The West Virginia Department of Education recognizes that the COVID-19 pandemic presents unique challenges to student learning. It is important that the school system is flexible in addressing best practices from local and national leadership. We realize that changes will be necessary in the delivery of instruction, the development of school schedules and the administration of the typical school day.
Priority is that every child in West Virginia continues to receives a world-class education and is prepared for their future – whether that be education, employment or enlistment. The information available on these pages will serve as a framework for the upcoming school year.
Convene a “Return to Instruction and Learning” working group, potentially led by the director of curriculum, chief academic officer or the equivalent, and composed of diverse and representative stakeholders on the county and school-levels, including school leaders and teachers.
Set an ambitious goal to ensure that every student is on-track for success by the end of the 2022 school year. This goal could include developing a process for schools to create and implement individualized plans for each student based on their needs.
Develop a plan for assessing students’ learning progress and loss when students return that includes multiple forms of assessment (e.g., diagnostics, formative assessments, student work, conferences, advisories, parent feedback).
Deliver the most appropriate school scheduling plan based on local school needs (see re-entry resources for sample schedules that will be available in July 2020).
Inventory all use of multi-tiered systems of support and other intervention programs and services that are available to students when they return to school, through the county and on the school-level, and identify any gaps.
Develop supports that emphasize the critical importance of the home-to-school connection through family engagement and partnerships.
Identify the most vulnerable students (e.g., students with disabilities, English learners, students who are homeless or live in temporary housing, migrant students, students who live in poverty or whose families face other challenges and students directly affected by COVID-19 due to a death or job loss in their family) to recognize and prioritize their needs.
Communicate possible changes to grading, report cards, promotion policies, local assessments and outline decision points.
Ensure that schools and teachers are engaging in horizontal and vertical teaming opportunities to promote intentional curriculum planning, documentation and lesson plans to ensure continuity of instruction during a second wave in school year 2020-2021, should it occur.
Ensure that schools and teachers are engaging in vertical teaming to heighten emphasis on addressing the critical prerequisite skills and concepts that are necessary for students’ academic success.
Secure resources and plan restorative supports and professional learning offerings for teachers around research-based and evidence-based best practices for instruction and interventions.
Secure resources and plan restorative supports and professional learning offerings for teachers around COVID-19 and trauma, equity and implicit bias, social-emotional learning, inclusion and appropriate use of digital and online learning tools and systems, and culturally responsive education.
Consider your instructional resources, plans and interventions for the upcoming school year in a face-to-face environment as well as prepare a remote contingency plan should there be a resurgence of the virus.
County collaborative early childhood teams should include planning for re-entry that addresses pre-k classrooms located in collaborative sites, as well as within school buildings.
Solidify and communicate an overall plan for face-to-face and/or remote learning for when students return to school that includes timelines for analyzing current data, making adjustments to curriculum and academic goals based on the data and determining what students know and are able to do via local assessments.
Implement supports that emphasize the critical importance of the home-to-school connection through family engagement and partnerships.
Share resources and supports that focus on use of multi-tiered systems of support for all learners.
Assess the capacity of structures outside the regular school day, such as summer learning options, extended day and after school programming, to potentially be leveraged to support students in need of learning recovery.
Align expectations and transition opportunities around onboarding school communities, including students, teachers, school leaders and parents, that prioritize the whole child and emphasize a tone of safety, togetherness and empathy.
Develop and implement tools and learning opportunities to support families with the technologies students will be using to learn when school opens.
Provide supports and professional learning offerings for teachers around research-based and evidence-based best practices for instruction and interventions.
Continue to review assessment data gathered by schools to identify overall trends and specific gaps in student learning to design targeted supports, match appropriate interventions through the use of multi-tiered systems of support and monitor the achievement gap.
Ensure regular opportunities for horizontal and vertical teaming for educators to have discussions about students’ progress, specifically focusing on the progress of the most vulnerable students or student populations.
Refine and sustain supports that emphasize the critical importance of the home-to-school connection through family engagement and partnerships.
Develop and refine targeted instructional and intervention plans to remediate learning loss for the most vulnerable students or student populations.
Assess the efficacy of all interventions against the goal of ensuring that every student is on-track by the end of the 2022 school year, and report out the results on a regular basis.
Evaluate the effectiveness of any remote learning experiences by surveying school leaders, teachers and parents and make improvements in case of any additional disruptions to school time.
Sustain supports and learning opportunities for families to master the technologies students will be using to learn throughout the school year.
Sustain supports and professional learning offerings for teachers around research-based best practices for instruction and interventions.