School Schedules

  • 12. School Schedules

     

    In response to the COVID-19 pandemic the Dobbs Ferry School District has developed a Continuity of Instruction plan for the 2020-2021 school year.  The District’s Continuity of Instruction plan includes contingency planning for three possibilities: 100% in person instruction, 100% remote learning, and a phased-in or hybrid approach.  Throughout our planning and decision making, the District has been relying on NYSDOH guidance and NYSED Reopening Guidance, and soliciting feedback from various stakeholder groups.  The District anticipates that it may be necessary to toggle between these various instructional models as the situation within our school community will be fluid.  We recognize the need to be flexible and nimble in our response and view this planning as our current best thinking that over time will evolve and change as conditions within our community, directives and orders from New York State, and the needs of our students also change.  Regardless of the model of instruction in place, the District may choose to prioritize certain groups of students (e.g., students with disabilities and/or English language learners) with regard to the frequency and duration of in-person instruction based on need.
      

     

    100% In Person

    It is the hope of the District that at some point in the near future we will be able to resume 100% in-person instruction.  This will be possible, however, only when DOH guidelines are revised to no longer require the current social distancing requirements and the District is able to meet any other DOH health and safety requirements that may be in place.  When District schools return to 100% in-person learning, each school will follow its traditional schedule.

     

    100% Remote

    The plan for 100% remote instruction will be implemented in the event that conditions are such that we are unable to open schools for either 100% in-person or a hybrid model of instruction.  The need to shift to a 100% remote learning position may be influenced by a variety of factors including directives from New York State and/or the District’s inability to appropriately staff in-person learning.

     

    The District has identified the following goals for remote learning, which will serve to guide our actions:

    • Maintain student engagement and focus on learning
    • Use a blend of activities, both synchronous and asynchronous, to ensure that content and skills are reinforced and introduced in a variety of ways
    • Provide opportunities for students and families to interact with teachers and other staff using multiple modalities
    • Continue to address the unique learning needs of students
    • Provide ongoing support for students’ social and emotional health
    • Be flexible with regard to students’ developmental needs, independence and readiness
    • Adapt, evolve and innovate as necessary

    At all levels

    • Learning will take place daily.
    • Daily schedules will mirror a regular school day to the greatest extent possible, with breaks as appropriate based on age.
    • Schedules will allow for 60 minutes at the end of each day to provide teachers with the flexibility to meet with students individually and/or in small groups as necessary, collaborate with colleagues, plan instruction, and respond to parent inquiries.
    • One day a week will be designated as a “flexible teaching day” to allow for small group instruction, t-periods, and the provision of related services, limited in-person experiences and SEL planning initiatives.

     

    Remote Learning at the Middle/High School

    • Follow student and teacher regular 9-period day  
    • Follow current “Wednesday” (condensed) Bell Schedule daily
      • 8:12am - 2:20pm
      • 38-minute periods (teachers 5 periods = 190 minutes live daily)
      • 3-minute breaks between periods (passing time)
      • Student lunch and Free Periods (Academic study) as scheduled
      • Teacher lunch, preparation and professional period as scheduled
      • 2:20pm - 3:20pm each day available for flexibility to meet with students individually and/or in small groups as necessary, collaborate with colleagues, plan instruction, and respond to parent inquiries
      • ENL/AIS/Related Services provided as scheduled

     


    Remote Learning at Springhurst

    Support 180 minutes of learning daily, facilitated by a teacher or staff member. (The number of minutes daily will differ based on children's development needs, readiness, independence level.)

     

    • Remote learning activities will take place between 8:30am - 2:00pm
    • May include a combination of the following as appropriate:
      • Direct Instruction
      • Opportunities for Independent Practice 
      • Opportunities for discussion
      • Small Group work
      • Project based learning opportunities
    • Daily learning activities will include:
      • Social and Emotional Learning
      • English Language Arts
      • Mathematics
      • FLES (grades 2-5)
      • Integrated Science and Social Studies (Weekly)
      • Specials (as scheduled): Physical Education, Art, Music, Technology, Library, and Band or Orchestra (if applicable)
    • Planning will incorporate screen and movement breaks
    • Lunch and “recess” time will be scheduled daily
    • To the extent possible schedules will be consistent from day to day
    • Teacher lunch, and preparation period as scheduled
    • 2:00pm - 3:00pm each day available for flexibility to meet with students individually and/or in small groups as necessary, collaborate with colleagues, plan instruction, and respond to parent inquiries
    • ENL/AIS/Related Services provided as scheduled



    Hybrid

    In anticipation of the likelihood that the District will be required to offer a hybrid model of instruction that involves students being on campus at their respective school on a part-time basis, the District engaged in planning around what hybrid models of instruction would best serve our school community.  Like all school districts, the Dobbs Ferry Schools have unique challenges when undertaking such a task. Factors the District considered in making decisions regarding which hybrid model would best serve our needs included student academic needs, student social and emotional needs, student and staff health and safety, and students’ ability to work independently and self manage.  Additional mitigating factors that impacted decision making included the limited availability of classroom space, transportation challenges, student nutrition, related childcare issues and budgetary reality.  

     

    Taking all of the above into consideration, the District is planning for the implementation of a distinct-wide hybrid model of instruction that maximizes our available resources and capacity, while recognizing the uniqueness of students at each of the various grad- level spans.  While initial conversations focused on the feasibility of planning for a consistent alternating day model at all three schools, the District has ultimately settled on a differentiated approach.  As a District, our belief is that different age students have different needs and so our implementation of hybrid models needs to be differentiated as well.  Our hybrid plan at each of the three schools is differentiated with regard to the amount of in-person instruction and support available, and offers the most practical solutions based on what is best for learning and social and emotional well-being given the students’ varying developmental abilities.

