SAN JOSE (BCN) — As San Jose public schools get ready for the fall semester, nearly all school districts in the city have sent surveys to determine how parents and students want to return to school.
Eleven out of the 12 school districts have asked their stakeholders, which include parents, students and other education experts, whether they prefer in-person teaching, online learning or a hybrid of the two.
It also asks if parents would send their children to campus at all. The surveys have played a role in how schools plan to reopen in August.
Several districts in the city have not published their survey results:
-San Jose Unified School District will be releasing its survey results by Friday, according to the district. The results will impact the district’s reopening plan for the academic year, which has not been determined yet.
-Mount Pleasant Elementary School District closed its survey on July 10 and said it would release its results in the coming weeks and has not announced official plans for the fall.
Evergreen School District closed its survey on Sunday so that it could begin addressing appropriate staffing, building, and other needs with online or hybrid learning but has not made the survey results public. It also announced on Thursday, following the board of trustees meeting on Wednesday evening, that it would resume with a distance learning model in August and tentatively switch to a hybrid model in January 2021.
-Oak Grove School District conducted a parent survey that closed May 31 inquiring about back to school preferences and any obstacles to online learning. The district did not publicly release their results but will resume in August with distance learning until at least Oct. 5. From then, if it is safe, the district will switch to a hybrid model for TK-sixth grade students. Middle school students will continue to do distance learning until further notice, according to district Superintendent Jose Manzo.
-Cambrian School District also conducted several surveys throughout the summer but did not make the results public. However, survey results influenced the Board of Trustees’ decision on Tuesday to start the new year with distance learning, according to the district.
-Franklin-McKinley School District administered a survey but has not made it public. Based on the results, it is allowing families to choose between a hybrid learning model and a fully online model. The hybrid model splits cohorts into two groups that alternate being on campus. Cohort A will be on campus Mondays and Wednesdays, Cohort B will be on campus Tuesdays and Thursdays and both groups will be online on Friday.
Several other districts have published their results:
-Berryessa Union School District closed its survey on Tuesday and released the results on Wednesday. Of the 2,848 parents who participated in the survey, nearly 80 percent said they were at the very least hesitant to return to school. Of that 80 percent, nearly a third said they would not send their children back to school until a vaccine is available. Sixty-six percent of parents supported a distance learning program.
The Berryessa Union School District Board of Trustees voted on Wednesday to start the new year with a distance learning model and tentatively hope to switch to a hybrid model on Sept. 28, assuming it is safe to do so.
-Alum Rock Union School District administered a survey at the end of May into early June and with responses from 560 staff members, 1250 student parents and 803 students from 3rd to 8th grade. For students, 58 percent picked 1-2 days online with 3-5 days on campus as their first choice, 68 percent picked 3-5 days online and 1-2 days on campus as their second choice and 67 percent of students chose online learning as their last choice. Parents had similar results with 52 percent of parents picking 3-5 days on campus as their first choice and 77 percent picked 1-2 days on campus as their second choice, according to the Alum Rock reopening survey data.
The Alum Rock Union School District will return with a distance learning model in August, according to the district’s website.
-Campbell Union School District conducted a survey from May 29-June 4 and asked over 1,300 parents/guardians and nearly half of the students in grades 3-8 about their concerns with schools reopening, according to the district.
Seventy-seven percent of parents said they prefer to send their children back to school when it is safe to do so, emphasizing that parents are not educators, elementary school children are not self-directed and children need to see their teachers to understand better, according to survey results.
Now the district is conducting another round of surveys to obtain more definitive answers on how parents would like to proceed and are discussing four potential school schedules before submitting their final recommendation to the governing board on July 23.
-East Side Union High School District conducted its own survey and found between 40-48 percent of staff, students and parents are not comfortable attending in-person instruction, according to Superintendent Chris Funk.
ESUHD determined that it will start with distance learning for the year and will be releasing the guidelines in the coming weeks. However, the district will have in-person instruction for its most underserved populations, which includes students who have special needs, foster youth and short-term English learners, among other students.
It will also be offering a place to study for students who do not have access to broadband or a safe and quiet place to study. The district may also offer in-person tutoring, mental health classes and college guidance support for students.
-Moreland School District also conducted and released their staff and parent survey results. About 65 percent of parents felt relatively to extremely comfortable sending their children back to school with a hybrid model. If the hybrid model was to be in place, more than 450 households would need some form of child care and around 830 would not. Most parents wanted schools to resume on site but the second-most popular was distance learning.
Of the Moreland School District staff, 77 percent said they had adequate support to continue distance learning. Of the 266 staff survey responses, eight said they would consider resignation, retirement or a leave of absence if the district was to continue virtually through December and 286 said they felt prepared but may need more online subscriptions.
The district decided to return to campus virtually and is working with a reopening task force to iron out the details for the new year, according to Superintendent Mary Kay Going’s Tuesday message.
One district did not conduct its own survey:
-The Union School District did not create its own survey but utilized Santa Clara County’s countywide survey, according to the district.
Based on the district’s summer outline, the district created a School Reopening Focus Group consisting of board members, teachers, staff and parents from different campuses to be the main component shaping the reopening plan. In May, the district collected community input through public board meetings and other focus groups, according to a June 4 announcement.
The Union School District will resume in the fall with a distance-learning model that has a five-stage approach to reopening. Stage two will reopen campus in the morning for vulnerable students, stage 3, will additionally open campus for TK-first-grade students, stage 4 will extend campus reopening for students up to sixth grade and stage 5 is a full reopening of all campuses, according to district Superintendent Denise Coleman’s Tuesday announcement.
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