MACON COUNTY, Ala. (WSFA) - On Monday, Alabama public schools will resume with alternate methods of education. That means that students will finish up the school year from home. In Macon County, school officials are ready for the challenge.
“Macon County has an academic continuity plan, as does every one of our public school systems in the state of Alabama," said Macon County Schools Superintendent Dr. Jaqueline Brooks. “And our plan is a blended method that allows us to deliver distance learning through the internet and WiFi connectivity, or through cellular data with a cell phone or through alternative packets that we can deliver via a device or print a hard copy.”
Many Macon County students live in rural areas and will depend on paper packets, luckily the school system has a delivery plan in place.
“We have a system that will run simultaneously with our meal delivery system where we have school buses going out to feeding sites that we have set up around the county in our rural areas and that we will be able to make our packet run and pick up along with our meal,” Brooks said.
Parents will have to be more hands-on with the education process, but communication with teachers remains open.
“All of our teachers have set up digital communication tools, the Zoom free conference call, remind class dojo, and they are reaching out to parents. We have made a timeline of delivering our instruction to students starting Monday, April 6, and on Wednesday, April 8, will be our first check-in and at that time teachers will interview any family to find out if they’re having difficulty and what the needs may be,” said Brooks. “Depending on how families respond to those questions, then we will decide if any other alternative means are needed to support those families.”
Brooks said that this is a new learning experience that requires all hands on deck.
“This process is going to involve the entire family. It’s going to involve schools, and teachers, and staff reaching out in ways we’ve never reached out before. Very frequently, each of our teachers will have two daily office hours with a published number where parents can contact and call in. We also have a Macon tech helpline where parents will be able to call in as well as an email address where parents will be able to email," said Brooks. “So we’ve tried to put out a number of communication tools that will be shared with parents starting this coming Monday, so that we can all stay connected and have the best possible outcome for students that we can create under these conditions.”
The alternate education methods are effective April 6. The school year will end on June 5.