Dear Oldfields Students and Parents:
The Oldfields students will return to their studies next week, on Tuesday, March 31, through remote learning. There are, naturally, many questions around the format and class expectations. This email, along with the links to videos, will help make it a smooth transition for the girls. As questions arise, please reach out to me directly. Thank you for your continued support and partnership.
What is remote learning?
Remote learning is a powerful medium to provide quality education outside of the traditional classroom. It has gained in popularity, and today the majority of universities offer classes and entire programs online. However, not all remote learning is the same. Oldfields has put together a virtual learning platform that is thorough, predictable, and, most importantly, offers a personalized learning environment with individual attention.
Will there be a daily schedule? What are the expectations?
The Plan of the Week (POW) will provide a daily schedule for the students. The girls "attend" class during the listed time and the teacher will facilitate the learning through the use of synchronous and asynchronous lessons. While not intended to be a complete list of expectations, the following will serve the girls as they acclimate to their new remote learning environment:
- Students should dedicate a quiet and distraction-free area for schoolwork.
- Students are expected to be "in school" from 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM (EDT). Close attention is to be paid to the class times listed on the POW.
- Oldfields email must be checked before the first period, during lunch, and in the evening.
- Students should begin every class period by going to the calendar on the class page and clicking on the listed event.
The faculty at Oldfields has been busy over Spring Break exploring and preparing all the exciting ways to engage in remote learning. While we recognize there will be some technical issues, please know that the school will work with the students to quickly resolve them.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will attendance be taken?
Class attendance will be taken for every period. Teachers will have flexibility in how attendance is measured, and the School recognizes that there will be situations when students may not be available during the assigned class time. For asynchronous lessons, students will send the teacher an email upon completion of the lesson (this will count as attendance).
What if a student is absent?
Parents should email Registrar Mary Kate Thompson when a student is unable to participate in remote learning. Teachers, along with the help of the advisor, will work with the student to complete the work with extended deadlines.
How will remote learning work for students who live in another time zone?
Students who are unable to participate within the scheduled times (see Plan of the Week) should reach out to their advisor. These students will partner with their teachers to complete the work asynchronously utilizing recorded class session as well as other technology to insure they remain engaged in the class. International students will schedule meetings with the teachers during mutually agreed upon times.
Are there any privacy concerns with video conferencing and synchronous learning?
There are times when a teacher will record her/his Zoom meeting and post it to the class page (private site). Students’ images and voices will be included; however, the students can opt to turn off their camera and only use audio.
What should a student do if she is falling behind in her studies?
Oldfields’ teachers recognize the remote learning format is new, and it will take time to acclimate. Students should reach out to their teacher and advisor to share questions, concerns, and requests for support. The teachers and administrators are here to help!
Are students still being graded?
The students will earn marks throughout remote learning, and a Term III grade will be recorded. There will be multiple forms of assessment, and teachers will give students ample time to prepare and ask questions. Online learning still has quizzes and tests; however, the format lends itself well to papers and projects, too. Students and parents are encouraged to monitor grades through NetClassroom and reach out to teachers with questions.
How does academic integrity work during remote learning?
Oldfields students will uphold the same level of academic integrity during remote learning. Teachers will provide instructions and guidelines for homework, classwork, projects, and assessments. If you are uncertain as to whether a resource can be used, please ask!
What will advisory look like during remote learning?
Students will have advisory three times a week in real-time. This will be an opportunity to check in with their advisor, monitor progress, and talk as a group. Relationships are the foundation of an Oldfields School education, and regular advisory will allow us to continue to foster a strong sense of community.
What should a student do when she needs extra help?
Teachers are always available during class time and office hours. Schedule a time to talk over the phone or have a video conference call (e.g., Zoom, Google Meet). Remember, we are in this together!
Will there still be access to the Academic Strategies Program?
Students in ASP will meet with their teacher during the regularly scheduled periods. The ASP teachers will reach out to the students with more information.
How are accommodations handled during remote learning?
Students will be provided accommodations during remote learning. Teachers will work with the students and ASP to adjust the remote learning to include accommodations.
What about books and supplies for courses?
Upon departing campus for Spring Break on March 13, 2020, Oldfields students were informed to take their books and academic belongings home with them. In addition, the School will provide digital access to materials whenever possible and permitted under copyright law.
What if a student does not have access to high-speed internet access in their current location or other technical difficulties connecting virtually?
The School is committed to helping such students access remote learning. Students who are experiencing any technical difficulty or do not have reliable internet access should contact the Technology Department.