As the CNMI Public School System prepares for blended learning, where students will have two days of classroom instruction and two days of remote learning, parents who do not want their children to attend face-to-face classes can continue learning remotely, said Education Commissioner Dr. Alfred B. Ada.
Blended learning is set to begin in the third semester, which is next Feb. 3, 2021.
According to Ada, teachers on Tinian, Saipan Southern High School, and Marianas High School want to begin blended learning early, while William S. Reyes Elementary School and Kagman Elementary School have already started blended learning.
Ada added that schools are preparing themselves now because they don’t want to wait until February. In blended learning, students will attend two days of face-to-face classes and two days of remote or online learning weekly.
In order to comply with COVID-19 protocols of social distancing, half of the students will be attending face-to-face classes on Tuesday and Thursday, the other half will be online, and then vice-versa on Wednesday and Friday.
Since Ada advocates for mental health, the government austerity day on Mondays will be reserved for providing social-emotional support to students and school staff, follow-up activities, remediation/intervention as needed, collaborative teacher planning, and professional development.
In a previous interview with Ada, he stated that PSS is collecting data on student attendance and level of engagement in face-to-face learning, for which the number of students per classroom has been increased from 10 to 15 students in a class.
Additionally, Ada stated that he’s advised principals to reach out to parents, whose children are struggling, to participate in face-to-face classes.