CHICAGO (CBS) — As a result of the novel coronavirus outbreak, Indiana students will learn remotely for the remainder of the school year, state education Supt. Jennifer McCormick announced Thursday.
McCormick acknowledged the transition will not be easy with some students lacking internet access or for families with a limited number of computers. “It is tricky,” she said. “There are families with three kids doing e-learning, and parents are working at home, with one computer.” She also said some students will need paper packets. A limited number of districts do not have any remote learning plan and remain closed. She also said a lot of equipment needed to run digital learning plans is on backorder.
“I do not want to diminish the hardship” this is causing for parents, she said. In conjunction with today’s decision, the Indiana High School Athletic Association officially canceled all spring sports and tournaments.
Schools had been closed through May 1 due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Today’s decision extends that though the end of the school year. Schools will still have to submit a remote learning plan to the state to get credit for school days. The order applies to K through 12. Most schools in Northwest Indiana are in session through the end of May.
Michigan today also announced a similar measure. Illinois’ schools remain closed due to the “stay at home” order which is in effect until May 1.
For high schoolers, credits for 8 through 11 grades will be up to local school districts to decide. For seniors, they will receive credit for this semester’s courses since 75 percent of the school year was completed. McCormick said graduation will be up to local districts and she said schools are getting creative and looking at options. She indicated the ceremonies will look different. She also said summer school “may look different,” but did not say whether remote learning would continue or whether classrooms would reopen.