Dear Hill Community,
As we wrap up another busy week of preparing for a successful year, we are so excited to welcome our teaching staff back next Tuesday! I want to again take the time to give a huge Dillo Cheer to all of our dedicated educators who have worked hard all summer to learn and begin building their platforms to support our students. In the upcoming week, our teachers will participate in campus and district level professional learning focusing on supporting our students instructionally and emotionally as we prioritize reconnecting with our kids.
We also want to welcome Dr. Stephanie Elizalde to Austin ISD as she was named superintendent officially this week. She has been a great listener so far as she gets to know our different school communities. We look forward to working closely with her in the years to come to ensure our district and school continue to evolve and support all students to be successful, lifelong learners.
Earlier this week, a revised Reopening Plan for AISD was shared through email with all families. It describes the current, comprehensive plan for remote learning but also describes safety protocols for everyone once students are able to return to on-campus learning. Please know that this is a living document that may be updated further based on guidance. Hill School will also ensure families have campus-specific information prior to returning for face to face learning.
Part of the Reopening Plan refers to the new Austin ISD app that we are excited for our community to begin using. Once the opportunity for face to face learning begins in the fall, this app will be very handy as families will be able to self-screen their students as described. Search “Austin ISD” and check it out! We anticipate utilizing this more and more in the future as it continues to evolve. It is a great resource for announcements and calendar updates right now.
In case you missed it, you can view recordings of our first Parent Technology Training focused on our BLEND and Seesaw platforms. Please know that as part of our preparation for the school year, teachers will walk parents through their virtual platforms during our Virtual Meet the Teacher event that will be presented through Zoom. More details on that will be coming soon as our staff reports back to work. Please also check out the BLEND Parent Tour as another great tool to further support your knowledge and practice leading up to September 8th.
One note that sparked discussion during the Parent Technology Training for Seesaw was if parents should all go ahead and request an Ipad for their student(s) to utilize at home. Our innovation coaches explained that the district-provided Ipads will come loaded with applications and updates that will allow students to more easily navigate the learning.Therefore, they are encouraging all families of Pre-K through 2nd grade students to go ahead and request the district Ipad. Please use this Technology Request Flyer to support you in making your request. Also know that your technology at home will still support the learning, though, in the interim! They encouraged parents to use Google Chrome for the best experience with BLEND and Seesaw. For our 3rd-5th grade students, any laptop or PC will support those grade levels so requests can still be based on need at home using the same flyer above. Our assistant principal, Myra Josey (email@example.com), is our school contact if you have questions or need assistance on requesting district technology. The district is optimistic that technology distribution of Ipads will begin for Hill the week before school begins. I will update our community next week with dates once that is confirmed.
Beginning this upcoming week, we will ensure that we do a weekly Principal Check-In from now on so you have the most up to date information. Days and times may need to vary a bit as we can’t be sure of our upcoming schedules leading up to the start of school quite yet. We will provide more details on scheduling, events in the weeks leading up to school, and the best ways to find the different supports you may need. Our next Principal Check-In will be this Thursday, August 20th, at 11:00 am. You can complete this Google Form for questions we can look to answer that others may have as well. Here is the virtual Zoom information:
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 819 2489 9778
Lastly, we want to let everyone know that we plan to have teachers reaching out to families to let them know who their teacher(s) will be on Wednesday, August 26th. A virtual Meet the Teacher event will then follow prior to school beginning. We plan to announce more exact details on date and time during our Principal Check-In next week and in our communication to the community.
That was a lot but thank you for reading! We hope with these detailed notes and our weekly virtual check-ins from now on, you will feel confident you have the information needed to begin a successful school year. Have a wonderful weekend!