William S. Hart Union High School District

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COVID-19 Information

Welcome to the 2021/22 school year!  The Hart District welcomes students back to in-person learning and a full restoration of student athletics and activities. The District is focused on preserving the ability for students to continue to meet safely with their teachers by following county, state, and federal directives. Masks are required at all times while indoors on K-12 school campuses.    (See Los Angeles County's current numbers here.)

 

On October 1, Governor Newsom announced that after full FDA approval of the COVID vaccine for ages 12 and up, the vaccine will be added to the existing list of vaccines required for school for grades 7-12. This requirement will take effect the January or July immediately following full FDA approval. For more information please see the Governor's press release here.

The Hart District is focused on preserving the ability for students to continue to meet safely with their teachers. In an effort to limit non-essential group gatherings across the District that could potentially contribute to the spread of infection, the District will hold Back to School Night in a virtual format this year. The date of Back to School Night has been moved to September 9. More information on Back to School Night will be available on each school's website.
On July 1 of this year, the Governor signed AB 104. This bill allows parents, guardians, or adult students to request grade changes for any high school course taken last school year. Grades of “F” may be changed to “No Credit” or “NC” and grades of “A, B, C, or D” may be changed to “Credit” or “CR.” Parents, guardians, or adult students wishing to request grade changes should complete and submit the Grade Change Application form link below.

The window for making these requests closes at the end of the day on Monday, August 16. Please know that these grades, once changed, cannot be changed back at a later date. It is important that you confirm with any post-secondary institution that may receive an admission application from this student, that grades of “CR/NC” will be accepted for admission purposes.

For a list of postsecondary institutions that have agreed to accept transcripts with Credit or No Credit grades, click here: https://www.cde.ca.gov/ci/gs/ps/ab104surveyresults.asp
 
To access the Grade Change Application form, click here:
https://forms.gle/jP3JvwuLc4GU6vG58

If your family desires an alternative independent study option, the Hart District offers access to our award-winning Learning Post Academy (LPA).

 

You can learn more about LPA through a video introduction located HERE.

You can fill out an application to enroll at LPA HERE.

State and County officials recently ruled that masks will be required for all individuals while inside buildings on campuses.  Masks are recommended but not required while outside. 

 

We recognize that the issue of masking is a topic of great concern for many families in our community.  Given the strong interest in this subject, it’s important to understand who makes the rules when it comes to masking requirements.

 

Who Makes the Masking Rules?

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) calls for universal masking indoors on school campuses.  This is a requirement for California public schools. CDPH requirements on masking can be found HERE. Currently LA County requirements align with state mandates. Local school boards and district staff do not have the authority to defy the orders of State and County regulatory agencies.

At the 5/19/21 Governing Board Meeting, Superintendent Kuhlman confirmed that the Hart District is planning for full-time, five days a week instruction for the 2021/22 school year (barring an unforeseen turn with the pandemic). Masking and social distancing requirements for schools have yet to be announced by the state and county. We are hoping to receive more information on June 15.   

 

Parents will receive a survey in June asking for their instructional preference for the fall semester: in-person instruction or an independent study option through the award-winning Learning Post Academy.

 
 

5/12/21 - SCV Teens & Vaccines Virtual Town Hall

Vaccines are now available for students 12 years of age and older. For more information about vaccines for teens, please click here.

 

4/27/21 - In-person Graduation Ceremonies Scheduled

Dear Hart District families,

 

We are thrilled to share that we have been given the authorization to schedule in-person graduation ceremonies for all Hart District senior classes!

 

Together with our colleagues at College of the Canyons, we have been working behind the scenes for months to obtain the go-ahead from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.  This week, we received verbal and written approval for our plans.

 

Graduations will begin at 7:00 pm and will be located at the COC stadium (unless otherwise noted).  Graduation dates are as follows:

 

May 26 – Bowman (6:00 pm)

May 27 – Golden Valley

May 28 – Hart

June 1 – Canyon

June 2 – West Ranch

June 3 – Saugus

June 4 – Valencia

June 5 (Sat.) – Academy of the Canyons (time and specific location at COC to be determined)
Learning Post Academy (location and time TBD)

 

Our plan was only authorized after we demonstrated that we will comply with state and county guidelines for outdoor activities.  Your senior’s individual school site will share details in the days to come, but we want you to be aware that masks will be required at all times and spectators will be assigned seats to ensure appropriate spacing (county health officials determine masking requirements).  Health orders limit venues to a reduced maximum capacity.  As a result, we will have to restrict each graduate to a minimum of two spectator tickets.  A random lottery will be offered to those interested in obtaining additional seats.  As always, the graduations will be live-streamed so everyone can enjoy the celebrations.

