Canyons School District to implement 6 ‘Remote-Learning Fridays’

Jordan High School. Photo Courtesy: Canyons School District

UTAH, Oct. 21, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — The Canyons Board of Education has approved a plan to set aside six Fridays in the coming months for student remote learning and teacher preparation and planning in acknowledgement of the continued pressures faced by teachers and staff as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The first “Remote-Learning Friday” will fall on Nov. 5, said a news release from Canyons School District. Thereafter, the administration will schedule five additional remote-learning Fridays.

“Remote Fridays are days of learning,” the news release said. “Students are expected to use the time for independent study and will be provided learning packets or access to assignments on CSD’s common online-learning management system, Canvas. Teachers will report to school for work and use the time to collaborate with peers, create lesson and intervention plans, and provide any needed outreach to students.” Teachers will also hold office hours by appointment for students and parents.

“The goal here is to support teachers in supporting students,” said Canyons Assistant Superintendent Dr. Bob Dowdle. “Teachers need more planning and collaboration time to ensure students have the resources they need to excel, and students need more time to catch up on unfinished learning.”

A nationwide labor shortage has made it difficult to hire school support staff and find enough substitutes to cover for teachers who fall ill or have to be pulled from the classroom for district-sponsored trainings, the news release said. District office staff are volunteering as substitutes, and the district has suspended the rollout of new initiatives and postponed teacher trainings that aren’t state-mandated or required as a condition of a grant.

“In addition, high rates of student absences, due to illness or students being placed on COVID-19-related quarantine, are resulting in teachers having to invest extra time on interventions to keep students on track with their learning,” the news release said.

The Canyons Board of Education will consider at an upcoming meeting the proposed schedule for future remote-learning Fridays. As soon as the schedule is finalized, families will be directly notified through the district’s official communication channels.


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