Franklin County Schools aren’t opening until Aug. 26, but Elkhorn Middle School is working to be sure students and parents know what to expect.

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With FCS going with 100% virtual learning when school begins, EMS has released a video about how that will work.

Principal Jeff Rhode explains in the video how this year’s virtual learning will be different from the non-traditional instruction the system used to finish last year when schools were closed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“A couple things to throw out,” Rhode said “Even from the start of last spring, once we get into the virtual world through NTI, we’ve already been looking at where our areas of deficits were, what did we need to do better when we came back in August if we did start virtually.”

He said internet access is essential, and if it’s an issue a parent needs to notify the school. Packets won’t be handed out unless there is a medical exemption and doctor’s note that a child can’t be on computer.

Chromebooks will be handed out later this month.

The week will be divided into A days and B days, and the days will alternate throughout the week.

On an A day, Period 1 will be from 8:40 a.m.-9:40 a.m., Period 2 from 9:40-10:40 a.m., and Period 3 from 10:40 a.m.-11:40 a.m.

On B days, the schedule will be Period 4 from 8:40 a.m.-9:40 a.m., Period 5 from 9:40-10:40 a.m., and Period 6 from 10:40-11:40 a.m.

Rhode said schedules haven’t been finalized yet.

An hour break that will include lunch will be from 11:40 a.m.-12:40 p.m.

“Get away from the computer,” Rhode said about the break. “Go outside, do something other than go watch TV or jump on a video game.”

The school day will end with student support time from 12:45 p.m.-3:30 p.m.

“That’s where teachers are going to be reaching out to kids to do tutoring,” Rhode said. “That’s basically when we’ll have our office hours, this is where we’ll be reaching out to families about work getting completed, how the progress of a child is going, or if you reach out to us, this would be a great time. This is when teachers would be available to answer your call or answer email.”

This will also be a time when students can let teachers know if they need help in a subject.

Rhode stressed that students will need to advocate for themselves and also be organized.

“Shout out to all the teachers,” Rhode said. “They’ve been working incredibly hard over the summer to become better virtual classroom teachers. That is part of what we have to do better this time. We have to understand, we have to be better virtually as a school, as teachers, but we’re also going to need students to be better virtually as students.”

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