April 21, 2021

April 21, 2021

Dear SFUSD Staff:

George Floyd’s death at the hands of a police officer in May of last year sparked our ongoing movement for racial justice. Today and every day, we recognize that Black Lives Matter and SFUSD is dedicated to providing an education for each and every student that contributes to an anti-racist, fair, and just society. We invite our staff, students and families to continue engaging in dialogue about the relationship between white supremacy, white privilege, racism and police violence in a developmentally and socially responsive way. We continue to share resources with educators to hold a space for all of the feelings and thoughts related to current events. 

Please keep reading today’s digest for important updates.

Return Safely Updates

SFUSD is excited to welcome more students back to in-person learning while maintaining health and safety as our top priority. Here are some of the latest updates:

  • On April 19, SFUSD welcomed students (early education, elementary, and county schools) back at 51 additional school sites. In addition, students in 3rd-5th grades returned to in-person learning at elementary sites that have been open since April 12. 
  • On April 20, the San Francisco Board of Education ratified a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between SFUSD and teachers union United Educators of San Francisco (UESF) pertaining to return to in-person instruction for secondary students in focal populations for Spring 2021.
  • Wondering why we haven’t committed to opening a full secondary grade this school year? See Question of the Week below.

For Secondary Students in Priority Populations Returning April 26

  • Preparations continue to welcome 1,996 secondary students in priority populations to return on April 26. 
  • Families with secondary students with an in-person placement should have been notified by text, phone, mail and through ParentVUE.  For general information to prepare for in-person learning, visit How Families Can Prepare
    • School sites will contact families about participating in a mandatory orientation and to provide information about scheduled start and end times. 
    • Families can log onto ParentVUE to complete required forms. Information has been mailed to families who do not have an email on file with SFUSD. 
    • Visit Placement Packets to watch a ParentVUE video tutorial (available in English, Chinese, and Spanish) for help with submitting required forms in ParentVUE. Read FAQs for more resources and support with completing the required forms.
  • Due to facilities constraints and in order to comply with health and safety standards, certain secondary schools will be co-located at host sites:
    • Co-located at Lincoln HS
      • Hoover MS 
      • Ruth Asawa SOTA 
      • The Academy
    • Co-located at Mission HS
      • James Lick MS
      • Arc (Access) 
    • Co-located at Galileo HS
      • Marina MS 
      • Bay (Access) 
    • Co-located at Burton HS
      • Marshall HS 
      • MLK Jr. MS  
      • Willie Brown MS 
  • More questions? Review the Middle and High School Students in Priority Populations FAQs.

Summer Together Programs

  • SFUSD is partnering with the City and County of San Francisco to provide SFUSD families free in-person and virtual summer opportunities.
  • Early enrollment for eligible families has started and will last until May 7. Eligible families will receive targeted outreach and communications through existing programs.
  • General registration for SFUSD families begins on May 8. While space is limited, SFUSD families will be prioritized over non-SFUSD families. SFUSD families will have to provide their student’s SFUSD student ID number for verification.
  • SF Recreation and Parks Programs are asking SFUSD families to register their interest now. They have a two-step process for SFUSD families to receive priority. SFUSD families may register their interest in Recreation and Park Department programs from now until April 30. Families can call the Recreation and Parks Department general hotline at (628) 652-2900 (language interpretation available) with any questions. Hours of operation are Monday to Friday 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • For more information, including key dates and times, visit dcyf.org/summertogether.

For In-Person Families: Substitute Teachers and Class Schedule

  • We currently have a limited pool of substitute teachers who will be prioritized to cover classroom teachers who are absent or have been granted remote work accommodations. 
  • We will make every effort to assign a substitute teacher but there might be a shift from in-person/hybrid learning to distance learning for the days when a substitute teacher will not be available to cover an in-person classroom teacher’s absence.
  • If we are unable to confirm coverage for the next day’s class by 4 p.m., site administrators will contact families of students who are impacted to inform families that they will be in distance learning that day.
  • We will strive to provide as much notice as possible, and appreciate your patience and understanding while we navigate these unprecedented times. 
  • To learn more, review our Substitute Teachers and Class Schedule FAQs.

Language Arts Printed Materials

Sites should have received TK-2nd grade ELA and SLA supplemental print based materials:  Let’s Learn More with take home books for each TK-2nd grade student. If you did not receive materials or you need more, please contact Lisa Levin. We recommend that these materials are used during the Return to In-Person and Hybrid instruction. Please reference and share Guidance for Let's Learn More with teachers.

Fountas and Pinnell Leveled Take Home books were delivered to sites the week of April 5. Please review and share the following Guidance with ARTIFs for suggestions on how to best utilize the take home books for In Person and Hybrid instruction. 

Final Language Arts Modules Updated for In-Person Learning!

