Updated March 19, 2021
Elementary Enrollment in Distance Learning or In-Person Learning
Our sincere thanks to all the families who have submitted their preference form for returning to campus. The enrollment form is now closed.
At this time, if you did not complete the enrollment form for your student, we are assigning your student to In-Person enrollment, and they will be expected to report in person to their home school beginning on Monday, March 29 (grades TK-2) or Monday, April 12 (grades 3-5).
If you have any questions or wish to change your student’s enrollment to Distance Learning, please contact our admissions office at email@example.com or call (510) 644-7753.
School Campus Reopening Dates
As a reminder, elementary school reopening dates are:
- Monday, March 29th, TK – Grade 2
- Monday, April 12th (right after Spring Break), Grades 3-5
These are also the first days for new teacher assignments for students who will continue in Distance Learning. There are additional details about elementary on-campus and distance learning schedules at the end of this message.
Training and Set-Up Days, March 23th – 26th
During the four days prior to school reopening, from March 23th to March 26th, we will shift to several days of a Wednesday Distance Learning schedule to permit teachers and school staff to complete their final on-campus preparations for In-Person Learning, and to prepare for Distance Learning teachers to meet their new classes. During these days, you can expect that your child will participate in a morning Zoom class with their teacher, and that enrichment and Special Education teachers will balance online instruction with setting up their own instructional spaces, trainings, and rewriting schedules.
During these days, teachers will participate in COVID safety training, be oriented by their principal about campus modifications and procedures, and set up their classrooms. Teachers will be guided to set up their classrooms in the following manner, consistent with current guidelines from the California Department of Public Health.
- First, teachers will try to set up the classroom with six feet of social distancing between student chairs. (Principals have been trained to assist with this, and the district will provide examples of possible room configurations.)
- If this is not possible, some classes may be moved to larger viable instructional spaces, if available. (Classes will not be assigned to cafeterias.)
- If needed, teachers may adjust student seating to no less than four feet of spacing.
Elementary Start and Stop Times
We are returning to the same start times for schools that we used prior to the pandemic. These are listed below, along with the new end times. In order to avoid large groups of students congregating at school entrances, class start times will be somewhat staggered. Your principal will provide a specific start time. Please note that the school day is a bit shorter for the rest of this year to account for the additional work day responsibilities that will be assigned to staff.
Early Start Schools
Late Start Schools
Elementary Family Town Halls
We hosted informational meetings for elementary families on March 16. At these meetings, we shared more about elementary schedules for both in-person and distance learning, reviewed health procedures for students and families who are choosing to return, and answered community questions. The recordings are available for you to review.
Extended Learning Enrollment
The BEARS and LEARNS programs will be operating in a limited capacity.
If you are interested in enrolling your student in BEARS, please contact our administrative assistant, Ashley Stepney: firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are interested in enrolling your student in LEARNS, log on to berkeleylearns.asapconnected.com/ starting on Tuesday, March 16 after 9:00 a.m. to complete the application. Priority will be given to families based on need.
Due to social distancing requirements on all buses, transportation capacity will be limited. Unfortunately, this may mean that not all students can be accommodated.
Requests for home-to-school transportation from parents or caregivers should be emailed to email@example.com. Please indicate the student’s name, school site, and grade. If the student is eligible for transportation and the department is able to provide transportation within current social distancing guidelines, parents will be notified of the start date, bus-stop location and pick-up and drop-off times.
Students must wear a face-covering while riding the bus, and parents or caregivers must remain with students until the bus arrives to pick the students up. Parents or caregivers need to be at the bus stop in the afternoon for student drop off for Pre-K through Kindergarten students.
Parents and caregivers of students who qualify for bus service through their IEP should notify their case manager that their student is returning and will need bus transportation.
Teacher Staffing for In-Person Learning
We do anticipate that some teachers will not return to in-person learning for a variety of reasons. These teachers will be working in our Distance Learning program. We are currently working on staffing for the classrooms whose teachers will not return to campus, and you can expect to be notified next week by your principal if your child will have a different teacher for the rest of the year.
For Families Who Selected Distance Learning
This week, we are creating class lists for students who will remain in distance learning. These lists will be based on several priorities:
Priorities for New Distance Learning Class Lists
Match current teachers and students if possible
Keep current classes together as much as possible
Keep current school assignments together as much as possible
TWI families will remain in a TWI Distance Learning program, possibly with combination classes. We are working to identify bilingual teachers for these TWI Distance Learning classes.
Families can expect to hear from the district about Distance Learning teacher assignments on the following dates:
TK-2: Tuesday, March 23
Grade 3-5: Tuesday, March 30
Distance Learning teachers are BUSD teachers with experience at their own schools and in the curriculum for their grade level. I know that they will work hard to understand the learning needs of students who they are just meeting.
The Distance Learning schedule features one additional class per day with the classroom teacher:
Distance Learning Session
Distance Learning Session
Distance Learning Session
Distance Learning Session
Previous BUSD principal (and now central office Director) Michelle Sinclair will serve as the administrative lead for families in the Distance Learning program. She will provide support for issues related to class assignments and distance learning.
She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Each students’ new teacher will complete the Fourth Quarter report card for students in their Distance Learning class.
Families who select to remain in Distance Learning will not lose their home-school assignment in the 21-22 school year.
Most Distance Learning Students Will Receive a New Teacher
Students in Distance Learning will be regrouped and assigned to a Distance Learning teacher. Your student’s distance learning classmates will come from multiple BUSD elementary schools.
Your family will still be part of your current school community, receive school newsletters, participate in your current school’s PTA, etc. Your child will not lose their school assignment. We will save your child’s space in their current school. When we return to school in the fall (August 16, 2021), your child will attend their current school.
Free School Meals
Elementary school students engaged in In-Person Learning will receive a free brown bag, grab and go breakfast and a free, heated grab and go lunch daily. Afterschool programs will be able to provide snacks once programs are in session.
Nutrition Services will continue to operate free Grab and Go meal distribution sites for Distance Learning students for the remainder of this school year. Distribution sites may be modified as students return to our schools. Any changes will be announced in advance.
For students engaged in In-Person Learning, all school supplies will be provided at their school. For students remaining in Distance Learning, school supplies continue to be available at the Ed Hub.
Ed Hub Hours: Tuesday and Thursday 3:00-5:00 pm
Ed Hub Location: 1701 San Pablo Ave. (The Berkeley Adult School). Please enter on Curtis Street, between Virginia and Francisco Street.