Return to School Plan | 2020-2021

Our primary goal is to safely open our doors for face-to-face instruction in the hybrid model. Our next goal is to remain open. The safety and wellbeing of the DSHA community is all of our responsibilities. We are learning more each day about COVID-19 so even the safety measures we’ve put into place for the beginning of school could change throughout the school year. 
 
One of the challenges of this time is information overload and conflicting media soundbites. We invite the DSHA community to see our school community health measures through the lens of Catholic Social Teaching. Consider also the delegated responsibilities given to us by our sponsoring order, The Sisters of the Divine Savior. These responsibilities include improving the quality of life, responsible stewardship, and collaboration. 
 
Aligned with our Salvatorian values, we see our responsibility to the health and safety of one another as a social justice and equity issue  wearing masks; practicing diligent hand-washing; maintaining physical distance when able; self-isolating if ill or symptomatic; daily check-ins and reporting on any COVID-19 symptoms  all these actions help protect the health and safety of our DSHA community.  Indeed, our protective actions are definitely about more than just protecting oneself, they are about protecting the families of girls, teachers, administrators or staff you might not even know. 
 
As we begin the school year, the following health and safety measures will be in place in accordance with the American Academy of Pediatrics, Center for Disease Control and Prevention, and the City of Milwaukee Health Department, and the Milwaukee County Department of Health and Human Services
                                            
Our goal is to keep our community safe and that requires the commitment of each individual. As such we are requiring all students and families to acknowledge and agree to abide by the health and safety expectations and measures being put into place during this time.

GENERAL GUIDELINES AND PHILOSOPHY – THE WHOLE-PERSON, COLLEGE PREPARATORY EXPERIENCE DELIVERED

List of 3 items.

  • Primary Goal | Maximize In-Person Learning

    • From our Spring 2020 surveys, consistent feedback across all constituent groups – students, parents, and faculty – showed a desire for more structured time and a combination of synchronous and asynchronous learning. 
    • For any scenario we are faced with in the 2020-21 school year, our primary goal is to maximize in-person learning with high level teaching & learning strategies, prioritizing interaction and collaboration. 
    • Instruction will be provided in-person but also available synchronously and asynchronously to students learning remotely on a given day. Adaptations to the daily schedule as well as the revised BYOD policy and web cameras in every classroom will support this effort.
  • Grading & Assesments

    DSHA will continue with traditional grades to report students’ performance and proficiency in course learning targets and outcomes, and the grades will continue to be reported on students’ transcripts. 
    • The DSHA Profile in the next three years will include a notification, as we did on our transcripts beginning in spring of 2020 that the grades reflect the COVID-19 Pandemic situation. This profile accompanies every DSHA transcript submitted to colleges.
    • In learning, assessments and grading, we continue to aim for college preparatory experiences and for high quality over busy-work quantity. 
     
    How will assignments and assessments differ in a model that consistently accounts for any number of students learning from home, streaming a class live? 
    • The integrity of assessments will be an important factor in determining how to engage students in evaluating their knowledge, application and understanding. For example, there may be a shift to more performance or project-based assessments, rather than objective assessments (e.g. multiple-choice, true/false, matching, fill-in tests).  
    • Again, our ultimate goal for students is that they be challenged and engaged in learning, application and assessment in a way that best prepares them for college and beyond
    • We are continually researching the colleges’ approaches to their own teaching and assessing – especially in the midst of a pandemic. 
    • If students would be engaged in more performance-based or project-based assessments, both time and practice would be added into the learning experience. 
    • Time for students to complete a multi-step/multi-piece assessment and time for faculty to evaluate and provide feedback on such an assessment. 
    • Practice would also be built in: if students are not used to a performance - or project-based assessment in a particular discipline, teachers would build in time to practice this type of assessment.  
     
    Teachers who teach the same course will also continue to align their student learning outcomes, experiences, assessments and grading practices.  
     
    Cumulative final exams:  As a college prep school rounding the corner after “crisis teaching” for the last quarter of the 2019-20 school year, one return to normalcy is having students take cumulative final exams in 2020-21.  
  • Instructional Communications

    While the school may have little control over which scenario we are operating within at any given time, the way we communicate with students and parents will be consistent and reliable. Our goal is to create consistency and reliability through all communication channels, with the usual DSHA focus of caring and prompt customer service.  
     
