Success Academy Shares Remote Learning Lesson Plans With All Parents of Students in Grades K-2
May 11, 2020
**FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, MAY 11, 2020**
Liz Baker, 646-904-4200
Ann Powell, 646-894-6407
New York, NY — Today, Success Academy published six full weeks of lesson plans for students in grades K-2, to help educators and parents who may be struggling to provide content-rich learning during the Covid-19 pandemic. The plans are hosted on the network’s website and include both specific daily schedules and lessons as well as links to general resources. The suite of lesson plans can be accessed here.
“It has always been Success Academy’s mission to improve educational outcomes for all children, not just those who enter our schools through the lottery,” said Eva Moskowitz, founder and CEO of Success Academy Charter Schools. “Families are stressed. They’re worried that their children will fall behind. We are delighted to share these plans with parents across New York City.”
Success Academy began remote learning on March 19. With students in grades 4-12 equipped with laptops as part of the network’s 1:1 program, the transition from on-campus to distance learning was relatively smooth. K-3 classrooms required a different approach. Students were sent home with books and schools delivered remote learning schedules and assignments by email. Teachers made twice daily calls to students, for one-on-one book discussions and to review their strategies for solving math problems. Science, art, music, and dance teachers also checked in with kids and families regularly and sent personal videos to ensure learning and a sense of community continued, even at a distance.
By the end of March, Success had secured 10,500 Chromebook tablets, enough for each student in grades K-3 to receive a device. As of Monday, May 11, the network expects to be digitally connected to all 18,000 students. Instruction will be delivered digitally via Google Classroom and videoconference. Students will receive and submit their assignments through Google Classroom, and meet with their teacher and classmates on 15-30 minute video conferences for instruction and discussion.
Since March 19, the network has averaged a daily attendance rate of 97%, based on students logging into digital classrooms or connecting by phone prior to the tablet distribution. Classes start at 9am; middle schoolers spend 7 hours per day in remote learning with an hour for lunch; high schoolers are in class 8.5 hours with 40 minutes for lunch. For younger grades, the day is shorter with more frequent breaks. Students in grades K-2 started at 2.5 hours and now receive 3.5 hours of content; grades 3-4 started at 3.5 hours and are now at 4.5 hours of content. Across all SA schools, art, music, and dance teachers, as well as chess, debate, and sports coaches have found resourceful ways to connect with their scholars: posting online dance and soccer challenges, hosting chess and debate tournaments, and creating digital tutorials and school-wide videos.
All remote lesson plans from Success include daily science, which is an important element of SA’s school design: students study science five days a week, starting in kindergarten. With remote learning, kindergarteners spend 30 minutes a day learning about ecosystems, food chains, owls, and otters through a series of curated videos in the first week. As with all subjects, parents have access to discussion questions to engage their children and deepen their learning. Children also spend 30 minutes reading, followed by 30 minutes of writing or drawing about the book they read. Then there’s lunch, followed by math problems and more reading. Each plan provides links to specific resources such as Tumblebooks and Audible, which have long been mainstays for SA students — and in response to the pandemic, vendors have made them available to all children at low or no cost.
“These are unprecedented times,” said Moskowitz. “We’re all doing our part to help each other. The predictions of learning loss are dire, but it doesn’t have to be that way.”
ABOUT SUCCESS ACADEMY CHARTER SCHOOLS
Founded in 2006, Success Academy Charter Schools are free public K-12 schools open to all children in the state through a random lottery. With 45 schools across Brooklyn, the Bronx, Manhattan, and Queens, Success Academy enrolls 18,000 students, primarily children of color from low-income households in disadvantaged neighborhoods: 74% receive free or reduced-price lunch, 94% are students of color, 16% have disabilities, and 8% are English language learners. Success Academy schools received more than 17,000 applications for about 4,000 open seats for the 2019-20 academic year.
For more information about Success Academy, go to successacademies.org.