Update From Principal Fairly: New Camera Policy for Distance Learning

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Happy New Year, Everyone!

At Tech, our desire is to provide a distance learning program that is equitable for all students. We have three specific outcomes that we would like to achieve:

  • Every student experiences a positive social-emotional connection with the teacher and other students and shows appreciation and respect for other students and their unique living situations during the pandemic.
  • Every student participates in academic conversations and instructional activities to the fullest extent possible, including interpersonal communication, collaboration, and demonstration of skills.
  • Students whose unique living situations make it inappropriate to have cameras on for long periods have alternative ways to earn full credit in the class.

To this end, we are implementing a policy that states our expectation about how students use their cameras during Zoom and Meet classes.


Policy Title: Zoom Cameras On During Distance Learning

Every student is expected to have their camera on during live instruction on Zoom or Google Meet. Teachers have discretion to allow students to leave their cameras off after verifying the student’s identity for attendance.

Students with cameras off for part of the period are still required to complete the assignments for the class. Students who complete the required work will not be given a penalty for not having the camera on.

Every student is required to use a clear and accurate picture of themselves for the Zoom of Google Meet profile, with their first and last name(s).

The attendance code for a student that the teacher verifies will be “E” (engaged) for that class, even if the student later turns off the camera.

Some classes by their nature involve physical actions and skills that the teacher observes. If the student’s living situation makes it inappropriate to have the camera on during a class of this type, the teacher will form a plan with the student and parents/caregivers by which the student can continue to earn full credit. This plan will be kept with the student’s assignments. When the student is fulfilling the plan, no penalty will be given to the student for not having the camera on.

Examples of acceptable reasons for a student to participate in a Zoom class with their camera off: poor bandwidth, zoom fatigue, or not wanting to share their current environment.

Examples of ways that a student will continue to participate in a Zoom class with their camera off: listen and speak using the speaker and microphone, use the Chat box to enter contributions to the discussion, submit classwork through Google Classroom.

The school will continue to develop ways to support students as they gain confidence in participating in class with cameras on.


Students’ grade level Assistant Principal can respond to questions about this policy:

9th Grade: Mr. Price, martel.price@ousd.org

10th Grade: Ms. Ousley, cheryl.ousley@ousd.org

11th Grade: Ms. Calzaretta, elisabeth.calzaretta@ousd.org

12th Grade: Mr. Campisi, russell.campisi@ousd.org

Mr. Fairly, Principal

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OUSD prohibits unlawful discrimination (such as discriminatory harassment, intimidation, or bullying) against any student, employee, or other person participating in district programs and activities, including, but not limited to, those programs or activities funded directly by or that receive or benefit from any state financial assistance, based on the person's actual or perceived characteristics of race or ethnicity, color, ancestry, nationality, national origin, ethnic group identification, age, religion, marital, pregnancy, or parental status, physical or mental disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, or genetic information, or any other characteristic identified in Education Code 200 or 220, Government Code 11135, or Penal Code 422.55 or equity or compliance with Title IX, or based on his/her association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics (5 CCR 4610). BOARD POLICY 0410. BOARD POLICY 1312.3. BOARD POLICY 4030. BOARD POLICY 5143.3. BOARD POLICY 5145.7. Complaint forms are available at school sites, on the district webpage at www.ousd.org/ombudsperson, at the Office of the Ombudsperson located at 1000 Broadway, 1st Floor, Suite 150, Oakland, CA 94607, or via telephone 510-879-4281.

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