The end of year modules for ELA and SLA will support hybrid instruction. To maintain consistency, the lesson and resources can be used for distance and in-person learning. We will include general suggestions for small groups, conferring, and independence. These resources will be linked on the overview page for the final module of each grade level. Please access the grade level Modules on the ELA Planning Portal.

Below are video clips from the March Literacy Coach Network Clinic.  Click on the links below for considerations for literacy instruction for distance and in-person learning.

Distance Learning Updates

SF Loves Learning

You can use SF Loves Learning episodes or segments to start your day, during instruction, or for asynchronous learning! This month SF Loves Learning has created slide decks of videos for Women’s History Month and about Climate Change and Climate JusticeYou can find all of our decks so far in this resource deck and our most recent full episodes on our website.

Help us help you! Can you fill out this four-minute staff feedback form regarding any ways you have used the show or we can support your instruction going forward?

This week’s theme is Land & Erosion. Check out these segments that are airing this week:

If you’re planning for next week, the science theme is Seasons and the Planet. You can find all of next week’s segments and our full library to support your instruction in three ways:

  • Segments Library: Find any segment (read aloud, daily lesson, music, movement, community)!
  • Seesaw page: Teachers can adapt any Seesaw activity on our page.
  • YouTube channel: Subscribe to this channel, explore the playlists, and receive notifications when new content is published.

SF Loves Learning airs every weekday, 8:30-9am on KTVU Plus and any time at sfusd.edu/sfloveslearning.

Resource Highlight

Resources to Support Educators to Address Current Events

In light of the verdict in Minneapolis and other recent incidents of police violence in recent days, our colleagues have updated the resources to respond to current events document with a section that includes resources to support discussing racism and police violence in the classroom.

Vaccine Eligibility Open for Ages 16+

All people age 16 and over in San Francisco are eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. Eligible people age 16 and over should visit SF.gov/getvaccinated to learn about options for receiving the vaccine and to find links to schedule appointments at different vaccination sites.

People under 18 can only get the Pfizer vaccine and need permission from a parent or guardian to be vaccinated. However, not all sites will have the Pfizer vaccine. Check when you book.

Wellness Tips

Daily Sign In/Health Screening for IN-PERSON Staff Only

If you have returned to a school site or central office location for in-person services, you must sign in when you enter the site:

For staff with an SFUSD email account: Please use this form every day: Daily COVID-19 Staff Screening Form. The form can also be accessed at signin.sfusd.edu. You may need to log in first with your SFUSD email and password to access the form. For instructions on how to log in to the form with your SFUSD email account, view this video or read instructions

For contractors, visitors & volunteers: 

  1. Set up an account with Smartsheet at www.smartsheet.com.
  2. Register using the New Registration Form with your work email address. (contractors) or the best email address to contact you (visitors/ volunteers) at. You will only have to do this the first time you log in.  
  3. Proceed to sign to sign in with the Daily COVID-19 Staff Screening Form. This must be done upon entering the building on any day that you are there.  

For Contractors with @x.sfusd.edu email addresses:
If you have a contractor with an @x.sfusd.edu email address, they must complete the form on visitor.sfusd.edu so that they will be assigned to your site location and show up on your dashboard.  After they’ve registered, they can use the signin.sfusd.edu or SFUSD QR Code to sign in daily.

SFUSD SEL/Culture Climate Survey Window is April 19-May 4

We have launched the annual Social Emotional Learning/Culture Climate Survey. Staff should have received a survey link via email From Panorama.  IF you did not get an email, you can check with your site leader for the link. 

Students in grades 4-12 will also take the survey and will be receiving their link via email from Panorama.   

The survey is voluntary and confidential and survey reports use summary aggregate data, not individual level data.  Thank you for participating!

Tech Tips

Elementary Attendance Update: Mark In-Person Students as Blank for Present or A for Absent

Students’ attendance are automatically marked as DL. If you are taking attendance for elementary students who are attending in-person, please mark them as present (by clicking until it is blank or selecting the blank option from the top of the dropdown) or absent (by clicking until the code is A). 

Weekly Engagement Logs During Hybrid Learning

  • There are no changes to how Weekly Engagement Logs must be completed during school reopening. Check the corresponding boxes to indicate that the class is partial day in-person, distance learning by video or synchronous instruction, and/or asynchronously. 
  • Code 300 for Weekly Engagement Daily Participation tab will be sufficient for classes that have a mix of in-person and distance learning students..
  • Note that code 200 will only appear for classes attending in-person learning full-time. For more information on Weekly Engagement, please visit sfusd.edu/weekly-engagement.

School Leaders, Clerks & Counselors: Reports to Track Return to In-Person Forms on ParentVUE

Families with students returning to in person learning will need to complete the following documents through ParentVUE OR return paper forms to schools. 

