November 20, 2020 We hope you can take a moment to watch our new Spotlight on Scholars video newsletter and enjoy this glimpse into student learning in both our Online Scholars and Onsite Scholars programs. SBSD Spotlight on Scholars Video Fall 2020 Have a wonderful fall break! Jodee Brentlinger, Superintendent
Board Meeting on November 12, 2020 Board Recognizes Classified Employees Attaining Permanent Status The Board of Education recognized and congratulated classified employees, 23 in total from throughout the District, moving from probationary status to permanent status after one year of service. (Photo: Above, classified employees, Board members, and administrators on November 12 Zoom) Highlights from the Meeting Teaching and Learning The Teaching and Learning team provided Board members with a two-part presentation, called “TOGETHER: Moving Forward with More Students More Days a Week.” Part one was an energetic, informative slideshow with updates and videos about the District’s Online Scholars Program, led by Online Scholars Principal Angela Tremble and Assistant Principal Roderick Gayta; and the second part, led by Superintendent Jodee Brentlinger, detailed the District’s continued planning for phasing in of additional grade levels to the Onsite Scholars Program. SBSD’s Online Scholars Program began this fall, providing students from each of the District’s seven schools with a rigorous, engaging online learning option for those families wishing to continue in the online setting. District teaching staff dedicated to and trained in online instruction provide synchronous, asynchronous, and independent study lessons. Currently, there are 45 classrooms with 919 students, 28 Discovery Lab teachers, and seven specialists. The Online Scholars engagement, culture, and community are centered on Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) and support a rigorous, well-rounded experience for all students. Several Online Scholars, also known as “OL S,” participated in brief video interviews led by Assistant Principal Gayta and offered the Board and Zoom attendees a glimpse into the online school day from students themselves. The program recently launched its new inclusive mascot, the Haqaciters (photo: right), which was created by an OLS student and will soon be seen on spirit wear. To help build community, OLS has established its own social media presence on Facebook and Instagram and a hashtag, #SBSDOnlineScholars. View this informational and visual presentation on the District’s website . The second part of the Teaching and Learning presentation covered details for continued phasing in of grade levels, following health and safety protocols established by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and San Diego Health and Human Services Agency (SDHHSA), and the California Department of Education (CDE). It was noted that San Diego County was recently placed in the Purple Tier, the most restrictive tier per state guidelines. Superintendent Brentlinger reviewed the District’s School Reopening Plan guiding principles and 13 safety mitigation measures, which made it possible to reopen six school sites in September and keep them open to date, while expanding the number of days Kindergarten students can attend their physical sites to four days (as of November 9). With the continued efforts of employees, students, and families following health protocols in our schools and out in the community, SBSD continues to recommend the following timeline for implementing four-day weeks for additional grade levels, keeping in mind possible adjustments due to the County’s Purple Tier designation, flu season, and potential holiday travel impacts. Phase 6 - December 7, return Onsite Scholar 1st grade students four days a week (M, T, Th, F) Winter break (December 21 - January 1) Online instruction for re-entry testing (January 4-8) Phase 7 - January 11, return Onsite Scholar 2nd grade students four days a week (M, T, Th, F) Phase 8 - January 25, return Onsite Scholar 3rd grade students four days a week (M, T, Th, F) Regarding Onsite Scholars students in grades 4-6, the District is now convening school site committees made up of teachers, support staff, parents, and principals, as well as a District committee consisting of three representatives from each site-level committee. Considerations for returning grades 4-6 to school sites no later than February 2021, or earlier if possible (dependent upon state, county, and local health and safety metrics), will drive site and District committee work. The Board will receive a status update on phasing in at its regularly scheduled December 10, 2020, meeting. Additionally, staff will provide an update on academic, attendance, and Social-Emotional Learning indicators for the 2020-21 school year for all students. Board members asked for clarification on current recommended travel protocols for the upcoming holiday season, including notification to the District of students who may have a household member confirmed or presumed COVID positive. Based on soon-to-be-published state and county recommendations, the District is communicating with staff and families about holiday travel and gathering recommendations in anticipation of fall break, November 23-27, 2020. Read more details by viewing the entire Board presentation on SBSD’s website . Board Recognizes Classified Employees Attaining Permanent Status The following Classified Staff were recognized by the Board for having achieved permanent status with the District after completing one full year of probationary service. Carmel Creek School: Anusha Bezawada (Child Nutrition Worker I), Kelly Curran (Instructional Aide II), Paul Turner (Instructional Aide III) Child Development Center: Ashlea Bailey (CDC Teacher), Daniela Fonseca (CDC Teacher), Angela