La Porte schools to incorporate eLearning days and days off in response to virus threat

 

La Porte Community School Corporation Superintendent Mark Francisconi  today released a written statement to the public, advising that La Porte schools will be changing its instructional calendar for the next three weeks.

Leading up to spring break (April 6-13, 2020), La Porte’s instructional weeks will consist of three eLearning days and two off-days. 

Specifically, the schedule for the next three weeks will be as follows:

Monday and Tuesday, March 16 and 17: no school

Wednesday through Friday, March 18-20: eLearning Day

Monday through Wednesday, March 23-25: eLearning Day

Thursday and Friday, March 26 and 27: no school

Monday through Wednesday, March 30, 31 and April 1: eLearning Day

Thursday and Friday, April 2-3: no school

Monday, April 6 through Monday, April 13 – spring break

April 14 – to be announced   

In addition, all student activities are postponed indefinitely.

The changes, Francesconi said, were made “considering the safety of our students and staff, and obligation we have to deter the spread of the Coronavirus.” County superintendents met Friday morning to discuss Gov. Eric Holcomb’s announcement “that schools would be held harmless for twenty of the 180 required instructional days.” Because of that flexibility, Francesconi said,  La Porte schools are able to make changes to the school calendar.

The two off-days per week will count toward the 20 instructional days waived by the governor, Francesconi said.

“During this period of time, LPCSC administration will be meeting with and monitoring information from public health officials regarding the spread of the virus. Considering this information, La Porte County superintendents will meet to determine the schedule of instruction for the period beginning, April 14, 2020,” Francesconi said.

He encouraged parents to visit the LPCSC website (www.lpcsc.k12.in.us) for educational information regarding the virus. “Information from public health officials will help parents make decisions as to what is safe for their child and what is not, including whether or not to keep spring break plans which may have called for national or international travel.”

He concluded: “Lastly, I want to say that we should all be proud of our county officials who are working together to educate our citizens regarding the Coronavirus and model a sense of strength during a time of unprecedented challenges. Thanks to all of you for the patience and support you have shown and your understanding of the number of issues at hand. The journey continues and we will be keeping you informed of our next leg as determinations are made regarding the remainder of the school year.”

8 Responses to “La Porte schools to incorporate eLearning days and days off in response to virus threat”

  1. lawman

    Mar 13. 2020

    not sure how eLearning works. are there tests to turn in? is it just a month of if you don’t log on (or can’t)??

    Reply to this comment
  2. Chris Smith

    Mar 14. 2020

    Hi Lawman: Allow me to explain. For quite a while, all Indiana K-12 schools, including La Porte, have been doing e-learning as part of the normal school day. And, for several years now, all La Porte students have been using a personal Chromebook at school. The students can simply bring home their Chromebook if they need a home PC. As teachers, we use several apps with which we can post assignments, exams, readings, audio recordings, videos, photos and more – – anything that can be saved on a computer. We can have discussions and answer questions on-line. We can even record videos of ourselves, similar to YouTube. Thus, our students can seamlessly work from home. It’s not 100% the same as a live classroom, but our students and teachers are comfortable with it and it gets the job done.

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  3. Chris Smith

    Mar 14. 2020

    P.S. If students do not log in and do their assignments, they are marked absent.

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  4. John

    Mar 14. 2020

    I am very sorry to see this panic-stricken step taken. This is just an excuse for the kids to run amok and do absolutely nothing for school. This is also extremely disruptive to many parents, who work all day and may have no child care options to take. How unfortunate and stupid to do this. The appropriate response is NOT to jerk your head in like a turtle and avoid everyone.

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  5. Deb

    Mar 14. 2020

    What about children who don’t have a computer ? Not all families have one .

    Reply to this comment
  6. lawman

    Mar 14. 2020

    thank you Chris. I was wondering if there was a way to monitor this and put some teeth into it and it appears that there is. I have seen some results of total ”homeschooling ” and am not overly impressed.

    Reply to this comment
    • Chris Smith

      Mar 14. 2020

      Hi Again Lawman! As educators, my wife and I home schooled all four of our kids. All are successful adults, three are educators and our youngest just finished his master’s degree. So, I can attest that home schooling can be successful if done properly. I know of many local kids who did very well after home schooling and went on to graduate from major universities. But, with one in seven Indiana children being home schooled, the schooling is not always well done.

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  7. lawman

    Mar 14. 2020

    chris-you have the credentials to make this work. I think there should be a higher standard on who can ”homeschool” Failures are devastating to us all . thanks for all you informed insight on this.

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