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AISD's Plans for Schools Starting August 18

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And keep in mind that this week, the Governor is announcing new regulations because daycares aren't getting it under control after the regulations were loosened.  These are little kids we are talking about.

The ultimate problem is that we need everybody masking up, sanitizing stuff, washing hands, staying home if exposed or sick or showing symptoms, not being stupid, etc.  

If we could do all of that, we could open regularly.

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This is truly heartbreaking when you consider how left behind the poorest and disadvantaged are going to be. It’s gonna be something tons will never recover from. 

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4 hours ago, Samson's Wig said:

I was speaking more to people who think there are parents complaining about this because it's spoiling their good time.  That's the shortsighted bullshit.

I wish it was bullshit, but there have been a shit-ton of people complaining that they are having to watch their kids all day when they are home.

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On 6/19/2020 at 12:02 PM, atomheartbevo said:

It seemed like most of the teachers we know were spending a helluva lot of time trying to make contact with a small subset of their classes - something like 75% of the class had no problems checking in and doing the homework that was assigned, but 25% weren't (or couldn't) and were sucking up a disproportionate amount of teachers' time.  

Some of that is a technology/poverty issue, and AISD is throwing everything they can at it to get those kids the resources they need to get online, but some of that is either parents leaving their kids home alone, or the parents not giving a shit.   They are going to have to solve that problem (that's mostly unsolvable for some).

 

So my daughter would be one of the 3rd graders in your 25% that can't get her work done.  The thing is, she is quite smart and very capable. 

She is an extremely social being and she struggles mightily with the isolation of the home school atmosphere.  She has older sisters (9th and 12th) that would much rather gripe at her than help or encourage her, and me, a guy stuck working from home pushing 50 hour weeks while also trying to be a "3rd grade teacher".  My wife is a nurse and obviously can't do that job from home. 

So, in my mind, it is a much more widespread problem than what you describe.  If they are going to stick us with educating our kids at home, they are going to have to come up with a much better system than what I have seen so far.

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16 minutes ago, jinx said:

She is an extremely social being and she struggles mightily with the isolation of the home school atmosphere.  She has older sisters (9th and 12th) that would much rather gripe at her than help or encourage her, and me, a guy stuck working from home pushing 50 hour weeks while also trying to be a "3rd grade teacher".

That's my now second-grader.  Except he's got a younger sister, both are social butterflies and the isolation has been rough, and they've been pushing each other's buttons.  And this is how she's going to start her first year at school (hasn't been to daycare or anything all that structured outside of YMC/church).

16 minutes ago, jinx said:

So, in my mind, it is a much more widespread problem than what you describe.  If they are going to stick us with educating our kids at home, they are going to have to come up with a much better system than what I have seen so far.

With aggy having done the online thing to boost their numbers years ago, you'd think they'd have a readymade platform for elementary schools.

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What people need to understand is that there is no AISD plan. This is all school by school. If you are pissed at what you got at one school, don’t assume it’s the same at the school down the road.

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On 6/19/2020 at 11:22 AM, swraith said:

Get a tutor for the days they are not at the physical school. Basically have several sets of parents fund the tutor.

This is what we are kicking around with the neighbors. 

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Buy an rv and home school from the road...

or do the joint tutor or whatever you can to not stick your kids in a shitty situation. 

Because it’s awful. And the kids are going to pay. And it’s not fair. And it sucks. And I hate it. But it’s my job as a parent to mitigate that for mine as much as possible. But it’s a sin of a bitch for society.  

Its more of a problem than people in a nursing home that are very old dying for society.  Neither are good, obviously, but the price the kids that are getting left behind from this are paying will last forever I’m afraid. And the consequences for society will be astronomical I fear. 

Really fucking bummed out for our country, kids and the world, basically. 

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3 hours ago, atomheartbevo said:

And keep in mind that this week, the Governor is announcing new regulations because daycares aren't getting it under control after the regulations were loosened.  These are little kids we are talking about.

The ultimate problem is that we need everybody masking up, sanitizing stuff, washing hands, staying home if exposed or sick or showing symptoms, not being stupid, etc.  

If we could do all of that, we could open regularly.

You say that but if this thing is as contagious as everyone says and it seems to be I’m of the opinion it’s not if but when, and the only way out is a vaccine, herd immunity, or this thing mutates itself out of existence. 

