Twin Falls School District adapting to demand for distance learning
Parents committed to fully online learning asked to sign up by Aug. 5
TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) - The Twin Falls School District is adapting to unanticipated demand for distance learning, by adding additional online learning options for K-6 students. The homeschool program Venture Upward which allows for distanced learning for students K-8 generally has about 50 and 60 kids, has reached capacity.
“So Venture was never really designed as a program necessarily to pull kids out of the school setting; it was more an option for parents that are currently homeschooling,” said Twin Falls School District Superintendent Brady Dickinson.
He says the Venture Upward, usually has about 50 to 60 kids, and they knew they could accommodate about 200 students in the program.
“It filled up quickly,” Dickinson said. “As of this morning, we were at about 700 parents looking for online options for their students.”
Dickinson said the district has already taken action to provide additional options for families unable to make into Venture,
“That’s what we’re working on right now is the structure for that elementary program,” Dickinson said. “So it’ll be a mixture of IDL, or Idaho Digital Learning, and our teaching staff to be able to deliver a full online Elementary option to parents.”
To fully accommodate the demand for distance learning, the Twin Falls School District is asking parents committed to distance learning to sign up on their website by Aug. 5.
“So, for us, it’s about staffing and looking at the numbers that we have that want regular brick-and-mortar classrooms. The number of parents who want a fully online option for their kids and then be able to deploy the staff into the appropriate areas.” Dickinson said. “That’s why we’re asking for parents to tell us by Wednesday to which option they want so we can start moving staff around and be able to plan.”
Despite the unanticipated demand, Dickinson assures students who require a device will be able to receive one.
“We’re able to go one to one this year,” he said. “And so every student in our district will have a device, so parents who want to go with the full online will have a device available to them.”
Families interested in online learning within the Twin Falls School District are required to sign up before Aug. 5 at 5 p.m at this link.
KMVT reported in July, on the Twin Falls School District draft plan for operations during the COVID-19 pandemic. The plans includes a color coded system for school operations, dependent on the amount of community and school spread of COVID-19. District staff and students will be required to wear face coverings during community spread, and in certain protocols.
Copyright 2020 KMVT/KSVT. All rights reserved.