Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Resources

Communication Sent Out to Parents Via Email

Soft Closure 7 – 12th Grading
April 16, 2020

Soft closure brings challenges to students, parents, and teachers alike. Whether it be at-home student packets or online learning, this method of delivering instruction has its limitations, especially for a classical, whole group instruction school.  These limitations make it difficult to assess Xavier students in the same way that in-class teaching is assessed.  We want parents to be assured that Xavier administration and teachers understand this and are making necessary adjustments to allow for this change.  At the secondary level 7 – 12th grades, final second-semester grades will not be more than one letter grade less than the 3rd quarter grade unless the student did not participate actively during the 4th quarter grading period. These students’ grades will be brought to the Assistant Head of schools, and after conferencing with their teacher, a decision will be made as to their final grade.   Also, secondary students will be required to take final exams, however, the format will be different than what students have been used to in the regular classroom.  Final tests will be no more than an hour and if the test covers more material than a unit it will be open book.

Parents and students can expect meaningful feedback from their teachers when the assignment lends itself to this.  It is our aim that if your child does his/her best then the 4th quarter grade should not negatively impact the final second-semester grade.  Xavier secondary teachers are working hard to keep content manageable for families.  Our teachers understand that due dates may need to be flexible if students are experiencing difficulties or technology challenges. It is important that parents reach out to teachers with questions concerning their student’s progress and/or struggles. 

It is our goal to provide learning opportunities without causing major stress for students and families. We encourage students to do their best, but not feel overbearing pressure. We realize that when we begin in the fall, teachers will need to fill in content gaps caused by our current situation. 

Thank you for your efforts and contributions to help us deliver distance-learning instruction to your child.

Soft Closure Grading for Grades K-6
April 16, 2020

Soft closure brings challenges to students, parents, and teachers alike. Whether it be at-home student packets or online learning, this method of delivering instruction has its limitations, especially for a classical, whole group instruction school.  These limitations make it difficult to assess Xavier students in the same way that in-class teaching is assessed.  We want parents to be assured that Xavier administration and teachers understand this and are making necessary adjustments to allow for this change.  Although we will still be attaching grades (gr. 3-6) to student work, there will be a softer, more generous approach to grading.  Some at-home work will be assessed based on completion only while skills students have been taught the first three quarters prior to soft closure will be held to a stronger standard in order to provide constructive feedback.  Final second-semester grades will remain at least as they were at the end of the 3rd quarter grade unless the student did not participate actively during the 4th quarter grading period. For grades K-2, meeting expectations will be determined by using homework packets.  Homework packets will be analyzed for completeness, ability to follow directions and understanding of the concepts that are being reviewed.

Parents and students can expect meaningful feedback from both teachers and their paraprofessional graders when the assignment lends itself to this.  It is our desire that your children maintain their existing academic status as well as grow in some areas of content where possible in the current setting.  Xavier teachers are working hard to make this happen while keeping content manageable for families.  It is important that parents reach out to teachers with questions concerning their student’s progress and/or struggles.  

It is our goal to provide learning opportunities without causing major stress for students and families. We encourage you to do your best, but not feel overbearing pressure. We realize that when we begin in the fall, teachers will need to fill in fourth-quarter instruction and content gaps caused by our current situation.  

Optional: (we make available on a regular basis, but it will not be scored or tracked)

  • All Fine Arts content
  • Teacher provided enrichment activities

Student Work and 2020-2021 Calendar
4/8/2020

Dear Xavier Parents/Guardians,

I want to thank all of you for your help in making our packet pick-up and drop-off a success on Monday.  Everything that was collected is being stored until Thursday (tomorrow).  The material is stored away from contact with staff members for a period of time based on a suggestion from local health officials in an effort to help prevent the spread of the virus.  Teachers will get access to all of the dropped off material on Thursday and will then begin the process of grading and providing feedback.

Due to the fact that there is a delay in teacher access to the material submitted by students, all assignments that are turned in will not necessarily be graded and returned by the following Monday.  In other words there may be somewhat of a lag in returning student work.

