The fact is that most educators were under-prepared to design technology-driven, remote learning experiences when states and districts started closing schools because of COVID-19.
Previously, teacher professional development (PD) was focused on in-class teaching. Now, getting teachers ready for remote online learning has become the top priority in many school districts. This includes figuring out what resources intended for in-class work can be used and then either converting these materials to online courses or identifying vendors that provide web-based solutions that are accessible from districts learning management systems.
Teachers are being asked to learn to use new tools for online learning, use the apps proficiently while teaching, establish new app-based practices to ensure participation, and establish rapport through social and emotional learning tools.
What are your teachers doing to get ready for the next school year? Are they prepared to utilize your technology stack? Do they have the supports they need in place, should access to district/school learning resources become blocked?
All of these concerns take center stage when you consider what’s happening: teachers are being asked to do something new. Which is nothing new for them—they are always being asked to do more with less.
Next, we need to consider some of the key data and privacy considerations: security for student learning data and medical records data, as well as accessibility measures for students with reading, writing, physical, or mental disabilities.
The bottom line is that teachers' plates are full. What are you doing in your district to better enable your teachers? We would love to hear about your teaching experience.
Many students don't have internet access. According to a Rural America and Technology Study, 31% of households in the United States do not have internet access. So, before school districts can even begin teaching online, they will need to figure out how to get their student populations up and running on the Internet. Are your students able to access the Internet? We want to hear your stories?
Teachers are working from home and students are trying to learn from home. Each are distracted by their dogs, cats, children, siblings, etc. How are staying on task? Are your students engaged in their online courses? Tell us about it.