IUSD staff frequently updates this FAQ as we have new information. Please check back regularly and continue to visit iusd.org/COVID19 for the latest updates.
For questions about COVID-19 and related cases in Orange County or Irvine, contact the Orange County Health Care Agency (see below). For medical guidance; federal, state and county health guidelines; travel advisories; health screenings at U.S. ports of entry; quarantines and other government agency related questions, visit the resources below:
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- Orange County Health Care Agency (OCHCA)
- California Department of Public Health (CDPH)
Q: Why did IUSD close schools to students and the public?
A: The Irvine Unified School District (IUSD) closed our schools and facilities to students and the public aligned to health agency guidelines and the executive order issued by Governor Gavin Newsom. The public health crisis created by COVID-19 continues to escalate throughout Orange County and California which warrants swift action to prevent the spread of illness. Click here to read the full message from Superintendent Walker.
Q: What is the anticipated return date?
A: Governor Newsom and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Thurmond announced that all California schools will remain closed to students through the end of the 2019-20 school year, as a result of increased COVID-19 cases throughout the state. In recent weeks, the State of California has continued to escalate its efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19, through the executive order issued by Governor Gavin Newsom, calling for California residents to stay at home, with exceptions for attending to essential needs. A presidential Major Disaster Declaration also acknowledged the scope of this crisis and bolstered California’s emergency response efforts.
Locally, the Orange County Health Care Agency tightened restrictions on public and private gatherings and the Orange County Superintendent of Schools, Al Mijares, expressed his support for Orange County school districts to extend school closure dates. “Keeping children home from school is a drastic measure, one that shows how seriously health officials and educators are taking this public health threat,” said Mijares. “We must do our part now to flatten the curve.”
Q: What if conditions change?
A: If IUSD learns, prior to the end of the 2019-20 school year, that circumstances have changed and that we can safely reopen our schools, IUSD and our dedicated staff will do so at our earliest opportunity. To that end, the District will continue to monitor closely the guidance from federal, state and local authorities and coordinate our actions and responses with expert health agencies and other OC school districts.
Mental Health and Wellness Supports
Q: If my student needs mental health and wellness support, where can we find information?
A: The outbreak of COVID-19 can result in various forms of stress, especially for students who may be struggling to process all of the implications of this health challenge and the impact of social distancing. IUSD’s Prevention and Intervention team, as part of the District’s Speak Up We Care initiative, has developed resources that may be helpful for students and families. This includes information about available IUSD supports, how to talk with children and teens about COVID-19, community mental health providers and resources, maintaining a sense of connection, and other healthy practices. Our staff will continue to be actively engaged with students both academically and in support of social-emotional wellness. More than ever, it is critical that our students sustain a sense of hope, confidence, and optimism. Click here to learn more.
Emergency Distance Learning, Assessments, and Instruction
Q: Will Emergency Distance Learning opportunities continue through the end of the school year?
A: Yes, Emergency Distance Learning (EDL) opportunities will continue through the 2019-20 school year. Principals and teachers will consistently communicate with parents and students, so please remain in close contact and reach out to your school, if you have questions or need additional support.
Our principals, with support from District staff, will remain in close contact with their teachers to ensure they have the resources needed as they diligently work to provide distance learning to our TK-12 students. Teachers will continue to have access to school sites as needed, while observing social distancing guidelines, and obtain technological support, office equipment and other educational resources as needed.
As EDL extends through the end of the school year, district leadership, principals, teachers and staff will continue to work with students and families, soliciting feedback and adjusting instruction to optimize learning outcomes and support our families.
Q: What is Emergency Distance Learning? Do I need to enroll?
A: Emergency Distance Learning (EDL) refers specifically to days in which school buildings are closed to students and the public due to emergency conditions, but learning is continued off site with the support of classroom teachers and in collaboration with students and parents. During EDL days, students engage remotely in meaningful learning activities that support and continue current classroom learning. Using curriculum tools and technology, our teachers provide opportunities for students to both ask questions and receive feedback on their learning. The overarching goal of an EDL day is continuity of learning and the preservation of academic growth and progress.
Your student is automatically enrolled in EDL and your child’s teacher will supply everything you need to access instruction.
