Back to School FAQ

Back to School FAQ

The district will continue to update this page regularly as new information is available. 
Last updated: September 16, 2020, 3:41 p.m.

What factors will the district be looking at when changing learning plans?
Please refer to Appendix B to the Back to School Plan for the criteria used to make shifts in the learning plan.

Hybrid Learning Plan

Bexley City Schools plans to begin the hybrid learning model on Monday, September 21. The district will continue to look to guidance from Franklin County Public Health and the Ohio Department of Health.

Franklin County COVID-19 rates are currently rising, yet BCSD plans to still start hybrid on September 21. Can you explain the factors that go into that decision?
Franklin County Public Health and Columbus Public Health officials have communicated to districts that their guidance to return to school in the hybrid plan is still in place.

Why was September 21 chosen as opposed to original plans to start hybrid later?
Guidance from FCPH to return to school in hybrid came on August 28.  The district waited three additional weeks before making the shift.  In early August, when the Back to School Plan was voted on by the Board of Education, it was stated that multiple weeks of downward trending data and the guidance of public health would cause a shift in learning plans.

Where do I find my hybrid schedule?
Principals have sent the schedule to students.  If you have questions, please contact your child’s school.

Can I switch my hybrid schedule?
Principals and counselors have worked to adjust schedules so that students attend in the hybrid plan with members of their household and to balance the A Group/B Group assignments so that approximately half of our students attend at one time.
Due to social distancing requirements, it is highly unlikely that we can make further adjustments.  

What safety protocols and procedures are in place for in-person learning?
The Bexley Parent and Student COVID-19 Guide gives a full and comprehensive overview of all the health and safety measures in place at Bexley City Schools.

My child is in group B. What will they be doing on September 21 and 22 (the first days the district returns in-person)?
When students are not participating in in-person learning within one of our Bexley schools, they will be completing their daily learning through Google Classroom or Canvas. Student learning on these days could be supported in a variety of ways such as through a pre-recorded lesson from teachers, a live lesson via Zoom or Google Meet, and/or through independent practice or inquiry based activities that will be posted daily.

Group B students will follow the plan of learning located in Google Classroom or Canvas on September 21 and September 22.

How can we cover a year's worth of curriculum with only 3 learning days?
In reducing the number of students to half of a typical class, our teachers will maximize the opportunity to provide more individualized intervention, instruction, and extension on our in-person learning days. Smaller learning groups will also enable teachers to expose students to more content within a class period. This further aligns to our district instructional goal to provide differentiated learning experiences that support each learner.

Prior to COVID, instruction would have allowed time for teacher presentation of content, class discussion, and student work time. Sometimes, this would occur within a single period or block of time or it may have occurred across the span of multiple days.

In the hybrid model on in-person days, teachers will continue to present content, engage students in peer discussions, and seek to provide the necessary feedback that will support independent student work time outside of the classroom setting. Additionally, teachers will review student work submitted through Google Classroom and Canvas to provide responsive instructional support to students on their in-person days.

Will all classes be taped and posted on Canvas so that students who are at home due to illness can watch them to stay up to date on classes?
Teachers are not required to record their daily lessons and post them to Canvas. Planning for in-person smaller group instruction, whole class remote instruction, and small group distance learning requires coordination and time for our teachers which is a challenge to the daily pre-recording of lessons.  Additionally, live streaming of in-person lessons challenges the capacity of teachers to provide the more intensive and intentional student support that the hybrid model affords. Having to be similarly focused on the real-time learning needs and behaviors of students learning from home while managing in-person needs lessens the instructional effectiveness of our Bexley teachers.

As a reminder, if a student is absent from learning for any period of time, they are encouraged to utilize teachers' office hours to support them in their curriculum progression.

