Hybrid & Virtual Learning Commons
Changes coming to Bard
In anticipation of our return to the building on April 12th, the next few weeks will see important changes. Please read carefully below to learn how these changes affect you--whether you have chosen to continue remote learning or the hybrid model. Click here for information about our Pandemic Response Team. You can also read about the District's reopening plan here.
For Everyone: Changes in the Schedule
In order to accommodate our new in-person learning, everyone, including students who continue to learn from home, will be following a new schedule, starting on March 29 (the week before Spring Break). All students must first report to their scheduled homerooms at 8:15 each morning for attendance. Your homeroom schedule will not change--you should continue to log in to homeroom just as it is reflected in your current PowerSchool schedule.
When you look up your schedule in PowerSchool, it will not appear to change. But the class periods listed in PowerSchool will now meet at different times than they have been. Think about it like this: up until now, we have had nine 40-minute periods of class scheduled each day. One of these is a lunch period, so your schedule has had eight periods of class time each day. Take those eight different periods (forget about lunch here), and imagine that now you’re going to spread out those eight periods over two days instead of just one. So whatever class PowerSchool says you have on Monday 1stperiod, you will now have on Monday during Block A. Whatever you have in PowerSchool on Monday 2ndperiod, you will now have on Monday Block B. On Tuesday, we will start with what your PowerSchool lists as Monday 6thperiod. By the end of the day on Tuesday, we will complete one full “day” of the PowerSchool schedule. On Wednesday, we will then start with your PowerSchool Tuesday 1st period class, going through all of your PowerSchool Tuesday schedule by the end of the day on Thursday. It will take two weeks to complete a full week’s schedule as listed in PowerSchool. Here’s what the two-week cycle looks like:
|Week A||Week B|
|Block A 8:45-9:45||M 1st||M 6th||T 1st||T 6th||W 1st||W 6th||Th 1st||Th 6th||F 1st||F 6th|
|Block B 9:55-10:55||M 2nd||M 7th||T 2nd||T 7th||W 2nd||W 7th||Th 2nd||Th 7th||F 2nd||F 7th|
|Block C 11:10-12:10||M 3rd||M 8th||T 3rd||T 8th||W 3rd||W 8th||Th 3rd||Th 8th||F 3rd||F 8th|
|Block D 12:20-1:20||M 4th or 5th||M 9th||T 4th or 5th||T 9th||W 4th or 5th||W 9th||Th 4th or 5th||Th 9th||F 4th or 5th||F 9th|
For hybrid students:
Our school building will be open to those students who have opted for remote instruction on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. Wednesday will be remote for all students, faculty, and staff for deep cleaning.
1) Ingress Procedures
Before coming to school each morning, please use the RST Activity Scheduler app to fill out the COVID-19 Daily Health Screening Questions. If you have any symptoms, you should not come to the building. Directions for downloading the app can be found here. Please use extreme caution on your way to school: city transportation may be overcrowded—please wear your masks (2 if possible) and try to maintain social distancing on your way to school. Students are asked to arrive by 8:15 when ingress begins so that we can have all students to class by 8:45. Ingress ends at 8:45, so if you think that you may be late, please consider staying remote for that day. Once at school, 9thgraders should proceed to the Bergen street door (the main school entrance); 10thgraders to the corner if 16thand Bergen, and college students to the corner of 16thand Camden (near the loading dock). There, all students will step on the shoe sole sanitizing pad, have their temperature taken, and sanitize their hands. They will then proceed to their designated learning rooms for the day, remaining masked and maintaining social distancing.
2) In-person Learning
If you have opted to come to the school building, you should be aware that it will not be like a regular school year. We hope we can return to something more normal next year. Instead, you will be assigned to a 10-person learning room with one faculty member. Throughout the school day, you will stay in that room, and most of your classes will continue to be held remotely, using your Chromebook in your learning room. Since you will not physically move throughout the building from class to class, this means that other students in your learning room may be attending different classes at the same time as you. The school will provide headphones for students who need them, but you may opt to bring your own. Teachers will teach either from their assigned learning rooms or an alternate classroom, if necessary.
3) Safety precautions throughout the day – if these precautions are followed our school will be a *contactless site and the spread of COVID-19 here will be mitigated. [*Contact, as designated by the CDC, is being within 6 feet of someone for 15 minutes or more over a 24 hour period.]
- No visitors are permitted in the building, including parents.
- All adults and students in the building are required to wear masks at all times, except for breakfast and snack times.
- All students and adults in the building will maintain six feet of separation at all times.
- Students will remain in their designated learning rooms throughout the day. Each learning room is limited to a maximum of 10 students. Desks are be placed at least 6 feet apart and have been equipped with transparent shields to prevent the spread of droplets. Classrooms are also ventilated by open windows and disinfected with new hydroxyl air purification machines.
- Bathrooms will be limited to one person at a time. Breaks between classes are extended to 10 minutes to account for this change.
- Water fountains have been turned off, so students will need to bring water bottles that they have marked for easy identification. Microwaves are unavailable.
- If students are not able to follow these guidelines, they may be asked to return to remote learning for the rest of the school year.
