BCESD Superintendent to Students: Closure Doesn’t Mean Grades End

Published by The Bee News

April 15, 2020

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BULLHEAD CITY – Bullhead City Elementary School District Superintendent Carolyn Stewart has reminded students up to and including those in the eighth grade that distance learning during school closure includes grading.  She responded to concerns that some students have stopped taking their online classes, particularly in junior high school.

“We’ve had a great response from students and parents who receive classroom materials through printed packets dropped off by school bus in neighborhoods,” Stewart said.  “But some of those with adequate computer and internet access at home have simply stopped doing their classwork. And this could affect their ability to be promoted from one grade to the next when school resumes in the fall.”

There may be confusion, she added, because area high school students continue to take classes, but traditional grading ended just before spring break and the State’s closure of schools.  She noted that high school grading is different than K-8 grading.

“Junior high is not high school,” she added.  “Different rules apply. For K-8 students, decisions regarding promotion to the next grade didn’t stop at the end of the third quarter.  Students and their parents have only five weeks before the school year ends.”

Gov. Doug Ducey’s March 15 and March 20 executive orders of school closures require equitable ongoing education.  The instructional packets dropped off in neighborhoods each week are intended to provide educational access for students without the necessary technology to continue with online lessons.  Having some of the students with technology access as the ones not completing classwork is worrisome, Stewart said.  

“Do these students tell their parents that they’re doing their homework but they’re not?” she asked.  “Are there families that moved out of the area due to job layoffs or other matters and never notified the schools?  We’d encourage these parents to reach out to their schools and children’s teachers.”

Although all five BCESD schools are closed to the public, offices are staffed and accessible by phone.  Parents needing more information about their children’s status should call school offices Monday through Thursday during business hours.

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