The hybrid A/B calendar has been released through December. Is there no chance for all-in learning prior to December?
There is a chance to move to all-in or back to distance learning throughout the year including through December.   We published the hybrid days through December because students report to school on different days during hybrid (reporting for all in and all distance days is the same for all students each day).  We published for the semester to allow for planning.  Please see Appendix B to the Back to School Plan for the criteria used to make shifts in the learning plan:$file/Bexley%20Appendix%20B%20v.3.pdf

Is the Back to School Committee still directing decisions on when BCS would use hybrid learning and/or switch to remote learning?
The BCS Back to School Task Force had a specific job to develop the three types of learning models and overall risk mitigation protocols. Their work concluded in August.  The subcommittee that addresses physical health and safety and contact tracing continues to meet regularly.

Bexley E-Learning Academy

What is e-Learning? What is the difference between the distance learning plan and the hybrid learning plan? 
The Bexley e-Learning Academy is designed to accommodate families for whom extenuating health circumstances would make returning to in-person learning medically dangerous. Every year we have students who have to access their content differently due to health reasons.  We have always used third-party vendors to deliver content to students who cannot attend school in person. With COVID, we recognize that more families may have medical circumstances that necessitate e-Learning; therefore, we have shared this option with all families to review. This option is not intended to be an equivalent replacement for in-person instruction by a Bexley teacher. Further, our small size and extensive course offerings significantly limit our ability to assign staff to meet the demands of in-person learning and e-learning simultaneously. E-Learning will be self-paced learning through SchoolsPLP with a Bexley staff member serving as a case manager to a group of students (likely across grade levels and courses); the case manager will monitor student engagement in the SchoolsPLP environment.

In distance learning, all students will receive their instruction remotely from their teachers.  Teachers will teach remotely five days a week using live and recorded online lessons through Canvas (6-12) or Google Classroom (K-5) for instructional delivery.

In hybrid learning, students will attend two days a week by group A and B.  Teachers will be in their classrooms with students four days a week teaching in person.  About half of our students (A Group) will attend in person two days a week for instruction with their teachers while the other half of students (B Group) are at home applying or extending the learning that occurred on in-person days with the teacher. The “at home” days will not include live/virtual instruction from the teacher because the teacher will be teaching in-person four days a week. Wednesdays, all students will learn remotely (to allow buildings to be sanitized). On Wednesdays, teachers will be supporting individual and small groups of students virtually, providing additional resources, intervention or extensions as needed.  As stated in the Back to School Plan approved by the Board of Education on August 4, posted online and sent to families in the district’s weekly email on August 6,  “Shifting to a hybrid learning plan will be determined in partnership with Franklin County Public Health and will consider local data including county alert level, case rates, positivity rates, and trend data.”

We do not know if we want to register our child for the e-Learning Academy now.  Can we decide when the district returns to hybrid? 
Families need to register for the e-learning academy by August 20.  This commitment is needed for planning purposes and to ensure continuity of instruction for students.  Student seats are purchased through a contract with the SchoolsPLP vendor.  In order to have staff trained to use the platform and have the classes set up and ready for students when they are needed, we must finalize our contract with them now.

How does my child’s enrollment change if we register for e-Learning?
Students who are enrolled in e-learning remain registered with Bexley City Schools.  But, in order to provide accurate reporting to the state, students will be withdrawn from their currently assigned teacher and classes and enrolled in the e-learning classes with the Bexley staff case manager when the transition to e-learning occurs.  As such, they will no longer be on their teacher’s class roster. If at semester break, you wish to have your child return to school, they will be reassigned to a teacher to resume live classes.

Instead of registering for e-learning, can we withdraw our student when the district moves to hybrid instruction and then re-enroll if the district returns to distance learning at some point?
Yes.  If you wish to withdraw your student from Bexley City Schools when we move to a hybrid model, you may do so by contacting your child’s school.  Upon withdrawal, you will need to either provide evidence of enrollment at another school or submit paperwork to the district to request the homeschool option following the Ohio Department of Education requirements.

