Update from Ms. Samantha – June 16, 2020

Dear YCS Families,

It is hard to believe that we are days away from the end of the school year. These past three months of remote learning have seemed to both inch by and blend into each other- and here we are, at the home stretch. Wrapping up the school year remotely is something I never would have imagined doing. It is a surreal experience, each step a learning moment. We will do our best to bring this school year to a close smoothly, offering our students what we feel is the most important thing we can during this time- the knowledge that we have and will continue to be there for them. While we are still unsure as to what the next school year will technically “look like”, one thing that we can promise is that our school community will meet new challenges and expectations head-on and collaboratively, to ensure our students are provided a safe and productive learning environment.

With the end of the school year comes the distribution of report cards. At YCS, we have four checkpoints on your child’s academic progress.  The first checkpoint is our November Parent-Teacher Conferences, the second is In December when you get our mid-year progress report.  The third is our March, Parent-Teacher Conference and report card, and the fourth is what you receive in June, which is our end of the year progress report.  We use the end of the year progress report as the final grades for your child and it is a reflection of where your child is at, measured against the end of the year grade-level standards.

This year, our last term report card will look different. The Chancellor has shared the new grading policy for the last term/Remote learning term of the school year and these grades will look different than they have for the other terms. Students will receive either an MT (meets remote learning standards) or a N ( needs improvement), there are no failing grades. This grading system is to be used in place of our traditional Level 4-3-2-1, which measures student mastery of the Common Core Standards. Therefore, final grades will not measure where your child is at in terms of meeting grade-level standards, but rather measure their “engagement” during remote learning.

For all of the communication from the Dept. of Education and Chancellor, click here.

The format of the report card will look the same as the one you received in March, but with teachers providing a Meets Standards or Needs Improvement,  rather than Levels 4-3-2-1,      both in the overall subject section and the small sub-categories listed under the subject.

As a school, we understand the transition to remote learning was sudden, stressful, and challenging for many in our school community. We recognize that there are many different home scenarios that people have been managing and we have considered all of these unique factors as we have entered last term grades.  That is why when grading,  we are not just considering what your child accomplished during remote learning, but thinking of your child’s progress holistically, for the school year.  Please view these report cards as just one picture of your child’s academic growth this year.  It is important to celebrate all that your child has accomplished this year and what we have accomplished as a community.

Since we can not distribute the reports cards in class, the grades and comments will be posted on your NYC Schools Account.  If you do not have access to your child’s NYC Schools Account, please make sure to reach out to Christie, our amazing Parent Coordinator at mainoffice@yorkvillecommunityschool.org.  Report cards will be available for families to view on Monday, June 29th.

Our teachers have already been planning for returning to school, whatever that may look like, and have taken into account pieces of our curriculum that need to be revisited to ensure opportunities for our students to master grade-level core standards, as well as the safety and well-being of every child. We will leverage our use of school-wide assessments to inform instruction as we head into the school year. Our grade teams have created Google Slide presentations for families, called  “Getting Ready for ____Grade”. These presentations share what you can review over the summer to reinforce the year’s work, how and where to find resources to practice skills and strategies taught in their current grade and upcoming thematic studies in the year to come. These presentations will be emailed separately, by grade.  In addition, your child’s current Google Classroom as well as the Social and Emotional Learning Google Classrooms will remain open for you to revisit instructional videos, resources, and tasks.

There are still so many unknowns, a challenge for someone like me who wants to know, yesterday,  what to anticipate in order to create the best possible learning community for all of our children and staff. What I can promise is that as I am provided logistical information, I will be sure to translate that into a positive, productive, and supportive environment for all.