EXCEL CHRISTIAN ACADEMY RESPONSE TO COVID-19

Due to continued spikes of positive coronavirus (COVID-19) in our state and in our county and review of CDC and local health news, our Back to School date will August 24.  We will be offering both remote learning as well as on-site options.  Our on-site option continues to be contingent upon local and state governance. 

 

Learning will continues at Excel. Visit our Distance Learning page for important links and resources. 

The health of our Excel community and continuity of learning remain a top priority at the School. We will continue to monitor and plan accordingly with guidance from health authorities. 

FAQS FOR FAMILIES

School Plan

How long will Excel Christian Academy close if necessary?


Please stay tuned to the latest Community Messages section on this page of our website. Be sure to check your emails, this page, or Facebook for updates. You can learn more about COVID-19 preparations, signs and symptoms, and guidance at http://www.fldoe.org/em-response/index.stml.




Does Excel Christian Academy offer distance learning?


Excel Christian Academy does have distance learning platforms, such as Myschoolworx, Google G Suite for Education and other online learning platforms such as Khan Academy, MobyMax, ABCMouse, Writing City and BJU Press Online. Teachers will send details as to their class expectations. Visit our Distance Learning page for links and resources.




If the school must close, will Excel continue to serve school lunch to students?


We will provide this information if the school is required to close. FoodFinder FoodFinder is a national nonprofit with a website, www.foodfinder.us, and mobile app (“FoodFinder – Fighting Hunger”) that shows low-income families when and where to get nutritious free food from their closest food pantry. Organizations that would like to be included as a resource on this platform should also visit www.foodfinder.us.





Distance Learning

Will Excel Christian Academy offer distance learning if school must close?


Yes, is Excel must be closed, the learning will continue. In addition to the hands-on learning activities packets distributed to students in the spring, Excel Christian Academy offered distance learning platforms such as Myschoolworx, Google G Suite for Education and other online learning platforms such as Khan Academy, MobyMax, ABCMouse, Writing City and BJU Press Online. Please stay connected by checking your email, class social media pages, and our website for updates.




How will the School ensure my child is continuing to learn?


Teachers have been working closely with administrators and our technology director to develop lesson plans using online platforms and digital resources to ensure continuity of learning for students. Students will continue to be engaged with their teachers through a range of methods, including video, online discussions, email, and phone communication. Teachers will be available to communicate with students and parents on an ongoing and regular basis during a school closure to ensure that individual student learning needs are being met.




How will my child be graded? Will my child earn credits toward graduation?


All students will continue to earn letter grades for their schoolwork. Teachers will ensure that meaningful learning is taking place and use a range of approaches to assess student learning and determine student grades, which will be entered in report cards. For Upper School students, grades will be recorded on official academic transcripts, adhering to the academic calendar deadlines and schedule.





Student Support

What resources are available to my child if he/she begins to face challenges with learning?


Your child’s teacher is the first resource for your child if he/she faces learning difficulties. Teachers will make themselves available to speak with students and their parents directly as well as provide one-on-one support via Myschoolworx, Edmodo, Google Hangout/Google Meet, Zoom and/or phone. Each division group will select a learning platform that best suits its students' needs. Your teacher will communicate key information concerning their learning platform along with log in details. We also have a learning specialist available who can work with your child one-on-one via Zoom if needed. If your child begins to struggle with learning, please reach out to your child’s teacher and assistant principal/learning specialist so we can put additional support in place.




My child is becoming anxious about the spread of the novel coronavirus. What resources does the school have to support my child?


Excel Christian Academy integrates a comprehensive social-emotional learning program into the curriculum, including the extensive work we have done piloting the Four Pillars of Wellbeing & Choose Love SEL curriculum. The Four Pillars grew out of a research-based curriculum from the Yale Center for Social Emotional Learning. Parents of children who are experiencing heightened anxiety due to the widespread media coverage of COVID-19 should consult with their child’s pediatricians and/or psychologists. Students experiencing acute anxiety will need to seek treatment from outside providers. During a campus closure, parents/guardians should monitor students’ mental health and seek outside support as needed. For parents, remain calm when talking to children and answering their questions. Limit news exposure if it is upsetting. Focus on the Family is a great resource and offers this article on how to talk about COVID-19 with your children. https://www.focusonthefamily.com/parenting/talking-with-kids-about-the-coronavirus/ Another option is The National Association of School Psychologists which has a lengthy list of guidelines and resources for parents to reduce family member’s anxiety.




My child has ADHD, and prolonged screen time can exacerbate the symptoms, making it very challenging for my child to learn. A prolonged school closure will make learning very difficult for my child. What support can the school provide?


We will balance the amount of ‘screen time’ with hands on activities to be sent home with your children. These packets will also be available in administrative offices during office hours. The School’s learning support coordinators can provide additional support for students with ADHD and/or other learning challenges through one-on-one Google Meet sessions and phone check-ins. Not all distance learning is dependent on extended periods of screen time. Students will continue to be assigned work that will need to be completed without screens, including reading, writing, and solving math problems. Teachers will be asked to be mindful of the kinds of assignments they are creating to avoid overdependence on screen use. Please reach out to your child’s teacher if you observe your child having difficulties with increased screen time.





Family Resources

What Wi-Fi/Internet resources are available to my family?


AT&T AT&T is removing usage caps on all accounts and waiving data overage fees, as students and families begin to work from home. Comcast Comcast is offering free Wi-Fi, postponing service cutoff for coronavirus crisis. A map of Xfinity WiFi hotspots is available at www.xfinity.com/wifi. For those with school-age students at home, Comcast created new educational collections for all grade levels in partnership with Common Sense Media. Customers say “education” into their X1 or Flex voice remote to use. Charter/Spectrum Broadband Charter/Spectrum Broadband is offering free Spectrum broadband and Wi-Fi access for 60 days to households with K-12 and/or college students who do not already have a Spectrum broadband subscription at any service level up to 100 Mbps. To enroll, call 1-844-488-8395.




Is there support for families who are feeling anxiety about the COVID-19 crisis?


Florida Blue and New Directions Behavioral Health Florida Blue and New Directions Behavioral Health have teamed up to offer a hotline to help Floridians deal with their anxiety over the COVID-19 crisis. Specially trained behavioral health counselors will answer the phone 24-hours a day and offer assistance in both English and Spanish. To receive assistance, please call 833-848-1762.




Where can I find information about alternative school meals and/or free food resources for my family?


Summer BreakSpot The Florida Department of Education is working with the Florida Department of Agriculture, and together secured the authority to be flexible in the school lunch program. Districts have activated the Summer BreakSpot program to connect families with alternative school meals during the extended break. To access this website, please visit https://summerbreakspot.freshfromflorida.com/. FoodFinder FoodFinder is a national nonprofit with a website, www.foodfinder.us, and mobile app (“FoodFinder – Fighting Hunger”) that shows low-income families when and where to get nutritious free food from their closest food pantry. Organizations that would like to be included as a resource on this platform should also visit www.foodfinder.us.





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6505 Odom Rd.

Lakeland, FL 33809

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Excel admits students of any race, color, religion, and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, sexual orientation, color, religious, national,  and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.