Trivonovich (CDC Teacher), Sydney Wilson (CDC Teacher) District Office: Terra Carlson (Secretary I), Deanne Long (Instructional Aide II) Devin Schlichting (Instructional Aide II), Ellis Webster (Secretary III) Online Scholars School: Jeffrey Bibler (Instructional Aide III) Skyline School: Dipali Khanvilkar (Instructional Aide I) Solana Highlands School: Anne Burney (Instructional Aide II) Solana Pacific School: Annie Connors (Instructional Aide II), Savannah Derrick (Instructional Aide III), Randolff Siasoco (Child Nutrition Worker I), Leslie Shepard (Health Clerk) Solana Ranch School: Sandra Aquino (Instructional Aide II), Krysvell Bautista (Child Nutrition Worker II), Clement Tran (Instructional Aide I), Raquel Valdez (Instructional Aide I) Solana Santa Fe School: Madhavi Manchirevula (Child Nutrition Worker I) Board Directions and Actions Board Organizational Meeting Scheduled for December 17, 2020 Each year, the Board of Education holds its organizational meeting in December. This year’s meeting will be held on December 17, 2020. At this time, the Board will elect officers and calendar meetings for 2021. Skyline and Solana Vista PTAs Make Donations The Board accepted and thanked the Skyline and Solana Vista PTAs for their generous donations as follows: The Skyline PTA donated $5,000.00 for the Skyline garden, and $9,406.76 to support personnel, materials, and supplies for the 2020-21 school year; and the Solana Vista PTA donated $875.00 to support Solana Vista personnel, materials, and supplies for the 2020-21 school year. Upcoming Board Meetings Join Us Again The Solana Beach School District is currently hosting all Board meetings via Zoom video conferencing. Join us using the link below: SBSD Board meeting link Next Regular Board Meeting December 10, 2020, 6:30 p.m. Organizational Board Meeting December 17, 2020, 6:30 p.m. Follow Us! #SBSDEDU
November 16, 2020 Dear Solana Beach School District Families, With the holiday season right around the corner, many Solana Beach School District families may be planning to travel or join with friends or relatives outside of their immediate family to celebrate. We understand how important these traditions and connections are, especially during the holidays. Given the unprecedented surge in COVID-19 cases across the country, it is strongly recommended families follow all county, state, and national guidelines relating to gatherings and travel in order to stay healthy and help prevent the further spread of COVID-19 in our schools and homes. Please consider the importance of wearing a facial covering, washing your hands, and practicing physical distancing wherever you go, and stay home if you are feeling sick. San Diego County is following the California Department of Public Health requirements for gatherings . At this time, gatherings should be limited to no more than three households and should be held outdoors. All attendees should follow the standard hygiene protocols noted. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has put together a full list of considerations to help protect individuals and their families, friends, and communities from COVID-19 around the holidays . Public health officials are asking all individuals to avoid unnecessary travel, especially if you or someone in your family is at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19. If you plan to travel, please review the CDC’s travel considerations before you go. In addition, California has issued a travel advisory that states people arriving in California from other states or countries, including returning California residents, should practice self-quarantine for 14 days after arrival and limit interactions to their immediate household. For our Onsite Scholars parents and guardians, please be reminded that in order for your child to participate in our onsite learning program, you signed SBSD’s Parent/Guardian Health and Safety Agreement for Onsite Instruction . Among other requirements, this agreement states that all onsite parents/guardians will: Screen your child for specified health symptoms on a daily basis prior to attending school; Keep your child home and notify the school administrator immediately if your child has come in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 (CDC defines “close contact” as someone who is within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period); and, If your child tests positive for COVID-19, you will notify your school administrator immediately for the protection of all students and staff. This agreement is even more critically important as the county is in the state’s most restrictive Purple Tier and we begin to see the potential impacts of flu season and increased travel. As a parent, sister, and daughter, I understand that we are being asked to change long-standing traditions this year and adjust our lives in ways that we could have never imagined, nor wanted to, but it is critical that we all follow health and safety guidelines in order to protect ourselves and one another. The Solana Beach School District is planning to phase in more grade levels to four days of onsite learning in the coming weeks, but we can only do this if our staff, families, and community members cooperate with protocols so that our COVID-19 numbers remain low and schools stay open. You can review our Guide to Reopening Schools 2020-21 , our Frequently Asked Questions , and visit our website for more official SBSD resources at www.sbsd.net/reopening . I wish you and your families an enjoyable fall break and that you find new ways to celebrate safely and responsibly with your loved ones this year. Thank you for your cooperation and continued support. Sincerely, Jodee Brentlinger, Superintendent Upcoming Board of Education Meeting Thursday, December 10, 2020, at 6:30 p.m.
