FAQ: Elementary Academic Models

 

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Q: What are the elementary academic models parents can select from?

Adopted Elementary Academic Models:

Click here for video illustrations of the elementary academic model options.

 

Q: Is IUSD going to apply for the elementary waiver for grades tK-6?

A: On August 3, the California Department of Public Health released new information about the criteria for districts to apply for a waiver to reopen and provide in-person instruction for grades TK-6 only. IUSD is reviewing this new information and working with the Orange County Health Care Agency and the Orange County Department of Education to clarify the requirements of the waiver application process.  Click here to read more about the new California Department of Public Health guidelines. 

TRADITIONAL (TK-K)

Q: What are the TK/Kindergarten Academic Models parents can select from?

A:   There are two instructional delivery options for our TK/K students:

  1. Distance learning through the new IUSD Virtual Academy. Click here for more information. 
  2. In-person instruction in a non-overlapping AM/PM model
  • 2.5 hours per day (no overlap) in groups of approx. 15:1 or less. 
  • Some online and home learning included.

Students would either be assigned to Cohort A or Cohort B, which is very similar to the preference  parents selected upon registration. Cohorts A and B have the same teacher. The difference is that the full class of approximately 28 students will not occupy the classroom together at any time.  This option provides daily, face to face instruction, which is so critical for our younger learners, while also limiting interactions with other adults and students as recommended.

Q: Will there be screening protocols for students and staff before entering school?

A: IUSD schools will follow the guidelines for all OC schools, which include screening procedures.  Click here to read the guidelines.

 

Q: How will instructional and other spaces be cleaned for students in the traditional model?

A: IUSD will follow cleaning and disinfecting protocols established for all OC schools, which can be found by clicking here.  This includes cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces and limiting shared resources and materials.

 

Q: What is the expected class size for the traditional model classroom?

A:  Students attend school five days a week with class sizes reduced by half for the majority day by utilizing classified staff and additional space on campus.  

Q: How will sharing of toys/materials work for preschool, TK and K?

A: IUSD will follow the guidelines for all OC schools, which include protocols for shared and frequently touched items.  This includes ensuring there are adequate supplies to minimize sharing of high-touch materials to the extent feasible or limit the use of toys and materials to one group of students at time, cleaning and disinfecting between uses.  Click here to read more about these protocols.

 

Q: Will recess be allowed for TK-K students?

A: There may be a small snack/recess time during the day with students remaining in their cohort groups with staggered times. More specific information will be provided by school sites to their families.

 

Q: Will there be childcare before or after school?

A: Please contact the childcare provider at your school directly or visit the Irvine Child Care Project for more information about childcare.

 

Q: Will we know if we have a secured childcare spot before and/or after school?

A:  Availability is determined by the childcare provider at your school.  Please contact them directly or visit the Irvine Child Care Project for more information about childcare.

 

Q: Do families have the choice to start their kindergarten student next school year due to Covid?

A: In accordance with California law, school is mandatory for six-year-old students.  Parents or guardians must enroll their children in school once they reach the age of six.  It is a local decision with parental input if students will be enrolled in kindergarten or first grade.

 

 

TRADITIONAL MODEL (1-6)

Q: Will there be screening protocols for students and staff before entering school?

A: IUSD schools will follow the guidelines for all OC schools, which include screening procedures.  Click here to read the guidelines.

 

Q: How will instructional and other spaces be cleaned for students in the traditional model?

A: IUSD will follow cleaning and disinfecting protocols established for all OC schools, which can be found by clicking here This includes cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces and limiting shared resources and materials.

 

Q: What is the expected class size for the traditional model classroom?

A:  Students attend school five days a week with class sizes reduced by half for the majority of the day by utilizing classified staff and additional space on campus.

 

Q: Will there be limits on the number of students allowed in a classroom to support physical distancing?

A: As outlined in the academic models, IUSD schools will maximize available space on school campuses and instructional aides and other classified and certificated personnel to reduce the number of students in a single space.  However, in the traditional model, there will be times when the full class will be together in the classroom with the goal of 30 or less students total.  When this occurs, appropriate safety measures will be implemented, including the use of study carrels.