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2 hours ago, jinx said:

So, in my mind, it is a much more widespread problem than what you describe.  If they are going to stick us with educating our kids at home, they are going to have to come up with a much better system than what I have seen so far.

Here's an alarming scenario:  Parents who can't or don't want to work from home while watching the kids.

The kids are in school alternating days.  On the days they aren't in school, they are in some kind of daycare (whether it be a business, nanny, whatever).  All of the sudden they are exposed to a subset of their classmates on one day, and then the next they are in the care of another person(s) and/or around other kids.  You don't know who that person and/or those kids are being exposed to at other times.  Hell, the kids who are in school on Monday/Wednesday maybe, on Fridays, be around the kids who are in school Tues/Thurs.  Or they are around other kids/nannies/whatever that are around both groups throughout the week.

That's some nice cross-pollination going on.  Maybe we should have all of the kids in school physically, just very heavily isolated to their classrooms, run the risk that it will burn through a few classes, but at the same time, reduce the risk that they will be exposed to other kids/adults outside of the school on the days they would otherwise not be in school.

Administrations of various districts are sweating like crazy over this stuff, and they don't get a final say in whether kids can attend or not.

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5 minutes ago, Wulaw Horn said:

Buy an rv and home school from the road...

We are going crazy being cooped up in a house together 24/7.  Hitting the road full-time terrifies me.

We actually looked at the smaller RVs (but not so small they didn't have toilets), and if we could have found one in our price range, we'd be on the road right now.

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8 minutes ago, Wulaw Horn said:

Buy an rv and home school from the road... 

The privilege in this! My word. 

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2 minutes ago, atomheartbevo said:

We are going crazy being cooped up in a house together 24/7.  Hitting the road full-time terrifies me.

We actually looked at the smaller RVs (but not so small they didn't have toilets), and if we could have found one in our price range, we'd be on the road right now.

I’m only 2 weeks in but so far so good. It’s 33 feet with two slides and when we set up camp it’s fine. We are just committed to being outside all the time. 

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4 minutes ago, Wulaw Horn said:

You say that but if this thing is as contagious as everyone says and it seems to be I’m of the opinion it’s not if but when, and the only way out is a vaccine, herd immunity, or this thing mutates itself out of existence. 

On the one hand, while I'm on Surly which increases the chances greatly that I'm a lawyer or doctor (or both), I don't think it's as contagious in one way - by surface transmission.  Otherwise, a few workers in a grocery store or an Amazon warehouse would be spreading it all over the local population.  Or our sanitation efforts are paying off.

On the other hand, a shitload of people are catching it, which means it's got to be pretty much you are close to a covid patient and one or both of you are not masked.  Which means everybody just needs masks and wash their hands for the time being.

Which is a nightmare for a school.  Which goes back to my theory from a few minutes ago - have all the kids come back, isolate them by class (hell, maybe hire some additional teachers/full-time subs to help spread the class sizes out), and push the mask/santizing thing.

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Just now, Js1 said:

The privilege in this! My word. 

It’s the same privilege as chipping in on a tutor, or having a stay at home parent that can homeschool, or any of a bunch of other stuff that people with means will do to give  their kids the best possible outcome that they can have in a shitty situation. 

Thats how the world is supposed to work/has always worked, you do the best you can for the people you are responsible for. 

I cant take care of the whole world. Nobody can. My job is to take care of the people I’m responsible for as best as I possibly can. I make no apologies for that. I recognize and am grateful for that opportunity. 

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11 hours ago, atomheartbevo said:

I wish it was bullshit, but there have been a shit-ton of people complaining that they are having to watch their kids all day when they are home.

Sorry atom, but while I agree with most of what you're saying in this thread, I just don't agree with your anecdotal notion that shit tons of people who otherwise have nothing to do are complaining about watching their kids. 

Those who are complaining about the difficulties of the kids being at home are doing so because they're trying to hold down full time jobs while having to be a day long school teacher as well - which isn't possible long term.  There just isn't a large enough contingent of margarita sipping housewives in this town with kids in public school to even be statistically significant. 

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1 hour ago, Samson's Wig said:

Sorry atom, but while I agree with most of what you're saying in this thread, I just don't agree with your anecdotal notion that shit tons of people who otherwise have nothing to do are complaining about watching their kids. 

