Whether students are learning at school or home, Winton Woods City Schools mission remains the same, to ensure every student reaches their highest potential. School teams have been meeting remotely and strategizing the best ways to continue providing a rich academic experience while meeting the needs of all students virtually. According to the Technology Department, as of May 5, teachers and students have had 27,916 participation connections and 10,199 total meetings through Google Meet. “Providing our students with the basic foundational technology tools plays a vital role in students' having a successful virtual learning experience,” said Director of Technology Rhonda Hobbs.
“At the beginning of the year, students in Grades 8-12 received Chromebooks, and many high school students were provided with free Wi-Fi hotspots through the grant-funded 1 Million Project through Sprint. To meet the educational needs of our younger students, the district transitioned in January to grade 7. The Director of Teaching and Learning (PK-6), Adrienne Martin, decided that the work packets would be obsolete; so she made the recommendation to distribute Chromebooks to students in Grades 2-6 since they were already familiar with the use of technology in their schools.”
Our technology-rich environment is important to every aspect of student support. For example, Director of Student Services Tonya Bray said her department has plans to modify the virtual curriculum and resources to meet each student's needs. Her teams provide interventions and unique strategies to meet their individual educational plan (IEP). “We are meeting remotely to use technology to ensure each student is receiving all the resources necessary for success.” Another example of how our district supports our students with technology is through our ESL (English as a Second Language) program. District ESL Coordinator Gary Giblin said “our goal is to create and maintain a system by which we can meet families’ and students' language needs whatever and wherever they are.” Each week, ELL (English Language Learners) teachers and staff provide online instruction and videos that help ESL students complete their assignments. “We explain exactly how to do it, and take them through a series of steps of how to manage their work throughout the week. We translate documents and are available as interpreters for parent-teacher meetings and student-teacher meetings,” said Giblin. “We make sure our students have access to curriculum and arrange meetings for our teachers to support our students. We also have a 24-hour language line that provides translators and facilitates communication for our ESL families. Our building teachers have established routines where we reach out to them weekly. We have a lot of conversations with the students and parents to reassure them with what is going on in the classroom, school, and district.” Winton Woods is proud to be a district that implements technology successfully to enrich students’ academic and virtual learning experience.
PHOTO CAPTION: Winton Woods City Schools Technology Department distributing Chromebooks to students in Grades 3-6 to support virtual learning.