Why was SchoolsPLP selected? 
Over the course of the summer, district leaders in the Department of Staff and Student Learning reviewed many platforms as potential e-learning providers.  We started our search based on information provided by the Educational Service Center of Central Ohio and collaborated with other districts in the area.  First and foremost, we searched for platforms that offer a wide array of courses that are aligned to state content standards, which is the curriculum model that drives Bexley courses.  We also considered other factors, such as flexibility with enrollment times, variety of content, and price.  SchoolsPLP utilizes content from multiple course designers within a single platform and provides a broad course catalog for the full K-12 spectrum.  They also allow us to start students at the beginning of the year or partway into the quarter, and we are able to bring students out or add more students in at the semester break, as needed.  Finally, SchoolsPLP is more cost-effective than many of the other options, thus allowing us to be more fiscally responsible.  SchoolsPLP is also being implemented by New Albany Plain Local School District.

What if a course our student is scheduled to take is not offered by SchoolsPLP?
While the SchoolsPLP platform has a very broad course catalog, there are some Bexley secondary courses that are not available at this time.  We are currently finalizing other arrangements to provide courses not available in SchoolsPLP.  This may include offering the course through another vendor or trying to secure a teacher who is able to take on a sixth-course assignment to teach the course. Students may also opt to take the course during the second semester using College Credit Plus or pursue an independent study for credit using the Credit Flex process. If arrangements for an alternative is not possible for a course your student would like to take, he or she will not be able to take the course this year.  For students who are juniors and younger, they can try to schedule that course for the next school year and will need to select an alternative this year.  Until families have registered for the e-Learning Academy, we cannot finalize options for students as the options will be personalized for each student’s specific schedule. For this reason, we have set a registration deadline of August 20. 

Can my student take a course offered by SchoolsPLP that Bexley does not offer?
Yes. Your student can take any grade appropriate course that is in the SchoolsPLP catalog.  If it is a Career Tech (CTE) course, there is a $75 surcharge with SchoolsPLP.  Families will need to pay that fee to the district.

If my student takes a different course online and returns to school at the semester, how will they finish the course?
If Bexley does not offer the course, the student will not be able to continue. They will receive a ½ credit for the course on the high school transcript. Typically, this situation would only occur if students opt to take an additional course or elective beyond their typical schedule. If the course was instead of a regularly scheduled course, students will be enrolled in a semester elective or study hall upon return. Courses that are offered for the year will be available in the second semester if the student does not return to in-person learning for semester 2, and therefore, remains enrolled in the e-Learning Academy.

Can my student take courses beyond their grade level?
In order to take courses outside the grade level, a student must go through the formal acceleration process. This process includes advertised deadlines by which to apply.  See our website for information: Students who have already been formally accelerated will be enrolled in the appropriate course based on that acceleration.  Students in the math 6/7 or math 7/8 courses will have an e-learning math course that teaches the same standards taught in the in-person counterparts.

If my child is enrolled in the Bexley e-Learning Academy, can they participate in extracurricular activities?
Yes. Your student can participate in afterschool extracurricular activities. However, this does not include co-curricular activities, such as elementary choir or long-term class projects, led during the school day, as those activities will not have a virtual counterpart available.  Performance programs based on in-school courses for band, choir, and orchestra, among others, may be possible dependent on instructor availability.  However, we will not know if that is possible until we know how many students are in need of these courses.  For students who wish to participate in high school marching band, choir, orchestra, or other courses that include extracurricular activities based on courses during the day, they should create a Credit Flex plan for independent study to earn credit for the course portion and then may participate in the afterschool practices as scheduled.

Will students in the e-Learning Academy still have access to special education, English learner, and gifted services?
Students with disabilities can have many of their accommodations embedded into the courses in accordance with their IEP or 504 plans. The IEP team will meet to review and revise the IEP as appropriate for students with IEPs who opt into the Bexley e-Learning Academy.  The English Language Coordinator will monitor the access and progress of students and will connect the family with English resources as appropriate. Students will participate in English Language assessments as required. Students who are gifted and have a Written Education Plan for the elementary Cog ELA course will continue to be supported by a district Gifted Intervention Specialist.

