Letter to CoaH Families – March 24, 2020

Dear CoaH Families:

I am writing to provide an update on City on a Hill’s response to the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). As a reminder, all of our previous messages are archived here.

First, the Senior Leadership Team would like to remind you of two ongoing processes:

  • Please complete this family technology survey to help us assess your student’s need for a chromebook by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, March 25. We will reach out to families separately with instructions for Chromebook pick-up. 
  • Boston families: The deadline to request homework packets via mail is 5 p.m. on Wednesday, March 25. Given Governor Baker’s stay-at-home advisory, packets requested after this time can only be downloaded from our website.

Furthermore, we know that there continues to be many questions that you may have about how we are preparing as a community. The Senior Leadership Team has extended our FAQ to help address your questions:

What does Governor Baker’s stay-at-home advisory mean for our students?

In addition to the precautions you are taking to protect yourself and your family from coronavirus, such as the World Health Association’s Do the Five, our school nurse has suggested these helpful tips for preventive actions.

Will City on a Hill still re-open on April 8, 2020?

CoaH will be closed through April 7, in accordance with Governor Baker’s directive to close all schools in the Commonwealth. 

As you know, Boston’s Mayor has ordered all Boston Public Schools closed through April 27. As a charter public school, City on a Hill operates independently from traditional districts, like BPS. We have not yet committed to remaining closed through April 27, but will be evaluating our decision whether to remain closed beyond April 7 on a week-by-week basis. 

Our highest priority is the health and safety of our students and staff, so we certainly don’t want to jeopardize your health, theirs or the well-being of our families and extended families. We do have a responsibility to educate our students and we take that responsibility seriously, hence the reason we will be carefully evaluating the situation as new information becomes available.

What Distance Learning options is City on a Hill offering during the shutdown? 

CoaH students in both Boston and New Bedford have been given assignments to complete through March 27. Assignments are by grade level; students should only do the sections for their specific classes. Students will receive credit for completed assignments.

Boston students: Student assignments are available on our website by grade level. If your student is unable to access the assignments online, please email covid19@cityonahill.org with your students’ name(s), grade(s), and mailing address by 5 p.m. Wednesday, March 25 so that we can make arrangements to send them to you. Given Governor Baker’s stay-at-home advisory, packets requested after this time can only be downloaded from our website. 

All mail requests received as of 3 p.m. on Monday, March 23, have been fulfilled and should arrive via USPS to the address on file.

New Bedford students: All students should have received their assignments. 

We will share more updates in the following weeks with distance learning and assignments for the week of March 30.

What about students who are part of the Learning Network?

There are packets specifically for students who are members of our Learning Network. If your child is a member of the Learning Network and you have not received this packet, please reach out to covid19@cityonahill.org. We are currently working with our charter peers in Massachusetts and nationally on strategies to ensure that we will be able to continue meeting all IEP, 504, and EL service delivery requirements, particularly in the event of a long term closure. 

How do I return the completed assignments to my student’s teachers?

Rather than mail each completed grade level packet, we ask that students scan and return them to their teachers. The email addresses of our teachers were included on the cover page of each section of the grade level packet (e.g., English, math, history, etc.). 

There are several free scanning resources available for iPhone and Android smartphones students can take advantage of.

My student doesn’t have access to a computer. What is CoaH doing to help?

We are working through the logistical hurdles of lending chromebooks to City on a Hill Students who need them by completing this family technology survey to help us assess your individual technology situation. Please be reminded that the deadline to complete the survey is Wednesday, March 25 at 5 p.m. We will reach out to families separately with instructions for Chromebook pick-up.

Please know that we remain committed to supporting you to the greatest extent possible during this time.

Thank you once again for your help to keep our community healthy and safe. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to email covid19@cityonahill.org.


Kevin T. Taylor

Chief Executive Officer

To read our most up to date information, please visit the Our Response to COVID-19 page.

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