STATEHOUSE (April 13, 2020) – With Indiana school buildings closed for the academic year, State Rep. Sean Eberhart (R-Shelbyville) said there are several online resources available to help students continue learning at home.
To slow the spread of COVID-19, Gov. Eric Holcomb recently issued an executive order requiring all K-12 schools to provide instruction through remote learning for the remainder of the 2019-2020 academic year. According to Eberhart, schools are working with the Indiana Department of Education to create continuous learning plans to ensure education is still happening and students keep up with their school work. He said many schools have already implemented remote or e-learning programs.
"As we deal with the COVID-19 outbreak, keeping our community safe and healthy is critical," Eberhart said. "Even though kids and teachers cannot finish the school year in the classroom, it is important students continue their studies. Fortunately, there is a wide range of educational resources to help families."
Parents can visit doe.in.gov/covid-19, and click on "Remote Learning Resources" to access educational tools, including free online classes for all grade levels covering multiple subjects. Eberhart said there's also a parent toolkit with information on how to help students finish the school year strong, along with STEM activities, educational games, virtual tours of museums and zoos, and more.
Indiana Public Broadcasting Stations recently teamed up with the DOE to offer television programming and online resources aligned with Indiana's curriculum standards for K-12 students. Parents can find their local TV program schedule through the DOE's COVID-19 website or by visiting their local IPBS station website. Students and parents can also visit PBSLearningMedia.org to find grab-and-go activities, lesson plans, interactive lessons and other materials.
Eberhart said the state will continue looking for ways to help schools during the public health emergency and continue to be flexible during this unique time. For high school seniors on track to graduate, the DOE is working to ensure the students receive their diplomas.
"This toolkit can equip parents with great classroom lessons and projects to finish the school year," Eberhart said. "That includes bringing real-life educational destinations right to their homes. These tools can keep students engaged and spark the mind as we finish the school year this spring."
Most schools are providing food to students in need, with many offering meals at pickup locations. Each district has a different policy, so parents should check their school district’s website for specific information. For households with limited or no internet connectivity, Eberhart said the DOE's COVID-19 website also offers information on how to get low-cost or even free broadband service. Hoosiers can also contact their service provider directly.
Parents and guardians in need of child care during this time can visit childcarefinder.in.gov to find options near their home or on the way to work. However, children displaying any signs of sickness should remain home until they are better.
State Rep. Sean Eberhart (R-Shelbyville) represents House District 57,
which includes Shelby County and portions of Bartholomew and Hancock counties.
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