What COVID and online learning taught Florida school leaders

Interest in online learning—even after coronavirus is controlled—may require Florida to rethink funding and seat-time requirements
By: | June 19, 2020
A third of Florida parents want students to return to school full-time, another third say they will keep students home, and the rest remain undecided, surveys show.A third of Florida parents want students to return to school full-time, another third say they will keep students home, and the rest remain undecided, surveys show.

As Florida schools reopen, teachers should hold students to high academic standards but offer some flexibility for families contending with the health and financial impacts of the pandemic.

This was one of the key lessons that educators learned during months of online classes, a group of Florida district administrators said on a webinar hosted this week by McGuireWoods Consulting and moderated by the University of Washington’s Center for Reinventing Public Education.

Looking toward the new school year, statewide surveys show Florida parents are divided into thirds about how and where they want students to learn as district leaders develop reopening plans in the COVID-era, said Jacob Oliva, chancellor of the Florida Department of Education’s Division of Public Schools, said in a webinar Wednesday.

A third want students to return to school full-time, another third say they will keep students home, and the rest remain undecided.


More from DA: What states are requiring and recommending in school reopening plans


But continued interest in online learning—even after the outbreak is controlled—may require the state to rethink policies around school funding and credit and seat-time requirements, Oliva added.

Here’s a closer look at how lessons learned in three districts this spring will impact the new school year:

  1. Orange County Public Schools students turned in 13 million online assignments
  2. Duval County Public Schools checks in with families each day
  3. Broward County Public Schools move forward with ‘grace and compassion’

DA’s coronavirus page offers complete coverage of the impacts on K-12.


Interested in edtech? Keep up with DA's Future of Education Technology Conference®.