Students & Families » Reopening 2020-21 » FAQ - Tomball Virtual School (TVS)

FAQ - Tomball Virtual School (TVS)

Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - To be considered in attendance, a student will be expected to be engaged daily as evidenced by access to Schoology, daily progress via student-teacher interaction and completion of assignments. In addition, requirements to attend live lessons at specific times will be communicated by individual teachers according to grade level and course. Attendance is required at synchronous instruction times. A schedule will be communicated so that families know what to expect and can plan accordingly in order to meet attendance expectations.
CLUBS & ORGANIZATIONS
Jul 17, 2020 10:22 AM - Students who are enrolled in Tomball Virtual School will not be on campus during the school day. There will be opportunities for them to participate in clubs and organizations before or after school hours but transportation will not be provided. Details about how to elect participation will be made available by individual campuses once we start school.
COMMITMENT FORM
Jul 23, 2020 9:00 AM - Unfortunately no. We realize this is a difficult decision for families, but it is our goal to create the most consistency we possibly can in this situation for our students and teachers. We simply cannot assign teachers, design master schedules, ensure students get the most courses that they can based on course selections, and train staff accordingly without having a commitment for the first grading period. Families who did not submit the form will be automatically assigned to face to face teachers for the first grading period. In addition, changes may be made at the conclusion of the first grading period for families who choose. The second grading period begins October 23rd.
Jul 17, 2020 11:21 AM - Yes, at each marking period, students will be allowed to change their commitment from face to face to virtual or vice versa. We do ask that families make an informed decision and try to commit to the mode that they feel they can stay in for a semester due to scheduling, staffing, and planning purposes, but students will be allowed to change at grading period breaks.
Jul 17, 2020 11:21 AM - You will commit when you complete registration. You do not need to worry about committing at this point. The commitment form is only for currently enrolled TISD students. For more details about Registration: https://www.tomballisd.net/registration/
COURSES
Jul 17, 2020 9:00 PM -
Secondary students (7-12) chose their desired classes for the 20-21 school-year during the course selection process last spring, and Tomball ISD will make every effort to honor those selections. We anticipate to offer as many courses as possible; however, many courses at the secondary level require specialized certifications of staff members and an immense amount of hands-on or practical experience that cannot be offered through a virtual environment.  Students who have chosen courses that are not offered in an online environment will be contacted by their counselor and asked to select alternate courses.
 
Whether in the face to face environment or virtual environment, students are not guaranteed all of the courses that they choose during course selection due to too little enrollment to offer the course or due to schedule conflicts during the day where limited numbers of sections are offered.
 
Please see below for specific grade level course information:
 
PK-6 grades - All courses will be supported virtually
 
Secondary Courses: Grades 7-12 - Any course not noted below will be offered through TVS pending sufficient numbers of students selecting the course to support staffing and resources.  Many secondary student schedules will be individually determined based on course selection, graduation plans, and consultation with the student and parent/guardian. Please see other Course information below:

The following courses will NOT be offered virtually: (***If additional courses are deemed not possible to offer in the virtual environment, the list below will be updated. Please check back for updates. We will continue to provide information that we have as it becomes available.)
Advanced Broadcast Journalism
Debate
Photojournalism
Yearbook
Earth and Space Science
Environmental Systems
Current Events
World Religions
Personal Financial Literacy
 
***All science courses not listed above are able to be offered virtually pending sufficient numbers of students select the course to support staffing and resources; however, there may be a face-to face lab requirement during the week to supplement the virtual instruction. The lab time will be determined by the teacher and could be held after school hours. Transportation will not be provided to on-campus lab activities.

