Update on the 2020/2021 School Year

Posted August 12, 2020

Picture of Principal Dominique Jefferson

Dear Hallett Families,

We are living in unprecedented times; I am grateful for your flexibility and patience as we navigate this new normal, together. I know it has been difficult and frustrating managing so much uncertainty concerning the start of the new school year. Our Hallett Team is working hard to prepare for an incredible year despite our current reality.

As you may know, because of the increase of Covid-19 cases in Colorado, Denver Public Schools will not be starting the school year in person on August 17th as originally planned.  Our school year will now begin remotely (online) on Monday, August 24th.

You will receive information from us in the near future as we prepare ourselves and our classrooms for our new realities. We remain hopeful to begin in-person learning in some capacity in September. Please continue to stay healthy and safe so that we can do just that.

Beginning Monday, July 27th, EVERY FAMILY in DPS will need to complete the Annual Family Updateonline. This is where you will update  your information  and choose how your child will be learning this year. Your options will be “In-Person” or “Virtual”. Once you decide, you are committing to this choice through December 2020.  (If you need to create a Parent Portal account, click HERE ) Please take our brief survey to let us know if you’ll need help with this.

Some important information about the ” Virtual Learning ” option can be found HERE and some highlights are below:

  • An extension of your school community: Virtual program students will be assigned to a fully online program. In some cases, virtual program students will be assigned to a class with a DPS teacher from a different school in their community, based on class sizes and staffing availability. Current DPS teachers with experience in the content areas that they are teaching your student will be dedicated full-time to students in the virtual program. These teachers will receive additional training and support on delivering a virtual education program.
  • Virtual program classes: As much as possible, virtual program teachers will try to make their classes just like in-person learning. Most classes will be held live — meaning that there will be dedicated times for students to engage directly with their teachers and classmates. DPS curriculum experts are building coursework that is culturally relevant for our diverse Denver community.
  • Virtual program student services: If your student is on an individualized education program (IEP) or 504 Plan, your school team will work with you on whether and how your student’s services can be provided in the virtual environment. Students in the virtual program who are English Language Learners will continue to receive support services. Virtual program students will also continue to have access to their school’s social-emotional health resources, such as psychologists, social workers, counselors, or other support staff, who can provide social-emotional support, as we know that many students will need support for their mental health and well-being during this time.
  • Virtual program commitment: K-12th grade families who opt into the virtual program commit to a full-time, online program from Aug. 24 through December 31. Students will not lose their spot in their school while attending the fully virtual program.

Please note: the virtual program is not available for preschool students for the fall semester.

Virtual program improvements:

  • Strengthening teacher-student relationships through live daily instruction that requires less at-home adult assistance.
  • Supporting families with consistent expectations for attendance, instruction, and grading across grade levels and schools.
  • Simplifying technology for students and families by using consistent learning management systems — Seesaw for K-5th grades and Schoology for 6-12th grades.
  • Ensure we are reaching all students by closing the gaps in internet and device access, providing tech support opportunities and tutorials in multiple languages.
  • Ensuring students continue to receive special education services outlined by their Individual Education Program (IEP) during remote learning. School teams and parents will collaboratively develop plans to ensure that the student receives a Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE).

For those wishing to select ” In-Person Learning “, the year will have three learning scenarios:

  • Remote – School buildings will not be open. Learning takes place through a completely online model.
  • Hybrid – School buildings will be open with reduced class sizes on an AA/BB schedule, with an additional in-person day for students with disabilities and students in the early stages of learning English. Siblings will be assigned the same schedule. The hybrid scenario would not apply to students in the virtual program.
  • In-person – School buildings will be open. All students will return to school for in-person learning, except those who are in the virtual program.

(For a complete description of DPS’s remote learning plans, click HERE .)

In summary, you will be asked to select from the following:

  • Virtual Learning (100% online, even if/when schools resume in-person; District led, but they will try to place you with a teacher from Hallett or with a group in the nearby community. Note: there is no guarantee your child will have a teacher from Hallett)


  • In-Person Learning (may be a hybrid of both remote and in-person learning when available)

Once you make a choice, you are committing to this choice through December 2020.

We know this information can be overwhelming, frustrating and disheartening ; out of an abundance of precaution and for the health and safety of everyone in our community, these are our options today .   We are committed to doing all we can to supportyour child ’s success no matter what learning option you choose. Our Hallett Hawks will soar!

For those of you wondering about Discovery Link, we have been informed that our program remains for the 2020-2021 school year.  Once we have more specific information, we will share that with all of you.

At this time, it is most important that you complete your Annual Family Update when you have a chance (starting Monday, July 27th). Please make a Learning program selection in the Annual Family Update by August 7th so we can best plan for the year. We understand some of you may need help with the online registration/forms, so we ask that you take two minutes to complete this brief survey .

Quick Registration Survey

Continued health, safety and wellness to you all.

With love,

Dominique Jefferson