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More Than Half Of District Students Opt For Remote Learning

More than 55 percent of Claremont Road Elementary School’s students will learn remotely once the hybrid plan is put into effect on November 30. (File photo).

More than half of the district’s students will be learning from home when schools open for hybrid in-person learning on November 30.

As of November 24, 3,758 students, about 55 percent of the district’s 6,831 enrolled students, have opted for the fully remote plan, according to district spokeswoman Mary Clark.

More than half of the students in all but two district schools – Hillcrest and Pine Grove Manor – have opted for fully remote learning, Clark said.

The number of students opting for the fully remote plan increased by 1,152 from August, when the district announced it would delay opening schools for its hybrid program from September until the end of November. The reason for the delay was district administrators’ fear of the prospect of having more than 125 of the district’s roughly 800 certificated teachers not show up in the classrooms on a daily basis this Fall.

The only students who have been learning in schools since October are the special needs students and those who need special therapies, about 173 students in total. There are also about 20 Road to Success students at the high school.

According to Clark, this is the number of students and percentage of the student population, by school, who had requested fully remote learning as of November 23:

  • Claremont Elementary School: 366 = about  57 percent
  • Conerly Road School: 191 = about 55 percent
  • Elizabeth Avenue School: 256  = about 50 percent
  • Franklin Park School: 384 = about 59 percent
  • Hillcrest School: 195 = about 44 percent
  • MacAfee Road School: 202 = about 56 percent
  • Pine Grove Manor School: 161 = about 44 percent
  • Franklin Middle School – Hamilton Street campus: 354 = about 54 percent
  • Franklin Middle School – Sampson G. Smith campus: 446 = about 58 percent
  • Franklin High School: 1,203 = About 56 percent.

District students have the choice of either the fully remote option or the hybrid option of attending school this year.

Under the hybrid plan, students are divided into two groups, the blue and the gold groups. One group meets Mondays through Thursdays in school, while the other group learns remotely during that time.

The following week, the group that was learning remotely will be in school buildings Mondays through Thursdays, while the other group will learn remotely.

All students learn remotely on Fridays, which gives teachers time for class preparation and in-service training, and allows for deep disinfecting of school buildings.

Under the fully remote plan, students attend class virtually, mostly at the same time, and interact with their teachers and each other.

Schools will be running on minimum session schedules.

Clark said in an email that the remote option – called the FRPO – has evolved from being mainly asynchronous, meaning students completed assignments on their own with guidance and follow-up from teachers, to “much more synchronous, students will interact with their teacher and fellow students virtually for a portion of the day, discussing the same lesson.”

“This virtual interaction with other students will include other FRPO students, hybrid program students who are learning remotely that week and the hybrid students present in the school buildings,” she wrote.

There have been 18 reported cases of coronavirus infections among students, staff and outside vendors working in the schools as of November 20.

The breakdown of coronavirus infections by school is:

  • Claremont: 2
  • Franklin Park: 2
  • MacAfee: 3
  • Franklin High School: 8
  • Central Administration: 2
  • Outside Vendor: 1

The district has begun an ongoing coronavirus testing program for students and staff.

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