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Distance, virtual learning options in Rapides Parish

Published: Aug. 24, 2021 at 6:32 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 24, 2021 at 6:38 PM CDT
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - Families in Rapides Parish have expressed their questions and concerns with learning options outside of the classroom.

The parish has seen a high quarantine number since school started on August 10 and that’s led to parents looking into taking their children out of classrooms. Superintendent Jeff Powell says that Rapides Parish currently has two alternatives to face-to-face learning.

The first option is distance learning, which is controlled by each individual school. With distance learning, students learn at home with educational packets prepared by their school. They may also be issued a laptop, but Powell says each school is different.

“It all depends on the school; it all depends on the situation. So, some of them are doing packets; some of them are doing the Chromebooks. You know, we still have issues of connectivity,” Powell said.

There’s also the Rapides Parish Virtual Program that students need to apply for. Acceptance is determined by school principals under certain conditions, like health risks, and with proper documentation.

“If a family member or a student has an identified health risk that would really create complications if someone were to contract COVID in their house, we do have a process that our schools can walk parents through so that their child can apply to be part of the actual Rapides Parish Virtual Program,” said Powell.

Anyone interested in distance learning or the Rapides Parish Virtual Program needs to communicate directly with their child’s school.

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