April 3 Update
April 3, 2020
Dear San Pasqual Families,
Thank you to the families that joined us yesterday for our 2nd Virtual Coffee with the Principal session. For those that may have missed it, a recording can be accessed at our San Pasqual Union School YouTube channel.
As we discussed, earlier this week, California Governor Gavin Newsom and California State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond jointly announced schools were closed for the school year. The San Pasqual Union School District, in coordination with the San Diego County Office of Education, continues to carefully monitor guidance from federal, state, and local public health and education agencies. All decisions about reopening school will be made in conjunction with local public health officials and only when it is safe for students to return. While we hold out a faint hope that campus could possibly reopen later this school year, at this time, we are fully committed to continue teaching and learning through distance learning.
I want to be very clear that the 2019-20 school year is not over, it has just transitioned from classroom instruction into distance learning. As Superintendent Thurmond said today, “schools are closed but classes are in.”
As previously shared, staff at San Pasqual Union have worked tirelessly to provide a quality program of distance learning since the first day of these unprecedented school closures. We wrap up the first phase of our plan today and will commence with Phase 2, our long-term distance learning plan, on April 14th. As discussed during our “Virtual Coffee”, this plan addresses four main areas: communication, social-emotional supports, devices, and academic programs.
In the coming days, weeks, and months, we will continue to communicate regularly with you via our mass communications systems (phone, email, text), PeachJar, Principal’s Coffee, and our various social media platforms (Instagram, Twitter, San Pasqual Union School app). If you need assistance getting or staying connected, please contact me and I will assist.
We are also extremely concerned about the social and emotional well-being of all of our students and will continue to facilitate ways for students to stay connected, even if at a distance. Should your child or family need supports in this area, please contact us or refer to https://covid-19.sdcoe.net/Parent-Resources.
In order to facilitate an effective distance learning program, all students need to have access to appropriate technology. Our San Pasqual School Foundation, sensing a need to support our students during these difficult times, stepped up and funded 100 Chromebooks to be loaned to students in need. (If you would like to support the Foundation’s efforts, please donate now at: https://www.spufoundation.com/donate-to-spu)
We will also be issuing iPads to our TK-1st grade students who lack appropriate technology at home. We expect to be distributing these additional devices to students the Week of April 14th. If your child lacks appropriate technology for distance learning, please contact Mrs. Lee or respond to our upcoming technology needs survey.
Finally, your child’s teachers will communicate the specific goals and expectations for your child’s academic program. In summary, we are shifting a model of “flexibility with accountability.” Unlike our first phase, there will be student work that is required for which students are accountable and expected to complete. That being said, we understand that these are challenging times for all and we will remain compassionately flexible with all our families. As emphasized earlier, please maintain open lines of communications with your child’s teachers so we continue to understand both the educational and social-emotional needs of your child and can engage accordingly.
While we recognize this situation poses challenges and hardship to many families, the most effective way to slow and disrupt the transmission of this pandemic –and therefore get back to normal -- is by continuing to implement social distancing practices. We are grateful to our community for everything you are doing during this unique and difficult time.
We also appreciate your patience and understanding during this unprecedented time. Please trust that we are doing everything in our power to prioritize student safety and continuous learning as we all work toward the goal of getting our teachers and students back together as soon as we can.
Mark Burroughs, Superintendent/Principal