Learning and Teaching

Just as I wear a mask to protect you, and you wear a mask to protect me, remember that the decisions you make impact others’ children, and the decisions others make will impact your children.”

Last Updated July 28, 2020. This reflects our best thinking up to this point and we are constantly working on it. Updates will be shared here and via newsletter.


Early Childhood Division (Preschool - Grade 1)

In the Early Childhood Division (preschool-grade 1), we are currently planning to provide on-campus, in person learning five days per week, provided that local government and public health orders allow it. Our approach will include: 

  • Stable and self-contained cohorts informed by local government and health department guidance (Department of Social Services for Preschool and SFDPH for K-1) in order to limit discrete exposures and minimize risk where possible.
  • Students remaining in the same classroom everyday with teachers traveling to the students. 
  • Scheduling ample time for daily outdoor activity. 
  • Curriculum and instruction informed by assessment and observation that meets children where they are academically, socially, and emotionally. 
  • Partnership with families to support children’s success at home and in school through the transition into school and beyond. 
  • Prioritizing building strong relationships between and among teachers and students. 
  • Staggered morning drop-off and afternoon pick-up times to allow a risk-mitigated process.
  • Offering a virtual option every day for students to learn and stay connected if there are factors that prevent a child from being able to attend school on campus on a given day.
  • Sincere attempts to work in tandem with Lower School and Middle School models, to support our many families with siblings within and across the divisions.

Details of ECD plans for on-campus and distance learning models.


Lower School Division (Grades 2-5)

In the Lower School Division (grades 2-5), we will host students on campus for the greatest amount of time possible in person with instructors. In the event that students spend time engaged in distance learning, it will be driven by public health, space, and staffing factors.

  • Organizing students into stable and self-contained cohorts, informed by local government and health department guidance, in order to limit discrete exposures and minimize risk where possible. 
  • Providing students a homebase classroom for the day while on-campus, and prioritizing teachers coming to the students, rather than students traveling to additional spaces. 
  • Curriculum and instruction informed by assessment and observation that meets children where they are academically, socially, and emotionally.
  • A balance of Chinese and English learning.
  • Planning for staggered morning drop-off and afternoon pick-up times, to allow a risk-mitigated process for bringing shifting cohorts of CAIS and French American students and employees on campus each day.
  • Providing time in cohorts for breaks and outdoor play every day.
  • Offering an online place every day for students to learn if there are factors that prevent a child from being able to attend school on campus on a given day.
  • Continuing to preserve important time in the work day for teacher collaboration, continuing professional development, technology training, etc.
  • Making sincere attempts to work in tandem with Early Childhood Division and Middle School models to support our many families with siblings across the divisions.

Details of Lower School plans for on-campus, distance learning, and hybrid models.


Middle School Division (Grades 6-8)

In the Middle School division (grades 6-8) our objective is to allow for the greatest time possible on campus for students in view of public health guidance, staffing, and classroom space.

  • To reduce the possibility of exposure, students will be divided into cohorts that will spend the day together. 
  • Cohorts will remain in the same classrooms while on campus and will not interact with students from other groups.
  • There will be supervised activity breaks so students enjoy important outdoor time each day they are on campus.
  • Curriculum and instruction will be informed by assessment and observation that meets children where they are academically, socially, and emotionally 
  • We are researching technologies that will allow students who cannot for a variety of reasons attend on campus classes to attend their cohort’s classes by video.
  • Sincere attempts to work in tandem with the Lower School model, to support our many families with siblings across the divisions.

Details of Middle School plans for on-campus, distance learning, and hybrid models.


Questions? Contact Pandemic Response Coordinator Adam Ross