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Area teachers adjust to online learning

Several schools are back in session, but online.
Olathe Public Schools
Posted at 5:20 PM, Mar 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-30 18:20:41-04

KANSAS --  — Several schools in the Kansas City metro, from Olathe to Lawrence, are back in session – but all are operating online.

"This week, it is honestly about setting systems in place that parents can manage and figure out what the technology is," said Joshua Stock, a sixth-grade teacher at Santa Fe Trail Middle School in Olathe.

Districts in Kansas are relying on technology to bring the classroom to students – technology that Dr. Anthony Lewis, Lawrence School District superintendent, said his district already uses.

"We are using platforms that we were already using. Google Classroom, some were using Google Hangouts and some are using Zoom," Lewis said. "We redesigned school in a couple of days. This just speaks volumes of the amazing staff that we have in this district."

One problem teachers tackled was how to make the transition easy for parents.

"We wanted to streamline that [learning] to one site,” Stock said. “Because not only are you having some kids that have multiple teachers, but if you not only have multiple children, we wanted it to be all under platform for parents to go, to students to go to, teachers to go to.”

Kansas City, Kansas, Public Schools start online learning next Monday, and they are taking advice from other districts on how to make school at home a success.

"I was just talking to a co-worker in Price Chopper yesterday, and I was like, ‘So tell me what your kids are doing, tell me what kind of platform you are using. Are you giving it to them in days increments or weekly?’" said Canise Salinas, New Chelsea Elementary School principal in KCKPS.

She said one piece of advice districts are giving is that less is more – and to tell parents, “Don't worry, we are all in this together.”

"Take it slow, have fun with your kids,” Salinas said. “Don't allow this to be the end all, be all. Be flexible with what you see and what comes out.”