Frequently Asked Questions About In-Person Interest Surveys

Phase 2B In-Person Interest Surveys Frequently Asked Questions

Updated March 30, 2021

How will my responses determine teacher assignment?

Students will remain with their current teacher when they return for in-person learning. Your response to the question that asks if you would consider sending you student to attend class with a different teacher tells us what your preference is as we plan. That said, our goal is to keep students with their current teacher. There is an exception: students may be reassigned to other teachers in the same grade level at the same site to enable the teacher to provide instruction in person for as many days as possible.

How will my responses determine school placement?

Your response to the question "Do you plan to send your student to attend school in-person when a space is offered?" indicates to us whether or not to offer your student a seat in-person or to offer a distance learning seat. To the extent possible we will aim to offer you a seat that matches how you respond to this question.
Your answers to the following questions regarding schedules, number of days in-person, and teacher assignment indicate preferences. Your answers to these questions will not exclude you from receiving an in-person seat if the schedule offered differs from the preference you indicated. We will take these into consideration as part of planning.

How many preK-2 can be fit per class will all 22 be able to return if desired?

We are currently using a maximum of 14 students per class for planning. In cases where more than 14 students in one class want to return to in-person learning, we will pursue the following options, with the goal of providing as many in-person instruction days as possible:
We may assign students to another teacher at their school if another teacher has capacity in their class, up to 14 students.
If all teachers have 14 students, we may adjust class size capacity. We will aim to maintain 4 feet of distance between desks in this case.
Lastly, once both of the above have been used to maximize capacity and if there are still more students to accommodate in person, we may move to a schedule with fewer days of in-person instruction to allow all students at least some in-person learning time.

Will staff be provided new trainings based off the latest science? The previous trainings are now outdated.

No new trainings are planned at this point. Staff will continue to work with sites to gather feedack and provide support. The BRIT trainings are updated regularly to reflect current guidance

Can families who said they didn’t want to return change their minds? If so, how?

We understand that circumstances change. Families may decide at any time to withdraw their choice to return to in-person learning and continue distance learning. They may decide at a later date that they would like to return to in-person learning and SFUSD will offer an in-person placement when one becomes available again.

What happens if principals or teachers do not want to return?

Teachers will be permitted to teach remotely and a substitute teacher will be assigned. We have to give at least two weeks notice to staff, designate 4 teacher workdays before students return. Everyone gets an assignment letter to come back and teachers can request an accommodation. A process is starting this week for teachers to receive those assignment notices.

What if I haven't responded and want to come back?

Families who responded to the survey that they want to return to in person will be given a placement. Those who did not respond and/or who wish to change their response, are asked to share your updated preference with your school site. Each school site will make the determination regarding whether or not your student can be added.

Why am I receiving this survey now?

SFUSD is actively preparing to offer in-person learning options for some students and we want to hear from you about your current preference for this school year ending on June 2, 2021. 


SFUSD will only reopen schools once we can implement all health and safety measures agreed upon with our employee representatives and in accordance with public health guidance. In order to maintain physical distance and small stable groups of students, SFUSD cannot invite all students to return to in-person learning at the same time.

How will SFUSD use my survey information?

SFUSD will use this information to plan the instructional schedule based on each school site’s capacity and family interest. Selecting in-person learning as your preference doesn't guarantee that you will be assigned an in-person placement this spring semester 2021. Your child will be put on a waitlist and contacted if a space becomes available.

Due to space constraints as a result of physical distancing guidelines, there is limited capacity at our schools. Selecting in-person learning as your preference does not guarantee that a space will be available this school year. 

  • If you respond Yes, you will be put on a waiting list and notified if a space becomes available for your child. SFUSD will share a placement letter with the return date, school schedule, forms to return and additional health and safety information at least 10 days  prior to your intended start date. 
  • If you respond No, you will continue with distance learning and SFUSD will not hold a placement for your child for the remainder of the 2020-2021 school year ending June 2, 2021

What if I don’t want to return this school year but I may want to return in the fall?

This survey pertains only to your preference for the remainder of this school year, through June 2021, pending availability.

Who is this survey for?

You are being asked to respond to this survey for each child in the Phase 2B group and Grades 3-5. You will receive a unique survey for each child enrolled in SFUSD who is in this group. 


If we choose in person and a space is available, will my child be able to go to the school they are currently enrolled in?

Your child will remain enrolled in their current school. However, depending on physical capacity of school buildings and a number of other factors, we may invite your child to attend class at a school that is in close proximity to your current school in order to serve more students.

If I want my child to return to a school site, when will that option be available?

Families will be notified and given more detailed information at least 10 days prior to their child’s in-person learning placement.

What if I don’t want my child to return to in-person learning at this time?

You have the option of continuing distance learning or choosing to return to in-person learning. 


What if I say “yes” and then change my mind? 

We understand that circumstances change. Please know that you may decide at any time to withdraw your choice to return to in-person learning and continue distance learning. You may decide at a later date that you would like to return to in-person learning and SFUSD will offer an in-person placement when one becomes available again.

What health and safety protocols will be in place at school sites?

We invite you to learn more about the safety protocols SFUSD has established and what will be expected of students and staff when their school reopens. These include the following:

Preparing for when someone gets sick (e.g., contact tracing, notifications)

When will other families have a chance to share their preferences for remote or in-person learning?

SFUSD is planning a gradual reopening and has identified focal populations for the first phases of reopening. We cannot safely invite all students to return to in-person learning at the same time. This is because we need to adhere to social distancing and other safety guidelines and ensure schools and classrooms are equipped with the necessary safety materials. These efforts take time and resources to roll out and safety is not something we want to compromise. All families received a detailed survey during the fall planning process and families of students not included in Phase 2A will be surveyed again at the beginning of the new year. 

Health Considerations and Videos for more information

Health Considerations

Deciding whether or not to send your child to school for in-person learning during the COVID-19 pandemic can be challenging. According to the Centers for Disease Control, some children may be at increased risk of getting COVID-19 or may be at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19. For these children, parents and caregivers may need to take additional precautions with regard to school re-entry.

Watch these videos for more information: