Granite School District teachers are prepared for “distance learning” school days, teacher says

Feb 24, 2023, 6:00 AM
Granite School District has 800 refugee students...
FILE: Granite School District offices offices are pictured in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2021. Photo credit: Jeffrey D. Allred /Deseret News.

SALT LAKE CITY — Thanks to a recent snowstorm, many Utah school districts have been holding remote school days this week. Teachers in Granite School District are prepared for these “distance learning” days, according to second-grade teacher Gina Skeet.

Skeets, who teaches at Gourley Elementary School in Kearns, says the district has teachers prepare lesson packets in advance.

“In our district, the expectation is that we as elementary teachers have a distance learning packet that we prepare,” she says.

According to Skeet, the packet has review materials for subjects such as reading, math, writing, science and social studies. She says the packets have a school day’s worth of material. This doesn’t mean seven hours of work, but a review of the things students have been working on.

“We get that (the distance packets) prepared usually in November,” Skeet says. “And it’s got a note on it saying ‘don’t use this unless we do a distance learning day. And then, if we do have a distance learning day, this is what you’ll complete and return the next day.”

According to Skeet, teachers use the app ClassDojo to assist with teaching. Along with this, she says school closures during the pandemic helped teachers prepare for distance learning.

“Pre-pandemic when it was like, ‘Oh my gosh we might be out of school for like a week or whatever. What are we going to do’,” Skeet says. “We’re, kind of, that well oiled machine now, with what to do and how to do it.”

She says along with this parents are getting more “savvy” with Zoom calls as well as ClassDojo.

Skeet says the distance learning format keeps schools from having to make up snow days.

Jeff Caplan’s Afternoon News can be heard on weekdays from 3 to 7 p.m.

Related: Salt Lake City snowstorm this week broke records, did you know?

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Granite School District teachers are prepared for “distance learning” school days, teacher says