Dorchester Co. Public Schools seeking feedback on 2022-23 virtual learning day plan

Msea Calling For Virtual Learning

DORCHESTER COUNTY, Md. – Dorchester County Public Schools (DCPS) needs your help to decide what they may or may not do with eight virtual learning days in the 2022-23 school year.

The district is already planning for September 21st to be a virtual half day. “That’s going to be our practice day, where we work on getting the hot spots out, work on any issues, and practice with our teachers to make sure that our teachers know how to do virtual learning,” said DCPS Director of Curriculum and Assessment, Michael Colllins.

Plans for the other seven days are currently up in the air. Collins says some possibilities include professional development, dealing with inclement weather, or scrapping in person half days for virtual ones, among other options.

“We certainly have looked at Election Day as an option for an asynchronous day. We’ve also looked at maybe using a virtual day for SAT day at the high schools, or graduation days at the high school,” said Collins. “Virtual learning is very difficult, and very hard on teachers, students, and staff. The best way students learn is having a qualified teacher in front of them. So, even though we have these eight days, it doesn’t guarantee that we would use all of them this year.”

Now, DCPS is looking for public stakeholders to suggest what they think would work best. “Some of the feedback could be ideas that they might have, or suggestions on the virtual plan. Maybe they have thought of some uses for days that we haven’t thought of. We just like to be as transparent as possible. Another part of the plan is that transparency is a must. We’ll be communicating with our stakeholders, making them aware that this virtual plan is there for us to utilize,” said Collins.

This decision is now the new normal for public school districts in Maryland, according to Collins. “Since we kind of broke the ice with virtual [learning], I don’t think it will ever go away. So, it is here to stay, and the state department did give us eight days. Each year we will continue, and evaluate those and how to use them best,” he said.

The current plan is set to be presented at an upcoming school board meeting and put up for public comment, then the board votes. If you’d like to submit ideas or comments, click here, and select “Virtual Day Plan Feedback Form” at the top of the page.

Categories: Education, Local News, Maryland