MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Alabama is now the fourth state to close all public K-12 school classrooms for the remainder of the school year in an effort to stop the spread of the coronavirus. State Superintendent of Education Dr. Eric Mackey says that schools will be focusing on critical learning standards.
“We do have some communities that are going to go to more digital, kind of online learning. We do know that most students in our state don’t have the capacity to do that at home mostly because of lack of high-speed internet access at home, so for the for those, for the most part, they’re gonna have paper packets that will go back and forth between home and the school," said Mackey. "We are telling teachers, principals, and superintendents to really focus on what we are calling the critical learning standards. The key things that they need to know from one grade to the next grade.”
Montgomery Public Schools students can expect a combination of education methods.
“We know that some of our homes will not have the devices. So we’re looking at ways to get lessons to them if even if they don’t have a device," said MPS Superintendent Dr. Ann Roy Moore.
She said they are considering paper packets for students without access to online learning.
"The pickup of those packets, the return of those packets. That’s where we have to be careful with the distancing piece,” Moore said.
Opelika City Schools faculty and staff spent several hours on Friday handing out Chromebooks to parents in hopes that it’ll help their children continue to receive an education.
“We identified critical content several weeks ago and brought in our instructional staff to identify content delivery methods,” said Opelika City Schools Superintendent Mark Neighbors. “We’re delivering over 1,000 Chromebooks to folks who need some assistance with that, and we work with local industry on providing some internet access. Our local broadband Point Broadband is going to put out some information about services for our students."
The alternate education methods are effective April 6. The school year will end on June 5.