Those who are complaining about the difficulties of the kids being at home are doing so because they're trying to hold down full time jobs while having to be a day long school teacher as well - which isn't possible long term.  There just isn't a large enough contingent of margarita sipping housewives in this town with kids in public school to even be statistically significant. 

I think you are right. The ladies who lunch send the kids to private. Or have a nanny that can baby sit the homework. Or both. 

The people who are complaining about being home with kids all the time are complaining because they are trying to fill time work from home and it’s. It working if they are also baby sitter/teacher/prison warden during their work time. 

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2 hours ago, Samson's Wig said:

Sorry atom, but while I agree with most of what you're saying in this thread, I just don't agree with your anecdotal notion that shit tons of people who otherwise have nothing to do are complaining about watching their kids. 

Those who are complaining about the difficulties of the kids being at home are doing so because they're trying to hold down full time jobs while having to be a day long school teacher as well - which isn't possible long term.  There just isn't a large enough contingent of margarita sipping housewives in this town with kids in public school to even be statistically significant. 

While I agree with you about the majority parents working and having those difficulties of balance, there are half a dozen women that would rather be sipping on something with the kids in school on our street alone.  And they're fucking vocal about it.  The rest of us are too fucking busy to have time to gripe.

Kinda sounds like life as usual, sadly.

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3 hours ago, Samson's Wig said:

Sorry atom, but while I agree with most of what you're saying in this thread, I just don't agree with your anecdotal notion that shit tons of people who otherwise have nothing to do are complaining about watching their kids. 

I had my daughter home with me over the past year, and pre-covid, I spent a shitload of time at our neighborhood park.  During the time, I was also picking up our son, dropping him off, occasionally having lunch with him.   And I see it after school officially let out for the summer - there's plenty of parents hanging out at the park.   My wife's also in education, and as a result, most of her friends are teachers/staff, and they heard plenty of bitching from parents after things shutdown.  Parents that they know don't work.  

And then there's Tarrytown, which is a whole other universe unto itself.

Is it a majority?  No.  These people do exist though, and after covid kicked in, they bitched on FB groups we are on.

Parents with an attitude of "it isn't my job to make sure my kid is doing X amount of work!"  They are going to be in for a wakeup call when their kid isn't counted for attendance or not doing their work or whatever.

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And speaking of parks, I took our kids out early this morning, and there was a good 20 parents at our neighborhood park, easily 30 kids, no masks in sight, no social distancing, kids playing together.

Last night I got a survey asking if my kids would be attending in person.  My kids, that we've put through social distancing and made sure to do the right thing so that the risk to the older/elderly folks we are helping is lower , are going to be around kids whose parents don't give a fuck.

This is a big shit sandwich, and it's going to get worse, because far too many aren't even willing to take simple precautions.

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9 minutes ago, atomheartbevo said:

And speaking of parks, I took our kids out early this morning, and there was a good 20 parents at our neighborhood park, easily 30 kids, no masks in sight, no social distancing, kids playing together.

Last night I got a survey asking if my kids would be attending in person.  My kids, that we've put through social distancing and made sure to do the right thing so that the risk to the older/elderly folks we are helping is lower , are going to be around kids whose parents don't give a fuck.

This is a big shit sandwich, and it's going to get worse, because far too many aren't even willing to take simple precautions.

yeah, this is a fucking travesty. i cannot conceive of sending my kids back to a school classroom at this moment in time. it's not that i have excessive worry about their health, though there is some worry there, of course, it's about the community.  temp checks are a joke, because you can be asymptomatic for a week or longer while carrying this thing. 

we have just totally failed during this pandemic, here in the state of texas, and in the us as a whole. we wanted normality. guess what? shit ain't normal. this is going to be a massive disruption in all aspects of life, including the education of our children. it sucks, but we cannot return to normal until this thing fizzles out or we figure out how to effectively treat it or eliminate (at least mitigate) with a vaccine. or, i guess, the % of deaths that is necessary for herd immunity happens. 

unfortunately, this is like a war in how it's going to disrupt our society. it's going to define our kids' childhoods. 

aisd needs to be planning for remote lessons, and they need a real fucking curriculum for it. i can forgive the spring, since everyone was scrambling for solutions, but we just recently opened some bars, and the spread of this thing is spiking out of control. opening schools seems like a terrible idea, despite the ramifications. 

it sucks all the way around.

