Keeping Up In The Classroom

Alum Rock School District Hands Out Supplies Needed to Learn From Home

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In the face of lawsuits and harsh criticism, Governor Gavin Newsom is sticking to the plan saying Friday that school districts are ready for distance learning. 

The governor said the state has boosted the “safety first” approach with technological and financial help. 

There’s already been a lot of online instruction by the Alum Rock School District to families to get them ready for the first day of classes and on Friday they showed up at school in person to get their supplies.

About 170 students, incoming sixth graders to Sheppard Middle School showed up to get iPads donated by Verizon Wireless and a starter kit containing text books, art supplies, and other things for online instruction that starts Tuesday. 

Emily Gonzales Arias, 11, is ready. 

“Oh I’m really excited, I miss school,” she said. “Actually I think it’s going to be pretty easy I’m guessing.”

That enthusiasm should be good news for Newsom, who said the primary objective is to make online schooling interactive, engaging and easy to navigate. 

Sheppard Middle School is on board. 

“So our goal, especially on the launch, is really to be accessible and informative so that we don’t have anyone confused about where to go, what to find, etcetera,” said Principal Jacqueline Montejano.

Teachers were able to send home materials that students can use at home to facilitate the process. 

“One of the struggles is how are they going to access their textbooks, or how are they going to access their worksheets, or the other materials they need,” said teacher Jennifer Doherty.

A big plus will be a San Jose City program called IMPACT. 

“What a role is in this space is to monitor the chat and answer questions that may come through, make sure that students are ‘muted,’  make sure they’re engaged and focused on the teacher’s work too,” siad IMPACT Director Jose Magana.

From the looks of it, the start of this school year is already way ahead of last year in terms of preparation and enthusiasm.

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