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Shawnee Schools work on distance learning plan

Elisabeth Slay

As schools statewide remain closed for the remainder of the school year due to COVID-19 concerns, Shawnee teachers and administrators, like those of many other districts, are working on their distance learning plan to ensure students still receive their education.

Shawnee Public Schools Superintendent Dr. April Grace, in a statement Tuesday, said the district has worked very hard over the past few weeks to serve meals to students and prepare a course of action regarding distance learning.

Grace said she is grateful for the support from the staff who have been providing the students of Shawnee what they need during this pandemic.

"We served about 19,400 meals to our students in the first week of meal deliveries. This feat would not have been possible without our child nutrition, transportation and academic services staff who stepped up to organize, prepare and deliver our meals," Grace said.

In addition, Grace said the response from the community has been amazing and people have been doing their best to support students.

"Our community partners have been supporting us with meal packaging, supplies and making sure we are able to meet our students’ needs," Grace said. "The love, compassion and concern I have seen displayed for our students and their families has been breathtaking. I am so grateful because it truly does take all of us in this fight."

Grace explained in addition to the meal delivery program, SPS has been working on its distance learning plan.

"So many families have reached out to me with concerns they won’t be able to help their children learn at home," Grace said. "Rest assured our academic services staff, administrators and teachers have been working many hours to create a distance learning plan that meets the unique needs of all our students."

As soon as the district receives approval from the Oklahoma Department of Education, Grace said SPS will release information regarding how students will finish out the school year.

The superintendent also encouraged families to complete the 2020 Census, which will decide how much funding the district will receive for services like Child Nutrition for the next decade. Grace said people should visit to complete the Census.

"All in all, I simply have no words to adequately express how incredibly blessed I feel to serve our Shawnee students and community," Grace said. "We will know with all certainty that the strength of the wolf really is in the pack."

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