In the March school board meeting the Xavier Board of Directors approved the calendar for school year 2020-2021.  This calendar will be uploaded onto the school website in the next few days and I will send out a message through the Remind app to let you know when it is posted.  I would like to thank all that provided input and feedback to assist the Board in making a decision.

Sincerely, 

Gary Moon

Head of Schools

Xavier Charter School


 

Important School Update 
4/6/2020
Dear Xavier Family,
This afternoon, the Idaho State Board of Education unanimously voted to extend the current soft closures for Idaho schools until the end of the school year.  They did leave the door open to return to face-to-face school if  local health officials say it is safe to return.  Xavier Charter School is prepared and planning to continue to deliver distance learning for our students for the remainder of this school year unless circumstances were to improve.
Thank you again for your support and feedback.

K-6 Teacher and Classified Employee of the Month
4/6/2020

Xavier Families,

We are starting a new month and normally we hand out our Teacher and Classified Employee of the Month awards on the first Monday.  We want to continue with this tradition today.  We have entered April differently than ever before, we have been forced into a soft closure and distance learning with very little notice to prepare and ready ourselves.  Our staff has worked extremely hard to start delivering instruction to our students in a manner that is as smooth as possible.  Each of our staff members could easily be identified as the Teacher or Classified Employee of the Month and I would like to thank each and every one of them!

With that said, we do have award winners for April.  The winners for April come from nominations from their colleagues.  The following teacher and classified employees are the award winners this month for grades K-6.  Congratulations to both of them, the comments and descriptions that appear also come from their peers.

Elementary Teacher of the Month: Mrs. Karen Crider, First Grade

Mrs. Crider has been teaching for more than 40 years 🙂  She has been teaching so many years that she has taught some moms, dads, aunts and uncles of some of her current and recent students 🙂

Karen loves her students.  She works so hard to make sure that her students learn.  She spends hours and hours creating worksheets to extend the curriculum so her students will be prepared for 2nd grade.  She works tirelessly through the summer to find specific picture books to read to her students for every SAT word of the week. Mrs. Crider has taken our 1st grade reading curriculum and broken it down so we can teach the students who need extra support at a slower pace, if this wasn’t done many students wouldn’t be ready to read in 2nd grade. Teaching 1st graders is extremely challenging and Karen knows what it takes.  She is tough and strict, but so loving and kind and will do whatever it takes to prepare her students.

Mrs. Crider’s students love her.  Her students love her because she shares stories with them, she shares jokes from Alexa with them, they know what she likes and doesn’t like, they know the name of her dog Gracie, they know all about David (her son) and Brian (her husband), they know she has high expectations and they strive to meet those expectations.  She recently had a high school senior honor her on Senior Night at his high school football game, even this young man remembers his Mrs. Crider.

Karen is a Master Teacher.

Classified Employee of the Month: Trina Rowlands, Third and Fourth Grade Paraprofessional

During our regular school year Mrs. Rowlands is amazing!  She does a marvelous job working with our kids and making sure they are showing growth. She is willing to try any of the remediation strategies we throw her way and she is able to come up with strategies on her own.  During our distance learning, she has proven she is just as valuable.  Mrs. Rowlands has been willing to put packets together, scan documents, and try our distance reading and math meetings. Trina is also doing a daily read aloud on Class Dojo so the kids can see her face and bring comfort to them.  Mrs. Rowlands is a vital player in the Xavier Family!  

Congratulations Karen and Trina and thank you for all you do!!!

