LCPS To Transition to Fully Remote Learning

LCPS To Transition to Fully Remote Learning
Posted on 01/11/2021

For continued updates, please visit our LCPS Information and Resource Center by clicking here.

To view this script in video form, please click here.
Hello #TeamLCPS! This is your Superintendent Doug Straley and I hope you’re having a fantastic day. I’m so proud of the work you have accomplished and I am truly thankful to be a part of this community here in Louisa County.

Today, we are sharing with you a very important update, and I need everyone out there to make sure they watch this entire video, because we have a lot of very important information to go over.

Today, I am announcing that LCPS will transition to a Fully Remote Learning Model, beginning on Thursday, January 14th. We will remain in this model through Friday, January 29th. In a Fully Remote Learning model, all students will work on schoolwork remotely, and not at our school buildings.

We understand this is a HUGE announcement, and before everything, I want to go into why we are making this decision. So here’s why. 

We have a large number of staff members right now who are quarantined due to being close contacts to COVID-19 positive individuals who aren’t connected to LCPS. Because of the high amount of staff members who are quarantined, we do not have enough substitutes or staff to adequately fill vacancies, provide instruction, and maintain our health and safety strategies. We have to be at a place where we have enough staff to adequately uphold our health and safety standards. For today and tomorrow, we were able to come up with a short-term coverage plan, but it’s not a sustainable, long-term plan. In a video we sent out prior to the Winter Break, this is one of the scenarios we laid out and said would force us to temporarily transition to a Fully Remote Learning model.

So, it’s no one’s fault, the reality is that we’ve hit a point where we cannot fill the number of openings we have. It’s that simple. We are NOT making this decision due to COVID-19 cases in our schools, or because our health and safety strategies aren’t working. It is because of the number of staff members that we have quarantined at this time. 

So, with this announcement comes a lot of questions.  We’re here to support you.  And right now,  I want to go over a lot of the details that will help guide all of us these next couple of weeks.

First, let’s go over instruction. LCPS Virtual Academy students and families, please keep on with your regularly assigned schedule, including synchronous schedules, during this time. Your teachers will be available to assist you as usual.

Blended Learning families, students downloaded today, or will be downloading tomorrow, assignments for the next few days as we usually do at the start of each week.  So as we begin our Fully Remote Learning model on Thursday, January 14th and Friday, January 15th, your teachers will be communicating with you which specific assignments you should be working on, which may also include your Student Learning Resources. 

As a reminder, ALL of our Blended Learning students have been provided Student Learning Resources, or SLR’s. Our SLR’s include 10 days of asynchronous content, meaning students can work on these offline. Students, as you work on this content, our teachers and instructional staff will maintain office hours and be available to assist students by email each day of this transition.

So, to be clear, during this transition, Blended Learning students should work on the content they downloaded on Monday or Tuesday, and then teachers will direct you on when to begin working on your Student Learning Resources.  And I want to stress that this content will be graded. Assignments are for a grade. It is imperative that students complete all assigned work and the work in their SLR’s as required by their teacher. It’s important to also note that attendance is based on partial to full completion of assigned tasks. So families, it is very important that students complete assigned work from your teachers.

We have to work together to make sure our students continue to learn. So remember, if you need assistance, please contact your child’s teacher and they will work with you.

And while all of this is content you can complete without internet, please remember that we are providing a few different ways for you to access high-speed internet in case you need it.  One way is through our Wireless on Wheels units, which are placed at various locations throughout the county. Please make sure to check out for a complete list of locations.

Also, don’t forget that you can access internet in the parking lots at all six of our school campuses. Right now, we’re placing these signs outside of our schools that direct you to where the Wi-Fi zones are at our schools. 

So that covers instruction. Now, let’s talk meals. Beginning on Wednesday, January 13th, we will debut an enhanced version of our drive-thru, pick-up model. 

  • On Wednesdays and Fridays during this two-and-a-half-week period, we will be providing meals for pick-up at all six of our campuses from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. 

  • On Wednesday, we’ll provide meals for four days, and on Friday, we’ll provide meals for three days. 

  • These meals are free of charge for all children ages 2-18. 

  • We also offer an option to deliver meals as well. LCPS School Nutrition will be sending out this survey very soon. 

Another topic, tech support. We have two valuable resources I encourage you to utilize concerning this topic.

