Elkhart County lawmakers: New tools can help students succeed despite COVID-19 challenges

Posted by: Allison Vanatsky  | Friday, August 14, 2020

STATEHOUSE (Aug. 14, 2020) – Area legislators said new resources are available to help students succeed, especially as COVID-19 complicates the start of the school year.

"To keep students and families well-connected to educators as they head back to school, these online resources can offer support to parents," said State Rep. Doug Miller (R-Elkhart). "The internet is chock-full of great tools to help children learn, and the Indiana Department of Education has compiled a list specifically focused on the needs of Hoosier students from technical support to curriculum framework."

Miller said the Indiana Department of Education offers online resources to start the school year strong. Parents can find information on internet access, providers of high-speed broadband at a reduced rate and how to qualify for a free computer, all by visiting doe.in.gov. Students can also access educational activities sorted by grade level and subject area, including writing prompts, a free e-library, physical education and art programs. This website also provides information on health and safety guidelines that families can review when students return to the classroom, including help with face covering guidelines.

According to State Rep. Christy Stutzman (R-Middlebury), IDOE partnered with Indiana Public Broadcast Stations in the spring to connect families to educational television programing and online resources aligned to Indiana's academic standards. She said these programs are still available and can be accessed at PBSLearningMedia.org. Parents can find their local station and TV schedule by visiting IPBS.org.

"PBS is a long-time, trusted source of educational programming, and these resources will provide students additional support based on our state's standards," Stutzman said. "Using these tools along with classroom instruction can enhance a child's school experience and help them make deeper connections to what they're learning."

For free help completing assignments and tutoring, students can turn to AskRose.org. Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology's AskRose Homework Help is a free math and science tutoring service for Hoosier students in grades 6-12. State Rep. Curt Nisly (R-Milford) said students can call 877-ASK-ROSE or chat live online with a tutor to work through homework assignments.

"Struggling students can utilize the AskRose Homework Hotline outside of class time to get the additional support they need to complete their school work and stay on track," Nisly said. "Tutors are Rose-Hulman students who understand a wide range of complex math and science problems, and can help guide children to the solution while showing them how to solve similar questions in the future."

He said schools and officials are launching the new school year with plans based on local COVID-19 data, and families should visit their local school websites for the most up-to-date information.

More resources and information can be found at doe.in.gov.

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State Rep. Doug Miller (R-Elkhart) represents House District 48, which includes portions of Elkhart County.

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State Rep. Curt Nisly (R-Milford) represents House District 22, which includes portions of Kosciusko and Elkhart counties.

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State Rep. Christy Stutzman (R-Middlebury) represents House District 49, which includes the eastern portion of Elkhart County.

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