 

I would like to extend a special thank you to our partners at COC who supported our efforts throughout this entire planning process.  Without their help we would not be able to offer this special opportunity to our graduating seniors.

 

Each of your individual school sites will be sharing more information soon.

 

Best regards,

 

Mike Kuhlman

Superintendent

 
4/15/21 - Hart District Planning for In-person Graduation Ceremonies
With the current downward trend in cases and Los Angeles County's recent move to the Orange Tier, the Hart District is actively working on a plan that adheres to all state and county requirements to provide in-person graduation ceremonies for the Class of 2021. Some of these requirements include:
  • Adhering to venue capacity limits
  • All spectators must be from the same household
  • Spectator seating must be fixed and labeled with six feet of distance between households
  • Masks must be worn at all times and self-screening symptom checks performed
  • All participants must maintain six feet distance at all times
  • Spectators may not come onto the field after the ceremony
 
Exact dates and details will be provided soon.

 

3/9/21 - Hart District Planning for the Launch of Blended Learning on March 29

Good evening Hart District Families,

I’m writing today to provide an update on our plans for re-opening to blended-learning.  Today we learned the good news that LA County’s adjusted case rate has dipped below 7/100k.  The new rate is 5.2/100k.  Meeting this threshold opens the door for the start of in-person learning.  We are close to welcoming more students back on campus.

So when will students be eligible to return?  The LA County Office of Education recently said “two weeks.”  LA County then countered that it could be sooner.  Now we learn the State could change the criteria to further accelerate eligibility due to increasing vaccination rates.

While this is all good news, the lack of clarity presents challenges to those of us working to organize a safe and successful start to blended-learning.  Therefore, to ensure an orderly transition, I am writing to confirm that (assuming there are no additional curveballs) March 29 will be the date that we launch our blended-learning model.

Families are currently being asked to confirm their choice of either the blended or the online-only options.  In the next three weeks we will share invitations for exclusive campus tours for 7th and 9th grade students.  Hart District teachers will familiarize themselves with redesigned classrooms and will trouble-shoot new technology.  We are finalizing the return of our School Resource Officers.  Be on the lookout for videos which will familiarize students with new expectations on campus. 

We need all of your help to make this a successful transition.  There are other schools in California who have been offering blended-learning for many months.   Their success has been dependent upon everyone’s commitment to following the rules.  Masking, social distancing and good hand hygiene remain the keys to our continued progress.  Thank you for doing your part!

With hope and enthusiasm for what lies ahead,

Mike Kuhlman 

Superintendent         

 
1/11/21 - Pause on Small Cohorts and Athletic Conditioning **Updated 1/20/21
The Los Angeles County Department of Health strongly recommends that all schools in the county suspend in-person instruction services and activities during the month of January as much as possible. Based on this recommendation, the District has temporarily paused all small cohort instruction and athletic conditioning. The Governing Board will meet on 1/13/21 to consider the scope and duration of this pause.
 
UPDATE - At the 1/13/21 Special Meeting, the Governing Board voted to suspend small cohort instruction until February 8. Athletic conditioning will be temporarily paused with the issue to be re-evaluated at each successive Board meeting until conditioning may resume. The January 26 administration of the PSAT test has been cancelled and parents have been notified of other opportunities available to take the test.
 
UPDATE - At the 1/20/21 Regular Meeting, the Governing Board voted to resume athletic conditioning on 1/27 with voluntary participation and all safety protocols enforced.
 
1/4/21 - Vaccine Distribution in Los Angeles County
School staff has been designated for COVID-19 vaccinations in Phase 1B. For more information on vaccine distribution in Los Angeles County, click here.
 
12/14/20 - State Restrictions Delay the Transition to Blended Learning
State restrictions on the return to in-person instruction prohibit the transition to Blended Learning on January 11 as planned. Counties must meet the criteria for the Red Tier on the State's Blueprint for a Safer Economy for four weeks before schools can open for in-person instruction. The Board will consider potential dates for reopening based upon logical breaks in the academic calendar once Los Angeles County is eligible. Potential dates for reopening include February 8, March 22, and April 26. These dates can only be considered if the County determines that schools are eligible to reopen at that point.
 
10/30/20 - Spring Semester Decision Forms Due by November 13, 2020
In anticipation of a return to campus in a Blended Learning format for the spring semester, families are asked to choose between the following options: Blended Learning, Online Only, and Independent Study. Decision forms must be submitted for each student by November 13. More information on the three options can be found at the links below:
 
 
10/12/20 - Small Cohorts Return to Campus for Targeted Instruction and Services
Beginning Monday, October 12, small cohorts of students (maximum of 12 per group) with special needs began returning to campuses across the district for targeted instruction and intervention services. Participation is optional and all public health requirements are being followed including daily health screenings, masks, and social distancing. 
 
