St. Charles School Board members on Monday unanimously approved revisions to the district’s remote education program that will allow it to offer remote learning this fall in a limited capacity.
In May, the Illinois State Board of Education voted on a resolution that requires all schools to resume in-person learning. The board also decided that remote instruction needs to be made available for students who are not eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine and are under a quarantine order by a local public health department or the Illinois Department of Public Health.
The new school year is set to start Aug. 11. As part of the revisions, School Board members dropped the previous requirement in the program that participation be limited to junior or seniors or those that demonstrate individual educational needs.
In addition, board members decided the policy should expire in June 2022 unless they voted to continue the policy. Mark Moore, the district’s assistant superintendent for leadership and administrative services, made that recommendation.
“We have no time at this point to examine the long term use of a policy like this outside of pandemic mitigation,” Moore said. “So putting an expiration on it in essence forces us to come back with more insight into the policy before it would be used in a future school year.”
For its K-12 remote learning plan, the district is looking to partner with an outside company that would provide both synchronous and asynchronous instruction. Students would be enrolled in four core academic courses and two electives that are aligned with the Illinois learning standards and taught and overseen by certified educators with an Illinois license, according to district officials.
Each course would have one to three live lessons each week. The lessons are also recorded for students to access at a later time.
In addition, students will have on demand access during school hours for extra support and have questions answered by a certified teacher, officials said.