Read All About It...5/13/2020
The latest information from Principal Kosmala.
So here we are in the middle of the final quarter of the 2019-20 school year and we do have more specific information about grading. About two weeks ago the Oregon Department of Education came out with their guidance, which gave a framework for districts to follow as they came up with their local versions. This framework focused on 1. pass/incomplete or some variant for the semester, 2. students being protected if they were unable to complete some or all of the work, 3. attendance reporting not required for this year. Here is how it will work for Portland Public Schools:
- Summative marks will be a Pass (P) & No Evidence (N) in June on student report cards.
- “No evidence” indicates that a student did not participate in work for that standard.
- “Pass” indicates evidence that the student is progressing or proficient.
- Teachers will provide ongoing feedback on student work to assess essential learning, always giving students the benefit of the doubt.
- The scope of final report cards may be narrower than usual.
- Students are expected to participate in assignments and perform at a level that indicates their best work possible. If a student doesn’t submit an assignment, they would have No Evidence for the standard(s) measured.
- Teachers will be providing students with constructive feedback towards learning standards through the assignments in Google Classroom.
I expect that families have heard, either through the news or through their students, that Fridays are no longer part of our weekly instructional schedules. Because of the intense financial impact of COVID-19 and predictions of significant impact to the tax revenues that fund schools in Oregon, Portland Public Schools has furloughed all employees a minimum of 20% of their current time to participate in the Work Share program. Work Share is an Oregon unemployment benefits program that offers an alternative to laying off employees by reducing work hours.
Eligible staff whose hours and wages are reduced receive a portion of their regular unemployment insurance benefits to compensate for the lost wages. In the Work Share program, funds are saved by reducing eligible employees’ hours and PPS pay by 20% as a result of reducing their work schedules by 20% per week or 1 day each week. In order to minimize the loss of instructional time for students, three additional teaching days have been added to the end of this school year. Our new last day of school is now Wednesday, June 10, 2020.
Please be aware that class meetings, 1:1 conferences, and assignments will be scheduled for Monday-Thursday only. There will be no classes, conferences, posting of assignments or commenting on student work on Fridays. We encourage you to use the materials provided during the week to maintain a learning structure and routines for your students and family on Friday however you think is best, but it is perfectly appropriate for students to continue to spread their independent work over five days.
What has recieved way less attention is that these are not the only cost cutting measures currently in place. All schools and district departments are under purchasing restrictions, travel bans, and a district-wide hiring freeze. These cost saving measures, along with PPS’s participation in the Work Share program, are preserving precious resources to mitigate cuts for next year.