9/24/20 - Los Angeles County Office of Education Clarifies Four Week Requirement for Return to In-person Instruction
The Los Angeles County Office of Education (LACOE) provided the following written confirmation of the four week requirement for students to return to campus for in-person instruction: Qualifying County data needs to be sustained for four weeks.
First two weeks
“A county must meet criteria for the next less restrictive tier for both measures for the prior two consecutive weeks in order to progress to the next tier." (here)
Second two weeks
“Schools can reopen for in-person instruction once their county has been in the Substantial (red) tier for at least two weeks.” (here)
 
9/21/20 - Sports Teams May Begin Conditioning on Hart District Campuses
Beginning Monday, September 21, fall sports teams will be able to start conditioning. Spring sports will follow once the protocol has been implemented successfully with fall sports. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health guidelines will apply, which means this return to play is for conditioning only. All activities will be held outdoors in small, five-to-ten person pods with social distancing of eight feet or more during strenuous activity and frequent hand washing or sanitizing. Cloth face coverings must be worn by all when not engaged in a conditioning exercise. Equipment sharing will not be allowed, including passing a ball back and forth between two or more people. No visitors or spectators will be allowed.
 
Participation is voluntary for all athletes, coaches and staff. Non-participation will not have a negative impact on the student athlete or staff member in any way. All who take part will be asked to sign a form acknowledging they are there voluntarily, and will need to provide a self-certification screening.
 
** Update September 28 - Spring sports have also begun conditioning.
 
9/2/20 - The Governing Board Discusses Potential Dates for the Transition to Blended Learning
State restrictions on the return to in-person instruction prohibit the transition to Blended Learning on September 14 as previously planned. At the September 2 Governing Board meeting, the Board voted to consider potential dates for reopening based upon logical breaks in the academic calendar once Los Angeles County is eligible to open for in-person instruction. Potential dates for reopening will include October 19 and November 16. These dates can only be considered if the County determines that schools are eligible to reopen at that point.
 
9/2/20 - Los Angeles County Allows In-person Services for Small Groups of Students with Special Needs
On August 14, Governor Newsom announced that school districts would be allowed to bring small groups of students with disabilities and other acute needs to campus for one-on-one services and small group intervention (maximum of 12 students per cohort), dependent upon approval by their local health department. On September 2, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health authorized school districts in the county to be able to provide these services effective September 14. While this authorization is not a mandate, the Hart District is working on plans to provide targeted services and supports for students with special needs.
 
8/28/20 - Governor Newsom Announces a New State-wide Monitoring System
Today Governor Newsom announced a new state-wide COVID-19 monitoring system that ranks counties on tiers based on community transmission. Schools can reopen for in-person instruction once their county has been on the Substantial (red) tier for at least two weeks. Los Angeles County is currently on the Widespread (purple) tier. For more information, click here
 
7/17/20 - Governor Newsom Announces Full Online Learning Requirement for all Counties on the COVID-19 Monitoring List
Today Governor Newsom announced new expectations for the reopening of schools.  The Governor's statement indicates that the Hart District should begin classes on August 11 in an online format.
 
While today's announcements will necessitate time to digest the specifics, I want to be clear that the Board's decision on Wednesday is consistent with these latest guidelines from the State - at least in terms of our immediate next steps for online learning.
 
Stay tuned for more information.  
 
Mike Kuhlman
Superintendent 
 
7/15/20 - The Governing Board Votes to Open the School Year with Five Weeks of Full Online Learning
At the July 15 Governing Board meeting, the Board adopted a modified Fall 2020 Action Plan for the start of school that temporarily calls for Online Learning. The Board authorized the following:
  •      Classes will begin on August 11, 2020, in an online format
  •      Online instruction will continue for approximately five weeks (through the first progress reporting period - September 11)
  •      Staff will report to work as assigned for the start of the school year *Amended on 7/29/20 to allow teachers flexibility to teach from their classrooms or at home
  •      Training will start right away to enhance online instruction, to prepare for the next phase of Blended Learning, and to implement safety procedures as outlined in the Reopening Protocols for K-12 Schools, with the overriding goal to fully reopen.
To view the entire Board presentation, click here
 
6/30/20 - The Governing Board Chooses Blended Learning for Fall 2020
At the June 30 Special Board Meeting, the Board directed staff to move forward with planning for a Blended Learning model for the fall 2020 semester and to include a fully Online opportunity for families that are not ready to return to in-person learning.