Q: Will recess be allowed at elementary level?

A: Yes, there will be snack/recess occurring with students remaining in their cohorts and staggered timing.

Q: How will GATE be implemented in the hybrid model?

A: Instruction for students in specialized programs (GATE, ELL, etc.) will follow similar patterns as in the traditional model with students being clustered together in groups and appropriate instruction provided.
 

Q: Will there be childcare after school?

A: Please contact the childcare provider at your school directly or visit the Irvine Child Care Project for more information about childcare.

 

Q: Will we know if we have a secured childcare spot before and/or after school?

A: Availability is determined by the childcare provider at your school.  Please contact them directly or visit the Irvine Child Care Project for more information about childcare.

 

Q: As described in the proposed academic models, if the class is divided into smaller groups, what will the other students be doing, while the teacher is teaching?

A: As outlined in the academic models, when possible, schools will utilize instructional assistants to support instruction and rotate groups through instructional centers.  

Q: How will schools accommodate students who cannot use outside spaces due to weather or other conditions?

A: IUSD continues to work with school sites on a wide range of plans and possible scenarios.  Should weather or other conditions prevent students from utilizing outdoor spaces, schools will adjust their plans to support physical distancing to the fullest extent possible in accordance with guidelines for OC schools.

 

 

HYBRID MODEL (ELEMENTARY)

Q: Will there be screening protocols for students and staff before entering school?

A: IUSD schools will follow the guidelines for all OC schools, which include screening procedures.  Click here to read the guidelines.

Q: How will instructional and other spaces be cleaned for students in the hybrid model?

A: IUSD will follow cleaning and disinfecting protocols established for all OC schools, which can be found by clicking here.  This includes cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces and limiting shared resources and materials.

Q: What instruction can we expect for both the online and in-person portions of the hybrid model?

A:  In the hybrid model, the students in each classroom are divided into two cohorts and attend school in person two days a week and participate in distance learning three days a week.  In this model, only half the students in a classroom are present at a time.  

 

During the in person days, teachers provide direct instruction and facilitate student collaboration.  During the distance learning days, students complete reading and investigations to prepare for in person instruction as well as practice concepts and skills learned.

Q: Will there be live lessons with online instruction?

A: In the hybrid model, students will have direct interaction with their teacher each day.  On the days when students are not physically present at the school site, there will be an opportunity for students to interact with their teacher virtually in order to ask questions, be provided directions, and generally “check in” as to how the work is progressing.

Q: Will there be parity between this academic model and the other models?

A:  Each model will include the same academic standards and curriculum for each grade level and course.  However, just as with traditional school structures, the pacing and instructional activities may differ across models and individual classrooms as each teacher plans daily instruction to best meet the needs of their students.

Q: Who will teach and provide support during the online days?

A: In the Hybrid model, the distance learning days are intended for more independent student work - either to build knowledge and prepare for direct instruction with the teacher during in-person days or to practice and apply concepts after instruction.  Teachers will have support and assistance available to students during distance learning days outside the times that they are providing in-person instruction to the other half of the class.

 

Q: Will there be childcare after school?

A: Please contact the childcare provider at your school directly or visit the Irvine Child Care Project for more information about childcare.

 

Q: Will we know if we have a secured childcare spot before and/or after school?

A: Availability is determined by the childcare provider at your school.  Please contact them directly or visit the Irvine Child Care Project for more information about childcare.

 

Q: Will there be dedicated classrooms for hybrid students?

A:  Teachers and students in the hybrid model will have a dedicated classroom similar to traditional instructional models.

 

Q: How will schools track attendance?

A:  Teachers will document daily participation for each student on each school day.  Students who do not participate in the assigned activities for each school day will be considered absent.

 

Q: How will GATE be implemented in the hybrid model?

A: Instruction for students in specialized programs (GATE, ELL, etc) will follow similar patterns as in the traditional model with students being clustered together in groups and appropriate instruction provided.

 

Q: Will consideration be given to put siblings/twins on the same schedule in the hybrid model?

A: School sites will work directly with families on matters such as this.  More information will be provided to families from their schools in the coming weeks.

 

Q: Will students participate in PE and other activities such as music, science, art?

