Coachella Valley Schools develop tentative plans for academic year

Olivia Sandusky

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Superintendent Scott Bailey never expected Desert Sands campuses to be empty this spring.

“This is the first time this has happened in generations so we’re literally writing the book, and we’re writing the book in collaboration with United States Department of Education, state officials and county officials,” said Bailey.

His students have missed around 50 hours of education due to COVID-19, leaving Desert Sands Unified staff to seek alternate options.

“We have a begin date for a more formal online engagement for April 6th, we just want to make sure the kids are exposed to those standards,” said Bailey.

Meanwhile certain private schools like Xavier College Prep haven’t skipped a day, using online programs already in place.

“We have teachers using different tools in a similar way that way we can have students having an at home experience that would mirror one they would have in a classroom,” said Emily Glenn, a teacher with Xavier.

With Xavier as a local model, Coachella Valley and Palm Springs Unified School Districts are also preparing their teachers to instruct remotely. W

No district as a set answer for graduation, although some are offering encouraging words.

“If you were on track when we went off school this month, you’re in good shape, I don’t see how children can be held accountable for something outside of their control,” said Sandra Lyons, the superintendent for PSUSD.

The College Board also created an online, shorter version of their advanced placement exam, while the state received preliminary approval to wave testing, all in an attempt to help students.

“These are very unprecedented times and we’re becoming more agile as we kind of rebuild school in its current state which is a little more virtual,” said Bailey.

Desert Sands is continuing to provide meals for students at this time.

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