South Orangetown Central School District

Distance Learning Plan

SOCSD is asking parents for feedback regarding their children’s distance learning experience. Input will inform efforts to enhance and improve the educational program. Deadline is June 1. Click for the survey: English | Español

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SOCSD’s Distance Learning Plan provides for students to continue their learning through live sessions, pre-recorded videos, assignments, learning resources and weekly office hours.

Developing technology-infused classrooms in which students actively engage by taking responsibility for their own learning has been an integral part of our District’s curriculum and instruction work for nearly a decade. As a result, our students are familiar with many of the learning resources their teachers are using and how to access them.

Following is how our Distance Learning Plan will work.

Timeline

Through Executive Order 202.11, Governor Cuomo has extended the mandatory, statewide closure of public schools to at least April 15. SOCSD’s Distance Learning Plan begins March 31 and will continue for the duration of the mandated school closure.

Tappan Zee High School Distance Learning Plan

  • Students will engage in teacher-led, teacher-supported and independent learning in all courses.
  • On March 31, teachers will contact students to reconnect and prepare for instruction to begin on April 1.
  • Each Friday, students will receive a schedule of live sessions or assignments from their teachers for the following week.
  • TZHS students must log into the TZHS Google Classroom by 12PM, Monday through Friday, to submit the daily attendance Google Form in order to be marked present each day. If a TZHS student is absent from Distance Learning on any school day, parents must report their child’s absence by sending an email to [email protected].
  • TZHS has been a 1:1 technology school for several years; all students were issued school Chromebooks to use for the duration of their high school careers. A limited number of wireless hotspots are being distributed to high school students in need who do not have internet access at home.

South Orangetown Middle School Distance Learning Plan

  • Students will engage in teacher-led, teacher-supported and independent learning in all courses.
  • On March 31, teachers will contact students to reconnect and prepare for instruction to begin on April 1.
  • Each Friday, students will receive a schedule of live sessions or assignments from their teachers for the following week.
  • SOMS students must log into the SOMS Google Classrooms by 12PM, Monday through Friday, to submit the daily attendance Google Form in order to be marked present each day. If a SOMS student is absent from Distance Learning on any school day, parents must report their child’s absence by sending an email to [email protected].
  • Distribution of a limited number of Chromebooks and wireless hotspots to students in need began before schools closed on March 13. SOMS is contacting families directly to arrange for pickup.

William O. Schaefer and Cottage Lane Elementary Schools Learning Plan

  • Students will engage in teacher-led, teacher-supported and independent learning.
  • On March 31, teachers will contact students to reconnect and prepare for instruction to begin on April 1.
  • Learning packets were backpacked home with all K-2 students on March 13 to cover the period of April 1-15.
  • WOS and CLE students must log into their homeroom teachers’ Google Classroom each day, Monday through Friday. A daily attendance Google Form will be posted in each homeroom teacher’s online classroom; students must sign in and submit that form by 12PM to be marked present each day. If a student is absent from Distance Learning on any school day, parents must report their child’s absence by sending an email to [email protected] (WOS) or [email protected] (CLE).
  • Distribution of a limited number of Chromebooks and wireless hotspots to students in need is in progress. Schools are contacting families directly to arrange for pickup.

Special Education Services

Administrators and staff have been working diligently to develop plans to maintain consistency of special education services during this time. We are committed to doing our best to address our students’ needs remotely, but it is possible that not all typical school-based instruction and special education supports can be feasibly implemented through a distance learning model during the present health crisis.

Special education and related services which may have been provided in a group setting may have to be provided individually or in a smaller group size. This may result in a reduction of the contact time between the provider and an individual student as indicated on the student’s IEP. Special education and related services may be provided directly with the provider on the telephone, by virtual meeting and/or using computer-based instruction, and/or instruction using written materials or assistive technology.

Special education and related service providers will be in contact with families the week of March 30. Each student’s case manager will remain their primary contact throughout this period of distance learning. Establishing a primary case worker-to-family communication method is our team’s primary goal for the first week of distance learning.