Visit our EDL webpage for additional information and resources.
Q: What happens if my student is not participating in Emergency Distance Learning?
A: Student participation in Emergency Distance Learning (EDL) equates to student attendance in class, which is required under compulsory education laws. Site administrators may conduct home visits (following social distancing guidelines) to ensure the welfare of students who have not responded to school communication or participated in EDL.
Q: Since school sites are closed for the remainder of the school year, how is enrollment being handled?
A: School site staff are continuing to enroll students for the 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 school years. Visit our Enrollment webpage for additional information.
Q: What is IUSD doing to support students with IEPs?
A: As IUSD continues to provide learning opportunities during this public health crisis, we are committed to supporting students receiving IEPs and other supports. Under the guidance of the California Department of Education (CDE) and the U.S. Department of Education, the District is collaborating with our teachers and support staff as we work to meet the needs of students with IEPs. CDE has established a workgroup of special education practitioners and other experts to help brainstorm best practices that they plan to share in the coming weeks. We’ll continue to keep our families informed and continually review how we can best support our students with special needs. For questions or concerns, please contact your teacher(s) and principal.
Q: Will my child still have their annual or triennial IEP meeting while the schools are closed?
A: If your child has an Annual or Triennial IEP due during the time that Emergency Distance Learning is occurring, their case manager/education specialist will be reaching out to you to see if you would like to hold the IEP virtually/telephonically or postpone it and hold it within 30 days of students returning to campus.
Q: My child has related services on their IEP, how will those supports be provided?
A: If your child receives any related services, such as occupational therapy, counseling, speech and language, etc., those providers will be contacting you to share how they will be supporting those areas of need during emergency distance learning. This may include, but is not limited to, consultation with parent/staff, direct interaction with your child via virtual platforms or by telephone, and provided activities to be completed in between virtual/telephonic sessions. Anything provided will be in compliance with federal, state, and local health official’s guidance related to social distancing and consistent with the District’s main priority of keeping its students, teachers and service providers safe and healthy.
Q: My child’s school is closed. Will they still be expected to participate in state testing?
A: No. Governor Newsom issued an executive order last week to waive this year’s statewide assessments in light of the current public health crisis. Students will not participate in the Smarter Balanced Assessments in English Language Arts/Literacy and Mathematics, the California Science Test, or the California Alternate Assessments during the 2019-20 school year. The Physical Fitness Test (PFT) has been placed on hold until students return to school.
Q: Will teachers use video or other interactive learning opportunities?
A: Our teachers, staff and principals are focused on keeping students highly engaged, connected and invested in their learning. Teachers will continue to have daily contact, to assign work, to provide feedback on the work, to host online discussion forums, and to provide resources to ensure that our students have a variety of opportunities to strengthen their understanding of essential learning targets. Our focus will remain squarely on learning and preparing students to be successful at the next level.
To this end, teachers are working with their peers, our Education Technology team and other District staff to avail themselves of a wide range of tools and resources to support direct and/or interactive learning. Please reach out to your teacher and/or principal for questions or concerns. As mentioned in Superintendent Walker's letter, our sites may be closed but education is not. Staff is working and we are here to help support you and our students during this unprecedented time. For additional information, updates and resources, visit iusd.org/COVID19. If you don't see your question addressed in this FAQ, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: How will I know how my child is doing in school without state assessment results?
A: State assessments are just one of multiple measures of student achievement. As always, your child’s teacher is the best resource for information about their learning needs. Teachers are leveraging online learning tools, including a variety of resources to gather evidence of student learning. Student work samples, checks for understanding, assessments, and course grades can all be used to identify student learning strengths and needs.
Q: How will my child’s teacher(s) grade and give classroom tests remotely?
A: Teachers will be monitoring student progress in the distance learning environment to check for understanding and identify learning needs. District guidance regarding grading expectations and timelines are currently being developed. If you have specific questions about your child’s progress or performance on assessments, please contact their teacher(s).
Q: Are the GATE identification and APAAS placement processes impacted by Emergency Distance Learning?