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I guess America is too “comfortably numb” to give a shit about the pandemic.

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Posted (edited)
On 6/24/2020 at 11:57 AM, Lobo said:

Yeah, we have a "town hall" with our board and superintendent leadership tonight.  I do not expect good things.  I helped craft a plan about a month ago that we were going to proceed with that I think was probably the happiest medium.  They politely told me last night to get bent, shit's all of a sudden very different again thanks to the last two weeks of selfish cunts.  

Hope your "but muh freedom" toddler tantrums were worth it, because my daughter is gonna be starting kindergarten in the dining room.  

Its not that simple.  My wife has been on the same district R2R committee from the get-go - there are multiple issues involved WRT/ space and educators willing to teach on-campus many dictated by the state and tea rather than local preference.  I have heard nearly every one of these calls and I can assure you the path that our district is taking is the best one.  Just make sure you fill out the survey ASAP on Monday morning and your kid will be fine.  

Edited by Gardner Barnes

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I hope so.  Between daughters pre school, older one at Spanish immersion Kinder, the envision committee, and uT task forces...I just have a hard time giving much of a shit anymore.  Good news is we put 50% of the effort into educating young people as we have into meetings about that topic, we are fucking Golden. 

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1 minute ago, Lobo said:

I hope so.  Between daughters pre school, older one at Spanish immersion Kinder, the envision committee, and uT task forces...I just have a hard time giving much of a shit anymore.  Good news is we put 50% of the effort into educating young people as we have into meetings about that topic, we are fucking Golden. 

I cant emphasize this enough - if you want your kids back on campus, get that survey in.  Ive see how they are time stamping responses.  There is a hard cutoff number for the district.  There is no preference for age, grad year, or  athletes.  There are a few select groups that will receive preference, but those groups are relatively small in number: SPED, Children of district employees, free/reduced cost lunch, and kids that are academically at risk (failed std tests).  

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1 hour ago, drt said:

While I agree with you about the majority parents working and having those difficulties of balance, there are half a dozen women that would rather be sipping on something with the kids in school on our street alone.  And they're fucking vocal about it.  The rest of us are too fucking busy to have time to gripe.

Kinda sounds like life as usual, sadly.

I really doubt anyones wife(even those that work) are too busy to gripe.

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1 hour ago, Gardner Barnes said:

academically at risk (failed std tests).  

Getting gonorrhea doesn't automatically mean you'll do poorly in school.

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4 hours ago, drt said:

While I agree with you about the majority parents working and having those difficulties of balance, there are half a dozen women that would rather be sipping on something with the kids in school on our street alone.  And they're fucking vocal about it.  The rest of us are too fucking busy to have time to gripe.

Kinda sounds like life as usual, sadly.

 

3 hours ago, atomheartbevo said:

I had my daughter home with me over the past year, and pre-covid, I spent a shitload of time at our neighborhood park.  During the time, I was also picking up our son, dropping him off, occasionally having lunch with him.   And I see it after school officially let out for the summer - there's plenty of parents hanging out at the park.   My wife's also in education, and as a result, most of her friends are teachers/staff, and they heard plenty of bitching from parents after things shutdown.  Parents that they know don't work.  

And then there's Tarrytown, which is a whole other universe unto itself.

Is it a majority?  No.  These people do exist though, and after covid kicked in, they bitched on FB groups we are on.

Parents with an attitude of "it isn't my job to make sure my kid is doing X amount of work!"  They are going to be in for a wakeup call when their kid isn't counted for attendance or not doing their work or whatever.

Of course anyone in that situation complaining like that needs fuck right off.  I've never doubted that such attitudes exist, I just don't think that's even a statistically large enough number of people that it matters even a little bit in the grand scheme.  And it sounds like drt should move to a new block.  

My main concern with school starting back up, after the obvious top-priority concerns regarding health and safety, is how grading and accountability is going to work.  I don't see how you can come up with any remote learning system that wouldn't result in having to fail a third of elementary age students if you insist on grading.  It's at least that many that fall into the camp of poor access, working parents, or even just the shitty day-drinking moms and dads you guys hang out with.  Maybe this is just a slight adjustment to the supposed merit-based system that is already inherently unfair for certain kids for no fault of their own.  We're just expanding the group of kids who get fucked by the system.  