A: In the hybrid model, during the in-person instructional time, the teacher will focus on essential standards in literacy and mathematics.  The majority of instruction in PE, music, science and art will be completed during the virtual learning days.

 

Q: Will hybrid students mingle and share spaces with traditional students?

A: No, the intent of the hybrid model is to limit interactions with other students and adults.  They will complete their school work inside of their classroom and will have very limited access to other instructional spaces.

Q: Will Hybrid students eat lunch on campus?

A: No.  However, students in the hybrid model will be able to purchase and pick-up lunch when they leave campus.  More information will follow from school sites.

 

Q: Why will hybrid students only be on campus four hours each day, rather than a full school day?

A:  There are two primary reasons for the shorter hybrid school day: 

  • It helps support safety by limiting interactions with other students during drop off and pick up times and eliminates lunch. 

  • It enables teachers to provide both in-person and virtual instruction.  Teachers will have the ability to support students virtually before and after teaching students on campus.

 

 

distance learning

Q: IUSD has stated that Distance Learning and the IUSD Virtual academy will be different from the Emergency Distance Learning in the spring of 2020.  Please explain how these academic options will be different?

A: Both the IUSD Virtual Academy (IVA) and Distance Learning will provide rigorous, high quality differentiated instruction from highly trained and qualified IUSD teachers and staff.  Teachers in our traditional and hybrid programs will be able to access the curriculum and resources offered through our Virtual Academy.  With the time to plan and learn from our Emergency Distance Learning experience, we can ensure that IVA and Distance Learning will provide tightly structured and standards aligned lessons, with frequent synchronous (live) learning, individualized support, peer-to-peer collaboration, and an infusion of new learning resources. Regardless of the format, IUSD students will receive the rich instruction, support, and connection they need.

 

Q: What is the training IUSD teachers will receive in online instruction for both the IUSD Virtual Academy and Distance Learning (hybrid, traditional and blended models)?

A:  IUSD has developed training specifically to support effective learning and promote student engagement in a virtual environment for both the IUSD Virtual Academy and Distance Learning for the in-person models.  The training includes a focus on strategies to build and maintain relationships with and between students, tools to support live interaction and peer collaboration, and methods for delivering direct instruction in a virtual environment.  This training is part of our Compass professional learning platform and is available to all teachers on demand to support learning needs whenever they arise. 

 

Q: Now that it appears all IUSD academic models will start in online learning for the 2020-21 school year, what is the difference between the Florida Virtual curriculum for IVA and the curriculum for distance learning (Hybrid/Traditional/Blended models)?

A:  Both the IUSD Virtual Academy (IVA) and distance learning will provide rigorous, high quality differentiated instruction from highly trained and qualified IUSD teachers and staff.  The IUSD Virtual Academy utilizes the Florida Virtual curriculum as a foundation and IUSD teachers supplement with additional district instructional materials and teacher created content.  In distance learning, the classroom teacher adapts the normal classroom instruction to a virtual environment so that in person instruction may resume with as little interruption to instruction as possible.  Teachers in our traditional, hybrid and distance learning models will also be able to access the curriculum and resources offered through our Virtual Academy. 

Q: Why is there a separate curriculum for IVA students and students in Distance Learning (hybrid, traditional and blended models) and will there be parity and the same level of rigor?

A: Although the foundational instructional materials may differ between IVA and classroom distance learning, both programs are aligned to the same essential standards and rigorous learning targets.  All curricular and instructional resources are available for teachers within the IUSD Virtual Academy, traditional, hybrid, or distance learning models to use and share.

 

Q: What is the difference between starting school in the IUSD Virtual Academy (IVA) versus in-person option?

A: Just as our Virtual Academy will provide rigorous, high quality differentiated instruction, distance learning will also provide tightly structured and standards aligned lessons, with frequent synchronous learning, individualized support, peer-to-peer collaboration, and an infusion of new learning resources. Regardless of the format, IUSD students will receive the rich instruction, support, and connection they need from highly trained and skilled IUSD teachers and staff.

 

model selection and teacher assignment flow chart

Click Here For PDF

 

Click here for information about IUSD’s Virtual Academy.

 

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