    2020-2021 Communication Plan Includes:
    • Training and built-in, hands-on practice for all students in the first week of school so the various DSHA platforms are understood and any issues can be identified and problem-solved immediately.
    • Parents and students will be able to access video tutorials and posted materials for refreshers and information about the major instructional technology platforms:  MyDSHA, Microsoft Teams, 
    • Student Council will continue to maintain their weekly student bulletin, the “Need to Know”, to coordinate and communicate all important school-wide communications for students.  This is disseminated through students’ DSHA email.
    • MyDSHA is the primary LMS (Learning Management System) and course communication tool. Teachers post course information, content, resources and other materials on their MyDSHA page, and students will be trained to maximize the use of this LMS tool.
    • There will be a weekly clear and consistent posting for each class regarding the learning, homework, class plans, etc. for each class, each week, and this information will be posted on the same location on each class page.  *MyDSHA, our LMS, is where course pages are found.  
    • Students new to DSHA (and as a reminder to returning students/families), the following communication tools are used frequently – often daily – to communicate with students.  
    Three major platforms that students will access daily:
      • MyDSHA | Our Learning Management System (LMS) which houses the course pages and has all of the information and materials posted for each course.  
      • DSHA Email | This is the most widely used communication tool across the school.  
      • Microsoft Teams | Teams Chat: allows for conversation with an individual or a small group.  Students will need to download the Teams App/icon to their computer and phone. Microsoft Teams can be used during the school day for students to meet in online groups, or ask a teacher a question.  Students are also encouraged to use Teams in the evening to collaborate or work together as needed. Teams Groups: this is where each class will meet, virtually, and where the class streaming will take place.  Students are added to a Teams group for each class section.
    Additional communication systems that parents and students will use (or receive) as needed: 
      • Brightarrow Texting/Email Mass Messaging System -- this communication platform is used to push out timely information to constituents and is used judiciously.  
      • DSHA social media accounts - our various school-connected accounts (Facebook and Instagram) promote activities and events spanning diversity, campus ministry, wellness and general school updates on topics of interest.  

College Preparatory Instruction | 2020-2021 Foundational Elements

List of 7 items.

  • Whole-Person, Mission Focus

    All 2020-2021 plans include all of the essential elements of the DSHA, whole-person approach to educating young women of faith, heart, and intellect.
  • Extended Instruction (EI) Schedule

    EI schedule each day of the week, all first semester.  This structure protects instructional time, minimizes physical movement throughout the building each day, and helps students better manage their course load each semester in this uncertain time while providing continuity between other scenarios.  
  • Technology

    Web cameras | DSHA is installing web cameras in all instructional spaces to live-stream instruction for students learning remotely on a given day(s).  This hardware allows for the ease of live-streaming with Teams.

    BYOD | Students’ daily requirement of bringing a laptop to school
    for in-class learning and engagement. Each student must have a laptop for her own use both in school and at home. Students will be expected to use DSHA email daily, access each class’ MyDSHA page daily, use Microsoft Teams daily, and use any additional application that is necessary for her learning and classwork submission (e.g. Turnitin). 
    • Click here to view the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy.
    • Any laptop running Microsoft Windows or an Apple laptop that has been purchased in the last few years should work with our school’s resources. Even though DSHA is not a Google classroom-based school, we understand that many students may already own Chromebooks. Most new Google Chromebooks will work, though students should be aware that for the DSHA platforms, Chromebooks may offer less flexibility than a Windows or Apple-based laptop. (One example is that the full desktop version of Microsoft Office will not work on Chromebook. You can still use the web-based Microsoft Office suite, but this set-up will provide fewer features). If your family needs help finding a laptop for your Dasher that matches your price point and needs, please reach out to John White Whitej@dsha.info, Director of Technology. 
    • What software applications do I need to buy? While work requirements depend on each Dasher’s course load, most resources used at DSHA are web- based and do not require special applications. There are limited classes where students will be asked to download applications. All students are issued a Microsoft Office 365 account and they will be able to download Microsoft Office to their laptops for free or use the Office 365 online environment. Students are expected to install Microsoft Teams to their laptop and access MyDSHA regularly via a web browser, but they do not need to buy applications to do so. 
    • If you have concerns about purchasing a laptop because of cost, please contact Ann Duffy, our Director of Admissions and Financial Aid.  DuffyA@dsha.info 
    MyDSHA | This platform will be the learning management system used for all classes.  Teachers will be posting all pertinent class information on the first Topics Board on each class page.  This Topics Board will consistently be the first board on each class page, so students can easily find the information they need. 
  • Classroom Interaction via Microsoft Teams

