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Huh? Remote Education Programs Ending, But Will Still Be An Option For Students

Back to school
Back to school Photo Credit: Image by Rudolf Hein from Pixabay

Even though Massachusetts plans this April to end remote and hybrid learning programs created during the pandemic, learning this way will still be an option for students.

Families will have the choice to keep their children in hybrid or remote-learning programs or enter their currently in-classroom learners in a remote program.

However, the programs are likely to be different than what is being offered now.

On Tuesday, March 9, Massachusetts Education Commissioner Jeffrey C. Riley said that hybrid and remote-learning models will no longer count toward meeting the required student learning time hours starting on Monday, April 5, for elementary school students, and Wednesday, April 28 for middle schoolers. A return date for high school students is yet to be set.

For many districts, Riley said, this will be a “substantial programming shift mid-school year.”

“Families should expect that districts may need to make challenging tradeoffs to accommodate the full in-person instructional mode,” Riley said in a public memo about the new deadlines.

For instance, he said:

  • Students currently learning in a hybrid model may shift to more in-person classroom days and the classroom learning space may have to be altered to accommodate more children.
  • In some cases, student-teacher assignments may change.
  • If students are in a remote learning model right now or choose to enter one in April, the remote learning option may look different than the model offered prior to the back-to-school deadlines.
  • Schools are being encouraged to use “live streaming” or simultaneous instruction for remote students.
  • Keeping the remote school option available is meant to allow children who need to quarantine for 14 days to continue with their classwork.

For more information about the transition and deadlines, visit doe.gov.

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