FAIRMONT, W.Va. – The Marion County Board of Education has decided to do a, “blended,” style of teaching for the 2020-2021 school year for K-12 schools.
The decision was made by the board based off of the survey results the sent to every parent in the county. It was a detailed form evaluating what each parent and family felt most comfortable with the return to school. The response showed that the overall desire in Marion County was not one way or the other, but a mix of both.
The blended style schedule will be as follows:
- Monday and Tuesday: Mix of students distant learning, and physically in the classroom.
- Wednesday: ALL students distant learning.
- Thursday and Friday: Mix of students distant learning, and physically in the classroom.
“We’re trying to think about everything ahead of time, but we are pleased that the majority of our community has been very gracious and understanding, because they are in the same situation,” said Superintendent Randy Farley. “They know that things are different for them, and as well as it is different for us. So, we’ll all just try to work hard together, and we’ll get there.”
School officials want to let the community know that distant learning is different from complete remote learning. They will still be able to stay active in the learning process, and with their teachers.
East Fairmont High School Principal Mary Lynn Westfall said that teachers have been working hard all summer to prepare for every style of learning, while simultaneously being able to stay interactive with each and every student as much as they can.
“We’ve communicated with our teachers, and tried to get them to prepare to delivery the instruction at a different manor than what they usually have,” said Westfall. “We’ve really emphasized the need to use all of the time we have, because our time with them is so much smaller than before. We’re going to be at about one third of the face-to-face time that we had with students in the past. So, we’re going to make sure every minute counts that we got them here with us.”
The Marion County Board of Education was also lucky enough to get the opportunity to be a one to one county for the technology. Earlier this year, they ordered enough Chromebook laptops so every student in the county could take one home to use with their distant learning.
Over the summer the board was told the lap tops are on back order, and instead of being delivered on the initial date Monday August 24, they won’t arrive until October.
“You know, this whole process has been full of little glitches here and there, but we have all, as a community, worked so hard together to get through them and we will,” said Farley. “This is just another one of those glitches and when they come we will distribute them.”
Only one third of the students at East Fairmont High School decided to do fully distant learning. The good news is, the Marion County Board of Education is allowing families and parents to reevaluate, and change the way their student is receiving their curriculum if they desire to do so at the semester break.
The second semester in Marion county is planned to start in January. For more information, or if you have any questions, you can reach out to the Marion County Board of Education.