Gary Moon

Head of Schools

Xavier Charter School  


First Week Wrap-up – 4/4/2020
Dear Parents/Guardians, 
We have completed our first week of distance learning during this unique time in our history.  I want to issue a very sincere thank you to our staff, students, and families for making the transition to distance learning as smooth as possible.  We have learned a great deal in one week’s time and are using the valuable feedback provided from students and families to grow and improve how we deliver instruction.  
This is a reminder that packet pick-up and drop-off is Monday from 7:30 am to 5:30 pm.  Each teacher in grades K-6 will have a box to drop off packets from the week we just finished and a box of packets for next week to pick up.  Our 5th and 6th grade teachers will also have a receptacle to drop off science fair materials. Packets for students in grades 7-12 that requested hard copies will be available during the same times.  We will have staff members on site to assist as needed.  Please remember to follow all social distancing guidelines.
We are hopeful that we will get direction from the State Board of Education regarding how long we will remain in a soft closure.  Their meeting is late Monday afternoon and we will pass on any new information by Tuesday morning.
Thank you again for your support and the privilege of working with your children.  Please continue to reach out to our teachers and let them know how the process is working.
Sincerely  
Gary Moon 
Head of Schools
Xavier Charter School 

School building access and hours of operation
 
Dear Xavier Families,
We will be implementing new school building access protocols and criteria starting immediately in an effort to follow the Governor’s Stay-At-Home order and still provide our essential service of delivering instruction.   We wish to do our part to slow the spread of the virus and limit exposure to our Xavier families and school staff.  All use of the building will be limited to essential purposes only and we will be reducing our office hours effective today.
Mondays will continue to be the pick-up and drop-off day for hard copy packets.  When the weather cooperates this will be set up outside and if weather does not allow there will be labeled tables in the lobby area.  We will have a small number of staff members on site Mondays to aid in the process.  Please respect social distance guidelines and use the hand sanitizing stations upon entering the building.  Packets will be available for pick-up and drop-off on Mondays only from 7:30 AM to 5:30 PM.  Our teachers and administrators will continue to be available through email Monday-Friday from 7:30 AM to 3:30 PM.
The building will be closed to the public on all other days.  The office will be open for phone calls during the following new office hours:
Monday 7:30 AM to 3:00 PM
Tuesday – Friday 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM
If there is a need for a meeting it will be through a phone call, virtual meeting, and in rare cases face-to-face by appointment only.
We wish to thank all of you for helping to respect and maintain the safety of our Xavier families and school staff.
Gary Moon
Head of Schools
Xavier Charter School

XCS Update 3-31-20 

Good Morning Xavier Families,

We were able to get day one of distance learning under our belt.  We have already learned a lot as we knew we would.  Communication and feedback between students, parents, and teachers is extremely important as we work to improve and refine our procedures.  I want to remind everyone again that all of our teaching staff is available on school days by email from 7:30 am to 3:30 pm.

It was great to see so many of you yesterday even if it was from a “social distance”.  Please let your students know that we miss them all very much.


3/26/2020

Update for 7 -12 Parents/ Guardians,

Since our secondary students were in school almost two weeks ago all of us have had to face many challenges to our daily lives. Despite all the changes, continuing your child’s education is our priority and it is our plan that the 7-12 educational program will be delivered online through the Google Apps with a majority of the instruction provided through Google classroom.

Before Monday your child’s second semester teachers will invite your child into their Google Classroom.  We anticipate that this transition to online learning will present us with many issues that we will work hard to resolve in a timely manner.  Patience by everyone will be very much appreciated. 

We recognize that communication is critical to ensuring that this program move forward as smoothly as possible.  We will have office staff in the building during regular school hours.  Teachers will not be on campus unless it is for essential purposes, but they can be reached through email during school hours.  Staff emails are conveniently located on the School webpage under the “About Us” tab.  Your child will be able to contact teachers either through Google Classroom or email. If you have any questions about Google Classroom please contact the teacher.  If you have received a Chromebook from the school and are having problems with it please Contact Mr. Bennett jbennett@xaviercharter.org.

We understand that learning online for your child may take some time to get used to.  Our teachers will start slowly during the first two days.  As the teachers move into more content instruction by Wednesday it is our plan that the teacher instruction per class per day for secondary students will be around 35 minutes.  This does not include the time for homework. Class lessons are recordable and therefore students may do their classwork at anytime.