     

    Guiding Question (from NYSED) 

    Are the instructional experiences, when considered as a whole, comparable in rigor, scope, and magnitude to a traditionally delivered unit of study?

     

    What the Differentiated Hybrid Model Would Look Like at Each School

     

    High School Student Choice Hybrid Model

    • Students will follow their regular 9-period day and the Wednesday bell schedule (8:12am - 2:20pm) to provide consistent synchronous learning experiences for all
    • All students will have access to the High School building and their teachers 5 days a week
    • A phase in approach in which all students will meet in person with all of their teachers during the first several weeks of school to launch the school year prior to transitioning to off-site.
    • Students will meet in person with their teachers either one-on-one or in small groups throughout each week 
    • Core instruction takes place off-site Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, though students have the choice to work on-site with support 
    • Additional in-person support will be provided based on need, related services, and/or choice as it relates to the individual needs of each student 
    • Both breakfast and lunch services will be available for those who wish to avail themselves of it
    • Wednesdays will be designated as a “Flex” day and will be for asynchronous experiences for students
      • Fitness experiences (PE)
      • Art experiences
      • Science Lab experiences
      • Related Services
      • ENL Services
      • Counseling Groups
      • SEL activities
      • T-Periods and/or small group In-person support  and/or one-on-one support

    • Students will have access to a blend of in-person support and activities five days a week including but not limited to:
      • In-person transitioning experiences for all incoming 9th graders
      • Small group and/or individual counseling 
      • Small group and/or individual extra help (T-Periods)
      • Special Education and Related Services
      • Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
      • ENL Support 
      • Daily department in-person support 
      • Art experiences
      • Hands-on Science Labs
      • Music experiences
      • Advisory (504 contact)
      • Speakers Series during lunch times
      • In-person experiences for “hands-on” electives, including science research, yearbook, computer science, film, Theory of Knowledge, etc.
      • Co-Curricular Club Meetings

    • All on site activities will be managed through a scheduling system such as
      • Pick-A-Time
      • You Can Book Me
      • Sign Up Genius
    • Student Participation in on-campus activities will be monitored by the Assistant Principal, Dean of Students, counseling team, and teachers to ensure equity of access across the student body

     

    • Benefits of this hybrid schedule for High School students:
      • Provides adequate synchronous instructional time to handle the curriculum of high school courses
      • Prioritizes student choice and student agency, allowing students to decide what they want to come to school for and whom they want to see
      • Creates flexibility for teachers and counselors so that blend of in-person and remote experiences can be customized based on student need

     



    Middle School - A/B A/B Model

    • All students will be on campus two days per week
    • Students will be divided into 2 groups and attend school on a split schedule model.   
      • Group 1 attends on Monday/Thursday
      • Group 2 attends on Tuesday/Friday.
    • When on campus, students would follow a 9-period day.  We will use the Wednesday Bell schedule (8:12am - 2:20pm) to align with the High School and shared staff schedules.
    • To allow for cleaning of classrooms, students will be cohorted for several classes.  When cohorted, they will remain in the same room and teachers will rotate to them.  
    • When a change of classes is required, available space in the HS will be utilized to allow MS classrooms to be cleaned.
    • When not on campus, students will complete individual assignments and learning opportunities posted to Google Classroom
    • Additional AIS/Related Services for “off campus” days as necessary
    • Both breakfast and lunch services will be available for those who wish to avail themselves of it
    • Wednesdays will be designated as a “Flex” day and students will not be in attendance
    • The Wednesday Flex day will provide valuable opportunities for teachers to provide related and academic intervention services, meet with students individually and/or in small groups as necessary, collaborate with colleagues, plan instruction, and respond to parent inquiries

     

     

    • Benefits of this hybrid schedule for Middle School students:

     

      • Provides a regular and easily understandable structured schedule, with all students following a fully-scheduled day 2 days per week
      • No more than 3 days in a row between in-person days for students
      • Allows ample time for counseling, small-group work, and individual attention based on student need 

     

     

    Springhurst - AM/PM Model

    • All students will be on campus four days per week (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday)
    • Students will be divided into one of two cohorts (A and B)
    • Students will attend school on an AM/PM model and will be on campus for in-person instruction 2 1/4 hours each day (exact time schedule will differ by grade level and will be communicated once finalized)
    • Cohort A will be on campus during the morning hours and cohort B will be on campus during the afternoon hours.
    • During the portion of the day when they are on campus, students will receive instruction in ELA, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, and SEL
    • During the portion of the day when they are off campus, students will receive instruction remotely in at least one of the following subjects each day: Phys Ed, Art, Music, Technology, Library and/or FLES (grades 2-5) and band or orchestra (if applicable)
    • Both breakfast and lunch services will be available for those who wish to avail themselves of it
    • Bus transportation will be provided for students attending both the morning and afternoon sessions
    • AIS/Related Services will be provided during the off-campus portion of the student day
    • ENL Services will be in-person push-in and/or virtual as scheduling allows
    • OT/PT will be in-person push-in and/or virtual as scheduling allows
    • Speech/Counseling will be in-person push-in and/or virtual as scheduling allows
    • Wednesdays will be designated as a “Flex” day and students will not be in attendance
    • The Wednesday Flex day will provide valuable opportunities for teachers to provide related and academic intervention services, meet with students individually and/or in small groups as necessary, collaborate with colleagues, plan instruction, and respond to parent inquiries

     

    • Benefits of this hybrid schedule for Springhurst students:
      • Allows our youngest students to see their teachers in person for as many days per week as possible
      • Provides a predictable and easily understandable routine for our youngest students
      • Uses remote instruction for activities that are often more engaging and accessible, while using in-person instruction for core academic areas  

     

     

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