November 10, 2020 Dear Solana Beach School District Families, As part of the Solana Beach School District’s next phase of reopening, yesterday we happily welcomed our Kindergarten Onsite Scholars to a new four-day week schedule (Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays). Our principals, teachers, and staff are using the District’s existing above and beyond mitigation measures, including face coverings, six-foot distancing, active health screenings, stable cohorts, and more as we enter this next phase of returning more students more days a week. Our Board of Education is prepared to add additional primary grade levels according to the following recommended timeline , with thoughtful consideration given to the current level of risk at the county level (tier system), and the potential impacts of flu season, the holidays, and local metrics. It is important to note that the proposed timeline is subject to change depending on newly issued health orders, requirements, and recommendations. Currently, the timeline for Grades 1-3 is as follows: Phase 6, December 7, 2020: Onsite Scholar 1st grade students four (4) days a week (M, T, Th, F) SBSD Winter Break (December 21 - January 1) January 4-8, 2021: Online instruction during re-entry COVID-19 testing Phase 7, January 11, 2021: Onsite Scholar 2nd grade students four (4) days a week (M, T, Th, F) Phase 8, January 25, 2021: Onsite Scholar 3rd grade students four (4) days a week (M, T, Th, F) The following county and local metrics will continue to guide us as we phase in more grades to our Onsite Scholars model: San Diego County does not exceed the Substantial Risk Level (Red) Monitor residential SBSD zip code data regarding cases per 100,000 No SBSD campus meets the 5% active case threshold for school closure SBSD’s Proactive COVID-19 Testing Program continues SBSD conducts re-entry testing (January) Asymptomatic testing continues (Winter, Spring) The decision-making process to expand the number of in-person instructional days is guided by our top priority of keeping all students and staff safe and healthy. We continue our phased-in planning as noted in the timeline; however, we ask that all SBSD families remain flexible as we continue to monitor county and neighborhood zip code data in order to determine if any changes are necessary to our recommended timeline. At this time, for SBSD families with students in Grades 4-6 , district/site committees are convening to discuss how to best maximize the return of our upper grade Onsite Scholars, while adhering to existing SBSD health and safety mitigation measures. Staff will update the Board on Grades 4-6 phases at this week’s Board meeting on November 12. Reminder! The next group of Onsite Scholar families (students with last names P-Si) and all staff will continue SBSD’s proactive asymptomatic COVID-19 testing this Thursday, November 12, at Skyline School. It is strongly recommended your child be tested for COVID-19 to continue our efforts to keep everyone healthy and our schools open. One of the many positive aspects of initiating SBSD’s testing program is the fact that the current PCR test used by UC San Diego Health has a sensitivity and specificity rate of 99.8%. This translates to one false positive case out of 500 tested. With individuals in the District being tested both symptomatically and asymptomatically, there is always a remote possibility that a test may result in a false positive. In the event an employee or family believes this may be the case in their situation, please review our updated District Testing Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) , including the protocol developed by the San Diego Health and Human Services Agency (SDHHSA) that will be followed in the event of a suspected false positive result. In closing, I want to express how thrilled we are to expand the instructional day for Kindergarten students to four days this week, and we look forward to implementing additional phases in the weeks to come. If you need any information, please visit our website at www.sbsd.net and follow us on our official social media using the QR codes below. Sincerely, Jodee Brentlinger, Superintendent Upcoming Board of Education Meeting Thursday, November 12, 2020 at 6:30 p.m.
October 28, 2020 Good afternoon Solana Beach School District families, The Solana Beach School District Board of Education will hold a Special Board meeting on Thursday, October 29, at 5:00 p.m. to further discuss the additional phasing-in plans for Onsite Scholars (students). The District’s school reopening plans began several months ago, and discussions now center on expanding in-person learning to more K-3 students with the safety of children and adults as our highest priority. I am receiving input from our school community that reflects differing viewpoints on how we should approach reopening schools during the pandemic. There is a continuous flow of new and changing information to both process and consider. I am confident SBSD is doing its due diligence in data-gathering, planning, and execution. I am also certain that we can use our common goals as a school community to thoughtfully execute our next steps. I believe a common goal we all share is that we want schools to reopen for as many students as possible as quickly as possible without compromising established health guidelines, such as facial coverings, physical distancing, healthy hygiene, ventilation, staggered schedules, testing, and contact tracing. Using our common goal, we can balance what we want to happen with what we need to do in order to prioritize the health and safety of both children and adults. Thus far, all campuses are open, serving 1,789 in-person students, since September 21. Additionally, we are successfully serving approximately 924 students with this year’s newly-created Online Scholars program. REMINDER! Onsite Scholars Asymptomatic Fall COVID-19 Testing Continues I want to remind the next group of Onsite