COVID-19 Information and Resources for TEC Families
Dear TEC Families and Students,
At TEC we know that together we create more opportunities and that is how we have developed our plan for the reopening of our vibrant learning community. Throughout these challenging months the TEC Leadership Team and staff has reviewed and aligned our practices and protocols to the COVID-19 guidelines provided to us from DESE, the CDC, state and local advisories to meet or exceed their guidance in order to prepare for the safe reopening of TEC’s in-person instructional programs this fall. We have shared our progress with our community along the way with a series of memos, personal outreach, and Zoom meetings and have provided additional information for families on our COVID-19 Resources web page.
We are so very grateful to our families who have been incredible learning partners throughout these difficult days, they inspired our staff members to create innovative ways to engage and challenge every child, every day. I want to thank our dedicated leadership team and instructional staff members who were determined to provide every child with the best possible remote learning experience possible and strived to maintain continuous communication with every family. I also want to acknowledge and thank the TEC Board of Directors for their ongoing support and encouragement throughout this pandemic as well as the network of educational leaders from all of the school districts who trust TEC to provide highly specialized programs and services to their students.
Throughout the summer TEC staff met to develop Strategic Plan to Reopen. I want to commend the many dedicated TEC staff members who have been actively involved in this planning process, their insight and participation in our strategic planning committees was invaluable. Although we all know that no one can guarantee a 100% risk-free environment, by working together we have developed and implemented protocols to mitigate health risks for our students and staff members as best we can to lay the groundwork for a healthy and successful school year.
As we move to reopen, the safety and wellbeing of our students and staff is our top priority. Whenever possible all staff and students will practice six feet of social distancing and all staff, and students who are able, will wear facemasks at all times. TEC has made significant changes to our facilities including posting signage, installing sanitizing dispensers, adopted restrictive entry protocols for visitors and vendors, marking of physical spaces for social distancing in our classrooms and common areas, established isolation areas, controlled access to restrooms, and limited movement between programs. We have confirmed the ventilation and airflow within our facilities is acceptable and our therapeutic pool was certified by the local health inspector.
Maintaining a healthy environment and ensuring all staff are trained properly in workplace safety standards for COVID-19 is essential and we have developed and implemented a comprehensive training program for all staff members designed and directed by our Nurse Leader and her staff. We have supplied our staff with the necessary Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) and all staff members are being trained in the use of PPE needed to provide direct instruction to our students with complex health and learning challenges. Our students will receive training from our nursing staff as well.
We have worked through the complexities of receiving our staff and students back to our classrooms with purposeful determination for creating the safest possible environment. For instance, new technology has been ordered to reduce any sharing of resources such as iPads and Chromebooks. All of our classrooms and offices are deeply sanitized daily and cleaning and sanitizing supplies are provided to every classroom and office to re-sanitize throughout the day.
Our plan to reopen in-person this fall was presented to the TEC Board of Directors on August 4, 2020 and was unanimously approved. Click here to review TEC's Final Plan for Fall Reopening.
Still, although we have spent many hours developing our plan to reopen in our preferred in-person learning model, we all know that there is always a possibility that we will have to change our plans due to another outbreak of COVID-19. To ensure continuity of instruction and support each program has prepared a detailed plan for both a hybrid and remote model of instruction.
We have worked hard and are prepared to welcome our students back to school, but we know that more needs to be done. Every member of our learning community, our staff, our students and our families must work collaboratively to keep our schools safe and healthy. We will be sharing additional detailed information to all of our families and students about our new practices and protocols before school opens in September.
Together, that is how we will move forward and rebuild the powerful learning community that we all miss!
Thank you for your patience, understanding and ongoing support.
Letters To Our Families
- Letter to Families March 2, 2020
- Letter to Families March 12, 2020
- Update to Families March 13 2020
- TEC High School overview of educational support to students, families and staff
- TEC Phoenix Academy overview of educational support to students, families, and staff
- TEC Campus School overview of educational support to students, families, and staff
- TEC Campus School overview of educational support to students, families and staff updated 4-2-20
- Letter to Families April 2, 2020
- April Vacation will be observed April 20 - 24th, 2020
- All TEC Programs will remain closed through the end of the school year per Governor Baker's order on 4/21/20
- Letter to Families June 5, 2020
- Letter to Families June 17, 2020
- Letter to Families June 26, 2020
- Letter to Families July 16, 2020
- Reopening Massachusetts Schools - a video from DESE
- TEC meeting with Families 7-29-20
- DESE Notice of School Closure
- DESE Letter to Families regarding Remote Learning
- Helpful Links - Educational Resources for Students and Families from DESE and Mass.gov COVID-19 Resources
- EAP - Resource for dealing with stress during the COVID-19 pandemic
- DESE COVID-19 Information Resources
- Commissioner of Education's Weekly Updates
- TEC Nursing Newsletter 4-1-20
- TEC Nursing Newsletter 4-10-20
- TEC Nursing Newsletter 4-17-20
- TEC Nursing Newsletter 5-1-20
- TEC Nursing Newsletter 5-8-20
- TEC Nursing Newsletter 5-15-20
- TEC Nursing Newsletter 5-22-20
- TEC Nursing Newsletter 5-29-20
- TEC Nursing Newsletter 6-4-20
- TEC Nursing Newsletter 6-12-20
Resources for Learning
- TEC Campus School Video Library for Students and Families
COVID-19 Health and Safety Training
How is TEC providing Remote Learning to your child?
- CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD TEC'S REMOTE LEARNING PLAN UPDATED 5-14-20
- CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD TEC'S REMOTE LEARNING PLAN
All of TEC's programs are utilizing an Extended Closure Student Planning Form to personalize learning throughout this emergency closure period. The form is shared with families and students and communicates:
- A list of all of the Team Members providing remote learning services to your child including their name, role and email address
- Critical Activities Specific to each student's needs
- Guidance on how to work on goals in a modified format at home
- Specific goals based on your child's IEP
- Other activities suggested by the Team Members will be included in your child's daily and weekly schedule
- A list of equipment in the home, loaned from school
- A detailed Communication Log noting the date, team member, forum and overview of the interaction with the student or family
What Can You and Your Child Expect?
Although we know that remote learning cannot replace students’ experiences in school, our teachers, specialists and support staff have worked hard to help all students to continue their learning during this extended period. TEC teachers are skilled in the use of online classroom tools such as Google Classroom, and a variety of assistive technologies. Throughout the school year teachers regularly integrate online content from our trusted partners such as Pearson Online and Blended Learning, Gradpoint and eDynamics, and will continue to do so. Our staff is dedicated to your child and has been working in integrated teams to create meaningful and productive remote learning experiences based on personalized learning goals for each student.
During this period of national and state public health emergency estimated to continue through May 4, 2020, special education services for you child will look different. TEC staff members have developed an individualized Remote Learning Plan for each student. This plan is not an IEP amendment, and as the TEC staff continues to develop and improve remote learning opportunities your child’s plan may be modified.
What can you expect? Special education and related services will be provided remotely through virtual, online or telephonic instructions. Learning will include supports and resources for independent learning that will include academic content, homework assignments and project-based learning opportunities with accommodations your child needs. Instruction and services will be delivered remotely in whole group and small group settings, or individually. TEC has distributed Chromebooks and personal equipment to our families. If you are still in need of equipment, please let your child’s teacher know.
Your child will participate in a blend of teacher (and related service provider) led (live) and teacher (and related service provider) created (not live) self-directed learning experiences including:
- Live Session - Specific times to be ‘live’ with a member of their classroom team shared with you on your child's Extended Closure Planning Form. This may be the classroom teacher, an assistant teacher, a counselor, a specialist or a therapist. This synchronous learning may include sharing a screen in Google Classroom or Zoom to allow your child to participate in a lesson, engage in a discussion, review material or to share something new.
- Teacher Directed Lessons- This will include assignments prepared by the classroom team that can be completed online or hard copy if requested. This is known as asynchronous learning and may include watching a recorded video, an online lesson in Google Classroom or another resource. There will be an expectation for your child to engage in this learning according to an established timeline. Your child may be asked to submit their work for credit.
- Intervention and Therapy - Resources, strategies and interventions will be included in your child’s plan designed by therapists, counselors, reading specialists and others who will continue to support your child’s access and engagement in Remote Learning opportunities. Therapists will provide teletherapy when appropriate.
- Self-Directed Learning Experiences - Your child will have access to additional extended learning and enrichment activities to keep their mind active during this time. This may include a ‘menu’ of activities such as virtual field trips, classroom challenges, mindfulness strategies, physical exercise, videos to review, and many more. Your child can also use their time to learn about things they are curious about.
- Office Hours - In addition to daily outreach, there will be specific days and times when classroom teams are available to return calls or emails to promote ongoing and regular communication between TEC teachers, students and families. If you have an emergency please call 911, never wait for office hours to reach out to a counselor or teacher.
- IEPs – TEC will participate in virtual IEP meetings based on the your child’s home district’s practices.
- Confidentiality and Privacy - While TEC remains obligated to protect students’ confidentiality and privacy, remote learning does not allow TEC to control who is viewing a lesson and therefore parents/guardians and students should be aware that there is no expectation of privacy. Teachers and service providers will make a verbal disclaimer at the start of the lesson or service that there is no expectation of privacy.
We encourage you to stay connected with us, we are here to support you!
If you have any questions about your child's learning plan please contact his/her Principal:
TEC High School, Principal Deborah Caligaris
TEC Phoenix Academy, Principal Sheila Thomas
TEC Campus School, Director Meredith Faletra
Director of Student Services, Susan Donelan