CCS extends virtual school enrollment period, lifts cap

3 options given for attendance

By AUTUMN HUGHES
Posted 7/24/20

Parents interested in enrolling their children in Cleveland City Schools’ virtual school have more time to make that decision.

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CCS extends virtual school enrollment period, lifts cap

3 options given for attendance

Posted

Parents interested in enrolling their children in Cleveland City's Virtual School have more time to make that decision.

In a called meeting Thursday morning, the Cleveland Board of Education approved extending the application deadline for the Virtual School of Cleveland until 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 28.

In addition, the previous virtual school enrollment cap was eliminated, opening enrollment to all families interested in choosing an online, virtual education for the 2020-21 school year. Previously, the enrollment was capped at 300 students.

Director of Schools Dr. Russell Dyer made the recommendations to the board.

“We felt it really important to move quickly,” Dyer said of the changes to the school system’s offerings. “We said the plan would be very fluid and it is so fluid we needed to meet.”

Dyer recommended lifting the 5% capacity limit of 300 students “to really an unlimited number — we have the capacity to do that, we have the interest to do that.”

Another change to the initial back-to-school plan introduced earlier this month is that families may switch from the Virtual School of Cleveland to the Traditional In-School model for the second semester or the Traditional In-school families may choose the Virtual School of Cleveland for the second semester, as well. Families can register online at clevelandschools.org/enrollment.

If you have already completed the online registration process, you may not go back into the system and change your option yourself. Instead, email Cleveland City Schools at uchelp@clevelandschools.org and include in the email the option you wish to choose, your child’s legal name, your name and your phone number.

Currently around 22% of families currently registered have indicated an interest in the virtual school, Dyer said. In addition, 79% of new, kindergarten and returning students have registered online so far.

“This change … will give parents the flexibility at semester break to choose one option or another,” Dyer said, adding if parents don’t select an option by July 28, the only option available to them is the in-school model.

Cleveland City Schools Supervisor of Secondary Education Dr. Jeff Elliott outlined the school year options available to parents and students:

• Traditional/In-Person: Students will attend school in buildings on a daily basis. Students will be receiving direct instruction in their scheduled classes, much as they have in years past, with protective measures in place due to COVID-19.

The COVID-19 implications are low to moderate community spread (with consultation with local health authorities).

The schedule is defined by each school and posted to the school website, the same as in years past.

• Traditional/At-Home: Moving instruction designed for in-person teaching and learning to an online environment. Students and teachers will follow a daily schedule and login for lessons. Students who do not have connectivity will be provided with a print option.

The COVID-19 implications are moderate to significant community spread with consultation with local health authorities).

Elementary school students will follow a common master schedule throughout the day. The at-home learning schedule will include time for synchronous and asynchronous instruction (Google Classroom). That schedule is available online at www.clevelandschools.org.

Elliott said the school system set the same daily schedule for grades K-3, so that students from different schools are on same timeline each day — if a friend or relative looks after students, having the same schedule for all schools makes it easier.

“This gives families some guidance on what is expected on a daily basis,” Elliott said.

Grades 6-8 will follow the bell schedule, and high school will be on a block schedule in the event Traditional/At-Home instruction is warranted.

• Virtual School of Cleveland: Students are enrolled in a full-time rigorous, comprehensive academic program. A Tennessee-certified, CCS teacher will provide instruction using an online curriculum that can be self-paced by the learner. Enrollment is intended for motivated students who desire instruction within the home. The Virtual School calendar will follow the CCS academic calendar.

The COVID-19 implications are the Virtual School of Cleveland will not be affected by community spread.

Schedules will be created in the beginning of the year with a weekly pacing chart to guide instruction. Teachers recommend timeline to assist the student with time management and provide regular feedback to students. Virtual school instruction is primarily self-paced and asynchronous.

The board also approved Dyer’s recommendation on students in Grades 3-12 wearing a mask/face covering that covers their mouth and nose when 6-foot social distancing is not possible. Students in pre-kindergarten through Grade 2 are encouraged to wear a mask/face covering.

According to the new procedure:

• Mask breaks shall occur throughout the day. Breaks should occur when students can be 6 feet apart and ideally outside. Masks may also be removed while eating and drinking at designated times. Masks are also not necessary when 6-foot social distancing within the school building is maintained.

• Masks/face coverings should be provided by the student/family, but extra disposable face masks will be made available by the school for students who need them, as supplies remain available.

• Masks/face coverings are required to be worn by everyone on the bus during school bus transportation.

• Masks/face coverings will be required whenever the county active cases remain above .25%. When the active cases fall below this level, masks will be strongly encouraged when social distancing is not possible for employees and students.

• Individual teachers may require the use of a mask in their classroom if they have documented underlying health reasons.

For more information about Cleveland City Schools’ Re-Entry and Reopening Guide, visit clv.city/reopening.

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