Amid school closures necessary to prevent the spread of COVID – 19, Kent School has launched a robust Distance Learning program to support students from Preschool through Grade Eight and their families. Tricia Cammerzell, Assistant Head of School for Advancement said, “We left school on March 6 for Spring Break. Things unfolded very quickly when we were away from school. Employees returned to school on Monday and Tuesday, March 16 and 17, and worked creatively, collaboratively and enthusiastically to prepare for teaching all of our students virtually. It’s a work in progress, but guided by our mission for academic, artistic, athletic and moral excellence, we are all doing our best to serve each student well.”
Distance Learning officially began on Wednesday, March 18. In advance of the launch, the administrative team prepared notebooks, materials and textbooks for each student to “grab and go” from the front porch of the school. Jenny Cernak, Assistant Head of School for Academics said, “Our remote teaching toolbox includes things we were already using, such as the Seesaw App, YouTube, and other Apps associated with our curriculum. In addition, we are using tools that are new to us, like Zoom and Google Classroom. We have also offered the use of school-owned MacBooks and iPads for any student who needs one for home use.” Cernak continued, “So far we are hearing positive feedback from our families while realizing there may be areas for improvement. We are all learning together, and I feel like we will emerge as more nimble, resourceful teachers and learners.”
Head of School, Nancy Mugele said, “While Kent School is best experienced together on campus, in our indoor and outdoor classrooms, in our visual and performing arts spaces, on our fields and in our gym, this complex time in world history requires us to distance ourselves physically.” She continued, “I am so proud and inspired by our faculty who are embracing technology and delivering content and remote connection to our students. They were able to pivot to this platform of teaching in less than 48 hours. It is remarkable.”
Some examples of Distance Learning in practice include Art Classes taught via YouTube videos created by Art Teacher, Pat Parkhurst, use of Math Skills scavenger hunts, and Preschool Circle Time conducted via Zoom, an online meeting tool. Middle School students are using Google Classrooms for literature discussions and writing assignments. Eighth Grade students continue to rehearse virtually for their spring musical, The Music Man, using Google Hangouts.
Mugele continued, “I sincerely hope that we are back together as a school community in May. We have so much to celebrate together.”
Kent School’s mission is to guide our students in realizing their potential for academic, artistic, athletic, and moral excellence. Our school’s family-oriented, supportive, student-centered environment fosters the growth of honorable, responsible citizens for our country and our diverse world.
For more information about Kent School visit www.kentschool.org, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 410-778-4100 ext. 110. Kent School, located on the bank of the Chester River in historic Chestertown, MD is an independent day school serving boys and girls from Preschool through Grade 8.
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