  1. Risk Acknowledgement Form,
  2. Prior Written Notice (for students with Special Education IEP), and
  3. Emergency Card Form (immunizations, TB clearance, and other health forms).

Run the U-FP9: ParentVUE Acknowledgements to track responses to the Risk Acknowledgement Form and the Prior Written Notice Form, including those who have not responded yet. It will also indicate who has completed the Emergency Card form online.

For more information on ParentVUE reports, visit the ParentVUE Toolkit. 

If forms are being returned in paper form, school sites must maintain these forms on file. 

Question of the Week

What are the challenges for SFUSD to open to a full secondary grade before the end of this school year on June 2 and by the May 15 state deadline?

It is possible that we will be able to open to more students before the end of the school year. We aren’t taking it off the table but are addressing the priority populations first.

SFUSD has been planning to serve focal student populations in middle and high school, including newcomer students, students demonstrating limited online engagement, homeless students, foster youth, and students in public housing. There is a lot of preparation under way to do this by the target opening date of April 26.

We have indications that there will be a shortage of staffing due to the number of staff accommodations (that is staff who cannot work in person). We are actively recruiting substitutes and contracting with firms as a last resort in the event there are not enough SFUSD substitutes available.

In addition, each classroom has to be inspected and set up. While some of this can be and is being done by contracted help and skilled volunteers, facilities staffing needs to direct the work and ensure all sites are up to the safety requirements. Each site needs to have a flow diagram to manage circulation. This is a specialized skill and must be done with the site leadership.

For more information about Return Safely Together plans, please see the FAQs.


Reminder: Return to Sites Health & Safety Playlists for PK-5 and Secondary Sites

  • See this Return to Sites Health & Safety Playlist for SECONDARY Sites
  • See the PK-5 Return to Sites Playlist to support younger students!
  • Review the Playlists for resources including:
    • Distance learning lessons to prepare students for reentry into school sites.
    • In-person lessons to teach students about health and safety practices while in school buildings.
    • Lessons and activities to help students process anxiety, grief, or other feelings  experienced during the pandemic.
    • Resources for families to support students to safely return to sites.

Reminder: Family Wellness Check-ins: Pausing on 4th Round

Considering timing for the SEL/Culture-Climate surveys (April 19 - May 4) and reopening priorities, the final Family Wellness Check-in #4 will be paused. Family Wellness Check-ins will continue next year. The SFCSD division-wide team appreciates your feedback as we continue to refine these emerging strategies.

Please work with your Coordinated Care Teams to continue outreach to:

  • Families you did not hear from during the Feb-March Wellness Check-ins (check Illuminate for a list of families the school did not reach during FWC #3)
  • Families of students who have not participated in distance learning (based on attendance criteria in distance context)
  • Families who requested follow up support during the Feb/March 2021 Wellness Check-in.

Reminder: The Nurse of the Day line has shifted to the Student and Family Resource Link Line

For support related to COVID-19 Health & Safety Protocols you can:

  1. Email your request to familylink@sfusd.edu - please put your support needs in the subject line of your email
  2. Call 415-340-1716 and Press 7 to be routed to or leave a message for the school site support team
  3. Visit familylink.sfusd.edu to complete an online request form.

Reminder: Coordinated Care Team (CCT) Google Classroom Updates to Support School Reopening

We have added the following materials to support school reopening in the CCT Google classroom:

  • COVID Safety and School Reopening Module:
    • Health and Safety Lessons
    • COVID 19 Resource Landing Page
    • Return to Sites Health and Safety Playlist
  • Proactive Classroom Circles: Hybrid Learning Circle resources

If you have any questions or need support accessing these resources you can: 

  1. Email your request to familylink@sfusd.edu - please put your support needs in the subject line of your email.
  2. Call 415-340-1716 and Press 7 to be routed to or leave a message for the school site support team
  3. Visit familylink.sfusd.edu to complete an online request form. 

Reminder: Use Your 18 Paid Educator PD Hours

Certificated, classified and early education educators represented by UESF have 18 Paid PD Hours they can utilize for professional learning through June 2021 (see List of Qualifying UESF staff).

The 18 Hours of PD (formerly known as QTEA/Prop A Hours or LWEA/Prop G Hours) are now only called the “18 Educator PD Hours” given the confusion with naming and the ever-shifting funding source.

The process for utilizing hours is DIFFERENT than the now outdated “Passport” of years past, having been updated when SFUSD moved to virtual learning last school year. All information and the full guidance for use of the hours can be found here.

Bright Spot

We send a big thank you to all of our school secretaries, attendance clerks, central office admin staff, and administrative support staff today on #AdministrativeProfessionalsDay! We appreciate your work every day and all you do to keep us moving forward.

Warm regards,

Superintendent Dr. Vincent Matthews