Return Learn Executive Summary DL

Executive Summary



The unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic has affected our community and drastically altered the lives of our students, families, and community. The unexpected closure of our schools in March 2020 has impacted the physical, emotional, social, and educational needs of our students and caused high levels of stress and trauma to them and their families. 

As we plan to Return Together for our 2020-21 Academic Year beginning on September 3, 2020, we recognize that a strong educational program is central to restoring some normalcy for our students and employees, regardless of whether that program takes place in the physical or virtual school space. 

With this plan, we focus on our instructional program, specifically distance learning. At the center of this proposal is the well-being of all of our students and recognition of the need to “make up lost time” to addresss learning loss our students may have experienced during the final months of school in spring 2020 and from the typical summer slide that we expect to be more pronounced when we return in the fall. 


The District’s vision is to rise above and disrupt the current status quo of systemic inequity to meet the academic, social and emotional needs of all our students, especially our most vulnerable students at each school. We remain committed to offer instructional models during this pandemic that serve our students and abide by county public health orders and keep our students and staff healthy and safe. 

Senate Bill 98 

This plan incorporates language and requirements from Senate Bill 98, which enacted changes to Education Code and follows guidance issued by educational leaders at the California Department of Education and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond. Keeping legal requirements, guidance from health and education leaders, and community voice at the forefront, the Return to Learn plan is designed to meet the needs of all Sac City students and work to mitigate learning loss that so many students have experienced during this unprecedented pandemic.

Guiding Principles 

Sac City Unified designed the Return to Learn Academic Plan using six guiding principles*: 

  • Commitment to grade level content and instructional rigor 
  • Focus on the depth of instruction, rather than the pace 
  • Prioritize content and learning 
  • Maintain the inclusion of each and every learner 
  • Identify and address gaps in learning through instruction. Monitor students’ progress on grade level appropriate assessments and adjust supports based on student results. 
  • Focus on the commonalities that students share in this time of crisis, not just on their differences. 

*Council of the Great City Schools

Distance Learning Instruction

With these guiding principles in mind, the District will ensure that every student has access to direct live instruction every day, with the option of participating in recorded instruction later; provide targeted instructional supports for smaller groups of students who are identified as needing additional support; provide high quality instruction aligned to essential standards even during the challenging time this pandemic presents; assessing each and every student, both through thoughtful and understanding instruction, and through common assessments to identify student strengths and needs; conduct professional learning for all staff on delivering high-quality instruction; accountability to meet the needs of our English Learners and students receiving special education supports; provide weekly teacher communication; and provide monitoring and reporting to parents/ guardians on student progress.