Updated: September 14, 2020 07:34 AM
Created: September 14, 2020 05:18 AM
ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — While many other districts are working with a hybrid learning model for back to school, Rochester City School District says it was just too risky and they will be starting school completely virtually on Monday.
Originally, the district was going to go through with a hybrid model but last month Superintendent Dr. Lesli Myers-Small decided to go 100% remote for the first 10 weeks of the school year.
Dr. Myers-Small says every child in the district will have a laptop and access to "MiFi."
The district already has a schedule for online learning. It shows that every morning, except on Wednesdays, there is a 15-minute block for teachers to check on the social and emotional state of their kids.
“We’ve retitled this ‘Remote Learning 2.0’ in the Rochester City School District and we worked very collaboratively with the RTA, the Rochester Teacher’s Association, to develop a set start time and end time for students," Dr. Myers-Small said. "We have both synchronous, which means real time, and asynchronous, which means you do that on your own time, learning.”
According to RCSD teacher Kristen French, they are rolling out a lot of new curriculum online which will be a new challenge when it comes to teaching remotely.
“There's going to be lots of kinks to work out and the only way we're going to really be able to get through this is together and really we need to remind ourselves that we need to keep this all student-centered and really focus on building connections with our students and families,” French said. “There's no other way to do it."
According to the superintendent, the district has partnered with lots of organizations to provide additional resources during their asynchronous learning time.
R-center learning labs are being set up at all nine city recreational centers. These are safe places kids can come, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Kids in grades k-6 will have access to computers, WiFi and they'll be fed three times a day.
“The staff who are going to be here are simply going to help with any kids who need help with navigating the online experience, with navigating their assignments in their online learning platforms, and any way we provide homework help we normally would do during the year,” Commissioner of the Department of Recreation Youth Services Daniele Lyman-Torres said.
According to the commissioner, students will do their schoolwork until noon and then spend the rest of their time with recreational activities.
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