    Use of Microsoft Teams to stream class sessions each day, and record class sessions for students learning from home.  Since DSHA guidelines for students staying home due to illness will be more strict in 2020-21 to protect all students, faculty, staff and our DSHA parent community, a student should never feel like she will miss instruction or class discussion if she stays home with mild illness symptoms.  Additionally, Microsoft Teams streaming of classes synchronously allows for students who are required to stay home for self-quarantine are able to fully participate in classroom learning each day, during their regular class schedule. All lessons will also be recorded. Faculty are training and preparing for the use of Teams as a daily instructional methodology and will prioritize the first few days of school for training students.
    • Note:  Teachers who must be home due to self-quarantine will be able to teach from home using Microsoft Teams, streaming instruction live to students in the teacher’s classroom at DSHA.  
    • If a teacher is too ill to teach, we will work to find a sub for any in-person classes that day (as we normally would).  In fact, DSHA has hired two permanent subs for the coming fall to assist with this effort. Even when a teacher is staying home due to illness, lesson plans for students are often emailed to our attendance secretary for distribution to students.  We would still follow this plan. (If a teacher is too ill to develop a plan and communicate to the attendance secretary, then students would have study hall and work time during that class period, either in-person or at home.)
  • Learning Management Platform via MyDSHA

    MyDSHA will be the learning management system used for all classes. Teachers will be posting all pertinent class information on the first Topics Board on each class page. This Topics Board will consistently be the first board on each class page, so students can easily find the information they need. 
  • Student & Parent Expectations

    Student and parent expectations for online learning: 
    • Communication is key; students should communicate with their teacher as soon as a problem or concern arises. Likewise, parents should contact the teacher with a course question or concern, to clear up any confusion and seek understanding. 
    • *Also important: if a teacher, counselor or administrator reaches out to a student or parent with a question or concern, it is our expectation that the student/parent respond promptly and help facilitate the dialogue we are seeking.*
    • Do not assume that a teacher knows that a student is struggling or needs extra help. We want to collaborate with parents and work as a team to support students and make sure we get them the help they need.
  • Attendance

    • Students are expected to engage in instruction and learning on a daily basis. 
    • If a student is absent from in-person learning for reasons due to COVID-19 and is well enough to engage, it is the expectation that she will participate remotely and be present for each class she is assigned. 
    • A daily phone call from a parent (to monitor attendance accurately) is required for a student to be excused from in-person learning before accessing classes virtually.  

Faith Formation | 2020-2021

List of 4 items.

  • 2020-2021 Focus + Scriptural Theme

    Scriptural theme – Proverbs 2:2"Turn your ear to wisdom, incline your heart to understanding." 


    2020-2021 Goal: Faith formation is the foundation for the work that is done at DSHA and remains a top priority in this coming school year, regardless of the academic scenario. We will maximize our efforts in faith formation, using Theology classes, Campus Ministry outreach, homerooms and Applied Wellness as opportunities to provide faith formation and spiritual growth and introspection.
  • Retreats

    • All grade-level retreats will take place at DSHA.  We have eliminated the overnight portion to allow for the school to be cleaned, and to eliminate the possibility of an outside organization canceling due to COVID-19 restrictions.  
    • Freshmen | Freshman Retreat will still take place in a format to be determined including perhaps on the same dates as originally scheduled.  This is a long-cherished tradition at DSHA and is a way for each freshman to deepen her connection to her classmates, her faith, and her school. 
    • Sophomores | Sophomore Retreat will also take place at DSHA in February. The format of this class retreat will be determined once it is closer to the actual date of the retreat. 
    • Juniors | Juniors will have a program either through homerooms or applied wellness throughout their junior year in place of the annual optional Junior Retreat. We will intentionally create opportunities for prayer and connection with their class. 
    • Seniors | Senior Retreat will take place for the entire class in November.  Dates TBA.
    • The small group experience of retreats will remain the focus for peer ministry and we are prepared to make adaptations to the format based on what is safest for students.
  • Mass and Prayer