A: No. All Multiple Criteria Measures (MCM) used in the GATE and APAAS processes were completed prior to the transition to Emergency Distance Learning. The GATE MCM screening process will be finalized in mid-June and parents will be notified via email at the time if their student is GATE Identified. The APAAS application closed on March 31. Applicants will be notified of program acceptance in mid-April.
Please see the IUSD Gifted and Advanced Learners webpage for additional information and updates: https://iusd.org/department/gifted-and-advanced-learners
Q: What will the impact of school closures be on graduation, student transcripts, and college application and acceptance?
A: The scope and impact of this crisis will require conversations at the state and national level to address these critical questions. For that reason, IUSD will continue to communicate regularly and work closely with other school districts and institutions of higher education to determine how to resolve issues that could impact our students, including completion of graduation requirements, college admissions, promotions, commencement and other end of the year activities.
Q: What are the District plans for summer school?
A: At this time, the District is moving forward with plans and registration for summer school. More information will be available shortly. IUSD will continue to monitor the situation and inform our community of any changes.
Advanced Placement (AP) Exams
Q: Will AP exams still be offered?
A: Yes. The College Board will offer at-home testing for AP exams this year. Complete details are available here. Highlights include:
- Students can take a 45-minute online exam at home using any device—computer, tablet, or smartphone. Taking a photo of handwritten work will also be an option.
- The AP exam will only include topics and skills most AP teachers and students have already covered in class by early March.
- The College Board is providing free remote learning resources.
Q: My student is signed up for AP testing, but we have not heard from the College Board. What should we do?
A: Your student should log into their College Board account and double check that in their profile they are using their personal email, not their iusd.org email. Click here for College Board contact information. To learn more about how the College Board is supporting students during the COVID-19 public health crisis, visit https://apcoronavirusupdates.collegeboard.org/students.
Q: When are AP Exams being offered, and if I am signed up for more than one test, will there be a time conflict?
A: Click here to access the AP Exam Schedule, the times provided are in Pacific time. Students are able to take up to three tests in one day without conflicts. To learn more about how the College Board is supporting students during the COVID-19 public health crisis, visit https://apcoronavirusupdates.collegeboard.org/students.
Q: How do I prepare for taking the AP test online?
A: The College Board will provide AP students and educators with information on how to access the testing system on test day and video demonstrations so that students can familiarize themselves with the system. Click here for additional information. To learn more about how the College Board is supporting students during the COVID-19 public health crisis, visit https://apcoronavirusupdates.collegeboard.org/students.
Q: What if I don’t have access to the internet or a device for AP Classes or Exams?
A: Fill out this form through College Board BEFORE Friday, April 24.
Q: Where can I get course specific exam information?
A: This information can be accessed here: Course Specific Exam information
Q: Will IUSD AP students receive college credit?
A: Yes, the College Board shared that colleges are committed to ensuring that AP students receive the credit they have worked this year to earn. For decades colleges have accepted a shortened AP Exam for college credit when groups of students have experienced emergencies.
Q: What test preparations resources are available?
Emergency Distance Learning / Credit/No Credit Final Grades
Q: Why did IUSD transition to credit/no credit grades for the final reporting period of the 2019-2020 school year?
A: Despite our best efforts to provide equitable experiences for our more than 36,000 students, we know that some students may struggle to process new material or demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of course content under these extraordinary circumstances. Our lower income students and students with special needs may experience even greater challenges. In recognition of the anxiety, stress, and inherent educational inequities that exist across our nation, institutions of higher education are promoting a credit/no credit model as the most equitable approach to codifying student learning.
Given these considerations, IUSD has committed to follow the guidance set by higher education and implement a credit/no credit model for the final reporting period of the 2019-2020 school year. Assigning letter grades in an environment where we cannot ensure there are sufficient supports in place to mitigate challenging home circumstances is not prudent or defensible.
IUSD’s decision included input from teachers, staff and District leadership, with unanimous support from principals and administrators. It was also made in consultation with higher education admissions officials, the Orange County Department of Education, and school districts across the state. The IUSD Board of Education approved the decision at the April 14 Board Meeting with the expectation that students will work toward mastery of essential standards and to demonstrate sufficient understanding of core content to earn credit for courses and that teachers will prepare students for a successful transition to the next level.
