Remote Learning Academy enrollment still above 5,000 for next semester

Sarah Sole
ThisWeek group
Scottish Corners Elementary School second-grader Charlie McGraw, 8, scrolls through his Dublin City Schools remote-learning site Nov. 10.

When Dublin City Schools' second semester begins Jan. 5, more than 5,000 students still are expected to be enrolled in the Remote Learning Academy, according to district officials.

The academy's current enrollment is 5,529 students, said Jill Reinhart, executive director of teaching and learning.

Deputy Superintendent Tracey Deagle said 5,031 students are enrolled for the second semester of the academic year. The district has 16,368 students, she said.

The similar totals mean the district doesn’t have to make any staffing changes, she said.

At the K-8 levels, teachers specifically are dedicated to teaching Remote Learning Academy classes, Deagle said. At the high school level, teachers instruct both remote- and hybrid-learning classes, she said.

Deb McGraw, whose 8-year-old second-grader, Charlie, attends Scottish Corners Elementary School, said she has chosen a second semester of the Remote Learning Academy for him.

“The teacher we had is excellent,” she said.

Scottish Corners Elementary School second-grader Charlie McGraw, 8, scrolls through his Dublin City Schools remote-learning site Nov. 10.

McGraw said concerns about the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, coupled with a desire for consistency in education, led her to choose the remote academy again for her son.

“At some point, you have to pick a lane,” she said.

Heather Carlisle also will continue to use the Remote Learning Academy next semester for her 12-year-old Grizzell Middle School sixth-grader, Chris.

Carlisle said she had been working with other families in a learning pod of sorts to create supplementary education plans for a handful of students. The students learn remotely together sometimes, and one student has been coming over her house to learn alongside her son, she said.

She said she spends time on weekends putting together learning plans, such as presentations around art, architecture and science.

Right now, the students are learning about personal finances, Carlisle said. They also have watched videos about France and Italy and learned to bake different items from each country, she said.

“This is my one shot in making sure that he could have the best education possible,” Carlisle said of Chris.

Consistency also was a reason Tamara Hager said she decided to keep her boys in the Remote Learning Academy.

Maison, 13, is an eighth-grader at Davis Middle School, and Austin, 10, is a fifth-grader at Hopewell Elementary School.

Austin, who has Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, is on an individualized education program, Hager said. For that reason, she was concerned about how remote learning would work for him.

But, she said, he has received a lot of support – so much so, that she almost is worried about his independence moving into the sixth grade.

“I have been just so happy with the level of support he has received,” she said.

Hager said a switch to hybrid learning would mean her boys would have new teachers, new expectations and new relationships to build.

“It would be like going to school for the first time,” she said.

Continued health concerns regarding the pandemic and a desire for consistency made her choose the Remote Learning Academy for a second semester, Hager said.

“If it’s not broken, why fix it?” she said.

ssole@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekSarah