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School district admin, teachers work with parents to meet students' distance learning needs

PMG FILE PHOTO - Teachers have been calling parents throughout the district this week to assess students needs for distance learning. As of April 13, the Oregon Trail school District will switch gears and go from offering only supplemental educational resources to distance learning, where teachers will work with students virtually in Google Classrooms, as per Gov. Kate Brown's orders.

"We have been navigating the constant updates from the state since mid-March," Superintendent Aaron Bayer said in a statement earlier this week. "We are doing everything we can to address them while creating opportunities for our students to continue learning in these challenging times. We understand how difficult this crisis has been for families, on so many fronts. Throughout this event, we will remain sharply focused on one outcome — helping children thrive."

Beginning on Monday, teachers have been calling families all over the district to assess the needs of each student to best be able to work with them through online resources. Physical packets have also been made available for those without access to online resources.

The big difference between the supplemental learning the district has been providing and distance learning is that teachers will now be directly working with students to further their education through Google Classrooms, paper packets, online experiences and/or phone conversations. It is possible student work will be assessed and will count toward student progress.

For those without computers or internet access at home, the district will offer Chromebooks and/or internet hotspots for those who request them beginning next week.

The Oregon Department of Education still has yet to give guidance on how to accommodate seniors scheduled to graduate this year, but the district anticipates new direction early this month.

"Our team has been working diligently to overcome the obstacles presented by this new direction," Bayer noted. "We appreciate your continued patience and perseverance during this time. Please reach out to us if there is any assistance we may provide for you and your family."

The school district office number is 503-668-5541.


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