Dear Keys Community,
We are living in an extraordinary and unprecedented time. Since Santa Clara County ordered a shelter-in-place directive, the Keys faculty and staff have fully mobilized our Distance Learning Program (DLP). Due to the County’s directive, nearly all faculty and staff are working from home at this time, using technology to collaborate and communicate in small and large groups. They’re making lemonade out of this situation and like the theater manager says, “The show must go on!” we’re saying, “…So shall school!” We are working every “muscle” to deliver a high-quality social-emotional learning DLP for our beloved Keys students.
We have launched our DLP while in motion. In other words, it’s a lot like building a bike while riding one. The opportunity to do this has been a challenge, but it’s also been a gift. Every faculty member has embraced the occasion to embark on this new adventure as a unified, energized and highly committed team, and we are so grateful for your patience and commitment as we initiate our DLP. We also recognize that in addition to the normal challenges that come with introducing a new program, we all may experience connectivity issues, device malfunctions, bandwidth problems, or other technical issues. We’re human and this much change can cause frustration – this is the time to use the social-emotional learning skills Keys is known to develop in our students and teaching practice. I have been struck by the compassion, kindness, and partnership Keys community members have demonstrated during this period of change. We are living through an extraordinary time, and I have confidence that we will find our way through this together because we are an extraordinary community!
Important DLP Notes:
If your student experiences any technical issues, the first place to look is the new Technology Resources section on KeysNet. Here you will find a collection of School Policies, Instructional Videos, Tutorials, Best Practices and Tips on how to be successful when using our distance learning tools. As we often tell the students, use the 5 R’s when dealing with a technical issue:
- Relax – keep calm, we all understand there will be hiccups along the way
- Retry – try again, try another browser, quit and relaunch application
- Research – brief search using the search engine of your choice, check out KeysNet resources
- Restart your computer
- Reach out – ask a teacher, ask a parent, ask classmates, email Ryan Matyjasik, Steven Zeigler or Cameron Johnson
Likely, many of you heard Governor Newsom’s remark yesterday about school closure and the possibility that schools may not reopen until fall. Governor Newsom provided no definitive answer. Presently, we are operating with the intent to reopen after April break, and like you, we are learning of updates from government officials in real-time. We are preparing accordingly, and as we receive messages from the state and the county, we will communicate with all of you as soon as possible.
In the meantime, we recognize the challenges of social-distancing in our close-knit community, and yet, we understand that closing schools, businesses, and group gatherings are only effective as a mitigation strategy when we all make the daily choice to keep our distance from one another as much as possible. This is taxing when we are deeply connected. Nonetheless, we need to do our part. Check out the article, “Social Distancing: This is Not a Snow Day,” by Asaf Bitton, MD, MPH, executive director of Ariadne Labs in Boston, MA for more information on this topic.
We also recognize how challenging it can be for adults and children alike when the ground keeps shifting beneath our feet and our normal, daily routines are upended. One of the most stabilizing actions you can take at a time like this is to work to put in place new routines and structures for yourself and your family. While we are temporarily suspending our weekly Wednesday Letter communication, we will be reaching out to you regularly in the weeks ahead with updates, information, and resources, including (in the coming days) tips around building routines, setting up schedules, and creating new opportunities for your family.
We hope you and your family are faring well and finding some new footing in this unfamiliar territory. Please stay tuned for more information and keep yourselves safe. We are here for you and want to do whatever we can to help us get through this together, and we will!
All the best to you and yours,