Support Cloud Learning
The Michigan Department of Education recently made the announcement that online learning initiatives were not going to count toward instructional time because, “there is no mechanism to earn instructional time during a period of mandated school closure”.
We respectfully disagree...#MakeItCountWB
The West Bloomfield School District has created an opportunity for all students to have access to a high quality educational experience from home, due to the uncertain and unprecedented times that we are facing. Our dedication is to our students. Our students deserve to continue learning, and deserve to have this time count as instruction.
The Michigan Legislature was scheduled to take this issue up for discussion on March 25. Unfortunately, the legislature has cancelled the March 25 session leaving us with no direction on from our elected leaders. We are taking our appeal to Governor Gretchen Whitmer and State Superintendent Dr. Michael Rice to hopefully see some action on this vitally important matter.
We hold a conviction that it is our work on relationships, culture, and accountability over the course of a school year, and a school career, that allows us to be as effective as we are in a virtual environment. The students and staff know each other, and feel a sense of accountability to one another, along with a responsibility to support one another. Without the strong relationships we have built, our online success would not be near what is has been.
- We are passionate educators who are doing what is best for our students.
- We are taking attendance each day and have averaged well above the 75% mandate.
- We are delivering meaningful, rigorous curriculum which is documented in our thorough plan which we will share.
- We have an outstanding online platform with Google Classroom, Zoom and supplemental materials.
- We have made access available to all students by providing Chromebooks, hotspots and supplemental materials. We delivered these materials to the homes of families who weren't able to come to the schools.
- We are meeting FAPE as defined by the US Dept of Education's Memo from March 22, 2020, MDE's guidance and our legal counsel.
During these unprecedented times, school communities have worked tirelessly to establish and deliver a mechanism that continues education for all K-12 students during what was originally announced as a mandatory “building closure”. This mechanism includes real instruction, real attendance measures, along with free and appropriate public education for students with individualized education programs and 504 plans. This mechanism also continues best practices in an online format, provides students with a sense of emotional and mental stability among very uncertain times, and has established strong communication ties among everyone within the school community.
- We firmly believe MDE's attempt to ensure "equity" is actually a travesty for all students. We cannot understand how doing nothing is better than giving all students access to the rich platform we have developed.
- We ask the MDE to evaluate our remote learning platform and acknowledge West Bloomfield's Cloud Learning Initiative as instructional time.
- West Bloomfield School District has a richly diverse population. More than 30% of our students qualify for Free/Reduced Lunch.
- While our median household income is high, it is not representative of the homes of many of our students.
What Can You Do?
We are shifting our message to demonstrate to Gov. Whitmer and Dr. Rice that it is the human element of education, and the passion of educators, that drives our student motivation and our recent Cloud Learning success.
We urge you to continue to contact their offices and share with them what student's classroom community looks like, and how that is the driving factor behind our Cloud Learning Initiative, the success we are having, and how that is why our teaching and learning should count.
If you have social media, please tag them with these messages and the talking points on this page and use the hashtags #WBrelationshipsCount and #makeitcountwb