How will students in the Bexley e-Learning Academy maintain connections with teachers and classmates?  Can they participate in live sessions with their original teacher or classmates or access assignments posted in Google Classroom/Canvas?
When the district moves to a hybrid or an all-in model of learning, live sessions will no longer occur since our Bexley teachers and students will be meeting face to face in classrooms.  Additionally, students in e-learning will no longer be enrolled in their previous teacher’s classes due to state reporting, so students will not have access to those Google Classrooms or Canvas settings.  The e-learning platform is designed to be an independent, self-paced learning experience.  However, we realize the importance of human connection.  So, the case managers assigned to monitor student participation and progress will hold weekly office hours for students to arrange for video check-ins. Additionally, those case managers will host weekly live sessions for the students in their group to interact with peers and engage in team-building and social-emotional activities.

Will moving to e-Learning midway through the quarter create learning gaps or transition challenges for students?
The goal is to limit the number of transitions students will need to make. That is part of the reason why families need to make a commitment for a full semester when registering for e-learning. To help smooth the initial transition to e-learning, case managers will adjust the assigned lessons in the e-learning course to reflect the initial instruction students received at the start of the year from their Bexley teachers. The SchoolsPLP platform allows for lessons to be removed if students have already been taught the content prior to entering the Bexley e-Learning Academy. The lessons will also be reviewed to ensure they align to the first semester of Bexley’s sequence of instruction. Families who do not want their child to make a transition midway through the quarter may opt to begin e-Learning from the start as soon as it becomes available within the next 1-2 weeks.

If the district returns to full virtual learning mid-semester, can my student return to classes taught by the Bexley teachers?
Yes, students may return to instruction with Bexley teachers at the beginning of the new semester (January 5). The student will need to fulfill the commitment made to stay in e-learning through the end of the semester. This is to ensure there is continuity in the content instruction and to avoid any learning gaps that may arise if the student were to go back and forth between settings.

What connection with the school district can my student expect in e-learning?
Case managers will host weekly live videoconference meetings with the students they oversee.  These weekly meetings, which will last 30 minutes to an hour, are opportunities for students to interact with one another. 

Discussion topics may help students get to know each other, provide opportunities for students to share challenges and successes they have experienced with e-learning, share tips that may help each other with managing time or resources, or simply socialize for a short time.  Counselors may occasionally visit these meetings to help provide social-emotional support, as well.  Case managers will contact families with the schedule for these meetings.

Students in the e-Learning Academy may participate in afterschool extracurricular activities.  Please contact the activity coach, leader, or advisor for more information.  E-learning students may also participate in the fall theater programs led by Ms. Becky Rhinehart, which will occur virtually.  Programs will include a 4-5 play, middle school play, two high school plays, and a high school improv event.

Distance Learning

What will trigger a switch back to remote learning?
A shift back to distance learning will be made in collaboration with FCPH and could be made for a cohort of students (grade level or classroom of students), a building, or the district depending on an outbreak of cases in a class, school, or district and/or Bexley and Franklin County as a whole.

Also, a lack of teachers due to illness or leave could force us to return to distance learning.

