Note: This document is intended as a simplified version of our Harmony Public Schools “Back to School Playbook 2020-2021.” For further information or clarification on any topic, please refer to the Playbook.
What do I need to learn from home?
Students will need access to a computer device and the internet to complete schoolwork from home. Students without consistent access to either may receive them from their Harmony campus. Campuses will begin distributing them via drive-through pick-ups starting the first week of August. Additionally, students may find that headphones, especially noise-canceling headphones, are helpful for online learning, however they are not required.
Will I need to shop for school supplies?
Yes. All students regardless of learning location (i.e. home or campus) will be completing assignments alongside their peers using the supplies listed by their campus.
Is anything different about online learning this year?
Yes, quite a bit. Harmony has upgraded its online learning by switching to a new system called Schoology. Through Schoology, students will be able to interact and engage with their teachers and peers in real-time throughout the school day to provide and more advanced and enriching school experience. Families will also have full access to grades, progress reports, assignments, classroom learning materials, calendars, and more from within the Schoology platform, providing a simple one-stop-shop for all things related to their student’s learning experience. Students and families will receive more instruction on accessing and logging into Schoology as classes begin.
Will online learners be taught differently than on-campus learners?
No. All students will be taught using the same material and at the same pace by the same Harmony teacher. In most cases, online learners will be taught simultaneously alongside their on-campus peers, unless the student is taking part in asynchronous learning (i.e independent learning outside normal school hours).
How will grades be calculated?
Grades will be counted on the traditional 0-100 scale. The “pass/fail” grading system that was implemented out of necessity during the Spring 2020 semester will not be used.
What hours of the day will online classes be taught?
Your campus will announce the specific schedule for your student, but generally speaking, classes will be taught online in real-time by their teachers during normal school hours (instructional minutes may vary by grade, according to Texas Education Agency requirements). This is called “synchronous learning.” A sample schedule can be found in the Harmony “Back to School Playbook 2020-2021.” Students needing to learn outside this timeframe can choose to learn independently. This is called “asynchronous learning.”
What rules or expectations are there for online learners?
Synchronous online learners will be asked to comply with the following rules:
- Student’s camera must be on during class time.
- Student should maintain school-appropriate behavior.
- Student should be dressed appropriately. (shirt, school shirt, jeans or khakis are OK).
- Only the student may be visible (no friends or siblings).
- Student’s microphone should be off unless instructed by a teacher (this prevents background noise).
- Students are expected to interact through the Zoom chat function.
- Students must show up on time.
- Students must use appropriate and respectful language at all times.
- Students are asked to use tools such as “raising your hand” (available in Zoom) and the chat feature if you have a question or want to answer a question.
- Student should remove distractions, such as going where there’s less background noise and turning off your phone.
- Student should use headphones, if possible, for increased privacy and better speaker and microphone quality.
- Students should have all required materials for class (books, paper, markers, etc..) nearby before the session begins.
- Students should be prepared to be called on to answer a question or participate in a discussion or activity at any time.
How will absences and attendance be counted for online learning?
Students who are logged in and learning alongside their teacher and classmates during normal school hours (synchronous learning) will be counted in attendance when they lo in to learn.
Student who learn independently through self-guided instruction (asynchronous learning) will be counted in attendance when they meet daily learning benchmarks and/or turn in daily assignments by no later than 11:59 p.m. on the given schoolday.
What happens if my child doesn’t have a computer to do their schoolwork on while learning from home?
Harmony will supply a computer device and/or internet access for the purpose of completing schoolwork to any student that does not have consistent access at home. These will be provided beginning the first week of August and distributed by drive-through pickups at your nearby Harmony campus.
Will my child have to wear a Harmony uniform for online learning?
Students may choose to wear a uniform if they would like to when learning online, however they are not required to. Instead, they are required to follow the dress code guidelines set forth for “Free Dress Days” set forth in the Student & Parent Handbook. This states:
“Garments must be free of holes, tears, inappropriate wording, logos, messages or advertising. No short, skin tight, or legging dresses, or skirts may be worn. All dresses must have sleeves. Students may not wear low cut, midriff-baring, or backless blouses. Students may wear jeans, but they cannot be tight pants including jeggings, tights or skinny style pants. Clothing items must not depict images of violence.”