Starting out there will not be two-way video conferencing between students and teachers. We are concerned that this type of instruction will cause many logistical and technological issues for families.   Interactions between students and teachers will take place through discussion boards and chat rooms.  Students are asked to use email as a last resort.   If teacher instructional videos are presented in Google Classroom, the videos will be files that students can access at anytime.

Grading will continue for secondary students according to our current letter grade and 4-point GPA system.  We ask parents to help monitor students to ensure that their work is their own.

The State Department of Education has confirmed that all testing, including the SAT and ISATS will be waived this year.  The decision to provide the opportunity for Juniors to take the SAT at the State’s expense is pending.  We will also be flexible with students who have been unable to finish their senior project due to the COVID-19 restrictions.

If your child needs materials from their classrooms, we will allow students accompanied by a staff member to retrieve what they need on Monday, 3/30 8:00 AM -6:00 PM.  Students will need to disinfect their hands as they enter the building and as they leave through a different exit point.  No more than 10 will be allowed in the building.

For students who have indicated on the “Access to Technology Survey” that they do not have internet connectivity, the teachers will have a packet of assignments available for curbside pick up in front of the school on Monday morning between 8:00 AM – 11:00 AM.  Please return the completed assignments to the school the following Monday.  The only exception to this plan will be for next week.  The first assignment packets will start for 7 – 12 students on Wednesday morning.

I know this is a lot of information and I’m sure there will be situations that come up that I have not addressed in this email. 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact me.


Distance Learning Update for K-6 Families
3/26/2020
 
Dear K-6 Families,
We are nearing the time that spring break ends and, as you know, it is going to look far different than in previous years.  Prior to the break, when school was closed to students, our staff worked incredibly hard to come up with two weeks of emergency distance learning plans in the events schools were closed after the break.  Thank goodness we did that, we will be ready to start providing instruction on Monday, March 30th through a school-work packet system for the first two weeks.  We plan to implement some electronic classroom components as we move forward but will utilize the prepared packets for the week of March 30th and April 6th for all required work.  Some teachers have started to set up electronic classrooms and may use them for informational purposes only at this time. 
We have staff members spending the next two days following up with families that did not complete the technology survey and with families that we needed more information from.  This will help us move forward with a blended packet/electronic format.
In addition to the school-work packets, our teachers will be sending short video messages home once or twice a week so students can have some visual contact with their teachers.
The school-work packets will be handed out every Monday.  The completed work from the first packets and the packets for the new week will be due and handed out on the following Monday. In other words, the packets picked up on March 30th are due on April 6th.  We are following CDC guidelines and we will not be able to grade the work that was returned immediately due to the virus being able to live on paper and plastic for short period of time.  There may be some lag time in returning graded work.   
Many of our teachers have reached out to see if you would like the packets for your students delivered through email or if you prefer to pick them up weekly from school.  We understand the burden this may put on you in regards to having a printer or using up your ink cartridges so we will have hard copies for ALL students available on Monday, March 30th. 
On March 30th if the weather is favorable we will have tables set up outside near the front doors with boxes labeled by grade level and teacher.  If the weather is not on our side the tables will be in the lobby.  Each student will have a packet in the appropriate box to take home on the 30th of March.  On April 6th there will be both a drop-off box to return completed work and a pick-up box for the new weekly packet labeled by grade level and teacher.  
This is a new form of learning for all of us and we are looking forward to working out the bugs as it is implemented.  I am asking for understanding and patience from all involved as we face challenges that are sure to arise. Communication between teachers and families is going to be critical to our ability to refine the process and best meet student needs.  We had originally asked our teachers to be on campus for three hours a day when we first came up with our plan.  Since the Governor’s Stay-At-Home order we are now asking our teachers to do as much from home as possible.  With that said, all teachers will be available through their school email from 7:30 AM -3:30 PM on all school days.   Please reach out to your teachers with questions and to provide feedback.
Please tell your children that we miss them and we are excited to get started.
Sincerely,
Gary Moon
Head of Schools
Xavier Charter School
Head of Schools Letter 3-26-20