MCISD to end online learning option Nov. 5

Posted 10/22/20

The Madisonville CISD school board voted Thursday to end their asynchronous instructional learning option for healthy students Nov. 5, based on a recommendation by the administration. The option will remain available for students forced to miss time due to a COVID-19 diagnosis or exposure.

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MCISD to end online learning option Nov. 5

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The Madisonville CISD school board voted Thursday to end their asynchronous instructional learning option for healthy students Nov. 5, based on a recommendation by the administration. The option will remain available for students forced to miss time due to a COVID-19 diagnosis or exposure.

The recommendation was put forth due to a lack of success that is shared by a number of school districts in the state as they navigate the new normal of educating during a pandemic.

“Our asynchronous plan is not working, it is not effective,” said Superintendent Keith Smith, who heard similar concerns from his counterparts at the first Region 6 superintendents’ meeting since March Wednesday.

“(The meeting) was a somber place, not a happy place,” said Smith. “This is a statewide problem. Nobody in Region 6, from the largest to the smallest as far as student population, is having any success with this. Everybody is reporting at best a 50% failure rate.”

Fortunately for Madisonville, less than 10% of their district population is currently participating in the asynchronous plan. This number has steadily dropped as more and more students return to campus on a daily basis, but the failure rate among that near-10% was described as high.

“In that failure rate, we have almost zero communication with the (failing students),” said Smith. “This is after multiple phone calls, emails and even home visits. We feel it is in the best interest to take the asynchronous plan, put it on the shelf and bring our children back to school, physically present, where we have less than a 2% failure rate.”

Many students throughout the state have not participated in physical learning since school shutdown for the COVID-19 pandemic March 13, leaving administrators concerned about their ability to function in their given grade upon return.

“There are many schools that feel like they are seeing multiple grade level deficiencies that have happened just between March and now,” said Smith. “I don’t think ours are that bad, we know we have some deficiencies. I hope it is not going to be a whole grade level, but we have not tested the students that have not been here since (March 13).”

The district will soon formally alert families of the change and post a thorough description on their website. The district will continue to send personnel to the homes of families with students who have not returned any corespondents regarding their status.

“We feel very confident in our ability to get the message out,” said Smith.

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