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Grades 4 - 12 Synchronous Learning – Virtual Learning

Virtual synchronous learning is defined as two-way, realtime, live, instruction between teachers and students, through the computer or other electronic devices. Students enrolled in the RISD virtual learning program will be assigned a virtual class schedule and must be available for live, synchronous instruction during each school day.


Students will be asked to log in and join the teacher via an online Zoom meeting daily for each class period or subject in elementary school. The teacher will take attendance for each of the scheduled online sessions and attendance will be recorded in RISD’s student information system (Focus).

Parents will receive normal absence notifications via Blackboard Connect each day. If the student is absent due to an illness, the parent must email the school front office and virtual school teacher with the reason for absence, including if the illness includes COVID-19 symptoms.

It is important that students understand that the virtual school attendance is based on daily engagement, not solely the completion of assignments. State law and RISD policy require students to attend at least 90 percent of their classes or calendar days to receive credit and be promoted. Virtual attendance will count in the same manner as on-campus attendance in satisfying this requirement.

Daily Expectations

Teachers will structure the instructional day to ensure the number of instructional minutes for face-to-face instruction in each subject area are similar in the virtual schedule.

Daily synchronous assignments are to be completed independently (parent support and coaching encouraged). Assignments and activities may include:

  • Students attend class on time, per their daily class schedule.
  • Students will follow the RISD dress code.
  • Students should be ready to engage and learn following the daily schedule.
  • Students should have a designated, distraction-free workspace to engage in learning.
  • Students will show their face on the screen to engage with the teacher virtually.
  • Students will participate in the class activities, discussions and assignments.
  • Students will use a variety of technology resources in their daily activities and independent practice including, but not limited to, iXL math and reading.

Suggested Schedule for Grades 4-6

Students in grades 4, 5 and 6 will follow a daily class schedule similar to what the student would experience in face-to-face learning. The schedule below is a sample and each student will receive their final virtual schedule prior to the start of virtual school on Aug. 19.

Sample Schedule for Grades 4-6

TimeMonday/Tuesday, Thursday/Friday
7:50 a.m. - 8:15 a.m.• Welcome
• Morning review
• Team-building
8:15 a.m. - 9:35 a.m.Language Arts
9:45 a.m. - 10:05 a.m.Guidance/SEL Lesson
10:05 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.Brain break and restroom break
10:15 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.Recess/Physical activity
10:45 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.Math
11:45 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.Lunch
12:15 p.m. - 12:35 p.m.Independent reading
12:35 p.m. - 1:20 p.m.Specials
1:20 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.Science
2:00 p.m. - 2:10 p.m.Brain break
2:10 p.m. - 2:50 p.m.Social Studies
2:50 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.End of day reflection
Optional On-Campus Experience:
  • Tuesday – Intervention/Enrichment
  • Thursday – Specials
7:50 a.m. - 8:10 a.m.Morning Activity
8:15 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.• Language Arts
• IXL Practice
• Teacher Small Groups
10:00 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.Brain Break
10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.• Math
• IXL Practice
• Teacher Small Groups
11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.Lunch and Recess
12:30 p.m. - 1:15 p.m.Science/Social Studies Practice
1:20 p.m. - 1:35 p.m.Classroom Zoom Team-building
2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.Optional On-Campus Support:
• 4-5th library, guidance groups or tech help
• 6th orchestra/band/choir
Other students will have independent practice,
research or exploration time.

Specials for Grades 4-6

Visual Arts, PE and Music 4-6

Elementary specials teachers will provide virtual homeroom teachers with weekly activities for students to complete. These activities could be live teacher facilitated experiences, pre-recorded lessons to view or teacher guided experiences. These activities will be designed to mirror the face-to-face learning objectives but designed to support learning at home.

Each campus will provide weekly optional on-campus experiences for virtual students. These activities will follow all RISD health and safety guidelines. Experiences will include opportunities for virtual students to connect with peers and teachers on campus and enrich their specials learning opportunities. All on-campus experiences are optional.

Library 4-6

  • The campus librarian and information technology educator (LITE), will provide read alouds appropriate to the grade level for the homeroom teacher to read.
  • The LITE will provide live online reading sessions to support students reading at home.
  • The campus LITE will ensure all virtual students know how to access learning databases and other technology resources.
  • The LITE will provide pre-recorded digital literacy lessons for students to complete to understand navigating their digital environment.

Each campus will provide a weekly opportunity for virtual students to access the library and check out books to support student’s independent reading.

Virtual Learning Design for Grades 7-12

Students in grades 7 through 12 will follow the schedule of classes at the student’s home campus. RISD will structure the student’s learning schedule to require students to participate in synchronous learning. Teachers will structure the instructional day to follow their campus bell schedule. Please see face-to-face schedules for new junior high school and high school block schedules. Within each course and subject, teachers will plan for students to participate in synchronous learning experiences coupled with independent activities and practice.

  • All core classes (math, science, ELA and social studies) will be offered in both settings, including advanced level courses such as Pre-AP, AP and On Ramps
  • Some elective courses for students who select RISD virtual school may not be available due to on-campus requirements or incompatibility of the requirements of the course to the virtual environment. The course catalog for virtual school will be posted on this website.
  • Students in grades 7 through 12 choosing RISD virtual school will be able to participate in on-campus classes for extracurricular activities (in accordance with UIL requirements). Limited RISD transportation will be provided to practice and class. In order for students to compete or perform with an extracurricular group, students must attend practice on a regular basis. If a student chooses not to attend in-person practice, the student may still be on the team but may not be eligible to participate in games or performances. Each coach, director and sponsor will review requirements with students and families enrolled in virtual school.