4) Egress Procedures
Starting at 1:20, learning rooms will be dismissed one at a time, using the same doors that they entered in the morning. On their way out of the building, students will be given a lunch to take home. We will create a rotational schedule so that no learning room will be dismissed last every day.
Frequently Asked Questions
What precautions are being taken to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in school?
Bard will observe careful ingress procedures (see above). All adults and students are required to wear a mask when they are in the school building. Students will be required to stay in their learning rooms, in which desks will be spaced at least six feet apart. Each learning room will have a maximum of ten students in it. Bathrooms will be limited to one student at a time. The use of water fountains and microwaves will not be permitted. No visitors, including parents, will be permitted in the building. Finally, the superintendent is in the process of arranging the opportunity for weekly COVID-19 testing for all adults and students. Our building will be disinfected every night and high-touch surfaces are scheduled to be cleaned throughout the school day. All of these guidelines are in place to keep our school community safe, and to keep COVID-19 from spreading in the wider Newark community. If a student cannot follow these guidelines, they may be asked to return to remote learning for the remainder of the year.
What happens if I feel sick during the school day?
You will be seen by our school nurse, Ms. Wisneiski. If you have a temperature over 100.4°F or other coronavirus symptoms, you will be taken to our isolation room. Your parent/guardian or emergency contact will be called to pick you up. Ms. Wisneiski will also provide you and your family with information regarding any further actions needed.
What will Bard do if there is a positive case of COVID-19 at school?
Because students will stay in their 10-person learning room groups, we hope to avoid any contact from room to room. If a positive case is found, all students and faculty in that room will be required to quarantine for 14 days. The classroom will not be used for at least 2 days to allow for disinfection. While the families of students in other classrooms will be informed of any positive cases in the school, only those students in the affected classroom will be required to quarantine. Please be sure that your contact information is up-to-date in SchoolMint so that we can contact you if necessary. If cases are discovered in multiple classrooms, Bard may be required to temporarily close in-person learning while we clean and follow the appropriate contact tracing and quarantine protocols.
What will class be like for those who are coming into the building?
Students will continue to use their Chromebooks for most of their learning, even from the school building. Students will be assigned to a 10-person learning room, where they will spend the school day. Students will not move between rooms. This means that sometimes, students in the same physical space may be logged into different classes at the same time. Faculty will also teach most of their classes from the computer, either in the same room as their 10-person learning room students, or in a separate classroom, if necessary.
What should I bring to school?
- You should bring to school the same materials that you use right now to learn online: Chromebook (if you are currently using your own device, we will issue you a Chromebook for hybrid learning). Please make sure that your Chromebook is fully charged every morning. Bard will provide headphones, but if you have headphones you prefer for online learning, you may wish to bring those as well.
- Any school supplies, like notebooks and pencils, that you currently use at home.
- Water bottle, clearly marked for identification, since all water fountains have been turned off.
- If you bring a snack, it should be in a closed container. No sharing.
Why are we doing this new schedule? Can’t we just keep the old one?
We are changing the schedule because we want students to be able to leave the building by 1:30 and grab their lunch on the way out. This will minimize contact in the building and help keep us safe.
I’m going to continue learning from home. So why do I need a new schedule?
All students, even those learning from home, will need to follow the new schedule because our faculty are teaching both groups of students. We need everyone to follow the same schedule so that our teachers can meet with both groups at the same time.
When I filled out the survey, I said I wanted to come back to school. Now I’m not so sure. Can I change my mind?
Yes. You can change your mind at any time. You can even start coming to school and then decide you are not comfortable. If you do change your mind, please be sure to contact us and let us know of your decision. However, once you have informed us that you plan to stay home, that decision is final until the end of the school year.
When I filled out my survey, I said that I wanted to stay home, but now I’m thinking I want to come in. Can I still come to school?
No, unfortunately, if you opted to stay home, you must remain remote. This is because arranging students into rooms is too difficult if new students come to school who we did not plan for.
I opted to continue remote learning. Will the district still provide breakfast and lunch to me?
Yes. Meals are still available at any of the pickup sites listed here. Monday pickup will include meals for Monday-Wednesday, while Thursday pickup will include meals for Thursday and Fridya.
Now that in-person learning is starting again at Bard, will in-person student clubs begin as well?
For the time being, clubs that have been held online will continue to be held online.
Will all faculty be returning to school? Are they vaccinated?
Most faculty will return to school, except for those who have medical exemptions. Most faculty are vaccinated or will be vaccinated soon. Nevertheless, it is important to protect everyone’s safety by continuing to follow all guidelines.
Can I eat in the classroom?
We will have a designated breakfast and a designated snack time during the day. Apart from these times, students should not eat in the classroom. Students may choose to either bring their own breakfast/snack in closed containers or eat the one provided by the school. Students may bring a water bottle or other bottled beverage from home – no glass bottles/containers. No food deliveries will be permitted to school. When a student is not eating or drinking, their mask must stay on.
Do I have to wear a uniform?
As always, uniforms are encouraged. If you do not have a uniform, be sure to wear school appropriate clothing. Important: you must wear closed-toed shoes for our shoe sanitizing station. No flip-flops and no slippers.