    Mass will be offered minimally once per week. Based on the current capacity guidelines, guidance in the Catholic Comeback document, one grade level will participate in an in-person Mass while perhaps other students are in their homerooms participating. Additional prayer and worship offerings include:
    • Reconciliation will be offered weekly in the Mother of Our Savior Chapel.  
    • Students will go to mass as a class regularly. 
    • Adoration will be offered weekly through Applied Wellness or streamed if necessary. 
    • Rosary/Mercy Mondays will still take place virtually each week. The time will be determined based on the finalized schedule.
    • Prayer Board will continue on Microsoft Teams in all scenarios. 
    • Daily student and staff prayer will still occur in all formats.
  • Salvatorian Service to Others

    Our students will continue their tradition of making a difference locally and even globally.
    • Salvatorian Service to others will be an integral part of Campus Ministry for the 2020-2021 school year. Salvatorian Service hours requirement will be communicated once school resumes. More opportunities to care for others will be offered during school hours. 
    • We continue to closely monitor the health and safety situation in the greater Milwaukee area, and as we get closer to the time period for Vocare, we will make a decision about that program.  
    • We will continue with our food collections program on the 5th/ 15th/ 25th of every month. If we are in a hybrid model, we will have 2 collections days. Campus ministry will determine a safe procedure for the collection and distribution of canned food. When necessary, we will move our monthly collections online through https://yougivegoods.com/riverwestfoodpantry.  
    • The Advent and Lent Projects will still happen and we will keep our traditions of having the Advent Project focused on a local organization/cause and the Lent Project being focused on a national or international organization/cause.

Student Services & Wellness | 2020-2021

List of 11 items.

  • 2020-2021 Focus | We are experts at caring for the teenage girl.

    Student mental health and wellness is of critical concern to DSHA as we return for the 2020-2021 school year. Deliberate consideration and considerable change has gone into preparing to support our students’ social/emotional, mental health, academic, college and career planning needs following and during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. 
  • Data-Informed Health & Wellness

    We will continue our practice of making data-informed decisions on the health and wellness of our students.  A standing group of counselors, administrators, Campus Ministers, our Applied Wellness Director and our Director of Student Services, Equity & Engagement meets weekly to review student wellness survey data, academic data, attendance data, and other inputs to ensure ongoing student mental health, wellness, academic success and relationship-rich connection. 
  • Student Services Programming

    The Student Services and Wellness Center Team will continue to support student wellness and the development of lifelong healthy behaviors through our presence and practice.  We offer individual and group support, whole-person focused wellness experiences, education, outreach, and an environment of positive change for students and for our school community. In addition, we provide a multitude of college and career building experiences that help our students to make informed and impactful life decisions. The foundations of our integrated student wellness approach are self-knowledge, proactive skill building and a shared Salvatorian purpose to collaborate to improve the quality of life in our worldUnder the direction of Mrs. Lisette Rodriguez-Reed, Director of Student Services, Equity, and Engagement, we are pleased to announce several changes in student services that will directly benefit students.
  • Applied Wellness Program

    • All Applied Wellness classes will be virtual all first semester. 
    • This allows students access to Applied Wellness experiences across the school day and after school, which they can access online. 
    • Students are able to use their built-in Applied Wellness time to participate at school in a small group wellness experience via Teams, or participate in some other online-based wellness resource experience. 
    • After school, at home, on the weekends, students will be able to access videos, content, resources and other wellness materials that will be posted to their Applied Wellness course pages in myDSHA.  
  • College Counseling

