Team Update 6/15/20
Dear SBCSS Team,
The California Department of Education (CDE) released its statewide guidance for reopening schools for the 2020-21 academic year. San Bernardino County district superintendents met with representatives from the County Department of Public Health to discuss and understand this guidance. Face coverings are recommended for staff and students at school sites along with social distancing and practicing safe hygiene. Our 33 school districts are looking at various models of instructional learning going forward—one that encompasses the traditional learning model with students and a teacher present, as well as distance learning and a blended learning hybrid practice. We are working together for our communities and making positive progress during this time of transition.
“Although these have been turbulent times in our neighborhoods, as well across our state and nation, the spirit of togetherness and unity for our country and democratic ideals remains strong and resilient. Continue to support one another and our efforts to move forward for the benefit of us all.” View this week’s message.
The California Office of Emergency Services (CalOES) is working with county offices of education to provide school districts statewide with a 60-day supply of Personal Protective Equipment for students and staff. Procurement and Warehouse Services staff is working diligently on a plan of action to receive, reallocate and distribute the PPE supplies—including cloth and disposable face masks hand sanitizer and no-touch thermometers to school districts prior to the beginning of the new school year. Congratulations to Katie Hylton as the new director of Business Support Services. Katie will replace Dave Reck, who recently announced his retirement after 27 years of service to SBCSS.
Education Support Services
Education Support Services programs continue to collaborate with Digital Learning Services to offer webinars to support teachers as they build capacity for online/blended classroom instruction. A five-day webinar series that focuses on EdTech tools for online History/Social Science curriculum is in the planning stages. The Footsteps 2 Brilliance program has seen 1,532 new children create accounts and log in for the first time since March 1.
Human Resources wants to remind all SBCSS employees to practice health and safety preventive measures in the workplace. The pandemic is still with us and in order to maintain a healthy work environment for all staff, we must be diligent in practicing health and hygine measures to limit the spread of the virus. As a reminder—all County Schools staff are required to wear face coverings at all times when in the workplace! Remember to practice safe social distancing of six feet or more and wash hands regularly.
Innovation and Engagement
The Homeless Education team took five of their youth ambassadors shopping for their college starter kits. Kits included bedding, towels, laundry soap, hygiene items, shower caddy and any other materials needed to set up their dorm room. Congratulations to the students who will be attending Chapman, La Verne and UCLA. Healthy SBCSS distributed 25,000 pieces of nutrition education and physical activity materials to summer meal sites for families. Kudos to Addison Saenz, a team member of Healthy SBCSS, for being named co-chair of The Coalition for a Tobacco-Free San Bernardino County.
Office of the Superintendent
With the worldwide protests that have taken place in response to George Floyd’s death and police brutality, our County Schools office will be holding a Watershed Moment webinar on June 25. The free event will focus on policing, protesting and perspective. It will feature guest panelists and discussion on the need for unity to help defeat systemic racism and promote equality and justice. Senior portrait sessions were provided by Communications staff at six alternative education school sites. Students were also encouraged to provide video messages thanking teachers and family members for their support during their education journey.
The Student Services’ graduation committee is busy finalizing details for the upcoming graduation ceremony scheduled for Aug. 28, including health and safety protocols to be observed during the ceremony. School site administrators coordinated yard sign deliveries for Tri-City and Chaffey West County Community Schools. A parade of decorated vehicles filled with well-wishing staff cheered on the graduates. Students and family members were touched by the extra effort to celebrate and honor the Class of 2020.
David Thurston participated on a California Collaborative in Educational Excellence and California Information Technology in Education panel discussing Information Technology (IT) and EdTech issues related to students and teachers returning to schools. The session was designed to advocate the need for inclusion of IT and EdTech staff in the planning for schools reopening. SBCSS Technology Services and Technology JPA hosted a virtual meeting for San Bernardino County district IT leaders. Representatives from more than 20 districts and one community college participated on the WebEx session.
We Need You!
Thank you to everyone who submitted their family member’s graduation photos. Congratulations to Lisa Torres with the Alliance for Education, Melissa Macias-Lares with West End Operations and Heather Smith with Curriculum/Instruction and Academic Enrichment for being the first three submissions. They will each receive a Starbuck’s gift card. Let’s celebrate the Class of 2020! Share a note of encouragement and celebration on our SBCS Good News photo album. It is our largest photo album to date.
We are venturing out more and more each week. Retail stores and restaurants have begun to reopen. Life is slowly beginning to return to a new normal. The Center for Disease Control has issued guidance to protect ourselves as we resume daily activities. Thank you for working together to stay healthy and well.