Scholar families (students) and all staff that the District will continue asymptomatic COVID-19 testing this Thursday, October 29, according to last name. Please review the schedule below. Solana Beach School District strongly recommends your child be tested for COVID-19 in our efforts to continue to keep everyone healthy and our schools open. Fall Onsite Scholar and Employee Asymptomatic COVID-19 Testing Schedule Testing Week (1:00-5:00 p.m.) Testing Site Participants to be Tested (Last name begins with) October 29, 2020 Solana Pacific Gu-Le November 5, 2020 Solana Ranch Li-O November 12, 2020 Skyline P-Si Modified Date! December 3, 2020 Solana Ranch Sk-Z County Centers Offer COVID-19 Testing Just recently, the County of San Diego has expanded its county testing process to include children from the age of 5 and above. Please visit the county’s Testing in San Diego County web page if you would like to take advantage of this ability to participate in COVID-19 testing. Resources If you or someone you know has questions about our school reopening planning process, you can access SBSD’s official resources posted on our website at www.sbsd.net/reopening . Resources include past Board presentations, SBSD’s Guide to Reopening Schools 2020-21, archived Communications to Families, links to health websites, or SBSD frequently asked questions (FAQs), and other resources, such as Rady Children’s Hospital COVID-19 “Town Hall for Families.” In order to have accurate information, I strongly encourage families to use these official District resources to stay informed with accurate information. Acknowledgements As a school community, we remain committed to collaborating and communicating in order to keep everyone safe and healthy while we continue to expand in-person learning for those families in the Onsite Scholars model. I appreciate the tireless efforts and the ingenuity of our teachers, staff, and families. Until next time, remember to take care of yourselves in addition to taking care of your families and friends. Sincerely, Jodee Brentlinger, Superintendent
Good evening Solana Beach School District families, In this Communication to Families, I want to update you about several important activities taking place in the Solana Beach School District over the next several weeks, including: Fall asymptomatic COVID-19 testing program; New Onsite Scholars family survey; SBSD’s updated requirement for Onsite Scholar families to immediately report a positive COVID-19 case to school officials and resubmit the Parent/Guardian Safety Agreement by October 27, 2020 (see details below); and, Special Board Meeting on October 29, 2020, at 5:00 p.m. REMINDER! SBSD Asymptomatic Fall COVID-19 Testing for Onsite Scholars As a reminder, SBSD Onsite Scholars (students) and all staff will continue asymptomatic COVID-19 testing this Thursday, October 22. Families, we strongly recommend your child be tested during the fall cycle according to your child’s last name. Please review the schedule below for the remaining testing weeks and school sites. Fall Onsite Scholar and Employee Asymptomatic Testing Schedule Testing Week (1:00-5:00 p.m.) Testing Site Participants to be Tested (Last name begins with) October 22, 2020 Skyline Ci-Gr October 29, 2020 Solana Pacific Gu-Le November 5, 2020 Solana Ranch Li-O November 12, 2020 Skyline P-Si Modified Date! December 3, 2020 Solana Ranch Sk-Z NEW! SBSD Onsite Scholars Family Survey With the goal of returning as many students as many days as possible onto our physical campuses, while maximizing health and safety provisions, we are seeking Onsite Scholars families’ input on some important program elements. Please take 5-10 minutes to complete this brief survey. If you have multiple school-aged children, please complete one survey for each child. We value your input. SBSD Onsite Scholars Family Survey in English SBSD Onsite Scholars Family Survey in Chinese SBSD Onsite Scholars Family Survey in Spanish UPDATED! Communications Regarding Reporting Positive COVID-19 Cases to School Officials Please read and become familiar with the following updated communications specific to the District’s required protocol whenever there is a student or member of a household with a positive COVID-19 case. Parent/Guardian Safety Agreement - All Onsite Scholar families will need to resubmit the Parent/Guardian Safety Agreement by Tuesday, October 27. The changes to this document are contained in numbers 2, 6, and 8d. You will receive this form via ParentSquare by the end of this week. Reopening Guidebook - Please review pages 9 and 10 of the SBSD Guide to Reopening Schools 2020-21 where the District’s protocol for reporting positive COVID-19 cases has been updated. Testing FAQ - All frequently asked questions regarding positive COVID-19 cases have been updated to include the requirement of families to report any positive COVID-19 case to school officials. FAQs (revised) for SBSD Proactive COVID-19 Testing Program Special Board Meeting: Thursday, October 29, at 5:00 p.m. A Special Board meeting is scheduled for Thursday, October 29, at 5:00 p.m. to further discuss the additional phasing-in plans for grades K-6. As a reminder, there are many resources on the District’s website regarding school reopening (presentations, archived communication letters to families, FAQs, etc.). In order to have accurate information, I strongly encourage families to use official District resources as their “go to” sources of information. This will help reduce, if not eliminate, confusion and inaccurate information circulating in our communities. Please visit www.sbsd.net/reopening for all official resources. As always, I express tremendous gratitude for all of the support from our families, students, and staff as we do all that we can to keep our staff, your family, and our community safe, while helping stop the spread of COVID-19 and keeping our schools open. Have a good evening! Sincerely, Jodee Brentlinger, Superintendent