A team of about 100 administrators, teachers, teaching assistants, community leaders, including Board of Education President Sue Kerr, has worked collaboratively since early July to develop the District’s teaching and learning plan for the 2020-21 school year. This large group is made up of subcommittees focused on specific grade bands and programs. The committees continue to meet regularly, in the evenings and on weekends, to work on the best implementation of each instructional approach for this school year.
In late July, after a thorough study of state and federal health and education guidance, and surveys of our staff and families, School District U-46 announced all students would begin the 2020-21 school year remotely. A July 27th Board of Education resolution approved the reopening plans for grades Pre-K through 12 and administration continues to give updates to our Board of Education during each regularly scheduled meeting. The latest update is always posted on the front page of u-46.org/covid, and all BOE presentations can be found here under the Board of Education section of the District website.
Timeline of Decisions and Communication
Aug. 24: District re-opened for teaching and learning, implementing our Distance Learning Program for our K-12th grade students before launching similar programming for our preschoolers a week later, on August 31.
Sept. 23: Questionnaire sent to parents asking if they want their students to remain in full-time Distance Learning Program this school year or participate in our Hybrid Model, a combination of Distance Learning and limited in-person instruction, when it becomes available by grade level. All middle and high school students will continue with Distance Learning through the second quarter which ends Jan. 15, 2021.
Oct. 13: Communication to Pre-K-2 Families about the Pre-K-2 Learning Models available by Oct. 26.
Oct. 15-Oct. 22: District and site-based communication to Pre-K-2 Families about safety measures, transportation, school meals and snacks, dismissal and arrival, school procedures and more.
Oct. 22: Student-Teacher assignments shared with families with children in Pre-K through 2nd grades.
Oct. 22: Delay to in-person instruction announced.
Nov. 2: Hybrid Model plan for students in 3rd through 6th grades outlined in presentation for Board of Education.
Nov. 9: Hybrid and Small Schools Model program begin for students in Pre-K through 2nd grade under new timeline.
Nov. 16: Middle school students with special needs enrolled in self-contained cross categorical classes invited to attend classes in their building two days per week.
Nov. 16: High School students enrolled in fine arts courses that require in-person instruction to utilize specialized equipment or perform in an ensemble in order to demonstrate mastery toward standards will be invited back into their building one day a week, starting this week.
Nov. 16: Students enrolled in CTE courses that require students to return prior to the start of second semester in order to complete the number of lab hours required to earn an industry certification will be invited back into their building one day a week, starting this week.
Nov. 16: Some students enrolled in the DREAM Academy will be invited to attend classes in-person several days a week, starting this week.
Nov. 16: The Kane County Health Department provides guidance that U-46 take an “adaptive pause,” effective Monday, Nov 23 and extending through Friday, Dec. 4. An adaptive pause under the state’s COVID-19 mitigation plans means that all students return to distance learning while there is a substantial transmission of cases in a region. This means all students, including those students in grades 3rd through 6th that were scheduled to return for hybrid on Nov. 30, will remain or return to a strictly distance learning format from Nov. 23 through at least Dec. 4. Read Superintendent Sanders' letter on the subject here.
Dec. 1: Superintendent Sanders annouces the decision to keep all U-46 students learning remotely through winter break and provides updated dates, by grade band, on when students can return for in-person instruction. Read Superintendent Sanders' letter on the subject here.
Dec. 21 - Jan. 1: Winter break, no classes.
Jan. 4, 2021: Distance Learning program scheduled to resume for all Pre-K through 12th grade students.
Jan. 11: Students in Pre-K through 6th grade, whose parents have selected the Hybrid Model, scheduled to return for limited in-person instruction. Read details here.
Jan. 19: Students in 7th through 10th grade, whose parents have selected the Hybrid Model, scheduled to return for limited in-person instruction. Students in the DREAM Academy also will return on Jan. 19. Read details here.
Jan. 25: Students in 11th and 12th grade, whose parents have selected the Hybrid Model, scheduled to return for limited in-person instruction. Read details here.
Feb. 3: U-46 Secondary Team releases updated grading practices, allowing students additional opportunities to demonstrate evidence of proficiency on learning standards.
Back to School Glossary
Canvas - The U-46 Learning Management System where teachers will be posting and organizing information for their courses. Teachers can post videos, course content, and lessons, and students can access and submit their curriculum assignments. Click here for helpful tutorials on navigating Canvas.
Zoom - The live, online video software that teachers will use for synchronous instruction with their students. The Zoom app has been installed on all U-46 issued Chromebooks, making it easy for students to open meeting links sent by their teacher(s).
Asynchronous instruction - this term refers to teaching and learning that does not occur in the same place or at the same time. Students during these periods might watch a recorded instructional session and complete exercises or may follow written instructions to complete independent learning activities without live interactive instruction. Students may also be able to check in with teachers during “asynchronous instruction” periods.
Synchronous instruction - live simultaneous instruction held at a specified time through Zoom. . The teacher and students will engage in live conversation, and activities as a whole group or in small groups. This time might be used for quizzes, testing, student presentations, and discussions.
Infinite Campus - Our online student information system houses registration, attendance, and performance-level data. Teachers may email their students via Infinite Campus. If you need help finding a username and password, click here.