Frequently Asked Questions
On April 2, 2020, Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued an executive order closing Michigan’s public and private K–12 school buildings for the remainder of the school year in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This closure naturally raises many questions for students, parents, and staff at Eastpointe Community Schools.
During the next few months, we will continue to develop and implement the remote learning strategies that we have already been using so that our students’ educations are not completely halted by this closure. Our teachers and staff will continue to use both online and paper methods to communicate with and teach students.
We will also continue to provide the meal distribution services that so many of our families are relying on through this crisis.
While we are still awaiting further guidance from the Michigan Department of Education, we want to be sure to provide our Eastpointe Community Schools families with as many answers as we can at this point. We know that parents will still have questions. Please know that we are working together to find the answers to those questions as quickly as we can at this unprecedented time.
What does this action mean for Eastpointe Community Schools?
First, it means we are doing our part to slow the spread of COVID-19, which has hit all of metro Detroit especially hard. By staying home, we continue to reduce the risk of exposure across our entire community and help lighten the burden on our community’s health care workers.
Second, the governor’s executive order calls upon all Michigan school districts to provide remote learning opportunities to learners. Here at Eastpointe Community Schools, we have already been providing our students with remote learning opportunities by mailing work home, building online platforms and lessons, and keeping open lines of communication with our students and families. This essential work will continue as we work to provide our students with the educational material they aren’t receiving in a classroom at this time.
How will families without access to technology be able to take part in remote learning?
Eastpointe Community Schools is committed to fairness and equity for every student. We recognize that some families may not have computer or internet access and are providing alternative ways for these students to receive the same information.
Will this at home work be mandatory? How will 3rd and 4th quarter grades be calculated?
Teachers have input third quarter grades for students in K-5 through our last face-to-face day on March 12. Report cards for third quarter will be prepared the week after spring break and mailed home.
Student work completed during the school closure will not negatively impact a student's grades or academic standing.
Will students advance to the next grade?
Students will advance to the next grade in the fall, provided their current teachers believe they were on track to advance before the shutdown occurred and they participate in remote learning. The principal and/or teacher will be make contact with families where students need additional support to advance to the next grade.
Will seniors graduate? Will they still have a graduation ceremony?
Seniors who were on course to graduate will receive their diplomas, provided they have met the requirements. Students who have not met the requirements will be contacted by their guidance counselor and are expected to complete the recommendations to get on track for graduation.
We know that there are traditions important to the senior year and will be working with students and families to provide opportunities that acknowledge their achievements.
What will happen with all of the standardized testing that is typically done in the spring?
This year’s 11th grade students will take the SAT in the fall free of charge to make up for the missed April testing date. The M-STEP has been canceled for this year, thanks to waivers received from the state and federal departments of education. Testing will resume during the 2020-2021 academic year.
Will third graders be required to meet the requirements under the third grade reading law in order to advance to the fourth grade?
No. Due to the extenuating circumstances all our state residents now face, this law cannot be enforced due to the amount of reading instruction our third-grade students will have missed. Therefore, no third-graders will be held back in 2020 based on this statute.
What if my child has an IEP?
The Michigan Department of Education has clearly instructed schools to consider the needs of students with IEPs when providing instructional services. Individualized educational programs must be continued to the extent possible. Our teachers and support staff are working to find ways to continue to provide our special education students with the support they need and the education they deserve.
Will the school year be extended? Will students have to come back in the summer?
The school year will not be extended. At this time, our board-approved district calendar has students returning the week before Labor Day as we have the past few years with a half day on Tuesday, September 1.
Why is all of this necessary?
Each year, the National Center for Education Statistics estimates students in grades 3–8 lose 20 to 50 percent of their learning during summer vacation alone. An extended closure of this nature is unprecedented, and we will not allow our ECS students to lose the great educational growth they have made this year.
Will the district continue to provide meal distributions?
Absolutely. We are committed to continuing to provide our families with this essential service. Please check our Food Services website for updated information about meal distributions.