Are teachers receiving more help to develop better and more effective ways to do online learning?
Yes, one of the reasons Bexley Schools is recommending to the Board of Education that the start of the school year be moved later is to provide more professional development and time for teachers to plan for a more robust distance learning experience, in case distance learning is needed at any point throughout the year.  Throughout the summer teachers have been meeting and planning for both hybrid and distance learning plans. Bexley Schools Instructional Coaches have been providing resources and support to our teachers specifically on distance learning throughout this summer. Coaches will continue to support teachers with in-person, hybrid and distance learning will continue all year.
How will remote learning this year differ from last year’s experience?The biggest difference is that our teachers will be more prepared. Last year’s shift to distance learning was abrupt, and we did not know how long it would last. Our teachers learned a lot last year and became more and more comfortable with the instruction as they continued to experiment and learn from each other. In addition to more time for teachers to prepare, we will be better equipped with the right resources to support students online. Teachers and Instructional Coaches have already been preparing for all the learning scenarios we may use this year so that our staff and students are more equipped to transition if needed.
Unfortunately, our order for Chromebooks to begin our 1:1 technology plan is delayed due to international shipping delays, a world-wide shortage of computing chips and other factors out of our hands. We hope to have a device in the hands of every Bexley student this fall so that everyone has easy access to our distance learning resources.
If Bexley Schools moves to all distance learning, will the students who originally enrolled in the Bexley E-Learning Academy have access to the material provided during distanced learning? 
No, students enrolled in the Bexley E-Learning Academy will be receiving their own instruction from their own classes online that may not seamlessly align with what students are doing in a classroom at their building. Just like Bexley teachers in the same building, teaching the same grade level may not be working on the exact same lesson at the exact same time, the Bexley E-Learning Academy teachers may not be teaching the exact same lesson at the exact same pace.

Individualized Education Plans (IEPS)

Special Education in Bexley e-Learning Academy
Intervention specialists and related service providers will be assigned to students participating in the Bexley E-Learning Academy and will provide specially designed instruction and related services according to the student's individual education plan (IEP). Accommodations may be provided by e-Learning Academy teachers. IEP teams will convene, as appropriate, to determine how a student's IEP may need to be amended in light of an online learning environment. 

Special Education in Hybrid Learning Plan

Students with an Individualized Education Program (IEP) will follow their assigned A/B schedule. When in-person they will receive the face to face intervention based on their IEP.

Remote learning days will consist of practice and assignments based on IEP goals and objectives and services. Intervention specialists will connect with students at home based on their individual IEP.

Special education plans may vary depending on students’ individual needs and team determinations. These plans are created through thoughtful review of IEP goals and a variety of student performance indicators. Students who receive the majority of their instruction through an alternate curriculum or take alternate assessments may be attending the learning center on days opposite of their scheduled A/B days. Specific schedules will be communicated by your child’s Intervention Specialist

Social Distancing, Masks, and Quarantine

The Bexley Parent and Student COVID-19 Guide gives a full and comprehensive overview of all the health and safety measures in place at Bexley City Schools.

If a teacher is unable to teach, will you have a sub? Even if it's a planned absence for a day?
Each school is in the process of securing a small pool of substitutes that will be available to provide instructional support should a teacher be absent from school for a day or an extended period of days due to potential quarantine. This pool of substitutes will be known as "building substitutes."

In the event of an extended absence, a substitute will be utilized to provide instruction to students on their assigned in-person days and Wednesdays.  Lessons would continue to be posted to Canvas and Google Classroom for students to access on their remote learning days. These lessons and learning tasks would likely be designed in collaboration with grade-level or department colleagues to further support the continuity of learning.

Depending on the curriculum to be instructed and the capacity of a teacher to provide the instruction while absent due to personal or family illness, a middle school or high school teacher may on occasion use Zoom to project themselves into the classroom using the SmartBoard while the substitute would facilitate student/teacher interaction and conversation throughout the lesson.

Bexley Schools, like other Central Ohio school districts, works in partnership with the Educational Service Center of Central Ohio to access substitutes.

If a student must quarantine while the district is in hybrid or all-in, how will the district deliver instruction to students over the course of those 14 days?
If students must quarantine, students will continue to access their instruction through Google Classroom or Canvas and would be encouraged to participate in the Wednesday remote day of learning if their health condition supports their participation.
Students in grades 6-12 would additionally be encouraged to schedule time to meet virtually with their teachers through Zoom during daily office hours to provide more individualized support during an extended absence.

Parents of students in grades K-5 can also reach out to their child's teacher with questions regarding the assigned lessons posted in Google Classroom.