportunities in Science, Social Studies, PE, Music, and Art.
  • Students will be assigned a homeroom teacher that will also be their in-person teacher when we are allowed to reopen for in-person learning.
  • All classes will be run through Google Classroom

Learning will be both Synchronous and Asynchronous

· Synchronous Learning = online or distance education that happens in real time. This can include live video conferencing, chatting, and live-streaming lessons for whole class, small group, and individual instruction.

Synchronous Learning opportunities will be provided every day for both Language Arts and Math. These lessons will also be recorded in case a student cannot access them at their scheduled time.
· Asynchronous Learning = learning when the teacher and students are doing work at different times. During asynchronous learning, teachers provide lessons, assignments, activities, etc. that students will be required to complete on their own time. Asynchronous learning is self-paced, more independent learning at the time most convenient for the student to to complete assignments, homework, etc learning when the teacher and students are doing work at different times. During asynchronous learning, teachers provide lessons, assignments, activities, etc. that students will be required to complete on their own time. Asynchronous learning is self-paced, more independent learning at the time most convenient for the student to to complete assignments, homework, etc.

· All teachers will use ClassTag to communicate with families.
· Students currently enrolled in ODP and TWI will continue to be taught under the core principles of each respective program.


Our Phoenix-Talent Virtual Academy (PTVA) uses the Google Classroom platform to deliver the following curriculum:

Reading and English Language Arts: Wonders by McGraw-Hill
Math: Ready by Curriculum Associates

Live instruction with a local certified teacher will be delivered in grade level classes for reading and math. Students will receive math and reading acceleration and intervention via iReady, and have access to MobyMax to supplement reading, phonics, mathematics, science, and social studies. The teacher will design lesson plans and suggest schedules to support parents in teaching and coaching their children in all subjects. Special education and language services will be provided virtually by the neighborhood school specialists.

Think of Virtual Academy as another school choice in our district. Please note: PTVA is available for the entire school year. Moving into CDL or in person learning is available at the end of each grading quarter. Whichever you choose our district will loan your student with their own Chromebook.