Today, Governor JB Pritzker announced that Illinois will continue its suspension of in-person instruction for another 30 days, through April 30. Governor Pritzker addressed students directly today, saying:
“I won’t try and tell you that texting and calling each other is the same as hanging out in the hallways or in the lunchroom. And I won’t try and tell you that a Zoom prom is the same as a real prom. I won’t try and tell you not to be sad about the lost goals and plans that you may have had for March and April. It’s okay to be sad. And if you do feel sad or frustrated or angry, whatever you feel, please let yourself feel that way. Don’t beat yourself up over being human. And if you’re experiencing overwhelming anxiety or you have a friend who is, and you need someone to talk to, there are resources available to you by phone and online through both ISBE and our Department of Human Services, as well as the city of Chicago.”
The Governor went on to encourage students to find ways to be of service in this crisis, as so many of our educators and administrators are modeling for them. I second the Governor in saying that while we are in the midst of a scary and uncertain time, we are also experiencing “a lesson in the fundamental goodness of people.”
As the Governor announced today, schools are now transitioning from Act of God Days to Remote Learning Days. All these days count toward the school year, and absolutely no days need to be made up. E-Learning Day Plan to ensure all students, including students with disabilities and English Learners, receive instruction and can communicate with their teachers. Remote learning will look different for every district and every school. You can use up to five Remote Learning Planning Days at any time to prepare and refine your approaches to remote learning.
We expect your plans to be tailored to your own districts, but please include a check-in or some method of accurately tracking “attendance.” This data will help teachers gauge which students may need additional outreach or support to engage in learning. Building in flexibility and inclusivity (rather than hard and fast times and deadlines) could encourage student participation.
Leyden High School SD 212, as well as all Leyden and Norwood Park Townships school districts will be promulgating Remote E-Learning Day Plans tailored specifically for each school district in the next several days.
School districts are considering whether in school education will reconvene before the end of academic year as well as considering mandatory summer school for this summer.