Dear FHUSD Parents, Guardians and Friends,
I begin this message with congratulations to Kelly Glass, the new 2020-21 FHUSD Superintendent. Ms. Glass attended the March 18th FHUSD Governing Board meeting where the Board approved offering her a contract for next year. Ms. Glass is the current superintendent of the Sierra Vista Unified School District in southern Arizona and she is excited to take on the leadership role of FHUSD as we move into a new decade.
The school closure and its impact on everyone continues to be the overriding topic for the school community and there are several recent developments to share. Today, Governor Ducey signed House Bill 2910 (
news release here
) addressing the state actions about the school closures. Elements of the legislation include statewide testing changes, school letter grades, staff compensation, modifications to the required number of school days, and alternative education formats during the closure. We will be following these legislative decisions very closely in the coming weeks. For now, here is a summary of FHUSD actions to date in response to the closures.
For the past two weeks, we have been providing free breakfast/lunch pick-up opportunities at McDowell Mountain Elementary and at the H’man ‘shawa Early Childhood Development Center on Ft. McDowell. Approximately 125 breakfast/lunch combination meals are distributed daily and this service will continue during the school closure.
As we transition to an online or virtual learning community during this time, a district wide technology readiness survey has been responded to representing about 1050 students concerning a family’s internet access and device availability. Schools are now in the process of making direct phone calls to households that have not responded to determine their technology needs or non-digital instructional alternatives. Over the past two days, we have distributed to families 300 chromebook devices that can connect to a home wifi network and allow students to login to their FHUSD account where communication with their teacher can be set up. At this time we provided one per family but will work to provide an additional device next week to families with multiple children in our schools.
Teachers at all FHUSD schools have also been creating their online classroom where instructional materials and information will be delivered next week. MMES staff will be using “Seesaw” as the primary platform to interact with students. FHMS and FHHS will be using Google Classroom as the primary online platform with some high school classes also using Moodle and Canvas. Information has been coming out for the past week from school principals and teachers giving students information about login procedures for these platforms. As schools transition into delivering actual digital and print instructional materials next week, please watch for emails from your child’s teacher(s).
I want the community to know, however, that we do understand the current stress for many families for providing basic childcare and getting household supplies and groceries at stores with limited supplies. We will continue to work with families to find the proper balance of meeting educational needs along with your essential daily personal needs during this challenging time.
Robert Allen, Ed.D.