Distance Learning Plan

In accordance with guidance from the Minnesota Department of Education, Spero Academy will be implementing a distance learning plan from April 6, 2020 until at least April 30, 2020. At this time, unless we receieve additional guidance from the Minnesota Department of Education, we expect students will be back in school on Tuesday, May 5, 2020.

The complete Distance Learning Plan for Spero Academy can be found here:

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Overview

Over the course of this Distance Learning Plan Spero Academy staff will partner with families to assist students in engaging in this new mode of learning.  Classroom teachers will be instrumental in continuing to communicate and provide instruction to their students. Families/Guardians will have options and resources that will give them choices in distance learning that best fit their students' learning style.  The Distance Learning Plan will be assessed weekly based on feedback from families and Spero Academy staff.  

Spero Academy will use a blended model of digital and analog tools to communicate, deliver instruction and track student learning. 

Below is a summary of the roles for parents, students, and staff, along with some common questions and answers!

Roles

Spero Academy understands the challenges facing families as we begin to implement a distance learning plan with your students.  We recognize that families will have challenges supporting their students with their distance learning. Spero Academy is here to support families and students as we navigate this plan. 

We are asking you as parents/guardians for the following support:

  • Read email updates sent from Spero Academy
  • Familiarize yourselves with your teacher's mode of communication or delivery of instruction (ex. Seesaw, Zoom, Google Classroom)
  • Families without home Internet access or with limited Internet access must inform teachers of this fact so needed modifications to assignments and due dates can be made.
  • Read Flex Learning plans sent to you by your teachers
  • Support your student in their at-home learning to the best of your ability
  • Email your teachers with any questions and concerns regarding the Flex learning plans (ex. Needing more time to complete assignments)
  • Families of students with an Individualized Education Plan will follow lessons provided by their teachers 
  • Students will know where to find distance learning assignments
  • Students will connect with teachers via email, Seesaw, Zoom, or Google Classroom to ask questions or get feedback on assignments
  • Students will complete their assignments as directed to the best of their ability

Classroom Teachers

  • Develop high-quality student learning experiences
  • Collaborate with their paraprofessionals and other relevant colleagues to design Distance Learning experiences for individual students.
  • Communicate with and provide timely feedback to students.
  • Communicate with families.

PhyEd Teachers

  • Develop high-quality student learning experiences in the area of Physical Education.
  • Collaborate with classroom teachers
  • Collaborate with case managers to develop resources to support students on their caseload.
  • Provide support and assistance to the assigned teacher.
  • Collaborate with the assigned teacher in developing high-quality student learning experiences.
  • Support student learning in assigned classrooms through online platforms.
  • Partner with classroom teachers to accommodate the distance learning curriculum they are providing to the learning support students on their caseload. 
  • Collaborate with case managers to develop resources to support students on their caseload. 
  • Communicate with and provide timely feedback to students. 
  • Communicate with parents, as necessary, with the case manager.

If you have questions that your student's classroom teacher cannot answer, please contact the member of our leadership team that is overseeing the area you need more information about.

Chipp Windham - School & Program Oversight
Susan Scheller - Academic/Curriculum Services
Kelly Tiedemann & Alex Ward - Special Education Services
Diane Pangal - On-site Child Care Program for Tier 1 and Tier 2 Essential Workers Oversight
Edi Becerra - Food & Curriculum Delivery Coordination
Devin Taylor - Food Service Coordination
Erin Giebink - IT/Technology Support
Roxann Manaen - Health Procedures Oversight

Q&A

Yes, attendance will be taken by your child's teacher based on their completion of assignments and whether or not they were able to reach your student to check in during the day. Please let your student's teacher know if your student is ill and cannot participate on a particular day. If your teacher is unable to reach you on a given day, it will be marked as an unexcused absence.

Yes, teachers will be available during the school day Monday-Thursday like our normal school week via email or other methods they have developed for communicating with their students and families.

Students whose families choose not to participate in distance learning for a day will be marked as absent.

Students will be responsible for completing all assignments sent by their teacher. We understand that our students often need flexibility at school and we will extend the same expectation to getting work completed at home, so there will not be any consequences for students with regard to grades or attendance if they need to complete work later in the day or on another day if they are having a challenging day at home.

We encourage families to take advantage of the resources for free wifi during this time described in our Resources Document. USI and Comcast Xfinity have also made their hotspots around the city free to access during this time. If you cannot access the internet at home, please reach out to your student's teacher so they can provide curriculum in an alternative way that does not require internet access.