    • College Counseling will continue as previously scheduled, with our College Advisor, Mr. Hendricks, meeting with senior students individually and/or through Applied Wellness offerings, homeroom times, and virtually as needed during the first semester.
    • Junior and Senior Parent Information meetings will be offered, although in a different format.
    • Juniors will start their individual and/or group conferences with Mr. Hendricks during the second semester.
    • The Bridge Builders Program will continue to offer monthly meetings throughout the school year for Sophomore students.
    • College visits will take place virtually at DSHA, and students will be able to sign up for these visits on the Naviance website.
    • Be on the lookout for an increased social media presence this year for updates on anything college, career, or scholarship related. You can follow the College Center on Instagram (DSHACollege) or on FaceBook at DSHA College Center. 
  • Inter-Departmental Programming, Resources, and Support

    For the 2020-2021 school year, the team of counselors along with the Applied Wellness, Campus Ministry and the fitness department will team together to provide students with comprehensive programming, resources and support. Counselors will be available to provide one-on-one counseling, group counseling, academic organizational skills, mental health awareness, college and career exploration and planning and more. As part of the whole-person wellness framework, students will have access to Applied Wellness programming through Campus Ministry; activities will include Salvatorian Service, grade level retreats, personal prayer and reflection, Adoration, Rosary, and pastoral counseling.
  • Full-Time School Counseling Staff

    DSHA will have three, full-time counselors, fully available to support student needs throughout the school day. These counselors include: Mrs. Therese Hayden, Mrs. Kristin Shea, and Mr. Dave Lynch. Although students can see any counselor, the counselor caseload is assigned as follows:
  • Student / Counselor Touchpoints

    Besides individual meetings with students, our counselors will meet with student groups through the homeroom model, through Freshman Seminar and through Applied Wellness; these multiple touchpoints allow for more connection times with counselors.
  • Full-Time Staff Nurse

    Beginning this year, DSHA will have a full-time staff nurse to supervise the COVID-19 screening and serve as a contact point for all COVID-19 specific inquires. Additional information about this person’s contribution to our school community will be forthcoming.
  • CHW Licensed Therapist

    DSHA is pleased to share that we are engaged with Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin to bring a licensed therapist into our building. This therapist will be therapeutically available to students approximately 60% time. The other 40% of time the therapist will provide educational programming to students, faculty, and parents on topics such as mental health, stress or anxiety management, and use of alcohol or other drugs. More information specifically on this topic will be forthcoming. 
  • Aurora Student and Family Assistance Program

    DSHA will continue to partner with Aurora to provide the Student and Family Assistance Program (SFAP), which is a free and confidential resource for students and families. Please utilize this link for more information Student and Family Assistance Program.

Fitness | 2020-2021

List of 3 items.

  • How will it work?

    For the first semester, the gym would need to be set aside and used for alternative classroom space; the gym is large (for physical distancing) and air conditioned (more comfortable for students and faculty in masks, especially in the hot weather in August, September and potentially October.) 

    Fitness classes and opportunities will run through the two cohorts of students in our Applied Wellness Program at DSHA: 
    • (1) Freshmen – who will participate in our Freshman Foundational Fitness Program
    • (2) Sophomores, Juniors and Seniors – who participate in our second wellness cohort, the Applied Wellness Program 
  • Freshman Foundational Fitness

    • Thiscourse is designed specifically for freshmen.
    • Fitness classes will be held in the Fitness Center, the Mind Body Studio, and outside as weather permits. 
  • Sophomores, Juniors, Seniors

    • All fitness classes run through the DSHA Applied Wellness Program.
    • All classes will be virtual for first semester. This allows students access to experiences across the school day and after school, which they can ask online. 
    • After school, at home, on the weekends, students will be able to access videos, content, resources and other wellness materials that will be posted to their Applied Wellness course pages in myDSHA.  

Student Life & Activities | 2020-2021

List of 8 items.

