Learning at Home

Tips and tricks from Elyria City School District

Dear families...

Happy holidays!

We're thinking of you -- and missing you immensely -- during this period of learning from home.

Those of us at school are fish out of water without the usual hustle and bustle of the students, especially during the holiday season.

While we miss their daily comings and goings, we are grateful for the wonders of technology and the ability to connect with students each day online.

We also take comfort in knowing these circumstances are only temporary, and we hope you do, too.

You will recall, we were compelled to switch to an all-virtual attendance model earlier this month due to a swell of staff absences and a shortage of substitutes.

The virtual model makes it possible for staff to work remotely so that teaching and learning can continue uninterrupted.

The current plan calls for virtual learning to continue through first semester, which ends Jan. 22, 2021.

The surge of positive COVID-19 cases in Lorain County has triggered a purple level, the most severe of warnings on the state risk-level chart.

While the county is at a purple level, the district's plan calls for virtual learning. (The only exception is for students who are receiving pre-arranged special services in person.)

If the number of cases diminishes and the county moves out of the purple risk level -- and if the district's staffing issues resolve -- we will return to in-person learning second semester, which begins Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021.

Clearly there is still a lot up in the air but if it's feasible to do so, the district's plan is to return in January with a four-day-a-week attendance model: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday.

Wednesdays would still be reserved for learning at home and for virtual office hours with the teachers.

The four-day plan, if put into action, would impact all students who opt for the in-person model in preschool through grade 12.

Please note: While it is our intention to return to in-person learning second semester and with a four-day attendance plan, we must be cognizant of conditions surrounding COVID-19 and keep options open for the possibility of returning in the same two-day-split-cohort model that was in place prior to going all virtual earlier this month.

We will be able to firm up second-semester plans in January and we will communicate those to parents at that time.

Families who wish to continue learning remotely can still do so through the district's already established Virtual Academy.

As we move forward in planning for second semester, we are asking parents to complete a short online survey indicating their preference for in-person or virtual learning.

Parents only need to complete the form if their student will change their current attendance plan from Virtual Academy to hybrid or hybrid to Virtual Academy.

The survey may be completed by following this link (in Spanish). Submissions are due on Dec. 21, 2020.

As always, we appreciate the many ways you are fostering learning at home. Please stay connected with us and reach out if there is anything we can do to help while we are learning remotely together.

Please email mailto:ask@elyriaschools.org or connect directly with your students' teachers and principals by emailing their last name first name at elyria schools dot org (for example, higginsamy@elyriaschools.org.)

Thank you and warmest wishes for a joyful holiday season.

Amy Higgins

Communications Director