Frequently Asked Questions 2nd Quarter
Phoenix Union Releases Plans for Second Quarter, Expansion of Student Services & Activities
These FAQs are intended to provide you with current information regarding PXU’s plans for the second quarter and the expansion of student services and activities.
Q1: If I’m coaching or doing performing arts, will I need to begin to teach from my classroom?
A1: If athletics, arts, academics, or activities resume, and you oversee, coach, supervise or teach those courses, you will be asked to meet in person during on-site activities in which students participate.
Q2: The September 14th press release says, “We will launch PXU Remote Learning 2.0, as we will make several changes and improvements to our current model and begin to phase in more on-campus student opportunities, activities, and support.” What does that mean?
A2: If the metrics are acceptable for the opportunity to provide on-site learning opportunities, programs like CTE, Visual/Performing Arts and others, we will be able to have on-site lab/class experiences to reinforce the continued virtual learning. This will include schedules and guidelines to maintain safe distancing and cleanliness requirements.
Q3: The press release says, “We will make improvements to our student and family outreach efforts.” What does this mean?
A3: See below
- Campus Community Liaisons are staying connected to students and families with regular and proactive check-in calls to our most vulnerable populations. We will expand these efforts to ensure each student is connected to a Caring Adult for ongoing support (ESED 2.0 launch).
- As referrals increase for supporting basic needs, the Falcon Family and Community Resource Center have increased inventory and supplies to ensure every student and family in need of food, toiletries, school supplies, general household items, and clothing is scheduled for distribution to allow students and families to visit the resource center and/or delivery will be made to families without access to transportation.
- Virtual Parent Workshops will begin 2nd quarter on various topics to build skills, knowledge, and capacity.
- With the launch of our Participatory Budgeting, a separate process for students and the process for parents/guardians will provide for opportunities for each stakeholder to deeply engage with their school community and district leadership to help reimagine school safety. Students and Parents/Guardians will help define school safety, determine strategies to improve school culture and climate and identify solutions based on needs and interests.
- The Participatory Budgeting process will build community amongst and between stakeholder groups by inspiring students and families to engage in their school community more deeply and intentionally.
Q4: The press release says, “We will expand food services.” How will this happen?
A4: Food Services will expand to service all students participating in “in-person” learning that occurs throughout the school day with both breakfast and lunch. Additionally, Food Services has already expanded to serve breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks, seven days a week, to all children 18 years of age and younger (up to 21 with exceptional needs). This will continue through curbside pick-up on Mondays and Thursdays.
Q5: The press release says, “We will launch comprehensive college and career counseling services.” How and/or what will this entail?
A5: PXU, in conjunction with higher ed and community-based organizations, is here to support families with resources, workshops and one-on-one assistance through the college exploration and application process. Although things have changed around us, the one thing that hasn't changed is the importance of college. Additional information and resources can be found on the PXU Prepare for Your Future website.
Virtual College Workshops offered Summer 2020
• ACT Test Prep
• Personal Essay Writing for Scholarships and Admissions
• Personal Essay Writing for Out of State Applications
• PXU Launch to In-State Colleges
• PXU Launch to Out-of-State Colleges
• Liftoff to College Application Workshop
• Be A Leader Senior Boot Camp
• College Depot Workshops in English and Spanish
• The Immigrant Scholarship Hustle (ISH)
Virtual PXU College Application Workshops in the Month of September: Counselors, college representatives, and community partners are helping guide participants through the application process.
• Maricopa Mondays
• ASU Sun Devil Tuesdays
• UA Wildcat Wednesdays
• NAU Lumberjack Thursdays
• Out of State Fridays
Financial Aid & FSAID Workshops in the Month of September and October: Hosted by College Depot
• Learn about the Financial Aid Process
• Determine what financial information you will need including “Who’s My Parent” on FAFSA
• Create an FSAID
FAFSA Support in the Month of October
• Sign up for Benji by text 602-786-8171 (This is not an app, no download required!)
- Benji is available 24 hours in any language
• Call 1-833-AZFAFSA (English) or 1-833-MIFAFSA (Spanish) – Monday-Friday, from 8-5 p.m.
• Attend a Virtual PXU FAFSA Workshop
- Monday - Friday, October 1 - 30, from 3-5 p.m. Use this zoom link.
- Get Individual FAFSA Help by Appointment – Complete this form.