  • Student Connection & Growth

    • The co-curricular experience at DSHA is developmentally important to the growth of the entire girl.
    • Many students point to a shared experience in one or more of our co-curricular experiences as defining moments and some of the most memorable experiences in high school. 
    • Co-curriculars foster a sense of student connection between girls and teachers, coaches and moderators.
    • Besides building connections in co-curriculars, DSHA is implementing a homeroom program in 2020-21 that will further foster student connection, belonging and fun.  
    • The DSHA co-curricular offerings are vast and there are a myriad of considerations. We will approach each activity with a reasonableness standard consistent with CDC guidelines. These experiences include the remaining items in this section. 
  • Athletics

    • DSHA Athletic Director, Peggy Seegers-Braun, has been working hard all summer to create health and safety guidelines for our athletic teams.
    • Our goal is to provide an athletic experience for all of our aspiring student-athletes.
    • Summer contact days at DSHA began the week of July 6.
    • Click here for the full DSHA Guidelines for Re-Opening Athletics | Fall 2020. 
  • Clubs

    • Each club moderator is working with the student leadership to make adjustments to how each club will operate. 
    • Our goal is to make the co-curricular experience meaningful and engaging, making adjustments to meet the unique needs and circumstances of the time and the school community.
    • Trips pertaining to co-curricular activities are still being considered.  
  • Dances/Socials

    This school year will require creative, out-of-the-box thinking on everyone's behalf. We are grateful that students at DSHA are natural critical thinkers.
    • We are committed to creating lasting high school memories within the current guidelines. 
    • During this time we will rely on our student organizations, student leaders and event moderators to plan for various events throughout the school year, and recognize that social events are important to keep at the forefront of our planning.  
  • Field Trips

    • For the fall of the 2020-2021 school year, we have opted to not allow curricular field trips. 
    • Teachers are welcome to utilize the virtual field trip experiences that many outside organizations have created to allow for the experience of the trip. 
    • As we receive updated information, we will determine the protocol for the spring semester regarding field trips.  
  • Theatre

    • The DSHA Producing Director, Amanda Marsala, and Theatre Director, Zach Zeigler, have been thinking creatively about how to offer a theatre season and performance experiences for DSHA students  and thus have moved the Fall musical to sometime later in the school year. 
    • First semester we will offer a series of One Act plays, with the ability to livestream performances if needed, to assure students have a dramatic experience and DSHA complies with health and safety guidelines.
    • More information regarding shows selected and audition/performance dates will be communicated soon.  
  • Homerooms | NEW for 2020-2021!

    • Homerooms will be facilitated by a faculty moderator, and will be set up by grade level (a built-in chance to get to know fellow classmates!)
    • They will launch at the beginning of the school year.
    • Students in homerooms will have opportunities to lead and even collaborate with other homerooms in their “pod” area, and will not only be engaged in planned activities throughout the year, but will also have opportunities for fun and games, socializing, bonding and holiday parties.
    • Homerooms will be a chance for students to get information (e.g. announcements), ask questions, check in with each other and develop a family within their larger DSHA sisterhood.
     
    Should we need to utilize online learning for a short or longer period of time, the homeroom moderators and leaders will share responsibility for checking in on their homeroom groups and will establish regular meetings during virtual learning.  
  • Lunch

    • Under the return to school protocol issued by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction and the Center for Disease control, it is recommended that schools consider using classrooms for lunch to limit large group gatherings. 
    • We are following these guidelines, and are planning for students to eat lunch in their homerooms.
    • Homerooms will be assigned to an A (Early Lunch) or B (Late Lunch), and the total homeroom/lunch block of time will be 60 minutes. 
    • Teachers will eat lunch with students during a 30-minute lunch time, with the other 30 minutes being used for homeroom activities.  

Fall 2020 | Community Perspectives

For questions, please contact:

  • Academics; instruction; curriculum | Dr. Heather Moran Mansfield, Academic Dean: mansfieldh@dsha.info
  • DSHA infection control measures; space utilization | Dan Quesnell, Principal: quesnelld@dsha.info 
  • Faith formation; retreats; prayer; service | Mrs. Stephanie Monson, Director of Campus Ministry: monsons@dsha.info
  • Homeroom; clubs; lunch; daily schedule; illness/attendance guidelines | Mrs. Ruby Brock, Dean of Student Affairs: brockr@dsha.info 
  • Student counseling support; student mental health needs | Mrs, Lisette Rodriguez-Reed, Director of Diversity, Engagement and Student Services: rodriguez-reedl@dsha.info
  • Technology: laptop questions |Mr. John White, Director of Technology: whitej@dsha.info 
  • Technology: questions about myDSHA or Microsoft Teams | Mr. Quinn Loucks, Instructional Technology Coordinator: loucksq@dsha.info 

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