eLearning and Service Delivery in a Time of Social DistancingPosted on May 29, 2020 4:57:08 PM
In dealing with the COVID-19 crisis, schools have been forced to deliver their services in a whole new way. In this rapidly evolving environment, this has ranged from ensuring that students have breakfast and lunch through food distribution, that they have laptops and lessons for eLearning, and that their families are aware of important communications.
Equally as critical has been ensuring that students receive essential services and supports, so they have equal access to an education during this time of eLearning. Students receive a variety of services in the traditional school setting, including medication, counseling, psychologist services, paraprofessional support, nurse services, and more.
As we reflect on what we've learned during the past 90 days and prepare for the 2020-21 school year, below is a list of questions districts may want to consider:
How will the district's guidance counselors, social workers, and psychologists provide services to students who may still be remote?
Which students with IEPs need continuing education services delivered in an alternative format? Has our method of delivery thus far been effective? In what way(s), if any, might we consider altering them?
Do specific students need physical therapy, speech therapy, and/or occupational therapy? In the event of an eLearning period extension, how will those services continue to be delivered?
During this stressful time, what is the social emotional impact on students, and how can we continue to support social emotional learning (SEL) in a remote setting?
Who are my English Learners, and what additional supports do they need to continue their learning and progress? Has what we have provided over the past 90 days been effective? In what way(s), if any, might we consider altering this?
If eLearning is further extended, how will we ensure that laptops remain operational? How will we facilitate their replacement or repair?
How many students with targeted services have completed their eLearning for the day? How will we assess their progress, both now and if eLearning is extended?
Many of our clients have been using non-traditional means, such as virtual chats and meetings, to support the delivery of services. Recently, we had two districts share their use of 5Lab dashboards to assist in monitoring the progress of their students and service delivery.
One district is coordinating with their high school's department chairpersons to view grades in progress through their grade distribution dashboard. This dashboard provides a view of student performance in all classes, by teacher, to assist in tracking grade movement and ensure all students progress in their education.
Another district is tracking guidance counselor appointments via 5Lab. This district visualizes student visits to the guidance "office," and has the ability to view the number of guidance counselor meetings taking place, including logged virtual meetings, to ensure that students still receive necessary academic and/or social emotional counseling services, despite not having a traditional meeting format with a student in the counselor's office.
A tremendous amount of innovation is taking place in education, thanks to the creativity shown by staff and students as they adapt to the evolving COVID-19 environment. While this moment in time is certainly testing our traditional methods of operating, educators from across the country are acquiring new tools in their toolbox, and many of these tools will enhance the delivery of future educational services.
To learn more about what the "return to learn" landscape is likely to hold for district leaders, and how to ensure your district is prepared, reach out to your 5Lab Advisor or schedule a personal demonstration with a member of our team.
Dr. Adam Cibulka is the Senior Manager for 5Lab with Forecast5 Analytics in Naperville. Prior to joining the Forecast5 team, Adam served in public education as a teacher, department head, assistant principal, and district level administrator. Most recently, Dr. Cibulka was the Director of Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment at DuPage High School District 88, located in Addison, Illinois, where he was responsible for the assessment structures, curricular resources, development of new curriculum, management of Title grants, professional learning communities, teacher evaluation system, and staff development teams. Dr. Cibulka received a Bachelor’s Degree from Wheaton College in History/Social Science Secondary Education and a Master’s (MA) and Doctoral Degree (ED.D.) in Educational Administration from Northern Illinois University.