New law's pilot program aims to end snow days with online classrooms
State Rep. Kathleen Willis (D-Dist. 77) co-sponsored a bill recently signed into law by Gov. Bruce Rauner that gives students participating in a new pilot program the ability to access the classroom from home.
“This law will bring our education system in alignment with current technologies,” Willis said. “This program will help us to develop better strategies to maximize the learning experience of our students, inside the classroom and out.”
The law calls for a pilot program in which at least three school districts will engineer ways to provide instruction online on days when schools close for weather emergencies, such as blizzards. Each e-learning day a district uses – up to five days – would count toward the required number of attendance days, so schools would not have to make up the lost days at the end of the school year.
Lessons from the three-year pilot program would help legislators draft a statewide e-learning plan that eventually might eliminate the need for snow days and provide all students with the same advantages and access to education.
“Every moment a student loses in the classroom is a moment they are not going to get back,” Willis said. “Our mission is to make sure students are learning in the best way possible, and this pilot program is the first step in reaching that goal.”
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