OTTUMWA — Applications for Bulldog Virtual Learning are now available through the Ottumwa Community School District’s registration website.

Parents wanting to enroll their students in virtual/online instruction should complete the application by Aug. 1; they must also register their students for the 2020-21 school year prior to completing the virtual learning application.

The online curriculum aligns to the Iowa Core Standards, and the district has included expectations for parents and students as part of the registration form. At the top is that the parent provides “a reason for requesting virtual learning.”

Parents, according to the application, are to maintain contact with teachers and school support staff; communicate at least monthly with the student’s teacher for progress and performance updates; maintain updated contact information to the district; ensure student participation in all required testing and provide transportation for the students when needed; and help the student establish and environment or workspace “for them to be successful at home in an online setting.”

The application also states the understanding the students will participate in the mandatory learning with attendance taken and grades recorded and that coursework will be a blend of virtual, teacher-led instruction and self-paced independent instruction. It also reads that “any device, technology, or materials given to my child to facilitate remote learning are the property of the district and must be returned at the end of the remote learning period.”

There are expectations for the students as well. They are required to communicate with their instructors in a timely fashion and provide original work; plagiarism and cheating are prohibited. The expectations also include self-motivation to fulfill course requirements; computer literacy such as using email, the internet and keyboarding skills; independent learning and time management skills — “Students must be capable of organizing and planning their time for learning … Older students will be given more responsibility to set their own pace … Students will be expected to manage time effectively. A weekly pacing guide/expectation will be provided for courses/subjects;” effective written communication skills; and personal commitment.

Bulldog Virtual Learning also stresses that quality internet connectivity “is important to ensure that students can engage in learning. Students should be able to video conference and stream video easily.” Those needing district assistance for internet access should make that indication on the application.

Minimum enrollment in the virtual option is a semester for high school and middle school students and a trimester for elementary students.

To view the application and expectations in full, visit https://ottumwa.forms-db.com/view.php?id=29505

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