Rockford Public Schools preparing to stay closed until fall

Local News

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Rockford Public Schools Superintendent Ehren Jarrett says District 205 is taking steps in the event that classes do not resume until August.

In a School Board Meeting on Tuesday, Jarrett said, “We’re preparing as if school will not reopen until next fall. We are hopeful and cautiously optimistic that health conditions will improve.”

As of right now, schools are set to reopen after Gov. JB Pritzker’s Shelter-in-Place order lifts on April 7th, but that date may be extended based on analysis on the spread of COVID-19 in Illinois and the nation between now and then.

“The need for social isolation that’s been in plan will eventually subside,” Jarrett continued. “I think we are approaching this distance learning plan with the idea that it has to be sustainable for the remaining 10 weeks of the school year. It’s not ideal, I don’t think any district is going to be as good at providing support for their students without some that face to face and support and we’re certainly no exception to that. But I do, believe that we’re going to put the best possible plan in place for the needs of our students with that worst case scenario in mind.”

Executive Director of Academics, Heidi Dettman, said the District is planning to move into “distance learning,” and is issuing a survey phone call to parents to determine each home capabilities for electronic connection.

The school plans to launch a Distance Learning website which will allow students to complete a lesson plan and submit work to teachers electronically.

Jarrett said plans on whether or not to hold graduation ceremonies were not in place yet, saying that will be contingent upon whether the Governor lifts the Shelter-in-Place order.

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