News Sports Opinion Photos Social Classified Obits Contact

School shifts to at-home settings

By Michael Butler

There is a new home school. Everybody's doing it.

Since the announcement that the remainder of the school year would be outside of the traditional classroom at an on-campus facility, students are taking a different approach to complete their studies.

In Tallassee, students have received packets with a breakdown of the required curriculum to finish what was started back in August of last year. Students at Tallassee Elementary are not yet using iPads, but those at Southside Middle and Tallassee High are using the devices at home.

"I know there are some critics with the iPad program, but it's been helpful," Tallassee City Schools superintendent Wade Shipman said. "It is the day and age we're living in. I don't see us using less technology in the future."

The school system submitted a plan to the state that has been implemented to finish by state's required June 5 deadline.

"We're still targeting our regular end of the school year of May 22. We've not really pegged a final date," Shipman added. "We're trying to make the best out of an unusual situation. We're trying to make these five to six weeks meaningful."

Shipman, who has a daughter among the 127 graduating seniors, has not ruled out some type of commencement exercise.

"It's still possible. The last thing we want to do is get people sick. If we were to stay on the same target date, then there would be a limitation on how many people would be coming in. We've talked more about families. How many family members would you have coming in?"

Shipman estimated that last year's ceremony drew approximatley 2,500 people.

"It's not possible to social distance that number. We would limit. We're not ready to pull the plug and make that decision. We'll give that a little more time."

The annual awards ceremony would likely be switched to a virtual setting.

"I think that's one of the things that could be done online," Shipman noted. "It usually takes place a week or two before graduation."