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COVID-19: Will Hybrid Education Be New Normal For School Districts, Colleges?

Could hybrid learning be the new normal after the COVID-19 outbreak?
Could hybrid learning be the new normal after the COVID-19 outbreak? Photo Credit: Pixabay

Some colleges and schools are making plans to adopt a hybrid education model that involves a combination of in-class and distance learning methods amid the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

When the outbreak arrived in mid-March, most schools at all levels were forced to concentrate their focus on remotely educating students for the remainder of the academic year.

As students, parents, and educators begin planning for the fall semester, many will be using lessons learned during the pandemic to form the hybrid model.

Under hybrid learning plans, students will have the option to take any course, or portions of courses, online or in-person, with the exception of courses that have been pre-designated as distance learning classes.

According to a survey from the Chronicle of Higher Education, 73 percent of those polled are planning in-person instruction this fall. Fifteen percent are waiting to decide what to do, while 5 percent are considering a range of scenarios or proposing a hybrid model.

States in the Northeast have been working with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to develop a plan for a hybrid approach for K-12 students. 

“This is tough saying we won’t have traditional learning from now to the end of June, but we are going to be leaders when it comes to nontraditional learning right now," Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont said earlier this year regarding the future of education in the region. "And I’m not quite sure how long online learning and Zoom learning is going to be nontraditional. My instinct is it’s going to be part of a hybrid plan going forward

“To the parents and kids out there, think of this as a new way to learn and this is not a lost opportunity,” he continued. “It’s a new opportunity. We are going to make sure this summer and this fall you are learning at your very best.”

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