Wednesday, Feb. 20 was an e-learning day for students in a number of area school districts.

With school closed for the day, those districts that called for an e-learning day have put in place a plan which allows for learning to take place outside of the classroom and in the homes of students.

The concept of e-learning is new for most districts, but the growing number of school closings related to the winter weather created a need for a solution that provides for education to continue even if it is not taking place in the most ideal of circumstances. 

The Redwood Area School District began its e-learning program effective as of Feb. 18. Based on the plan the school district has implemented, even though school has been announced as closed the decision to hold an e-learning day will be considered the equivalent of a school day.

What that means is the day will count for school attendance, and students who choose not to participate will receive an unexcused absence.

Under the plan, assignments or activities for each class will be listed on each teacher’s Web site by 10 a.m. the day that school has been closed, and teachers will be available from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. to answer questions students or parents may have.

According to Bob Tews, Cedar Mountain School superintendent, the decision to move forward with e-learning has been made, but the plan itself is a work in progress.

Wade McKittrick, Wabasso Public School superintendent, said the school has utilized the e-learning concept already this year and said the feedback they have been receiving so far has been positive.

According to McKittrick, “while an e-day will never replace the classroom experience completely, our teachers have done a great job of creating learning experiences that are meaningful and on track with course objectives. These days have been an excellent alternative for our district.”

Learn more on each school district Web site.

– Photo courtesy of the U.S. Department of Education Web site