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Teachers Should Prepare For E-Learning In The Fall, ‘Just In Case,’ Pritzker Says

The governor said he's not sure yet what will happen this fall, but teachers can use the summer to create e-learning programs just in case.

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CHICAGO — Teachers should use the summer to prepare to potentially continue e-learning this fall, Gov. JB Pritzker said Sunday.

Pritzker, speaking during his daily coronavirus briefing, said he’s not sure if Illinois students will do e-learning or in-person learning this fall. He recently ordered schools to remain closed through the academic year and extended the stay at home order to May 30.

The governor has repeatedly said he hasn’t made decisions yet about what will happen this summer with the stay at home order or with sports, camps and summer school for kids. All of those things will depend on coronavirus and if it continues to spread or if it declines here.

But teachers should use the summer months to prepare for e-learning this fall, “just in case,” he said.

“I would prepare for both [e-learning and in-person learning]. It is still unclear what things will look like over the summer and the fall,” Pritzker said. “But without knowing the answer, e-learning is an important thing for us to develop, either way.

“I think we’ve seen in this short period of time we’ve been in this COVID crisis … is that many, many schools are not ready for e-learning but should be.”

Pritzker said even if students can return to in-person classes this fall, e-learning will likely be more widely used even after the pandemic, so teachers and districts can benefit now from focusing on it.

The governor said state funds available to help school districts create e-learning programs.

Chicago Public Schools started its e-learning program in mid-April, though the district has struggled because many students do not have ready access to internet.

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