First, our LCPS Help Desk. Don’t forget our LCPS Tech team is ready and available to assist you with any technical questions you might have. You see the contact information on the screen. Make sure you have this information saved, and contact them anytime you need assistance. 

Also, don’t forget about our LCPS Tech Help Page. I encourage you to visit this site as often as you can! It has instructions on how to use your Chromebook or iPad, as well as instructional videos and one-pagers that explain how to do a lot of really important things with your devices, like working in offline mode, or deleting files safely so you have more space on your device. You can access this page right now by visiting ANY of our websites, hovering over the “Parents” tab, and clicking “Technology Assistance for Students and Families.”

So, as of right now, this transition will last through Friday, January 29th. Throughout the upcoming two-and-a-half weeks, we’ll continue to evaluate our staffing numbers and meet regularly with the Blue Ridge Health District. They remain very confident with our safety measures at our schools and on our buses, so our hope is that we’ll be able to return soon. 

And as a reminder, all of the work in our SLR’s is able to be completed without the internet. BUT, we do want to be proactive and prepare for if we ever reached a point where we needed to offer synchronous instruction, such as ZOOM and Google Meet. If we got to that point, students without adequate internet would have the opportunity to download videos of those sessions. And as we mentioned last month, if we were to get to that point, we will provide LCPS transportation for Blended Learning students who need access to reliable internet. This transportation would take students to either our school parking lots or a nearby WOW unit so they could access high-speed internet and download files, to include recording of synchronous sessions, teacher-made videos, and other assignments . 

In an effort to be as proactive as possible, we will be sending out a survey early next week where you can request this transportation for your student. Again, our hope is that this transition will only go through January 29th, but if it lasts longer, this information will be extremely valuable to have on hand. So again, be on the lookout for this survey.

So, again, let’s go over the basics of this announcement. 

  • Beginning on Thursday, January 14th, we are transitioning to a fully remote learning model. This transition will last through Friday, January 29th.

  • During this transition, blended learning students should work on previously assigned materials provided by their teachers, and then transition to working on SLR’s as directed by their teachers. This content will be graded.

  • Meals will be available for pick-up on Wednesdays and Fridays at all six of our school campuses from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. These meals are free of charge.

  • Throughout this entire transition, our teachers will be available to assist students. Please reach out to them whenever you need assistance.

And finally, we will continue to provide updates for you throughout this transition. Communication will be key, and I will do my best to share as much information with you as possible, and to be as clear as possible as well. 

I encourage you to visit our Information and Resource website, which you can check out by visiting Bookmark this site and visit it often. All of the information we have will be posted here.

Second, check out our Fully Remote FAQ page, which includes the answers to a lot of questions you may have right now.  You can access this site on our Information and Resource page. These are all resources we released to you before Winter Break, and we want to make sure you have access to them once again.

And finally, if you have any questions, we want you to contact us! Our Community Questions form is open right now and available on our Information and Resource website. Submit your question, and we’ll reach out to you directly with a response.

As I close, I want to offer you all some encouragement. This is no one’s fault. No one did anything wrong. The fact is COVID-19 is highly contagious, and it has found many ways to impact our lives. Our hope is that the number of staff members we have in quarantine will go down over the next two-and-a-half weeks, and we will be able resume in-person learning. But, if that doesn’t occur, we are being proactive and we will be prepared to move forward.  I will say this: our team here at LCPS will do everything we can to assist you and your student. We will make sure they are able to succeed.

We’re also going to maintain constant communications with the Blue Ridge Health District. They remain VERY pleased with how our safety measures have worked in our school division, and again, our hope is that we’ll be able to return to in-school learning.

I want to once again reiterate the importance of our healthy habits…

  • Wear a face covering.

  • Maintain six-feet of physical distance from those outside of your household.

  • Wash your hands frequently.

  • Perform a health screening each morning.

  • And stay home if you feel sick.

Alright #TeamLCPS, thanks for taking a moment to watch this update. Again, please review all of the information, visit our websites, and if you have any questions whatsoever, use our Community Questions Form.

And remember, No matter what happens as we move forward, our team and our teachers will support your student and your family every step of the way. We are in this together. Trust me. We’ve made it work before, and we will make it work again. One step at a time. Whatever it takes.

So let’s keep up the great work, let’s continue to make healthy choices, and let’s get it done. This is one more time where we can show that Louisa LEADS. Have a great day, and we are #TeamLCPS.

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