***All CTE courses are not guaranteed to be offered in the virtual environment. Depending on the number of students who sign up for virtual school and their course selections, course determinations will be made. If there is a conflict with a student selection, the counselor will contact you to work through other potential courses. Please note that many CTE courses may require a face-to-face lab requirement during the week to supplement the virtual instruction. The lab time will be determined by the teacher and could be held after school hours. Transportation will not be provided to on-campus lab activities. In addition, some components of courses may limit the availability of the course offering such as Health Science courses that require contact hours in the clinical setting. Due to health restrictions, some or all of these courses could be affected. If this is the case, you will be contacted to work through a schedule solution prior to the start of school.
Jul 17, 2020 9:00 PM - No student is guaranteed the elective course that they select during the course selection process. Schedules are always dependent on course enrollment, staffing, and the master schedule. Many students have to make tough decisions regarding their schedules each year. If students have selected a course that isn’t offered in either environment or one that causes a conflict in their schedules, they will be contacted individually to work through an alternate schedule.
Jul 17, 2020 9:00 PM - No student is guaranteed the elective course that they select during the course selection process. Schedules are always dependent on course enrollment, staffing, and the master schedule. Many students have to make tough decisions regarding their schedules each year. If students have selected a course that isn’t offered in either environment or one that causes a conflict in their schedules, they will be contacted individually to work through an alternate schedule.
Jul 17, 2020 12:00 PM - Yes, those students who indicated through course selection that they were interested in placing into Algebra have been notified and informed about the preparation and online testing window.
CURRICULUM & SCHOOLOGY
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - TVS will have a separate instructional design but will utilize the same curriculum and grading guidelines as face-to-face instruction. TVS assignments may look different but they will cover the same content and skills as on-campus instruction. The rigor and expectations will be consistent and will be aligned to state standards regardless of instructional environment.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Students will generally follow a typical school day in a virtual environment. Depending on the student and his or her grade level, selected coursework and individual needs, the amount of synchronous versus asynchronous time may differ student to student. Students will complete assignments on a daily basis and/or be expected to access the learning management system daily to engage in learning activities and to receive direct instruction from their teachers.

Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - The Tomball Virtual School has numerous differences from Remote learning in the spring. The Tomball Virtual School (TVS) will be more consistent with face to face instruction. Students who receive supplemental services or are in different grades will find that their services are developmentally appropriate.  Key aspects of the Tomball Virtual Academy include: 

  • Students will be expected to follow the full instructional day plan according to the campus bell schedule and expectations of individual teachers.                                                                        
  • Content learning and activities will be planned by the teacher to make sure each student receives appropriate instructional minutes in synchronous or asynchronous learning opportunities.                                                                                
  • A mix of pre-recorded videos and real-time virtual lessons. 
  • The same scope and sequence as students in the classroom                               
  • Increased rigor and accountability
  • Daily expectations for learning and progress, not weekly completion grades
  • Daily engagement with teacher via Schoology
  • Attendance is required 
Jul 30, 2020 8:00 AM - Yes. Our sample virtual schedules are designed around the school day with a mix of synchronous and asynchronous instructional time based on research, state recommendations and guidance, attendance accountability requirements, and our commitment to quality instruction. In addition, the structure of the school day will create the least amount of transition for students when they transition back to face to face instruction. We know that many families may struggle with the synchronous instruction time, and therefore, teachers will provide opportunities for students to engage in the instruction at a different time through recording and posting of lessons or other formats. Each teacher will design the instruction and communicate with students and families about the expectations for instruction. Grading guidelines will be consistent student to student whether the student participates at the scheduled time or a flexible time. We highly encourage engagement according to the teacher’s schedule due to the fact that this will provide the best opportunity for students to learn at the highest levels during this difficult time, but for those that require flexibility, we will provide it through a variety of resources.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - We will have on-line leveled texts that students can access to support reading growth.  Resources will be made available to students where it is deemed appropriate.  Our digital platform has a wide array of applications and options to ensure students have access to textbooks.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Additional learning opportunities will be provided based on teacher recommendation. Virtual teachers can provide enrichment and intervention aligned to face to face systems. Along with our rigorous virtual curriculum, enrichment activities will be available for student access via our new LMS, Schoology.
Jul 17, 2020 11:21 AM - No. The courses are not stand alone online courses that allow students to work at their own pace. The courses are virtual and facilitated and taught by teachers just as face to face. The mode is just different.

Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Students will have both synchronous and asynchronous instruction that include live lessons in addition to pre-recorded lessons. They may receive instruction in the following ways including, but not limited to: 

  • Authentic student work/assignments with timely and relevant feedback
  • Hands-on activities which may need an extra pair of at “home” hands            
  • Instructional activities within Schoology Platform and/or Google Classroom       
  • Portfolio tasks and turning in of assignments                                            
  • Assessments                                                                                                              
  • Video lessons                                                                                                       
  • Project based learning/assignments                                                           
  • Group/partner projects
  • Direct instruction from teacher in group setting through video conferencing


Lessons will be delivered in a variety of formats that could include both components.  Our expectation is that the majority of lessons will be taught in a live virtual setting.

Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Students will have assignments that are due daily and/or weekly at teacher discretion just like the face-to-face classroom. Assignments will be given based on the lesson cycle as well as course requirements.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - There will be a blend of asynchronous and synchronous instruction. Our belief is that optimal learning occurs when students and teachers can engage and share ideas during a live interaction.
 
In PK-2nd grade, the majority of the instruction will be asynchronous placing responsibility on the at home support with weekly check-ins by the virtual teacher. In 3rd-5th grade, a minimum of 180 minutes a day will be synchronous instruction.
 
At the secondary level, up to 70%- 80% of the instruction may be synchronous with some assignments being asynchronous as needed.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Feedback from rubric completion and assessment data will be aligned to the feedback of a face to face environment.  Timeliness of specific feedback will be limited to the learning management system and available hours of the virtual teacher to provide clarification, reteaching and additional support. The grading guidelines will be the same for remote learners and face to face learners.
Jul 23, 2020 3:15 AM - No.  We are anticipating around 3 hours of online work for the children.  Students will spend a mix of time with live direct instruction, watching videos of teachers completing examples, and time for independent work. We plan to record the lessons to accommodate situations where the child was unable to get on-line at the designated time.  Teachers will be available during the day to meet and accommodate your questions and the needs of your child.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Virtual teachers will respond to student questions as they arise. The students are assigned to the virtual teachers just as in a face to face environment. Teachers will continue to provide multiple opportunities for student additional support.  This support could be in the form of additional virtual tutoring blocks and one-to-one instructional opportunities via teacher “office hours” or through a variety of means set by the teacher.
Sept 10 2020 3:10 PM - Staff members completed a Schoology professional learning course upon returning to work in August and Schoology Campus Master Instructors tailored campus professional learning to meet the needs of each campus staff. Student access is directly tied to our master schedule and student information system. We rebuilt our campus master schedules for students based on family instructional environment commitments so that we have students in the best classes possible. Parents received their individualized Schoology Access Code for each child via email prior to the first day of school, and the code can also be found in the Home Access Center. Included in the email were “How To” login instructions for parents and students, which are also located on the Tomball ISD Schoology website along with additional support videos and documents. The first week of instruction will include navigation of the system through teacher instruction and a checklist of Schoology Success Criteria for students to master with teacher assistance. A help desk hotline has been established for parents and students who need assistance with the system.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - The face to face teacher will manage for temporary absence virtually.
EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES
Jul 16, 2020 10:16 AM - Students enrolled in TVS will be able to participate in extracurricular UIL extracurricular activities such as athletics and fine arts, but all participation will be before or after the face to face school day. Tomball Virtual School students will not be allowed to attend courses that are aligned to these UIL extracurricular activities during the school day on campus. The curricular portions of these activities will be delivered in the virtual environment for the corresponding courses that they are enrolled in. For example, if a student plays a sport, they will be assigned work through the virtual environment for their corresponding athletic period, but can participate in practice before or after school. This practice will be consistent across programs such as athletics, fine arts, FFA, and other competitive organizations. Transportation will not be provided for virtual school students participating in extracurricular activities before or after school.
FINE ARTS & P.E.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Students in TVS will be provided activities to participate in PE and Fine Arts opportunities at home.
GRADES & TESTING
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Grading for all Virtual School courses will follow the same grading policy as the courses in the face-to-face model. According to TEA guidance, the grading policies for remote instruction must be consistent with the District’s grading policies for on-campus assignments.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - The District is investigating ways to ensure assessment integrity. We expect students to exhibit academic honesty and we will work toward solutions to ensure this.
MEALS
Aug 28, 2020 1:00 PM -  In order to provide a high quality service and product, TISD has created “Curbside Communities” that will serve our Tomball Virtual School (TVS) students meals on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4-6 p.m. at several different locations. Meals will be provided on the student’s meal status (free, reduced, or paid lunch status) meaning that if a student is a paying student during the normal service, they would be required to pay for our curbside service.  If students normally receive a free lunch, their meal would be free.  If meals are normally at a reduced price, students would still be required to pay the reduced fee. 
 
