About a year ago Glendale Unified School District (GUSD) returned from a long two week Spring break. The second, unplanned week of vacation was extra preparation time for teachers to get ready to do remote learning in response to the pandemic.
Today, nearly a year later to the day, GUSD is starting to welcome students back to campus. They’ve given the parents the choice to send their children back to campus through the end of the year, presuming there are no flare ups of the coronavirus.
Today they’re dramatically changing their schedule and welcoming back portions of kindergarten through third grade students. Fourth through sixth grades will be invited back in a few weeks.
Students returning to campus are broken up into two groups. One will be on campus on Monday/Tuesday and the other on Thursday/Friday. Everyone will be remote on Wednesdays (presumably with room cleanings between the groups). Synchronous instruction will be from 8:20 AM to about noon and remote, asynchronous instruction will go until about 2:30 PM. About 55-60% of students have apparently opted to be back on campus and that number broken in half will leave about 30% of a grade class in physical attendance for their two days a week.
If I recall correctly, about two weeks ago the CDC changed their guidance for children and decreased the social distance recommendation from 6 feet to 3 feet. I’m not sure if GUSD is following this new recommendation.
Evie’s fourth grade Japanese dual immersion class was broken up between her tortoise (カメ ) group and the cranes (鶴（つる)). They’ve now been reshuffled and renamed the “roomies” and the “zoomies” depending on whether their groups will be attending in person or remotely, respectively. Evie will be a zoomie for the remainder of the school year.
While it might be nice for more socialization and a change in routine, it seems far easier and less stress with our routine to simply stay remote for the balance of the school year. There were likely to be only 15 or so days that she would attend in person given their structure and schedule. Erring on the side of caution, and a bit on convenience, remote seems a better option until the fall when a higher proportion of people are vaccinated.