AUSD COVID-19 FAQs and Resources
School facilities are closed in Albany due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but school remains in session. What this means is that students do not go to school for classes, but instead participate in distance learning. Assignments are provided to students either in paper packets, online, or through a hybrid of paper and online resources and students learn at home during the Shelter In Place statewide order.
As this situation evolves, we know that families have many questions. Below is some basic information. Please feel free to contact your teacher, principal, or district staff with additional questions. We will continue to update this resource as information becomes available.
How long will schools be closed?
On March 31, the State Superintendent of Public Instruction directed districts to prepare for schools to remain closed through the rest of the year. In light of this guidance, the District is actively working on continuing distance learning through June 12, our last day of instruction.
What is the District’s plan for providing distance learning?
- All AUSD teachers are working remotely, creating and delivering distance learning curricula for their students and working with students individually and in groups, depending on the class, grade, and student. If you, or your child, have not been contacted by your child’s teacher(s), please reach out to the teacher(s) first and then your principal.
- Teachers are responding to emails, but please be aware that it may take more time than usual given the circumstances and additional workload of remote teaching.
- If your child needs help with their assignments or has questions about class expectations, their teacher is the best place to start.
What are expectations for student attendance and completion of schoolwork?
We know that many families are dealing with a tremendous amount of stress and struggling to balance work, health, family, and schoolwork.
- Is attendance being taken? While attendance is not required to be taken or reported to the state, teachers are monitoring student participation in order to identify students who may need individual engagement or additional support.
- What happens if my child cannot complete their schoolwork on time? If you need additional assistance, please reach out to your child’s teacher.
- Will students be graded on assignments and tests during the closure?
- At the elementary grades, students are encouraged to engage with the assignments teachers are providing in order to maintain routines, connection to school, and good study habits. Teachers may provide feedback as appropriate. Students will not be retained as a result of the school closures and will be promoted to the next grade in the 2020-2021 school year. Curriculum will be adjusted, when students return to school in the Fall, to account for the instructional time lost as a result of the school closures.
- At AMS, students will not receive letter grades for 4th quarter but will receive Pass/Fail grades.
- AHS staff and administration are working together to review guidance, from California Department, colleges and universities, in order to determine Spring semester grading policies. Students should complete all assignments as gradebooks are being updated regularly.
- What if my child is at risk of failing a class? If there are concerns about graduation status and grades, families should contact their child’s teacher. Given the State Superintendent of Public Instruction’s direction that schools prepare to remain closed through the rest of the year, the District will explore offering additional credit recovery opportunities.
How will my student’s learning needs be supported?
- ELD resources: ELD specialists have been making contact with students and are providing ELD support through live Zoom sessions and/or sharing learning resources (via email). If you have not yet been in contact with your child’s ELD specialist, contact your school principal.
- Intervention Specialists: Intervention specialists have been making contact with students and providing support through live Zoom sessions and/or sharing learning resources (via email). If you have not yet been in contact with your child’s Intervention teacher, contact your school principal.
- Special Education: Special education teachers have begun reaching out to students. If you have not yet been in contact with your child’s special education teacher, you can expect to hear from them in the coming days. Additionally, all families of students receiving special education received this letter (linked here).
What resources are available for my student’s well-being?
- Counselors and mental health specialists are actively reaching out to students.
- Elementary Mental Health support providers are actively reaching out to students. Parents may email their child’s teacher to request a referral for mental health support.
- AMS: Counselors can be emailed directly and AMS Mental Health support is available via email on Monday,Tuesday and Thursday from 9am to 3pm.
- AHS: Counselors can be emailed directly and AHS Mental Health support will be available via email Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 9am to 3pm
- MacGregor: Mental Health support is available via email on Monday,Tuesday and Thursday from 9am to 3pm
Is the district still providing food for students? Are there other food resources available for AUSD families?
- AUSD will continue to provide free meals for any child 18 or under, regardless of place of residence. Meals can be picked up from 11am-1pm Monday-Friday, at Albany High School on 603 Key Route Boulevard.
*Beginning April 6: Meals will be served 11am-1pm on Monday, Wednesday, Friday. Students may pick up multiple meals.
- The Berkeley Food Network Pantry (1925 Ninth St.) is open to Berkeley and Albany residents 10 am- 2 pm, Monday through Thursday; 5-7 p.m., Monday and Wednesday; and 10 am-noon, first and third Saturdays.
Is the District open during this period of school closure?
- All AUSD employees—teachers, principals, district staff, and non-teaching staff—are being paid throughout the closure.
- District office staff are working remotely; processes such as enrollment, financial management, etc. are ongoing.
- Building maintenance staff are continuing to work to clean and disinfect our facilities.
- Technology staff are working to ensure that students and teachers have the technology needed to continue distance learning.
- Our executive chef is preparing and serving meals daily at Albany High School.
- Construction work on the Ocean View campus is ongoing as an essential service exempted from shelter in place.
Will the school board and committees continue meeting?
- The school board will continue to meet virtually, using Zoom technology. Those meetings are open to the public. Dates and agendas are on the AUSD website.
- We will discuss the feasibility of the Budget Advisory Committee, Board Policy Committee, and LCAP Advisory Committee meetings virtually.
How can we get the technology support our students need for distance learning?
- School sites are reaching out to families regarding their need for technology and are distributing chromebooks as needed. If you need a chromebook, contact your child’s principal.
- There are several options for free internet access:
- Xfinity WiFi Free For Everyone
- AT&T COVID-19 Commitment
- 2 months free Wifi from Comcast
- 2 meses de Wifi gratis de Comcast
- 3 months free Internet and Phone from Sonic
Support for Sheltering in Place
- How to Help Teens Shelter in Place
- Coronavirus (COVID-19): How to Talk to Your Child
- Talking to Children About COVID-19 (Coronavirus): A Parent Resource
- How to Get Work Done While Caring for Kids
- How to Explain Coronavirus COVID-19 to a Child with Anxiety
- Mental Health and Coping During COVID-19 | CDC
Public Health Resources
- Alameda County Public Health: Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)
- California Public Health Department: Fact Page
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)