Welcome to ExcelinEd’s ongoing roundup of creative solutions states and districts are taking to meet the education needs of their students affected by school closures as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. We need your help sharing these solutions so policymakers and state leaders can learn from each other. Please forward this information to your state leaders who are seeking solutions and send us your state’s or school district’s innovative efforts for us to amplify and share nationally.
Florida Ramping Up Virtual School Training for Teachers
The Florida Department of Education announced a partnership with the Florida Virtual School (FLVS) to offer all school districts student support and teacher professional development tailored to the online learning environment. The Florida Department of Education is also offering $200 stipends to teachers who complete the training with an immediate goal of training an additional 10,000 teachers statewide.
In addition to teacher training, FLVS is increasing its server capacity to accommodate 120,000 new full-time students by the end of March and up to 400,000 new full-time students by the end of April.
South Carolina Buses Turned into Mobile Hotspots
The South Carolina Department of Education plans on stationing 3,000 school buses with Wi-Fi access across the state for student use, starting March 23 when the first full week of remote learning begins. Rural and high-poverty districts with limited Wi-Fi access will be prioritized. So far, the state has received 477 requests for buses with Wi-Fi capability. The state plans to release a map of Wi-Fi-enabled bus locations.
Massachusetts Public Broadcast Stations Bring the Classroom to the Living Room
The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education is partnering with public media outlets WGBH in Boston and WGBY in Springfield to provide distance learning via broadcast and digital platforms for grades preK-12. America’s Public Television Stations said many of its other members are teaming up with local school districts to provide remote learning.
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