I'm hoping that this turns into an opportunity to completely rethink the way we educate children in this country, and make adjustments that would never happen outside of a major disaster like this.  I doubt we'll be so lucky, but I can hope.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Gardner Barnes said:

Its not that simple.  My wife has been on the same district R2R committee from the get-go - there are multiple issues involved WRT/ space and educators willing to teach on-campus many dictated by the state and tea rather than local preference.  I have heard nearly every one of these calls and I can assure you the path that our district is taking is the best one.  Just make sure you fill out the survey ASAP on Monday morning and your kid will be fine.  

Why does the timing of filling out the survey matter?   N/M I saw your follow up post.

Edited by Samson's Wig

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TEA is requiring a return to more normal grading. Its going to be rough for a lot of kids that don't have much support. If we can get kids in the building at least one day a week in a hybrid model, they will get an entire day of small group instruction. Would help a ton. 

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I agree that will help, Larry.   It's desperately needed.  I don't think it's enough to prevent a huge percentage of kids from failing though, unless the grading system is incredibly lenient.  And I don't think any school district is going to fail a huge percentage of its students for any reason. We've been shuffling uneducated kids through the system for decades when they should have been held back.  They're not going to stop now, and certainly not with a huge chunk of kids involved.  So grading becomes meaningless, and smart kids will recognize this immediately - which opens up an entirely new group of kids to apathy and failure.

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4 minutes ago, Samson's Wig said:

how grading and accountability is going to work.  I don't see how you can come up with any remote learning system that wouldn't result in having to fail a third of elementary age students if you insist on grading.  It's at least that many that fall into the camp of poor access, working parents, or even just the shitty day-drinking moms and dads you guys hang out with.  Maybe this is just a slight adjustment to the supposed merit-based system that is already inherently unfair for certain kids for no fault of their own.  We're just expanding the group of kids who get fucked by the system.  

I'm hoping that this turns into an opportunity to completely rethink the way we educate children in this country, and make adjustments that would never happen outside of a major disaster like this.  I doubt we'll be so lucky, but I can hope.

Ideally, we get all the kids in a classroom so the teacher can assess them for several weeks.  And get in some solid grading, but mainly to identify the kids who obviously suffered from the extended spring break, and who need the most help to catch up.

That's where we are going to have to really rethink some things - identifying those kids that suffered and are falling behind., and also we are going to have to come up with a system for the special education kids as well, because holy shit, this had to have been a beating on them.

There are a group of kids, obviously it varies heavily by parent(s) economic situation, but there are a group who are able to learn and who are able to turn in work through Canvas/Blend/whatever, and able to engage on Zoom.  We had this conversation with my son's teacher - granted, our school is mostly pulling kids from middle/upper-class, but she had a decent chunk of kids who were able to hit the ground somewhat running, and keep up their work, and turn in projects and "assignments" (couldn't call them that at the time).  But then there was a smaller group of kids who really needed help.  Ye Olde 80/20 rule.  80% require 20% of her attention, and the other 20% required 80%.

I will say this:  We were, I guess lucky that we had teachers who fully utilized Canvas/Blend - every single day, there were projects for math, science, reading, social studies, art, music, etc.  And the people my wife worked with were fully utilizing it as well.  But a lot of teachers/schools had problems getting up and running, and hopefully that's being corrected this summer.

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Eanes is having us choose between online or in building for first semester. We have a couple of weeks to decide. 

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For those saying you're not gonna send your kids back to school, be prepared for a bad time.  There's no such thing as a "good" online curriculum.  Sure there have been online high schools for a while but those have been mainly to simply get kids to graduate after struggling with regular school.  I don't even know if there is a comprehensive online elementary school, and if there is I imagine it's shitty.  

Also keep in mind the traditional school system has decades of momentum and it's very hard for it to simply pivot in a few months to quality online or hybrid style.  None of the teachers have been trained in that sort of thing and based upon the age of the internet, the research into online learning is relatively new.  It's not gonna be perfect at any level.  

All you parents need to understand that no matter what, it's not going to be perfect, shit, traditional school was never perfect.   Deal with it, don't blame the teachers for shit they never expected, never trained for or have no control over.