We remain committed to providing parents and guardians with a meaningful opportunity to communicate their feedback and participate in the ongoing implementation and development of their children’s Section 504 plans or IEPs. Parents are encouraged to contact their child’s case manager or related service provider with questions or concerns regarding the special education support being provided during this period of distance learning. Should there be additional concerns after having spoken with the case manager and/or related service provider, parents should contact Executive Director of Pupil Personnel Services Karen Tesik, Ed.D. at [email protected] or (845) 680-1025.

Additionally, Section 504 or CSE Requested Review meetings may be scheduled, if necessary, via telephone or videoconference via Zoom, an online platform. To request that a 504 Team or CSE meeting be scheduled, parents should contact their child’s case manager to discuss their concern. Zoom will also be used for Annual Reviews. Parents will receive a link in the invitation for their child’s meeting and may connect via video, audio only or use a call-in number to participate via conference call. All of the information parents need to know to connect in the manner they prefer will be included in the email. Parents are urged to check their email prior to their child’s meeting.

All meetings that were cancelled due to the closure will be rescheduled. Our plan is to have all meetings that are scheduled after April 10 proceed as scheduled. Parents will be provided a copy of the meeting packet via email prior to the meeting, ensuring their ability to meaningfully participate. Parents who have a meeting scheduled for after April 10 and are unable to participate, are asked to notify the Pupil Personnel Services Office in advance by calling (845) 680-1025 or emailing Lillian Croyle at lcro[email protected].

With regard to initial or re-evaluations, if a student has been recommended for an evaluation which requires a face-to-face assessment or observation, the evaluation will be delayed until school reopens. Evaluations and reevaluations that do not require face-to-face assessments or observations may take place while schools are closed, so long as a student’s parent or legal guardian consents to the re-evaluation or evaluation.

English Language Learners

English Language Learners (ELLs) will participate in grade-level instruction and activities as well as engage in activities to simultaneously develop English language proficiency and content understanding. Our English as a New Language (ENL) team is developing resources and activities to support our ELLs in continuing to read, write and listen to English every day.

REPORT CARDS/GRADING

Second trimester report cards for our elementary students will be sent home by April 3 and will include grades for all work completed as of March 13.

South Orangetown Middle School
The third quarter will end as scheduled on Friday, April 3 and students’ third quarter grades will be based upon work completed through Friday, March 13. Students will have a two-week window to work with their teachers on any work they may be eligible to make up. In addition, teachers may use student work assigned after March 13, if it helps a student’s grade. Report cards will be published on the Parent Portal after April 17.

For the fourth quarter, classes will be graded on a pass/fail basis with the exception of high school credit-bearing courses (Earth Science, Algebra Honors, French I, Italian I, Spanish I, Studio Art and Design and Drawing for Production). This will enable the assessment of mastery of content and skills in a developmentally-appropriate way that takes into consideration the stresses on middle school aged students navigating this pandemic. Teachers will provide additional information to their students regarding fourth quarter assessment.

Tappan Zee High School
The third quarter will end as scheduled on Friday, April 3. Students will have a two-week window to work with their teachers on any work they may be eligible to make up. Teachers may also use student work completed during distance learning, if it helps a student’s grade. Report cards will be published on the Parent Portal after April 17.

Student work completed in the fourth quarter will be graded. TZHS will work to support students and families with resolving challenges associated with the distance learning requirement so that all students are able to achieve to their fullest potential. The main objective guiding the fourth quarter grading system is to recognize effort as well as student mastery of content and skills in their respective courses. Administrators are sensitive to the importance of grades in a high school student’s career and, at the same time, are seeking to balance that against the stresses on students navigating this unprecedented situation. Teachers will provide additional information to their students regarding fourth quarter assessment.

June Regents Exams have been canceled. NYSED will issue official guidance regarding graduation requirements on April 7.