I hope you and your loved ones are well and making it through these difficult days and weeks in good spirits. I know that’s hard, given how dramatically it has affected our lives and how different our daily schedules are.
I want to share my continued appreciation for the DPS community — so many people have come together to support and strengthen each other. Our students, families, and educators continue to face each new challenge with a spirit of hopefulness, togetherness, and kindness. People have reached out with appreciations and suggestions. Thank you for staying connected to Team DPS!
Things have changed quickly, and every day, it can feel like there is some new thing to deal with. But throughout it all, our top priority continues to be the safety and health of the entire DPS community, which is why we all are doing our part to stay home whenever possible.
I know there are many questions about what remote learning will look like for your children. Our first priority has been supporting equitable access to technology and the internet so that we can continue the learning for all of our students. We know that learning happens best when we have strong relationships, and that’s why we are asking our teachers to look for ways to reach out and connect with their students. Our school teams have been working hard, with central support, to plan for remote instruction based on the needs of their students and families.
Given the short time we’ve had to build these plans, we want to give our schools and teachers a lot of flexibility in adapting to what works best for their students and families and their own personal circumstances. It will likely look different from teacher to teacher and grade to grade, but we are asking everyone to provide grade-specific content for students to engage in daily. We are also including supports for working with and accommodating students with different learning needs. Some learning may happen in real-time, with teachers leading live instruction via video platforms. Other times, teachers may record and post content, and students will access and complete the lessons independently, with teachers available to support learning and answer questions via remote “office” hours.
We recommend limiting screen time for kids in our early childhood education (preschool) programs, since our youngest students learn best from interactive, hands-on experiences. Visit the DPS Early Childhood webpage for ideas and resources, and please reach out to your school for how to support your child’s continued learning.
Next week is the last week of our longer-than-expected spring break. And prior to the launch of remote instruction on April 6 or 7 (depending on the school’s calendar), school team members will be in touch with families with more information about how the remote learning experience will be structured. We encourage families to reach out to their school directly with questions. They can also visit our family resources page for helpful tutorials and online activities.
We know that the move to remote learning will be a bit bumpy and uneven at first. We’ve worked hard to put together a strong plan, and we will continue to get better as we go along.
Thank you for your support, cooperation, and understanding through this longer-than-expected break. We are excited to re-connect with our DPS students as we begin the transition to remote learning. Stay healthy and happy at home!