Highly Selective Colleges and Universities beginning Wednesdays in the Month of October: Learn about the admissions process, programs, financial aid and more.
PXU is dedicated to the continuing professional development of its staff including counselors and college mentors. We have been very busy using this time to grow, develop, and support staff working with families.
Q6: The press release says, “We will improve interventions for freshmen.” How and/or what will happen?
A6: With Freshman House Coordinators on the majority of our comprehensive campuses and in collaboration with Stand for Children/Center for High School Success, PXU is dedicated to the success of our freshmen students. Coordinators are closely monitoring freshmen grades and working with freshmen teacher teams to identify students who are struggling and connect them with the necessary supports (teachers, counselors, social workers, coaches, etc.). We are utilizing data to reinforce social/emotional, behavioral, attendance, and academic needs. PXU continues to strive to have 100% of our freshmen students connected to a sport, club, or activity. Additionally, PXU will provide increased opportunities for students to work in-person with their teachers for tutoring, as well as, opportunities for hands-on learning in many of their classes.
Q7: The press release says, “We will continue to strengthen our virtual social and emotional supports. How will this work?
A7: During Quarter 1, we’ve diligently tracked the social, emotional, and mental health trends and needs of our students and discovered a vast struggle among students with grief/loss, suicidal ideations, and family struggles at home. As a result, in Quarter 2, we’ll focus specific efforts on providing targeted supports in the area of grief and loss; providing one-on-one grief counseling, support groups, coping strategies instruction. Additionally, we’re looking to support a suicide prevention effort by providing prevention workshops for students and staff to better understand how to navigate signs and symptoms of suicide. To continue to have a firm grasp on the needs of our students, we plan to facilitate quarterly SEL needs assessments to identify gaps and provide immediate and necessary supports to ensure students are successful in the virtual setting.
Q8: The press release says, “Phoenix Union is committed to increasing on-site services throughout the quarter in order to meet the needs of our students and families. What does this mean?
A8: Not only will specific courses have the opportunity to bring a safe number of students on site to supplement hands-on learning, ACT testing, and other required placement assessments have begun and will increase as the metrics allow.
Q9: The press release says, “. . . we will be able to resume some arts, athletics and other activities in October. We will soon release guidelines for the safe return of the arts and other important student engagement opportunities, such as clubs and CTE programming.” How?
A9: CTE programs and performing arts courses that have performances and competitions as part of their curriculum will be able to offer in-person experiences using a coordinated and safe rotation schedule in order to maintain safety for students and staff.
Q10: What changes are being made to the Bell Schedule?
A10: The new bell schedule is being sent to all staff on September 28, 2020.
Q11: What if a school provides on-site experiences and someone who has been on-site tests positive for COVID-19?
A11: When a student is reported to have a positive test, this information will be reported to the District lead nurse (usually by Maricopa County Department of Public Health) and the identified administrator at the District Office. The protocol for contact tracing will be implemented and families with potential exposure will be notified, asked to quarantine, and be provided information where they can get tested.
Q12: The press release says, “In order to reopen schools for learning, Phoenix Union needs to move from substantial spread (red) to moderate spread (yellow), and then from moderate to minimal spread (green).” What data will be used to determine?
A12: Maricopa County updates its information weekly. PXU reviews the data looking at zip codes where our students reside and also zip codes they travel to for school attendance. The two metrics are compared to ensure data falls within the benchmarks established by the county and state departments of health.
Q13: How do you know Phoenix Union will not reach minimal spread (green) in time to launch in-person learning in October?
A13: PXU prioritizes the health and safety of our students, staff, and community. From the beginning of school closures (Spring 2020), we have not wavered from this decision. For the 2020-2021 school year, we stated we would commit to a quarter-by-quarter decision about a return to school for in-person learning. We want our families to be able to plan appropriately for school and work commitments and will communicate well in advance any decisions about either a continued expansion of in-person opportunities or a full return to in-person learning. Although our data is trending in the right direction at this time, many of the zip codes where our students live continue to be in red or yellow and do not meet the criteria established for a full return to learning.
Q14: How do I find more information about LOA or FFCRA?
A14: Please visit PXU Return to Work for details about LOA and FFCRA paperwork. The information is located on the left side of the page and is labeled “Return To Work FAQ” and “Families First Coronavirus Response Act FAQ”.
Please visit our website, www.PXU.org for future updates.
For more knowledge about the coronavirus / COVID-19, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).