Getting Started

  • Launching the School Year

    Teachers will spend the first weeks of school building an online classroom community, empowering successful online learners, and identifying student gaps or needs in learning. Teachers and students will spend time getting to know each other as learners and as people in an effort to create trusting relationships between teachers and students and grow friendships between students.  We will also spend time assessing students to identify learning gaps using the  MAP test  and locally developed assessments and tools. Students attending in person will take the MAP test at school and students enrolled in remote learning will be able to take the MAP test at home using a Chromebook.

    Technology

    Starting this school year, District 15 will be fully 1:1 in Kindergarten through Eighth grade. Students learning virtually will take their Chromebook home and families who lack reliable internet connectivity will receive a hotspot.

    • 7th and 8th grade will continue using their assigned Chromebooks.
    • 4th, 5th, and 6th grade will receive a new Chromebook and case.
    • 2nd and 3rd grade will receive a Chromebook.
    • Kindergarten and 1st grade will receive a touchscreen Chromebook.
    • All students will receive an email address in order to facilitate communication and provide single sign on access to digital resources.
    • Kindergarten through 3rd grade students will receive a Clever badge for signing into their Chromebook.
    • A set of helpful set of tutorials are available here.

    Instructional Tools

    Teachers will utilize many of the same tools that are used in the in-person classroom. In addition to any online curricular resources, teachers may use: 

    • Google Classroom and Seesaw to assign and manage classroom activities and communications;
    • G Suite for communication, collaboration, creation, and organization;
    • Parlay to foster rich discussions;
    • WeVideo to deliver video messages and instruction (teachers) and creatively demonstrate learning (students);
    • Google Meet may be used for live virtual meetings and discussions;
    • Additional Tools to support student learning and engagement (i.e. Flipgrid and Padlet)

    Curricular Materials

    Students will receive all textbooks, manipulatives and other materials and resources that they would receive during in-person instruction. A material pick-up date will be provided to students and parents prior to the first day of school. 

    Special Subject Areas

    Students will continue to receive instruction in PE, Music and Art and elective courses (junior high) in the same type of rotation as in-person instruction. Time allotted in the daily schedule is for asynchronous independent lessons/assignments for that Special and/or synchronous instruction provided by the Specialist. Lessons/assignments for Specials will be shared with the student through Seesaw or Google Classroom. 

    Attendance

    In accordance with ISBE reporting requirements, attendance will be taken every day and recorded in Infinite Campus. 

    Grading

    We will continue with our current grading system and report cards for both virtual and in-person instruction.

    Special Education Services 

    As we prepare for the Virtual Learning Cohort for the start of the 20-21 school year, the student services team will be reaching out soon to discuss your child’s special education services as per their Individualized Education Program (IEP).  While your child is participating in the Virtual Learning Cohort, the district will be providing special education services to support your child’s virtual learning experience.  To document agreement on the implementation of these services and supports for your child, the team will create and review the Individual Virtual Learning Plan (IVLP) based upon your son/daughter’s current Individualized Education Program (IEP) plan.  As a parent/guardian, you will have input and be included in this process. This Virtual Learning Plan will include review and determination of the goals, services, and accommodations that will be provided while your child is enrolled in the Virtual Learning Cohort.  Please see a linked blank copy of the IVLP document here (English or Spanish).

    A member of our school team will be in touch to schedule a time to meet with you virtually or via phone to discuss your child’s Virtual Learning Plan.  

    Multilingual Programming During Distance Learning

    ESL services will continue to be provided by an ESL certified teacher with the goal of making grade level content accessible and helping students increase their proficiency in English across the four language domains of listening, speaking, reading, and writing.

    Bilingual one-way programming will continue to be provided by certified staff to speakers of Spanish, Japanese, Telugu, Korean, Polish, Bulgarian, and Tamil at identified bilingual sites. Programming will offer native language support with the goal of making grade level content accessible and helping students develop proficiency in English across the four language domains of listening, speaking, reading, and writing.. 

    Dual language two-way programming will continue to be delivered by appropriately certified teachers. The program will continue to follow the guidance of language allocations and biliteracy goals as in previous years. Parental support for both native Spanish and English speaking families will be provided. 

    Important communication will be provided in native language to the greatest extent possible across all District 15 schools.

    Early Childhood Programming

    Virtual Learning will be provided in a developmentally appropriate way in order to engage our young learners with an emphasis on learning through play. All students with IEPs will receive an IVLP to determine how their special education needs will be met virtually. We will maintain a team based approach supported by classroom teachers, therapists, and paraprofessionals in partnership with our families. Staff will provide opportunities for collaboration, coaching, and consultation to support parents during virtual learning.

    Gifted Programming

    Gifted programming will continue for students participating in virtual learning.  

    The Gifted program will maintain the current mixed-grade structure (3-4 classes and 5-6 classes).  Each class will be taught by a gifted program teacher.

    To the degree possible, students will continue to experience the program’s main instructional units and activities.  When a unit cannot be adapted to the virtual format, an alternative will be substituted.