Q: Why did IUSD not implement a choice option?
A: In recognition of the anxiety, stress, and inherent educational inequities that exist across our nation, institutions of higher education are promoting a credit/no credit model as the most equitable approach to codifying student learning. IUSD principals unanimously agreed that allowing a choice between letter grades or credit/no credit would simply highlight and exacerbate these inequities for students. Our lower income students and students with special needs may experience even greater challenges with access, and many of our students are already experiencing disruption and stress by the impact of COVID-19 on their families. To be clear, even some of our students currently performing at high levels may struggle, if their home circumstances change or more of their teachers get sick.
In making this decision, we also considered the difficulty of calculating grades in an environment where teachers have vastly different capacity to provide and monitor online learning. This is simply one more inequity that our students are facing. Add to this challenge the reality that some of our teachers are sick or are dealing with sick family members and struggling to maintain the continuity of instruction, and we have an environment, where any student could be harmed by letter grades.
Also, to assign a grade in a course this semester that in no way resembles what a grade in that same course would have been in prior years lacks integrity. The high performing nature of our schools is widely recognized and, in large part, because of the quality of our instruction and the rigor and excellence reflected in our grades. Irvine’s reputation has always served our students well in college admissions and will continue to be an important consideration, that separates Irvine students from others, as admissions officers consider the integrity and rigor of our programs.
Moving to a credit/no credit or incomplete grading model enables our teachers to focus on providing critical feedback and ensuring that students have the understanding of essential concepts necessary for success at the next level rather than counting points and trying to calculate grades. We have an opportunity to focus entirely on learning. And, as we have shared, we would never have made this decision without the commitment from higher education to hold students harmless. They simply cannot hold students harmless and consider grades from any school district.
To that end, the Chief Deputy Superintendent of Education for the California Department of Education, Dr. Stephanie Gregson, recently responded directly, to the question of whether students who turn in transcripts with grades vs. credit would be looked upon more favorably for admission, and she reiterated that the institutions of higher education in California will not be weighing one over the other. CDE also reiterated, Do No Harm and Equity need to be at the forefront of grading during the time of school closures. https://www.cde.ca.gov/ls/he/hn/gradegraduationfaq.asp
We have received these same assurances from the most highly selective schools in the country. Please read the remainder of the FAQ to see these assurances.
Harvard’s Dean Claudine Gay captures the inherent inequities and challenges with offering student choice during this extraordinary time. “Instructors have come to feel that they cannot assign grades equitably, given the radically different circumstances students find themselves in. We cannot make the usual comparisons in the midst of a global pandemic, and the shift to an alternative grading scheme reflects the enormity of our current situation.” Gay continued, “Were we to permit students to opt-in or opt-out of P/F grading, students who find themselves in very challenging situations would have no choice but to shift to P/F--and they would suffer in comparison to their peers as a result. A mandatory Emergency Satisfactory/Emergency Unsatisfactory system is the only way to treat all students equitably.” Click here to read Dean Gay’s message in full.
Q: Why didn’t IUSD “freeze” grades or simply hold students “harmless”?
A: We have fielded questions asking why we can’t simply let students maintain the grades they had in early March and hold them “harmless.” The reason we aren’t freezing grades is because we are committed to students continuing their learning. If we stopped evaluating student progress in March, we would be granting permission for students to disengage from the critically important knowledge and skills needed for success at the next level. If this were to occur, we would actually be inflicting harm. In IUSD, holding students harmless means ensuring that their learning continues.
We have also heard that by not assigning a letter grade we are dis-incentivizing learning. That’s not true. The surest way to end learning would be to “freeze grades.” A shift to credit/no credit means that students are now working toward earning course credit so that they will be successful at the next level. Our students should be engaged, participating in class, grappling with new concepts, completing assignments, and communicating with their teachers. Letter grades are one means by which to communicate student progress and achievement. Credit/No Credit is another and in this environment, where instruction may not look the same and the home environment for each child is very different, assigning letter grades with any degree of certainty isn’t possible or defensible. However, what is defensible is ensuring that students learn the concepts critical to success at the next level. Those students who demonstrate that knowledge will earn credit. Those who don’t will earn no credit, or incomplete grades, as appropriate.