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I think it’s important for kids to be at school.  There is almost no risk to kids.  Anyone who would otherwise come in contact with them — at school or home — should make a decision on keeping distance.  
 

This isn’t a rich kid or poor kid thing.  It will hurt poor kids more.  

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Eanes is having us choose between online or in building for first semester. We have a couple of weeks to decide. 

No. You have the weekend to decide.

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17 minutes ago, Gardner Barnes said:


No. You have the weekend to decide.

“The application window closes July 8 at 5pm.“

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Nice humblebrag ladies.  ;)

In all seriousness, there's one deadline in July.  But I bet dollars to donuts the TEA and Governor change their minds again by 1 August.  

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1 hour ago, 4th&Five said:

Eanes is having us choose between online or in building for first semester. We have a couple of weeks to decide. 

I think TEA has told all districts to have both options.

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16 minutes ago, CleverNickname said:

I think TEA has told all districts to have both options.

Gotcha. I wasn’t following all that closely until I got the email. Seventh grader has already gone back and forth three times on what she would prefer. Third grader will be really upset if we don’t let her go back. Not that they have much say. 

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“The application window closes July 8 at 5pm.“

I know what it says. I’m telling you the reality of what is happening. You are competing for a limited number of spots on campus. All survey responses are prioritized by time stamp.

 

You have the weekend to decide. You wait till July you can be assured remote learning.

 

I could be wrong of course but my guess is that about 70% of respondents will choose on campus. Capacity is no where near this number. Trust me on this. My last name is on the R2R document.

 

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4 hours ago, dingleberryswitzer said:

Sure there have been online high schools for a while but those have been mainly to simply get kids to graduate after struggling with regular school.  I don't even know if there is a comprehensive online elementary school, and if there is I imagine it's shitty.  

There is a comprehensive online elementary school.

 

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My son was failing in kindergarten. We pulled him in March and did time for learning for 3 months. He entered first grade at the same school ahead of his class in every respect. 

Theres plenty of decent resources for home schooling elementary kids. This isn’t rocket science. 

My son is very bright and extremely adhd so factor that in. 

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8 hours ago, Samson's Wig said:

 

And it sounds like drt should move to a new block.  

Meh, if I chose my neighborhood by what the neighborhood stay at home moms posted on Nextdoor, I'd probably have to live in Siberia.  Besides, the yoga pants are nice.

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56 minutes ago, Wulaw Horn said:

My son was failing in kindergarten. We pulled him in March and did time for learning for 3 months. He entered first grade at the same school ahead of his class in every respect. 

Theres plenty of decent resources for home schooling elementary kids. This isn’t rocket science. 

My son is very bright and extremely adhd so factor that in. 

This Time for Learning?  https://www.time4learning.com/

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9 hours ago, Samson's Wig said:

This Time for Learning?  https://www.time4learning.com/

Toss in Epic for reading and Dreambox for math - fantastic apps that are keeping our son interested and keeping him from regressing.  Our pre-Ker is using Epic's read-aloud books.  The read-aloud voices are, for once, not annoying like a lot of apps.

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Thanks guys.  We've exhausted Dreambox, and Epic to a lesser extent.  We have one 8 yo that is dyslexic and and has numerous visual processing disorders, obviously on a 504 plan, and needs a lot help.  Epic hasn't registered for her at all.  But she is working with tutors (over zoom) in addition to her eye therapy each week.  Her twin brother just finished up To Kill a Mockingbird and is about wrap up Great Expectations. His advanced reading and comprehension skills are almost harder for us to navigate than his sister's limitations. Epic doesn't offer things that intrigue him, unfortunately.  He digs through my personal library (such as it is) for things to read.  It's been a tough nut to crack with each of them.   

Honestly, if we're 100% online this fall, and I really think that might be the case at this point, I might just pull them and homeschool them until things open back up. At least it would save the insane frustration that was keeping up with the 30-40 different logins for various software and websites that each individual teacher chose because Blend and Canvas are terrible, and the near perpetual failure of said software and websites on a daily basis.  I greatly appreciated the effort that their teachers put in this spring, but I'm not sure there was much educational value at all.  If we see more of the same this fall it might be the smart move to just save the kids the headache of that nonsense and teach them directly utilizing Time4Learning or IXL.   https://www.ixl.com/

 

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