School Day Overview and FAQs

School Day Overview and FAQs
Posted on 08/19/2020

Dear Silver Gate Families,

We are excited to begin school on August 31st. The first week of school will look a bit different this year. Our educators will be in district training for the majority of the day. Along with their training, they are reserving time to check in with their students. Your child’s teacher will be sending you the check-in schedule. The district will also be providing workshops for families to help navigate online learning. Our district will soon be releasing additional information about the upcoming school year, but I wanted to share a few additional items with you.

As you know, we will start the school year online and will return to on-campus/in-person learning as soon as it is safe to do so. Scientists at UCSD have and will continue to advise our district on this decision. Click here for more information on school reopening criteria. When we return to on-campus learning, those that choose to stay online (those who are not returning to school/in-person learning), will continue with the same classroom and teacher via live stream. Additional information will be provided as the district prepares for students and staff to return to campus. 

School Day Overview

Our school day will begin at 7:45 AM (our normal start time) and end at 1:50 PM. Students will participate in both synchronous and asynchronous learning activities every day. The 360 minute day will be organized as follows:

Whole Group / Small

Group Live Instruction

Small Group and Conferring/ Office Hours

Flex/Asynchronous Learning

180 Minutes

  • Community Building

  • Content-Specific lesson OR review

  • Synchronous practice/ activities

  • Small group targeted instruction

60 Minutes

  • Small group targeted instruction

  • Digital feedback

  • Video Conferencing

  • Office Hours

120 Minutes

  • Asynchronous learning for students

  • Flex and Preparation Time for Teachers

  • PLC, 504, IEP, and Staff Meetings

Whole Group and Small Group activities will take place during the class time each morning. Activities associated with Flex/Asynchronous Learning will take place during the “Flex Time” block in the schedule above. 

  • A 6 hour school day for students (includes daily whole group instruction, small group instruction, synchronous and asynchronous learning, independent work ( projects, practice, completion of assignments, assessment etc.).

  • All students will have daily, live interaction with their teachers via video conferencing

  • Students will NOT be in front of a computer for 6 hours.  We know that is not good for kids and that kids need frequent movement and brain breaks! Teachers will teach “live for 3 hours a day, this includes whole and small group time.  Small groups are proven to be more effective and engaging therefore, teachers will be holding more small group instruction than whole group instruction. Teachers will also have an additional “live” hour daily in the schedule for office hours 1:1 conference, or additional small groups.

  • Please see this document for our assurances to our Pre-K - 1 Families: What Families can Expect for our PreK-1 Learners

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What will the first week of the school year look like? - A: The district designed “Welcome Week” training modules in response to the collective family feedback. The self-paced training modules are intended to launch a successful start of Online Learning and equip families with skills and information needed to support online learning at home. The modules are district created sessions that allow families to access anytime for flexible scheduling. 

For example, the Technology modules provide basic levels of Chromebook support such as: Signing Into Your Chromebook and Chromebook Device Care. While other modules cover Signing Into Online Learning Platforms through Clever. The Health & Safety Requirement Modules provide families with informational guidelines on topics such as Handwashing, Masks, and Information on the Transfer of COVID-19, in order to build common understanding of best practices. Additional Welcome Week topics include: Social Emotional & Wellness and Family Resources. 

Teachers will meet with their students each day beginning on the 31st to build community in their classrooms. Teacher workshop topics include: Quality Online Learning, Social Emotional Learning and Restorative Justice Practices, Culturally Responsive Practices and Ethnic Studies, Standards Based Grading, Implementation of IEP Services, New Benchmark Curriculum for English Language Arts, and Online Daily Schedules and Expectations.