Q: What does a credit/no credit grade mean and how will it impact my student’s GPA?
A: Students will be expected to work toward mastery of essential standards and to demonstrate sufficient understanding of core content to earn a grade of "CR" (credit) for courses. Students who receive a grade of CR will earn full credit for the course. The CR will not be calculated into the GPA.
Students will receive a mark of “NC” (no credit) if they have not met the minimum proficiency levels for standards within a course. Counseling staff will work with students who receive a final reporting period mark of NC to determine if the course needs to be repeated or if students have demonstrated sufficient proficiency for the NC mark to be changed to “incomplete.” Incomplete grades may be resolved through a variety of credit recovery options during the summer and subsequent school year. No Credit and Incomplete grades will not be calculated into the GPA.
Students who took AP courses will have their GPA weighted for the first semester of the year. A grade of “CR” in the second semester will not raise or lower their GPA. We realize we have students who were working very hard to improve their GPAs with weighted course work this semester. They will have another opportunity to demonstrate mastery of the course through the new at-home AP tests being offered by the College Board. Complete details are available here.
Q: Will credit/no credit impact graduation eligibility for seniors?
A: No. Students on track to graduate will, and those with extreme hardships related to COVID-19, may be granted waivers. A waiver would reduce the IUSD graduation requirements, for eligible students, to the minimum standard established by the California Department of Education. Student waivers must be approved by the Board of Education and decisions regarding waivers will be made in consultation with school staff.
Q: How will credit/no credit impact admissions or eligibility for college?
A: COVID-19 is an international public health crisis. There is not a state or a nation that has not been impacted. The fact is that many students in the United States are no longer attending school. Some districts have made the shift to distance learning and others are still struggling. To that end, we have been assured by the institutions of higher education in California and across the nation that moving to credit/no credit this semester will not impact college eligibility, which is one reason why IUSD principals unanimously supported this transition.
In an emergency distance learning environment, a credit/no credit grade is the most equitable approach to quantifying student learning and enables educators to focus less on tracking “points” and more on preparing students for the next level. As the COVID-19 crisis escalates, we need to ensure that we honor learning without putting undue pressure on our students and families.
The State Board of Education (SBE), California Department of Education (CDE), California State University (CSU), University of California (UC), California Community Colleges, and independent nonprofit colleges and universities have stated that they will accept credit/no credit grades in lieu of letter grades for A-G high school courses completed in winter/spring/summer 2020.
Q: Has there been any change to the University of California admissions policies since the March 31 statement was issued which announced they would be accepting P/F or Credit/No Credit grading?
A: No, on March 31, the UC System approved a series of critical, short-term measures to ensure that no student’s admission would be adversely impacted by the disruption of COVID-19. There have been no changes to their position since that time. Click here to see the statement from the UC System.
Q: Are highly selective schools also providing assurances that credit/no credit grades won’t impact eligibility?
A: Highly selective colleges in the United States utilize holistic review. Holistic means they take into account a broader framework than just grades and scores. They ask for essays, possibly letters of recommendation, and, most importantly, they take into account a student’s context: what was available to the student and what was not.
Right now, we have a global pandemic with local solutions. It will be the responsibility of colleges, as it always has been, to adapt to those local solutions. Whether it was the wildfires in California or hurricanes in the Southeast, colleges have long adapted to extreme situations by adjusting deadlines, resetting requirements, and taking into account the local circumstances of its applicants.
In an environment where students have differing levels of access and grades can’t be authenticated, credit/no credit is the only honest and equitable local solution. And, frankly, in this time of change and uncertainty, it frees up students to do the things that have long held more sway in the selective admissions process: being generous, creative, thoughtful, and curious contributors to their communities and families.
Whether it’s Harvard looking for applicants of character or MIT wanting students engaged with the common good, colleges have long sought students who can – above and beyond showing up in the classroom – show up in their communities. This is a moment when districts can empower students to actually do both.
We have received assurances from Stanford, Harvard, Yale, Columbia, USC, Northwestern, MIT, Tulane and others, virtually all of the schools that IUSD students attend, that in this unprecedented time, students won’t be harmed. Click here to read statements from these schools.