For more information on what Curbside Community your child's campus is assigned to, visit our Child Nutrition webpage.
SAMPLE SCHEDULES
 
All posted schedules are SAMPLE schedules only. The schedules are designed using TEA's instructional guidance on instructional minutes and are aligned to our TISD daily schedules.
SCHOOL SUPPLIES
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Students will need computer and internet access. In addition, supplies may need to be purchased based on course and grade level.
SPECIAL EDUCATION
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Students in Special Education accessing TVS will require a remote learning plan.  A remote learning plan can be created as an ARD amendment.  Most students in Tomball ISD received an ARD amendment describing a remote learning plan in the 2020 spring semester.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Most IEPs are designed for in-class direct instruction.  The district will make every effort to provide full IEP services, however, some accommodations, modifications and services cannot be delivered in a remote environment.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Yes, immediate informal feedback is limited in a remote environment.  Special and general education teachers will not have the ability to provide immediate correction, clarification and explanations that many students need in order to access the curriculum.  Students who require physical prompting or assistance to complete learning tasks will not experience the same level of support from a teacher in a remote environment.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - If your decision to opt for your child to attend TVS is based on your child’s disability related needs, an ARD committee will be held to consider homebound eligibility. For eligible students, homebound services could include in person instruction in the home combined with instruction through TVS.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Yes. Speech and language services can be delivered through a tele-practice model in a remote environment.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Paper-packets and other accessible materials (i.e., braille) will be distributed as needed, on an individual basis, based on ARD committee decisions.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Teachers will receive training on how to use curriculum access tools such as text-to-speech and speech-to-text to increase curriculum accessibility in a remote environment.  Training will also include what type of assessments can be implemented in a virtual model to measure IEP progress. Documentation of IEP implementation will be required during remote instruction, but the method will differ from in-class direct instruction.
SPECIAL PROGRAMS
Jul 17, 2020 12:00 PM - Yes, students will be screened for GT. Processes are being designed to complete testing and families will be notified regarding next steps.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Students who are guaranteed related services English as a Second Language, Bilingual Education, GT, etc. and choose Tomball Virtual School will be provided their support and services to ensure we meet the needs of students virtually. Every attempt will be made to replicate services for students with the understanding that some services may not be feasible in a virtual setting.  TISD will actively communicate with parents the options available in a remote setting.
STUDENT SUPPORT
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - The district will provide programmatic options for our dyslexic students to access at home aligned to their needs.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - As Social Emotional Learning has been a key focus in Tomball ISD for several years, we will continue to make SEL a priority for students in all grade levels virtually as well as face to face.
TEACHERS & HOME CAMPUS
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Yes, each student will continue to be connected to their home campus. Parents will continue to receive communication from the campus and will be invited to engage in various virtual activities throughout the year as feasible. Of note, if a Virtual School student switches to face-to-face, they may not have the same teachers, as teachers may or may not be teaching both an online and in-person class.
Jul 13, 2020 11:30 AM - Virtual courses will be taught by certified teachers. Your student’s teacher may or may not be from your student’s home campus. The district will use student enrollment numbers to help guide staffing and meet the needs of the community.  This may include teachers from other campuses as part of a student’s schedule.
TECHNOLOGY
  Chrome OS™ 64
·        Intel® Celeron® processor
·        4 GB memory; 32 GB eMMC storage
·        11.6" diagonal HD touch display
·        Intel® HD Graphics 500