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Arlington Central School District adjusts to remote learning

Online lessons, meeting platforms and resources help students and teachers stay connected

Arlington Central School District

It’s a tough time for schools, their students and families.

Weeks-long closures of school buildings in the region and across the nation due to the COVID-19 pandemic mean school districts are grappling with remote ways to educate their students. Educators are shifting their coursework to virtual lessons that are taught through online programs. Students are navigating online lessons and remote communications with their instructors and classmates. Parents are sorting out ways to homeschool their kids and work with the technologies involved, while meeting home and work obligations.

Locally, the Arlington Central School District (ACSD) in LaGrangeville has put in place a range of online and ongoing measures to meet the educational needs of its staff, faculty and 8,000-plus students in grades K-12 across 11 schools.  

For instance, to facilitate remote learning, the district’s faculty is using the Google Classroom platform to communicate with students, including posting assignments, resources, and general announcements. As well, teachers have the option to use Google Meet as a video-conferencing tool to conduct recorded or live online instruction and meetings.

Additionally, the ACSD has distributed more than 900 Chromebooks to families who need technical devices and will continue to provide additional devices as needed. As well, a list of companies offering free WiFi and an extensive list of supplemental resources for students’ use have been posted.

In all, nearly 2.6 million public and private schools in New York State serve kids in grades K-12, according to the New York State Education Department (NYSED), including about 57,000 of the students in Orange County, 22,000 in Ulster County, 38,000 in Dutchess County and 9,000 in Sullivan County.

“This is an incredibly challenging situation and we are asking a lot of teachers, parents and students,” said Dr. Brendan Lyons, Arlington Superintendent of Schools, via email. “We also know that everyone is doing their very best to make this a successful experience and that while some things will work easily, others will not be as successful.”

While re-entry plans for the re-opening of the district’s schools will be guided by the Governor Cuomo’s executive orders along with directives provided by the NYSED, planning stages are underway for the ACSD’s summer and fall terms. No additional programs have been determined at this time.

“Online teaching is challenging work and it is receiving a lot of time and attention from our faculty and staff,” said Lyons. “We appreciate the continued patience of our community. We have been heartened by how our community has come together to support each other during this unprecedented time.”

Karen Maserjian Shan is the editor of Hudson Valley Parent