Q: How will credit/no credit affect eligibility for athletics and performance groups at the high school level?
A: The California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) vested local school districts with responsibility for determining eligibility during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our high school principals, who serve as our liaisons to CIF, determined that the eligibility criteria for athletics and performance groups for next fall will be completion of a minimum of four classes with a grade of credit. The use of GPA for eligibility purposes will be eliminated for the 2020 spring semester.
Q: How is the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) evaluating Emergency Distance Learning?
A: In response to questions regarding schools that have moved to distance or e-learning environments, the NCAA Eligibility Center released a statement stipulating that the NCAA will not require a separate review of distance or e-learning programs utilized by schools with NCAA-approved core courses that have moved to distance or e-learning environments for Spring/Summer 2020 terms.
Students are encouraged to complete their NCAA-approved core courses through the channels of instruction provided or recommended by their school, district or state department of education.
Q: How will credit/no credit impact placement for subsequent courses?
A: Many of the course and program placement decisions for our students were already underway, prior to the transition to emergency distance learning. However, teachers will continue to gather evidence of learning to inform placement and students will be expected to work toward mastery of essential standards and to demonstrate sufficient understanding of core content. In this environment, communication between students and teachers will be critical. If it does not appear that a student is prepared for the next level, summer school options may be available to increase readiness. Pre-assessment in the fall of next year will also help to identify areas where students need additional support.
Q: Is there any consideration for waiving graduation requirements for students who are facing family challenges associated with COVID-19 or Emergency Distance Learning?
A: If there are seniors who cannot meet IUSD diploma requirements due to extreme hardships related to COVID-19, these students may be eligible for a waiver. The waiver would reduce the graduation requirements, for eligible students, to the minimum standard established by the California Department of Education. Student waivers must be approved by the Board of Education and decisions regarding waivers will be made in consultation with school staff.
Q: Will elementary and middle school students also receive credit/no credit grades?
A: All IUSD students will be expected to work toward mastery of essential standards and to demonstrate sufficient understanding of core content to earn credit for courses. Elementary and middle school students will also receive credit/no credit grades for effort and achievement. There will be a notation on the report cards that states, “All students received a mark of credit/no credit for Trimester 3 of the 2019-20 school year due to the unique circumstances and challenges presented by the Covid-19 pandemic.”
Q: In an Emergency Distance Learning environment will teachers continue to provide direct instruction and feedback to students?
A: Transitioning away from letter grades for the remainder of this school year does not mean that students will not be learning or held accountable. IUSD students will be expected to work toward mastery of essential standards and to demonstrate sufficient understanding of core content to earn credit for courses. Teachers, staff and administrators will remain focused on keeping our students highly engaged, connected, and invested in their learning. Teachers will continue to have daily contact, to assign work, to provide feedback on the work, to host online discussion forums when age appropriate, and provide resources to ensure that our students have a variety of opportunities to strengthen their understanding of essential learning targets.
Our focus will remain squarely on learning and preparing students to be successful at the next level. Should you have additional questions related to your child’s progress, we encourage you to contact his or her teacher. Our teachers will continue to be the best resource for understanding your child’s progress in class.
As acknowledged by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond, emergency distance learning may not mirror classroom instruction. However, IUSD remains committed to providing the highest quality educational experience we can envision. Our entire staff from leadership, to teachers, to classified employees, to school counselors and more are here to serve students. Please do not hesitate to regularly connect with your teachers, principals, and other school staff. Also, continue to visit iusd.org/COVID19 for resources and updates.
Student Access to Technology
Q: What are device and internet options for students to connect to Emergency Distance Learning?
A: Teachers are working diligently to provide lessons that can be accessed from any personal device at home. District Chromebooks or devices are not needed to access Emergency Distance Learning but are available for students who do not have access to devices at home.
If your child does not have a device to use for EDL opportunities, IUSD will provide one. To support social distancing guidelines, the technology checkouts will require an appointment in advance. To request an appointment, please complete this Technology Access Form.
