Dear Two Rivers Families,

Next week’s spring break would traditionally be a week for Two Rivers students and staff to take a

break from school by spending time with family, traveling, or engaging in additional enrichment

activities. We realize this year’s break will be different, and likely falls at a time when many of you are

already feeling overwhelmed from balancing work, childcare, family health, financial stress, and more.

Our hope, and our advice to staff, is that the break will provide relief from school work and offer some

opportunity to recharge and tend to the many other things on your plate. As in the past, Two Rivers

staff and students will not be expected to work over spring break.

We’re also using spring break as a checkpoint to think about how our students and families are doing

after nearly a month of distance learning. Since we first started, we’ve made adjustments to class

schedules, streamlined resources for classrooms and families online at , and implemented new security measures to

protect students while learning online. Please be sure to see our latest guidance and information about

Zoom and Go Guardian attached to this letter. To help us gather further family feedback, please

take five minutes to complete this survey at by Sunday, April

19th . We appreciate your input and will use the results to inform planning as we continue to navigate

this challenge.

While Mayor Bowser has not officially extended school closure, she has publicly acknowledged that we

will not go back to school on April 27th as originally anticipated. The mayor recently submitted

legislation to the D.C. Council that extends the public health emergency in the District until June 8th,

2020, but emphasized that it is still possible that schools will reopen in advance of that date. Her team

has committed to giving us at least two weeks of notice prior to reopening schools. While we await

further guidance, the Two Rivers leadership team is engaged in planning for several scenarios, ranging

from reopening in May to reopening next school year. We will keep our families updated as planning


In the meantime, we hope you are able to find some relief during spring break, and look forward to

resuming our distance learning with renewed energy on Monday, April 20th.

With gratitude,

Aurora Steinle, Chief of Staff

Gail Williams, Director of Operations

Jeff Heyck-Williams, Director of Curriculum and Instruction

Jessica K. Wodatch, Executive Director

Kenneth McCants-Pearsall, Chief Academic Officer

Khizer Husain, Director of External Relations

Guidance for Families on Distance Learning Safety & Security

Zoom & Go Guardian Teacher Update

What our schools are doing to manage behavior and protect safety while using Zoom for

distance learning:

We are addressing the concerns around the digital safety of Zoom by working closely with Zoom

representatives and applying security features to all meetings. Specifically, all of our Zoom links have an

embedded password. Moving forward, we are going to require students or family members to enter that

password before entering the Zoom meetings. Those passwords will be shared by your child’s teacher.

In addition, we have implemented the use of Zoom waiting rooms. This allows the teacher to accept or

reject anyone trying to enter the meeting. Related to this, one helpful tactic is to change the name on

your Zoom settings to the student’s name before entering a meeting so teachers are able to recognize

the students as they enter. Both of these measures help to ensure that people not invited to a Zoom

meeting are not able to get into the meeting. Finally, you’ll find that in some cases teachers are disabling

the chat function and/or placing all students on mute where appropriate to support a safe and

productive use of group time.

We’ve also added a program called “Go Guardian Teacher.” Go Guardian Teacher is a classroom

management tool that allows teachers to monitor online student activities during class. Teachers use

the tool to instruct class while students are online and to make sure students stay on task during class.

While logged in, Go Guardian also monitors student web searches and flags for the teacher any

inappropriate searches that are attempted.

What we need from families:

We need the partnership of our families to help reinforce digitally responsible behavior from students.

These unprecedented times serve as an opportunity to teach students the importance and skills of being

a digital citizen. Please additionally refer to your Two Rivers Student and Family Handbook regarding

the uses and consequences for abuses of technology.

To support the use of Go Guardian, we also need families to use Google Chrome and ensure students

log into their Two Rivers accounts. Families using personal machines should log in through Gmail.

Teacher monitoring only occurs through the student’s email and will not continue to monitor other

uses of the device when the student is not logged in.

A note about recording Zoom calls…

We record our Zoom calls and make them available for other students that may not be able to sign on

to access the content of live lessons. If any family does not want their child video-recorded, they are

responsible for making sure their video is turned off during live Zoom lessons