The Pacific Times | The Only Student-Run News Website in Natomas

NP3 Schools Start the Year Online

By Chim Unanwa and Jack Fedor
Co-Editors | The Pacific Times

The 2020-2021 school year at NP3 High was set to begin with students in classrooms on August 3, but this will not be the case due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

NP3 students have not physically been in classes since March 12.

The rising numbers of positive COVID-19 cases in Sacramento County led NP3 High administrators to work with the local school officials to create a plan meant to reduce student risk of exposure to the novel coronavirus while still being able to learn.

As the current situation in the county continues to evolve, discussions are ongoing. At press time, NP3 High’s plans for the 2020-21 school year were as follows:

On July 15, NP3 executive director Tom Rutten wrote in a letter to all NP3 families that it would not be safe to return to campus until at least August 31.

This would mean that school will reopen with distance learning. The letter added that school would not look the same as the “crisis learning” implemented at the end of the 2019-20 school year.

Notable changes with distance learning will be live daily instruction, attendance, assessment and student accountability when NP3 is back in session.

The change to distance learning, from the hybrid model previously being planned for, also requires August 3-5 be used to distribute textbooks, tech equipment and to meet teachers.

On August 4 students and parents were invited to a virtual back-to-school night hosted by the students advisor. All students will attend their first advisory meeting from 9:30 to 11 am on Wednesday. Students will then attend their “B-Day” classes on August 6th and 7th while completing assignments at home following the classes. All of these meetings will be taking place on Zoom.

That means, the earliest NP3 would start live online instruction is August 6 and that NP3 schools will extend the school year to June 4. These dates depend on whether the state will allow schools to have fewer instructional days for the 2020-21 school year.

“I was looking forward to meeting my new advisory, making friends with the kids who had come from different middle schools, spending time with my own friends, and attending my first guitar or Pilates class, but nothing can beat…well, not dying. Not getting sick and putting my family at risk. Sadly, the hybrid may not be a solution as of right now. I’m relieved that we are just doing distance learning for the time being. Distance learning became increasingly difficult as time wore on, but I’m that through having live daily instruction and just changing how it was before, distance learning will become a more effective solution to our current situation,” stated freshman Krista Chouang.

“I think the way things are being handled by the school currently is great. The new plan is really the best that it could be for everyone. In regards to school opening by August 31st, I am hopeful but I do doubt it just with the way things are outside of school. I just appreciate that the school is looking out for the safety of the students and staff,” sophomore Akshaj Mehta described.

Students will attend virtual school on Mondays from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. and on Wednesdays from 9:30 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. Office hours will make a virtual return but they are for appointment only and will be from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on Tuesday and Thursday. After online lessons are done for the day, students are to complete independent work.

Distance learning will take place until at least September 25, which means the earliest students could return to classes is October 12, following fall break.

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