SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. — Teachers and students in the Sweetwater Union High School District are set to turn the page on a new chapter. It’s the first day of school for the South Bay district Monday, and things are going to look a lot different due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The district has adopted a distanced learning model, which means teachers will for the most part be leading classes online from their homes.
School officials said the return to school will be based on public health orders and that they will reassess their situation at three key dates during the year - September 21, 2020, November 30, 2020, and March 1, 2021.
Students will be in a daily block schedule that will include both synchronous and asynchronous instruction and attend daily synchronous lessons and connect with their teachers during office hours, according to school officials.
The district said they've partnered with UCSD to provide professional development to over 1,800 teachers. Officials said student attendance will be monitored and academic grades will be based on mastery and course completion requirements. Additional supports will also be provided for English Learners, Students with disabilities, Students in transition, and low income students.
The district said every student will have access to a device and when public health orders allow for a physical return to school, safety protocols will be in place and closely followed and monitored.
Afterschool programs will continue virtually and all fall athletics have been postponed until at least mid-December as outlined by the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF), according to the district.
Distance learning will be in effect through October 12, at which point the district will re-evaluate whether it's safe for in-person instruction.