Morrison: Free online learning tools available to Hoosier students, parents

Posted by: Wade Coggeshall  | Thursday, April 16, 2020

STATEHOUSE (April 16, 2020) – With Indiana school buildings closed for the academic year, State Rep. Alan Morrison (R-Brazil) 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 Morrison, 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.

"Reducing the spread of this virus has required many sacrifices by Hoosiers," Morrison said. "While it's not ideal for students to have to continue their education at home, these online resources are helping them stay engaged in learning."

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. Morrison 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.

"We're fortunate that current technology allows us to access so many resources and communicate with others while practicing social distancing," Morrison said. "Indiana's parents and educators have stepped up efforts to implement lessons for students of all ages and abilities at home."

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.

Morrison 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 a diploma.

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, Morrison 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 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.

For more information about remote learning, visit doe.in.gov/covid-19, or email IDOECOVID-19@doe.in.gov with questions.

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State Rep. Alan Morrison (R-Brazil) represents House District 42,
which includes all of Vermillion County and portions of Clay,
Fountain, Parke, Vigo and Warren counties.
Click here to download a high-resolution photo.