Q: When will my student receive their class schedule?  A: Teachers and I are working on class placement and we will release student schedules by August 28th.  Please understand that classroom placement can change as we might need to balance classrooms. Teacher allocation is based on student enrollment, so when we lose students we lose teachers.  Of course we understand families need to do what is best for them, but it is important to understand that withdrawing and postponing enrollment may have consequences such as reorganizations of classes and combination classes. Please give us the opportunity to teach your child during these uncertain times. The Silver Gate team recognizes that parents are concerned about zoom, schedules and screen time, and balancing the demand of parenting , work and school work.  We are committed to supporting students and families any way possible.

Q: What time will the students' instructional day begin and end?  A: All live teaching will be done between 8 am -12 pm (with the teacher’s office hours occurring after lunch). Your child will not be online this entire time, but may be accessing live online instruction between these hours.   We hope this will help parents plan their own schedule and those of their students. Your child’s time after 12:00 pm can be spent on projects, completing assignments, reading, etc. ( this will be outlined in more detail by the teachers).

Q: What is synchronized learning? A: Working/Learning with a group

Q: What is asynchronous learning? A: Working/Learning independently

Q:  Will we have minimum days? A:  No

Q:  What time is lunch?  A: School wide lunch hour will be from 12:00-1:00

Q:  How will students with Disabilities receive instruction? 

Students with disabilities will receive live instruction from their general education classroom teacher, their education specialist and their related service providers via video conferencing in both whole group and small group as well as office hours to connect with teachers if they still have questions or need more support. Accommodations and assistive technology will be provided online as outlined in a student’s IEP.  Families can request a meeting with the IEP team to determine how IEP services will be delivered in online learning. 

Q:  When will we get our daily schedule? A: Teachers will be providing you with their daily schedules. All teachers at each grade level will have similar schedules, curriculum and assignments.

Q:  What learning platform will each grade level use?

  • TK-1 -  Will use SeeSaw

  • 2-4- Will use Google Classroom 

Q: What will the school year look like when we return to on-site learning and when will this occur? A:  More information to come on what it can look like when we return to brick and mortar.

Other Important Items

Material Collection & Distribution of devices

Our staff is developing a plan to distribute textbooks, computers, and other materials to students. Please save the following dates:

To pick up your device, enter through the alley on Venice St., drive through the parking lot, and exit onto Catalina Blvd..

Wednesday, August 26

Thursday, August 27 

  • Make up time 11:00-1:00

Wednesday, September 2 & Thursday, September 3 Time to be Determined

  • Distribute textbooks and consumables to students

  • Distribute computers to student who need a device

Face coverings and gloves are required to be worn at all times by school staff.  Families who drive up in cars should also wear face coverings over their nose and mouth at all times.

-Social Distancing guidelines must be followed by staff. Ensure a full arm length between the family member in the car and the staff person on the ground, to maximize the distance towards 6ft. 

Additional information regarding the distribution schedule and processing protocols will be distributed shortly.

Food Services

San Diego Unified School District Curbside Grab n’ Go Meal Pick-Up Locations

Beginning Monday, August 31, drive-thru or walk-up to receive a nutritious breakfast and lunch

Monday-Friday from 12 p.m.-2 p.m. at your school’s designated meal pick-up site. 

Additional fruits and vegetables along with a variety of foods from the district’s partners are planned to be provided to families once a week from each serving location. More information to come.

School sites and meal pick-up locations (alphabetical)

Site Access: School Offices will remain closed during online learning and services will primarily take place electronically. Please visit our school website to communicate directly with staff members.

School Photos: School photos will be postponed until it is safe to return to onsite instruction. 

Next Steps

Additional information regarding the following topics will be provided shortly:

  • Kinder Orientation

  • Device Distribution- times

  • Textbook & material distribution-times

As you can see we are working hard to prepare for online learning and we are excited to share it with you. As we launch this new school year, I want to assure you of Silver Gate staff’s commitment to provide a strong and robust online learning experience for all students. We recognize that while this is a different kind of school year reopening, it is an exciting time. Thank you for your support and your commitment to Silver Gate. Again, more information will be coming soon. Here’s to an amazing 2020-2021 school year!


Maria Fowler


Silver Gate Elementary

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