As we go through this challenging time, it is important that we are all mindful of and sensitive to the public. As difficult as the situation is, in a sense, we educators are fortunate in that we can work from home and are continuing to have our jobs and draw our paychecks. We all need to be aware of and sensitive to the fact that many in our communities, including some of our students' parents, may not be able to work from home and if their place of employment is closed, they may not know when their next paycheck will come.
It is important that as we work from home, we keep a record of types of school tasks we are working on, of learning activities and resources we are posting or sending to our students, and of communications we have with our students or their parents. People don't see the work we do at home, so it is good to have this documentation so we can show the work activities we are doing.
Using Schoology to post updates or send class messages is a good way to let our students and their parents/guardians know that we are still here for them and are working to provide them learning opportunities, even from home.
We have posted a Questions and Answer Sheet from WVEA on the Governor's Stay at Home Order. It is in the News section here on the website. This would be an example of something we could send out to students to share with their families. Anything you can share to help students or parents deal with the uncertainty of the current situation is useful. Parents are sure to appreciate news and information we can provide them on what is going on during this trying time.
Many educators are posting and sharing resources with each other on Schoology or social media pages. This is a great way to stay engaged with our students and collaborate with each other. Many educational sites and resource providers are offering things free for teacher use for distance learning with students during school closures.
As always, during this time we should continue to be careful what we post online. People understandably get upset at some things they read online, but make sure for our own protection that we are professional when posting about school and careful in how we conduct ourselves. We need to continue to act responsibly. If we need to go out for essential things like groceries, gas, food, to the pharmacy, etc., it would probably be better if we do that during the afternoon since we are to be available during work hours if administrators, students, or parents need to reach us. Of course doctor's visits have to be done when they are scheduled or needed, but we should just be aware of our actions and how they could be perceived by the public. Remember, they only form their opinions from what they see - and they don't see what we are doing from home.
The hard work everyone does day after day to make our schools the best they can be and to help our students learn, grow, and thrive is so important. It often seems unappreciated, but know that you do make a positive difference. Don't let a negative comment or the unknown get you down. Keep doing all the good things you do for our kids as best as you can. Take care of yourself and your family. We usually hear the few loud and upset voices and focus on those, but there are so many who realize how dedicated you all are. So let's be aware that there are always eyes upon us and just keep doing all the good things you do so the public continues to be supportive of us and our schools.
Thanks for taking a few moments to read this and especially for being the kind of person people would want teaching and serving our children!