(WKBN) – Superintendents across the Valley were disappointed to find out Monday that in-person learning has been canceled for the rest of the school year. Many worry they won’t be able to honor their graduating seniors.
Ohio schools have been getting used to their new normal over the last few weeks, with students adjusting to the new way of learning.
“We have teachers contacting them on a continual basis via email, phone, dropping off tutorials that they need at their houses,” said Weathersfield Schools Superintendent Damon Dohar.
But Monday’s order from Gov. Mike DeWine has truly put Ohio students in a place no one has been before.
All school buildings will remain closed for the rest of the academic year, which means seniors may not have the usual graduation ceremonies.
Poland Schools plan on doing whatever they can to honor their seniors.
“We have every intention of holding some form of a ceremony on that evening,” Superintendent Dave Janofa said.
He recognizes seniors have lost so much and wants them to have something they can count on — a ceremony on May 30.
“We want to stay at the date that we already created and to try and ensure that every student — every senior student, every student in the class of 2020 — can be there,” Janofa said.
DeWine also advised districts to be innovative to prepare for more social distancing at the start of next school year.
For Poland students, that might mean coming to the school building only a few days a week.
“There would be maybe a hybrid system where you would do some remote learning, as well as the brick and mortar traditional learning that we’re familiar with,” Janofa said.
For Weathersfield Schools, students may come in for only a portion of each day.
“You would have kids coming in four hours of instruction, just at different times,” Dohar said.
Both Janofa and Dohar hope everything returns to something close to normal for next year’s seniors.
“Just put you up there on a pedestal and say, ‘Thanks for all the hard work that you’ve done.’ And, unfortunately, we’re not going to be able to provide that similar type of experience,” Janofa said.
Weathersfield Schools are hoping to have a graduation ceremony sometime in the summer when restrictions could be lifted.