CANFIELD – The local Canfield School District is looking to provide students with a non-traditional way to keep up to date with their studies next year.
At a recent board of education meeting, board members and Superintendent Joseph Knoll discussed the creation of a digital academy.
Knoll said the decision to look into an online academy stems from the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It’s in response to our concerns that we’re going to have parents… who still feel a bit uncomfortable sending their children to school,” he said.
“It’s our attempt to meet the needs of these families.”
Hilltop Elementary School principal Joseph Maroni will serve as the online option principal, Knoll said.
Maroni is researching programs and providers, he added.
Board members support moving forward with non-traditional education
in untraditional times,” said David Wilkeson, Chairman of the Board.
“One of the buildings could have an outbreak leaving that district school closed,” Wilkeson said, noting that, as evidenced since March, mandates can change “in the blink of an eye.”
Once the district is ready to enroll students, Knoll said plans will be unveiled.
In addition to being prepared for possible health-related closures, the district is also offering online schooling to help students who might not perform well in a traditional classroom, Knoll and Wilkeson said.
“It’s another path, a tool on our tool belt,” Knoll said. “It’s a win-win.”
The online academy will also be useful as some teachers will not be returning in the fall.
Wilkeson said the online classes come at a time when the council has been conducting surveys to collect back-to-school data.
Saying staff and parents are worried about returning to school, Wilkeson said some older teachers could also be at risk of infection. Some have retired, which is also a cost-saving measure.