Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) is launching Microsoft Teams this week to aid students and parents with distance learning. This is the second part of a distance-learning plan implemented by CCPS to ensure students are learning during the school closure. Starting Wednesday, April 15 teachers will begin to use Teams, a collaborative learning tool that features a classroom set up in Microsoft Office 365.
Teachers can use Microsoft Teams to talk with students, share assignments and feedback, provide help and respond to questions. Starting next week, teachers will provide two 30-minute lessons in Teams for students twice a week. Lessons will provide direct instruction on content in the elementary packets and Apex Learning courses. Teachers will be available on the Teams platform during their designated office hours. Lessons provided, including video content, presentations, question and answer sessions, and assignment updates are posted in Teams. Students and parents can access Teams at any time and are not required to login or be online in the Teams platform during teacher office hours.
Teams lessons also will include content for special area and elective courses, such as fine and performing arts classes, Advanced Placement (AP), physical education, elementary art, music and science, and career and technical (CTE) courses. Lessons in these areas will focus on fourth-quarter curriculum. AP lessons will include exam preparation for students.
Elementary school students will be assigned to a Teams classroom with their grade-level teacher. Special area teachers will also have Teams classrooms, but the schedule may rotate by grade-level or class. Principals will provide parents with more information about special area Teams schedules through weekly email newsletters. Middle and high school students will be assigned to a Teams classroom according to their school schedule.
Students with IEPs will continue to receive updates from case managers about using Goalbook to provide additional instruction. Students in the three-year-old program will continue with packet work; Three’s program teachers will not use the Teams platform. Students who receive English as a Second Language (ESOL) services can continue to use provided packets.
Office hours for teachers are: elementary school teachers, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.; middle school teachers, Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.; and high school teachers, Monday through Friday, 1 to 4 p.m.
Parents and students received user guides through StudentVue and ParentVue accounts. The guide is also posted on the CCPS website at ccboe.com. Teachers will create introductory Teams lessons and share with parents and students sometime this week. Teams lesson content are complementary to the elementary learning packets and Apex online content (and secondary paper packets).
To access Teams, students must first log into their CCPS Office 365 account at https://login.microsoftonline.com/. Office 365 also is linked to the main CCPS website, under the photo slideshow. A student’s user name is their student identification number followed by @ccboe.com. For example, email@example.com. A student’s password is the same for StudentVue or what they use to access computers at their home schools. Office 365 is accessible from a laptop, mobile device or tablet.
Students without technology or internet
Families who do not have technology at home can request to borrow a laptop from CCPS for their child. Requests should be submitted through Ask CCPS on the CCPS website through the Request a Laptop section. Staff are compiling requests and answering as received. Families who do not have internet access can visit one of the four CCPS provided hotspots to access free internet. Information about the hotspots is posted at https://www.ccboe.com/pr/ccpsatt-providing-temporary-cellular-hotspots/.
The launch of Teams is to provide students and parents with guidance on distance learning instructional materials. Students without access to technology or a device can continue to work with the paper packets. Copies of all paper materials should be saved.