Covid-19 Announcements and Information
April 9, 2020
Missouri Governor Mike Parson ordered all schools in Missouri to cancel in-person classes through the end of the 2019-2020 school year.
While this is a disappointment for our students and families, we know it is for the safety and health of our larger community. As we do our part to control the spread of Covid-19, we will continue on in our online learning, and finish this school year strong, right up through May 13, 2020. That means we persevere through our studies, continue meeting in our virtual classrooms, tune in for our morning assemblies, and stay on top of our assignments…all with a spirit of excellence!
This is a season where we typically recognize our students’ hard work and achievements. There are many items to sort through: Kindergarten Graduation, 8th Grade Junior High Promotion, and of course our beloved High School Senior Graduation. Rest assured, we will be celebrating!…we just need to wait and see how and when we will be doing this.
March 17, 2020
Mayor Lucas issued a “stay at home” order for any person not performing essential services. This started Tuesday, March 24. He has also closed schools in the Kansas City Metro area, through Friday, April 24 to help stop the spread of COVID-19. This includes the Center School District, which is the district that The Daniel Academy is located in.
We understand the new circumstances are not easy for any of us to process, but we must do our part in stopping the spread of the Coronavirus.
TDA Journey Into the Digital Classroom
We broke for Spring Break on March 12, 2020, and had one of the most odd Spring Breaks ever, at home, in isolation. We watched the news, as literally, every single day, was an earth-shaking country wide, state wide, or city wide change. In a matter of days, we went from planning our Spring Break vacation to social distancing and shelter-at-home. Somewhere in the middle of all of that, a myriad of school decisions were made, on how to move forward in this new world.
Our executive leadership met on 3/21. This was at the very beginning of ‘social distancing’, and to the best of our understanding, we tried to stay away from each other. Ten of us, sat in a huge circle, and discussed what to do next for our school. We talked, we prayed, we wrestled with different options…and decided to ‘soft’ launch our online school on 3/24. In a 72 hour blur of madness, we selected an LMS, created users and settings, and started rolling out video tutorials for our teachers and parents. We also assembled a small group of helpers and emptied out every single desk and locker into a bucket or trash bag. The very next day we had parents come by at allotted time frames to pick up their belongings. By that evening, students had all of their books, worksheets, and notebooks to finish off the school year!
Our ‘soft’ launch included the creation of a virtual classroom for each class, 1 welcome video from each teacher, and a few assignments posted…just for everyone to get into the swing of things. We held training meetings, rolled out more video tutorials, and officially launched our ONLINE school on 3/30, with our first LIVE stream class! It has been a massive tornado of a learning curve, for teachers, students, and parents! Our inboxes are full, and our brains are bursting…but school IS HAPPENING. There have been a ton of hiccups along the way, and of course we anticipate more, as we continue to move forward. But classes are meeting, office hours are happening, classwork is being assigned, homework is being done and submitted digitally…it’s all moving forward!
Online School – Best Practices
This simple little Best Practices Portal is meant for us to share, with ourselves and whoever else is interested, all that we are learning. We know that any help we can give to each other, in this time of global crises, is good help that we can all appreciate.
We decided on using Google Classroom and the full G-Suite of tools bundled together. We looked at Schoology, zoom, and a handful of other tools…but made a decision to go with Google because our students were already using Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Drive. And while Zoom sounded like a fantastic conferencing platform, we kept to Google Meet, so as to not have to introduce yet another platform to our already overwhelmed staff, faculty, and families.
So…if our Google Classroom Adventure of selection, activation, roll out, and training is something that might benefit you…please read on! We’ve broken our collection into 4 broad categories:
- For All School
- For School Admin
- For Teachers
- For Families (Parents and Students)