School Update From Our Principal

Dear Virtual and Academy Prep Students & Families,

You have received emails from Dr. Vierra, following Governor Gavin Newsom’s and LA County officials’ announcement Thursday of a new public health order for people to stay home to increase social distancing, Los Angeles County Superintendent of Schools Debra Duardo announced she has extended her recommendation to close all schools in Los Angeles County with students returning on Tuesday, May 5, 2020 to limit the community spread of COVID-19.   

We wanted to reach out and explain what this means for you, our students and families. This may be lengthy, but it includes much of the information our students and families need to know. 

School Closure - School is closed to the public, and dark to non-essential staff until May 5th or other information is provided which would require an adjustment to any dates. This also means school is "closed" for students until May 5th. Beginning April 2nd, we will be on Distance Learning until May 5th. See information below regarding what Distance Learning means for your student.

 Food Service - The Antelope Valley Union High School District will continue serving our families meals from 10:30am-12:30pm, Monday – Friday at our High School Campuses. Many other schools within the valley are providing meals as well. Make sure your student has school identification if you would like to take advantage of these services.

 Distance Learning Particulars - We will try to be as detailed as possible, with more information to follow as it comes. 

·  Students will receive work in week cycles, beginning on April 2nd. The work cycles will be:  April 2-10, April 13-17, April 20-24, April 27-May 1, and May 4-5. Students will complete work each week as assigned by their teachers. 

·  Teachers will use a student management system to assign, collect, and support students. Most teachers will use Google Classroom or Canvas. Some will use pre-existing systems such as Moodle, APEX, or other systems. 

·  Students should expect approximately 2 hours of work per week per course. Students will have the entire week to complete each course's coursework. 

·  If students do not have connectivity, please communicate this with your teachers and site administration. We will work to accommodate your child’s educational needs.

·  Each teacher will establish "office hours" where students can connect with their teachers. This will be done on Google Meet (a very easy platform that allows students to connect via webcam or to call in) or other methods deemed appropriate by the teacher. Teachers will monitor emails and will be able to take calls. More information regarding office hours to follow as we get set up. 

Obviously, this information is just the beginning of the planning and implementation of distance learning. As a parent or student, what I would begin to do as a habit is to check your email daily and for students to check their teacher's Google Classroom daily.

Chromebook/Technology Needs - Each of our middle school students has a Chromebook checked out to them and while our virtual students were offered one during enrollment. If your student needs to check out a Chromebook, we will be establishing a protocol for distributing those next week. We will likely coordinate Chromebook checkouts “drive-thru” style.  If you experience technology complications, we will work to provide assistance the best we can. More information to come soon.


I'd like to now take the time to answer frequently asked questions by students and parents. 


What will happen to my 3rd quarter grades?   Grades are locked in as of March 13th for 3rd quarter. If you were going to turn in work and haven't been able to do so, simply contact your teacher. If you can do so digitally, do so. If not, make individual arrangements with your teacher via email.   

I am not sure if my teacher uses Google Class or any other online system, what will I do?  Your teacher WILL be using a student management system if they are not doing so already. Keep checking your student email for more info.  

I have an IEP, how will I be supported?  More information to follow, but you will be supported as best as we can. Your unique needs will be addressed individually. Feel free to email your case carrier if you have additional questions and they will work to provide additional assistance needed. 

How will attendance be taken?  For students, just take care of your school work and attendance will take care of itself. We will use a system similar to summer school. Just stay on top of your weekly work and your attendance will be validated.  

What should I do now to prepare?  s we make our way to April 2nd and distance learning, I would say begin by setting up a work space for you to complete work at home. Prepare a nice space where you have computer access and can do work with limited distractions. Get in the habit of checking student email regularly. Research Google Meet, a platform many teachers will use. If your teacher uses a student management system such as Google Class or Moodle, check it daily beginning April 1st.

What about AP testing? (High School Students only)  College Board reported that they are not canceling AP testing. Visit the College Board website for information (we will provide info at a later time). College Board has thought outside-the-box and will do remote testing. I can't stress this enough. If you paid and committed to taking an AP test, TAKE THE TEST. If you don't take the test, you won't be eligible for any modifications or waivers they provide. More information will come as we get closer to test administration.

What about graduation/promotion?  I can't stress this enough... WE DO NOT WANT TO CANCEL anything, let alone graduation/promotion. I want to assure you we are doing EVERYTHING in our power to keep these events. People are working very hard behind the scenes to work this out for our students. The cancellation of this event may still be necessary due to circumstances beyond our control. We will keep you posted with any new information.

I have a question, but do not know who to ask?  Please email your students teacher, counselor, or any administrator if you have a question and do not know who to ask. We will forward your email to the correct person or we will answer you ourselves. Please email me at if you have a question and do not know who to ask. I will forward your email to the correct person or will answer myself.


Ok, take a deep breath....This is a lot of information to digest. We will communicate with you, students and families as often as we can. We cannot stress enough that our staff is here for you as we transition to distance learning. As a nation, we did not choose this and we may not be happy with this... but it is here. We as a staff will do everything in our power to give your student the best possible learning experience in these unique times. With that said, we need your support to get through this. We care about your student and we want to make sure they are supported. We ask you for your continued support and ask that we do this together. Thank you students and families. 


Thank you for your time and we look forward to navigating this new experience with you.


Matthew Berryman

Principal – Academies of the Antelope Valley