Through your JCEA questions and answers link we have inquired and received answered for the following questions. If you are not a member of JCEA please click here.
Question: If someone does not want to participate in teaching online what happens?
We need to serve our kids and community during this time and continue to deliver learning to the best of our abilities. Jeffco Public Schools considers this a moral and professional obligation to the community’s children. Teachers are contracted for 185 days with Jeffco Public Schools. If a teacher fails to work on a contracted day where they have not taken leave, then this would be considered leave without pay. Failure to participate (without taking the appropriate leave) would also be considered insubordination and neglect of duty, which are grounds for dismissal.
Question: Do employees have the ability to use leave or sick time?Yes.
Employees may use sick or other leave time as is the case under normal school procedures. Similarly, teachers should plan for how instruction and lessons will get to students during their absence (more info is forthcoming re: whether or not “coverage” for an absence is necessary).
Questions: Do we have to log hours?
The district is not requiring this. Teachers are salaried professionals.
Question: What are non-classroom teachers being asked to do during online learning?
It depends on the role and the needs of the other staff, students, families, and community. Instructional coaches have been partnering with our central TOSA’s to organize the support teachers are requesting. Digital teacher librarians are supporting students, teachers, and families in transitioning to remote learning environments. Central TOSA’s are facilitating the online sessions and training that teachers have been participating in. For the remainder of this week, all central TOSAs are organized around supporting teachers to be successful in a remote learning environment. These responsibilities are changing and shifting almost daily and we should expect that to continue for some time as we all work to figure this out.
Question: Do teachers need to take attendance and give grades?
Yes. However, “attendance” may look different. It could be that the student is counted as being in attendance during some pre-arranged session where the class would meet online – this is a “synchronous” approach. It also might be counted by evidence that a student has engaged with the lesson and completed a task – this is an “asynchronous” approach. Grades for assignments might look very similar to what teachers do normally. Dr. Glass wrote a recent blog post on this subject, which may give people some things to consider.
Question: What additional PD (virtual) will be provided for teachers struggling with online learning?
This is in development and we will be seeking input from teaching staff on what kind of professional development teachers would like to have and the best mechanism by which to provide that. Additionally, this link will connect teachers to self-paced online learning to support remote teaching and learning. This link is a list of Schoology group codes to engage with other teachers in the same grade level and/or content areas. Many teachers and central-based TOSAs are sharing ideas in this setting. Input from JCEA on what teachers need most would be helpful – we want to support our teachers in this new remote learning model as we know it is a learning experience for everyone.
Question: What should educators do if their principal is not following district protocols?
We would need more clarity on the “protocol” not being followed to answer. This is a very different school environment and some “protocols” may not make sense. Please send specific cases and we are happy to evaluate those. For the most part, we are hearing great things about what teachers are doing and we appreciate that. Please continue to use the JCEA question form to alert any issues.
Question: How will IEPS be handled in a virtual environment?
To the extent possible, we are working to deliver the services required under the IEP remotely. In the places where this is not possible, we may have to provide services later once the infectious disease threat has passed.
Question: When will we know when we are going back?
As of now, the state is requiring schools to remain physically closed through April 17th. While other districts are just now trying to figure out what remote learning looks like, we are ahead of the game by knuckling down now.
Question: How will we know if we’ve had a positive test in our school community?
Director of Health Services, Julie Wilkins, will be in charge of handling communications to staff members.
Question: Should we have to document all work and student work in a spreadsheet and in our calendars?
A teacher may do this, but what is described here sounds impractical and cumbersome, although we don’t know the details on this from the question. Teachers should have some way of accounting for student attendance and student work, just as they would in a regular classroom setting. However, there is flexibility in how that happens. Teachers should devise their own systems, work with peers to design systems, or work with their school on these items. The models of remote learning are so diverse that it would be impractical to standardize some kind of documentation system. The district & JCEA leadership are working on what a long-term, systemic approach would look like.
Question: Do I have any options as we move forward with Remote Learning besides trying to meet all IEP meetings on WebX?
You can certainly use WebEx, or some other virtual meeting platform if that suits your needs better. The floor is also open for suggestions and we also encourage staff to try different different solutions and develop innovations for solving known and unforeseen problems that may emerge as we continue down this path of remote learning.
Question: What kind of time will we be given to develop 3 more weeks of online learning activities, resources, materials? It’s incredibly time consuming.
The district is committed to giving teachers Monday’s to get trained up and no student contact. Students will learn for the foreseeable future on Tuesday-Fridays.
Question: Is there any set time teachers need to engage students in learning? I’ve been chatting with a few other teachers and my schedule looks insane by comparison.
There is no set time from the district – the intent is to provide teachers’ flexibility and professional discretion. We expect all teachers to be engaged in delivering professional and quality learning experiences for students. This can look different from building to building and even teacher to teacher. Dr. Glass’ post on synchronous and asynchronous learning may be useful to consider.