• Back to School. Options, Answers and Expectations for School in the Pandemic.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • RESOURCES

     

    Before-school and after-school activities

    Our expectations and approach to social distancing, physical barriers, face coverings and hygiene will be expected in all before-school and after-school programs. Schools and partners conducting these programs will take similar steps to maintain distancing and workstation barriers while conducting activities inside the school.  Outdoor activities will be encouraged (weather permitting) while still maintaining social distancing in activities.

    Athletics (including spectators) and activity buses

    See our page all about athletics.

     

    Career and technical education (CTE)

    Preparing students for the workforce through career and technical education programs, which are available at almost all middle and high schools, remains an important goal for our school district.

    Like all other classroom education, our expectation is that teachers and school leaders work together to implement plans appropriate for the CTE lab or classroom and the skill or lesson being taught.

    For example, solutions for welders, whose workstations are naturally separated, will be different than the solutions for information technology or engineering students. Programs such as cosmetology and culinary arts will implement procedures and guidelines consistent with current requirements of their professions and industries.

    School personnel will determine other appropriate steps to implement social distancing and barriers between workstations as appropriate for the hands-on environment of each career training field.

     

    COVID-19 cases impacting a school community

    See our full health precautions page

     

    Duval HomeRoom vs Duval Virtual Instruction Academy: What's the difference?

    Duval HomeRoom is designed for families who want a distance learning opportunity to start the school year but intend to return to full time face-to-face instruction at some point during the school year.

    Duval HomeRoom:

    • Utilizes teachers within the existing school or regional team
    • Follows established school class schedule
    • Uses existing curriculum and resources
    • Distance Learning with live (synchronous) sessions
    • For high school students: credits transferable midyear back to brick and mortar school

    Duval Virtual Instruction Academy (DVIA) is designed for families who want a virtual learning opportunity for the entire school year.

    DVIA:

    • Uses DVIA teachers who have special training in online instruction
    • Uses a special learning platform to access all courses
    • Curriculum specially designed for online learning
    • Sessions can be accessed 24/7
    • Student learning is self-paced
    • Credits needed to be finalized within DVIA

    Exceptional Student Education

    See our full Exceptional Student Education page

     

    Fine Arts Education (art, music, dance, theatre)

    Each school, grade level and class may be a little different, but the pandemic will not dampen our enthusiasm for fine arts education.

    The Fine Arts Department has developed recommendations for school administration teams and teachers to make adaptations to our art, music, dance, and theatre classes to ensure safe fine arts instruction, but these recommendations will still require some adjustments at the school  level. Thankfully, our fine arts teachers are very creative people. We will ask teachers and school leaders to implement these district recommendations as much as possible for fine arts classes to minimize the risk.

    • Social distancing should be in place to the greatest extent possible.
      • Students actively engaged in playing wind instruments should maintain a distance of 10 feet apart, while all other performing arts activities should maintain 6 feet distance.
    • Face coverings should be required when students are unable to adhere to social distancing guidelines or are in common areas such as retrieving instruments, equipment, or materials.
    • Face coverings are not expected when students are actively performing, but social distancing should be maintained.
    • The sharing of instruments, equipment, and materials will be kept to a minimum.
      • In the classroom, students may be assigned materials or instruments for use during the school year to minimize the sharing of items.
    • Any shared materials, equipment, or instruments will be sanitized between student uses.
    • When possible, music and choral groups will practice outside. 
    • School personnel will determine other appropriate steps to implement social distancing and barriers between work areas as appropriate for the hands-on environment of each arts area.

     

    Field trips and student travel

    Field trips and other student travel are currently not feasible under recommendations from the CDC and other health partners. Therefore, these activities are prohibited.

    At the conclusion of each nine-week quarter, the district will review guidance from health agencies and partners to determine if field trips or other travel is feasible.

     

    Health Education

    Health education provides students with the knowledge and skills necessary to practice healthy behaviors and teaches students how to recognize the influence of responsible decision-making on quality of life. By providing effective health education programming, schools can help students develop health literacy skills, so they are able to access information, resources, and services in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle. The development of these skills is especially important during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Below are considerations for the physical environment and instructional strategies for health education.

    • Follow all district guidelines for classrooms regarding physical distancing, healthy hygiene habits (including face coverings) and sanitation.
    • Ensure adequate supplies for all students to eliminate sharing of high-touch materials such as textbooks, instructional materials, and equipment to the extent possible. Clean and disinfect supplies after student use and between class periods. 
    • Skills-based health education will be implemented to equip students with the knowledge and strategies needed to properly care for themselves and others throughout their lifetime.

     

    Meal Service

    See our full health precautions page

     

    Physical education

    Physical education provides K-12 students with a planned, sequential, standards-based program of curricula and instruction designed to develop motor skills, knowledge and behaviors for active living, physical fitness, teamwork, self-efficacy, and emotional intelligence. The skills and knowledge gained by students through physical education are especially important during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    State law requires all students to participate in physical education in grades K-12, with instruction periods totaling 150 minutes per week in elementary school. Middle school students shall be enrolled in one semester of physical education each year; high school students shall be enrolled in Health Opportunities for Physical Education (HOPE) as the graduation requirement.

    Below are considerations for the physical environment, personal hygiene, equipment safety and sanitation, and instructional strategies for physical education.

    • Locations for physical education instruction will be selected where students and staff can respect social distancing guidelines and remain 6 feet apart to the greatest extent possible.
    • Weather permitting, physical education instruction is encouraged to take place outside to allow for maximum opportunity for social distancing.
    • Students will not be required to wear a face covering while participating in physical education class.
    • Drinking fountains will be cleaned and sanitized frequently or deemed out of service. Students and staff are encouraged to use individual water bottles.
    • Students are encouraged to come to school dressed in clothes that are appropriate for participation in physical education, whether indoors or outdoors. It is a school-based decision to eliminate the use of locker rooms based on space and enrollment.
    • Limit the use of physical education equipment by assigning individual pieces of equipment to each student (preferred) or grouping students in small cohorts of no more than six students that share equipment for the duration of the instructional period with cleaning after each use.
    • All efforts will be made to use games and activities that require no physical contact and do not require students to be in close proximity to each other.

     

    Recess

    Recess will not be eliminated as it is required for 20 minutes daily for all students in grades K-5. Recess helps students achieve the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity per day for children and adolescents, which can improve strength and endurance, enhance academic achievement, and increase self-esteem. Recess also helps students practice social skills such as cooperation, following rules, problem-solving, negotiation, sharing, and communication. Opportunities for free play, to engage in physical activity, and to practice social skills are especially important during COVID-19.

    Below are considerations for recess:

    • Students will wash or sanitize hands before and after recess.
    • Significantly limit or eliminate the use of playground equipment or play structures.
    • Encourage recess games and activities that do not require physical contact or for students to be in close proximity with each other.
    • Limit the use of recess play equipment and eliminate the use of equipment that would be shared or passed between multiple students.
    • Play equipment that will be touched or handled by students will be properly cleaned after each use.
    • Students will not be required to wear a face covering during recess.

     

    School Grades and Statewide Assessments

    Currently, the Florida Department of Education has not altered any statutes or rules regarding student assessments or school grades for the 2020-21 school year.

     

    Volunteering and visitors

    To minimize the risk of COVID-19 entering a school campus, school volunteers and visitors will not be permitted on school grounds. Principals may grant exceptions to this directive on a limited basis and as they deem appropriate.