Please see the letter below dated 3/25/20, as well as our Frequently Asked Questions page, which will be updated regularly.
Dear Emmaus High School Families,
This communication serves as a follow-up to Mrs. Campbell’s district-wide communication that was sent yesterday, after Governor Wolf’s extension of the mandatory school closures in Pennsylvania until April 7th for staff and April 9th for students. If you did not have an opportunity to review that letter, you can find it HERE. I hope this communication finds you and your family safe and healthy. As Mrs. Campbell stated, The East Penn School District remains committed to keeping our students, staff, families and community informed, supported, and most of all connected to our schools in the best way we can throughout this difficult time. I take comfort in knowing that just last year, we faced an unprecedented emergency at Emmaus High School in the form of a flood that severely impacted our school building, our staff, and our students. The East Penn community rallied together at that time to support students and each other, put the pieces back together, and carry on. I know that we can and will do the same thing now.
Continuation of Learning Plan at Emmaus High School:
Our essential goal is to provide continued new learning and meaningful feedback for students without creating additional challenges and barriers for your child or your family. This letter is intended to serve as a high-level overview of the program, and is supported by a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page on our website. The FAQ page will be updated regularly as we receive new information and/or make decisions about items that are still pending as I write this.
Between now and April 3rd, students should continue to access and complete optional assignments for remediation and/or enrichment available HERE. Beginning on April 6th, teachers will begin posting online assignments and materials that represent new learning in each of your child’s courses. The material will be posted in Google Classroom or a similar online space that your child’s teachers already have in place. Your child should have “join codes” for the online space in each of their classes. If they do not, please have them email their teachers. If there are any courses for which they are not able to secure the codes by April 6th, please contact the appropriate individual below, who will send them to you:
New learning activities will be posted by Monday, April 6th and again each week, should schools remain closed. They will be available on-demand in an asynchronous format. This means that students are not required to log in at specific times of day to receive instruction, but can complete the learning activities at their own pace at a time that is most convenient for them and your family’s circumstances. All of your child’s teachers will conduct live, virtual office hours every week at scheduled times, during which students can log in to ask questions and get help as needed. Each learning activity that your child submits will be reviewed by the teacher, and your child will receive feedback indicating whether they have achieved the learning objective or whether they need to make adjustments/corrections in order to do so.
The best way to monitor your child’s online schoolwork is to have them log into Google Classroom with you. They will be able to show you what the teachers have posted in each class and what they have submitted.
We recognize that all of the material that would normally be covered in our high school courses cannot be addressed given current circumstances. Next week, teachers will review each course that we offer, and identify the essential content and skills that must be addressed prior to the end of the school year in order for students to earn credit for their courses and successfully move on to their coursework next year. Learning objectives and work expectations will be consistent in all sections of each course, even those that are taught by several different teachers. Because course content will be modified this year, final exams will NOT be given at Emmaus High School this June.
Teachers of Advanced Placement courses will provide enhanced instruction and materials to best prepare students for the modified AP exams that will be administered by the College Board online later this Spring. More information about AP courses is included in the FAQ document and at this link to the College Board site.
As Mrs. Campbell indicated, assignments completed during this learning phase will not be graded or entered into PowerSchool. The decision not to grade in this second phase is important because we recognize that current conditions could interfere with student learning. We want to provide learning and meaningful feedback for students without creating additional challenges and barriers. However, it is necessary for students to complete the learning activities in order to remain on pace with their classmates. For those in grades 9-11, the assignments will prepare them for their coursework next year. For seniors, the assignments are necessary to meet graduation requirements. If our school closure is further extended, the district may choose to begin issuing formal grades for assignments at a later date.
At this time, we have not made a determination as to how final grades will be calculated for the 19-20 school year. Once a determination has been made, that information will be posted on our FAQ page and sent out via e-blast to those subscribed.
Marking period 3 has been extended until at least April 17th.
Although traditional attendance will not be tracked in PowerSchool, teachers will monitor student participation in online activities. Members of our staff and administration will contact the parents/guardians of students who are not completing online activities on a weekly basis to provide notification and support.
Your child’s school counselors will be available to provide social, emotional, and academic support as we move forward. Feel free to email your child’s counselor to request support.
Students with disabilities will receive enhanced support in completing the online learning activities from our learning support teachers and case managers. Assignments will be modified and accommodations provided consistent with student’s IEPs or 504 agreements. English Learners will also receive necessary accommodations under the support and supervision of our English as a Second Language teachers.
We wish to continue to support our students and families with their technology needs during our school closures. Please read through some of our technology troubleshooting tips compiled by the Technology Department, which may assist you with your EPSD-issued device. If you have a persistent issue, please contact email@example.com.
Spring is a time when we host many events that are very special to us and to our students. Junior Prom is scheduled for May 16th and Senior Prom for May 22nd. Our graduation ceremony is scheduled for June 14th. At this time, these events have not been postponed or cancelled. We know how important these rites of passage are for students, and are holding out as long as possible. Ultimately, these decisions will be guided by directives and/or guidance from state and local government officials.
As you know, our building remains closed. Although we do maintain an online presence through Facebook and Twitter, we do not monitor social media as a means of fielding questions or receiving feedback on our school or programs. If you have a question or concern, please contact your child’s teacher, counselor, assistant principal or me. If you have a general question that you would like us to incorporate into our FAQ page, please feel free to submit it HERE.
On behalf of the faculty, staff, and administration at Emmaus High School I want to thank you for your ongoing support and understanding as we do our best to make the right decisions for our students during this challenging time. As a final note, if you want to receive all building communications in the most timely way possible, I encourage you to click here to subscribe to our e-news blasts. Stay safe and keep in touch.
Dr. Kate Kieres, Principal – firstname.lastname@example.org
Emmaus High School