MCAS eLearning Teacher FAQs
What is eLearning?
eLearning is the use of technology to enable people to learn anytime and anywhere. eLearning is the use of devices to provide electronic content that takes place within classrooms and can also be used to provide educational content when the weather prevents schools from opening. These days can also be used on professional development days.
Can we just assign students paper/pencil homework?
No. The Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) requires eLearning that utilizes technology. Only students with an accommodation written into their IEP or ILP may have paper/pencil work solely on an eLearning day.
How do students without internet access or devices at home participate?
Students without internet access or devices may use an access point at another location in the community (e.g., businesses, homes). Students will also have opportunities to use computer labs before and/or after school when school resumes to complete the eLearning day assignments. (Building principals will be responsible for determining the schedule, staffing for their building, and communicating to parents.)
What are the work expectations for teachers?
The IDOE requires that teachers have their eLearning day content posted online by 9 am. Teachers will need to be available to support and communicate with students and parents from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM. Teacher contact information (email) must be provided to families.
What types of activities could I plan for on an eLearning day?
Some teachers may choose to hold a “live class session” for a discussion, or other learning activity using Google Classroom or Blackboard. All live class sessions must be recorded and available for student participation after the live session. Individual iReady learning paths on the Internet may be used, as well as other web based activities. Resources will be shared.
How is student attendance taken on eLearning days?
Students may be counted present for completing any portion of the assignment. It is important to remember that students have 3 additional days to complete this work to be counted present on an eLearning day.
Do we have to meet a specific attendance rate on an eLearning day?
eLearning days are considered a regular school attendance day. The IDOE has not provided a required percentage for attendance on eLearning days, however, we are striving to maintain attendance that meets the average across the school year.
Will students with an IEP/ILP have extended time to turn in assignments?
All IEPs must be followed, so if a student has extended time as an accommodation then that is also extended on eLearning days/assignments.
What if a student does not turn their work in by the deadline?
The student is then counted absent and assignments are treated just as if the student missed a day of school and did not complete their work.
Should eLearning assignments be graded?
Yes. The IDOE recommends that assignments be graded.
When there are multiple consecutive eLearning days, will students receive additional time to complete assignments?
Yes, for each eLearning day held, computer labs will need to be open three days for students to access the eLearning day content. Time can be extended, however, time may not be shortened.
What supports are in place to help me understand my role as a teacher on an eLearning day?
PLC agendas will be designed that will help you understand how to create and upload class content for the eLearning day. Technology personnel will also be able to support staff through a technology helpline and email on an eLearning day.
Will we have an opportunity to practice eLearning with our students prior to an actual eLearning day?
Yes. Teachers will need to design weekly classroom opportunities to practice eLearning routines with students so they are familiar with this concept. If you are already using blended learning strategies, this will be easier for your students. We encourage all teachers K-12 to engage students in blended learning strategies for the upcoming school year.
Are there specific requirements that we must meet when posting online content?
The Indiana Department of Education requires that online content provide continuity and that teachers include the following components in their lesson:
- Learning target
- Amount of time to complete activity
- Work to be turned in to the teacher (electronically or hard copy)
What is the responsibility of a co-teacher in planning eLearning lessons?
The responsibility is the same as on a regular school day.
What are the time/work expectations for teachers?
Teachers in grades K-6 should plan for 2-3 hours of work and grades 7-12 should plan for approximately 30 minutes per class.
What if there are consecutive inclement weather days?
There is no pre-determined limit on the number of days in a row that MCAS might have eLearning. All eLearning days are determined by the district.
What if staff or students have technical problems or questions on an eLearning day?
The Technology help desk will be available to help at 873-2000, ext. 8359. The help desk can also be reached directly by calling 873-2141.
Is there ever a time that we wouldn’t have an eLearning day?
Yes. The district administration would make the determination that it isn’t appropriate. For example, if there is a widespread power outage.