If your family does not have internet access at home, we will work with you to help you get and stay connected. For more information about free and low-cost internet options, please see our Support Center. If you would like additional support or have other questions about home internet access, please complete the Technology Access Form.
Q: How can I get help with technology issues related to Emergency Distance Learning?
A: IUSD has step-by-step tutorials available for students and parents for Canvas, Google Classroom, online textbooks and many other educational software programs at http://support.iusd.org. You also may send a request for support to our Technology Help Desk at email@example.com. Please make sure to include your student’s full name, school site, the student’s teacher or course name, and a description of the issue they are having.
IUSD Meals and Community Assistance
Q: Will IUSD provide meals to students who need them?
A: Education is an essential service. While schools are closed, IUSD will provide breakfast and lunch to any IUSD student in need. Please review this information carefully - the grab and go meal schedule has been changed to reduce parent trips and to support social distancing.
Beginning April 6, Nutrition Services will provide free breakfasts and lunches on Monday, Wednesday and Friday at the same locations from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Meals provided on Monday will include meals for Monday and Tuesday, meals provided on Wednesday will include meals for Wednesday and Thursday and there will be meals provided on Friday.
- Cadence Park School - 750 Benchmark, Irvine
- Culverdale Elementary School - 2 Paseo Westpark, Irvine
- Cypress Village Elementary School - 355 Rush Lily, Irvine
- Northwood Elementary - 28 Carson, Irvine
- Oak Creek Elementary School - 1 Dovecreek, Irvine
- Southlake Middle School - 655 West Yale Loop, Irvine
- University Park Elentary School - 4572 Sandburg Way, Irvine
- Venado Middle School - 4 Deerfield Ave., Irvine
Meals will be provided for the days and locations listed above at no cost, in the parking lots of these schools, using a drive thru grab-and-go system to support social distancing and safety. Walk-ups are welcome. For families who cannot visit these school sites, email firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information about meals and updates from IUSD, visit iusd.org/COVID19.
Q: What if my family needs long term food assistance and other services?
A: IUSD has connected with our community partner Families Forward to augment IUSD meals and to help link students and families to long-term food assistance, along with other vital services.
Families Forward has set up a drive-thru food pantry (M-F) 10 a.m. - 2 p.m., located at 8 Thomas Drive in Irvine. The drive-thru stations provide non-perishable items to families each week. No appointment is necessary. Visit Families Forward for more information.
Families Forward also offers counseling services, housing programs, career services and more. If any family is facing a housing crisis as a result of COVID-19, please click here.
The following resources also offer supports to families (language support services available):
Q: Is childcare available?
A: Childcare programs for IUSD families are run through the Irvine Child Care Project (ICCP), which is a community based program. However, as a result of the COVID-19 public health crisis and in accordance with the State of California Executive Stay at Home Order, child care programs are only available for children of parents working in essential sectors.
Ten of the 28 ICCP child care programs are currently open to serve children of essential critical infrastructure workers at the following sites:
- Canyon View Elementary School - 12025 Yale Court, Irvine
- Deerfield Elementary School - 2 Deerfield Avenue, Irvine
- Oak Creek Elementary School- 1 Dovecreek, Irvine
- Plaza Vista School - 670 Paseo Westpark, Irvine
- Springbrook Elementary School - 4782 Karen Ann Lane (temporary location), Irvine
- Stonegate Elementary School - 100 Honors, Irvine
- Turtle Rock Elementary School - 5151 Amalfi Drive, Irvine
- University Park Elementary School - 4572 Sandburg Way, Irvine
- Vista Verde School - 6 Federation Way, Irvine
- Woodbury Elementary School - 125 Great Lawn, Irvine
Rainbow Rising will re-open their 14 ICCP sites on Monday, May 4 to children of essential workers and will contact enrolled families to notify them of this date. Campuses included are:
Alderwood Elementary School
Beacon Park School
Bonita Canyon Elementary School
Cadence Park School
College Park Elementary School
Culverdale Elementary School
Cypress Village Elementary School
Eastwood Elementary School
Greentree Elementary School
Loma Ridge Elementary School
Meadow Park Elementary School
Northwood Elementary School
Portola Springs Elementary School
Westpark Elementary School
Directives from Authorities and Expert Health Agencies
Q: What are the recent executive orders and guidelines issued by authorities and expert health agencies?
A: The State of California escalated its efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19, through the executive order issued by Governor Gavin Newsom, calling for California residents to stay at home, with exceptions for attending to essential needs. A presidential Major Disaster Declaration also acknowledged the scope of this crisis and bolstered California’s emergency response efforts.
Locally, the Orange County Health Care Agency tightened restrictions on public and private gatherings and the Orange County Superintendent of Schools, Al Mijares, expressed his support for Orange County school districts to extend school closure dates. “Keeping children home from school is a drastic measure, one that shows how seriously health officials and educators are taking this public health threat,” said Mijares. “We must do our part now to flatten the curve.
On April 1, 2020, Governor Newsom and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Thurmond announced that all California schools will remain closed to students through the end of the 2019-20 school year, as a result of increased COVID-19 cases throughout the state.
Q: Who is making health and policy decisions related to COVID-19 for our County?
A: The executive order issued by Governor Gavin Newsom, calling for California residents to stay at home, with exceptions for attending to essential needs, is a statewide order. A presidential Major Disaster Declaration also acknowledged the scope of this crisis and bolstered California’s emergency response efforts.
In line with these orders and measures, the Orange County Health Care Agency (OCHCA) recently tightened restrictions on public and private gatherings. OCHCA is required by California law to take measures necessary to prevent the spread or occurrence of additional cases of specific diseases or any other contagious, infectious, or communicable disease. As part of this mandate, OCHCA is responsible for health and related policy decisions.
OCHCA is working with and taking guidance from the Governor, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), to inform and support our state and county, including IUSD. For questions about COVID-19, County health guidelines, travel advisories, quarantines and other government agency related questions, visit or call:
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- Orange County Health Care Agency (OCHCA)
- OCHCA COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions (OCHCA)
- California Department of Public Health (CDPH)
- For OCHCA information line, call 1-800-564-8448 and for additional OCHCA contacts, visit ochealthinfo.com/about/admin/contacts.
Q: Who do I contact regarding Orange County or Irvine COVID-19 cases?
A: The Orange County Health Care Agency (OCHCA) is responsible for questions and information related to COVID19 cases for our city and county. Please visit their website at ochealthinfo.com. As a school district and in accordance with student and other privacy laws, IUSD cannot and will not communicate this information.
Q: Is IUSD coordinating with other agencies?
A: IUSD continues to monitor the situation and closely work with expert health agencies and other local and state agencies. In addition, Orange County TK-12 schools, private schools, universities, colleges, municipalities and other local agencies are participating in weekly conference calls led by the Orange County Health Care Agency (OCHCA) to ensure all have the same accurate information.
Prevention and Mitigation
Q: How can parents and students help prevent illness?
A: Please adhere to the following guidelines from CDC:
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Click here for handwashing tips from the CDC.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or cough into your elbow/upper arm and teach these habits to your children.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- Get the flu vaccine every year.
- More healthy habits can be found by clicking here. Follow all expert healthcare agency guidelines.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
Q: What are social distancing guidelines?
A: Expert health agencies advise that to effectively support social distancing and the extraordinary measure of closing schools, students should stay home and minimize social contact as much as possible to keep caregivers and adult family members safe. While children have not been shown to be a high-risk group for serious illness from this virus, these steps are critical in supporting public health as they can transmit the virus to those most vulnerable.
Public health officials recommend that families make arrangements for childcare during closure that avoid leaving children with elderly people who are more vulnerable to the impact of the virus.
Staying Connected to IUSD
Q: How will I receive information from IUSD and schools and where do I go for questions?
A: Although the District Office and school sites are closed to the public, education is an essential service and our sites remain staffed, while following all expert health agency guidelines. For questions related to your school, please call the front office. If you have questions for the District, after reviewing the information on iusd.org/COVID19, including this frequently asked questions (FAQ) page, email email@example.com.
Schools and IUSD will continue to stay in touch with families during this time by email or other forms of established communications. Updates will be regularly posted on iusd.org/COVID19 and IUSD social media (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter).