Families with school-age children are debating whether or not to send their students back to the classroom. The Anoka-Hennepin School District would like parents to share their intentions for fall by next week. The options before parents right now are to choose between a hybrid learning scenario - where children attend in-person school two days a week and do distance learning at home 3 days a week - or keep their kids home full time for distance learning.
Anoka-Hennepin released a 20-page "Return to School Roadmap" this week, which provides some idea of what the hybrid and distance learning models could look like. All Anoka-Hennepin Schools will divide students into two groups based on their address. Group A will attend school in-person on Tuesday & Wednesday ONLY, while Group B attends on Thursday and Friday. Mondays will be virtual learning days for everyone, as teachers provide support and prepare online learning materials for the rest of week. This hybrid model will allow schools to stay at 50% capacity, which limits in-person group sizes and makes social distancing more attainable.
Every student will have a device this year. Either their own or one provided by the school. On the days students are learning at home, elementary classes have a structured schedule made up of a a mix of live or pre-recorded instruction, paired with online activities under the guidance of a teacher.
Lessons will look more like a regular class day for middle and high school students. Each distance learning day, teachers will begin the lesson via live stream addressing both the students in the classroom and those at home. And attendance is required at the designated class time. But middle and high school students also have the option to choose a completely virtual learning experience this year, StepAhead Online High School, which allows them to log in and complete work at their own pace and on their own schedule.
Anoka Hennepin Schools want families to complete a survey by August 10 to share whether they want to choose full-time distance learning or the hybrid model. To help families make their decision, the district has answers to dozens of frequently asked questions on their website. You can find them at ahschools.us/covid-19. Anoka-Hennepin has been updating this website several times a day with the latest answers as they become available.