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Rural school district reacts to K-12 closure, rest of school year

Houghton Lake High School

Michigan Governor Whitmer announced the closure of K-12 school buildings for the rest of the school year. In the Executive Order, the governor refers to districts switching to remote-teaching. 



Rural school districts are trying to make this work in areas where families might not have internet access.


So in an effort to make it work, rural school districts reach out to families without access by phone and snail mail. 


Superintendent of Houghton Lake schools, Julie Brown said some teachers have been sending packets of schoolwork, but others are able to class on Zoom, a video conferencing service. 


"As heartbroken as we are for students, we have some really great opportunities to really meet different needs of students in all areas, regardless of socio-economics or geography," Brown said.


She said the district plans on providing Chromebooks to families without technology.


"As long as we provide the opportunities that parents need to be able to help their kids connect with remote-learning, I think they’re going to be okay," Brown said. "We have so many kids right now that are doing electronic conferencing with teachers. We didn’t do any of that prior, what we’ve seen so far is they’re adapting very easily."

She said seniors will be given the opportunity to pass classes required for graduation.

Brown said the goal is for students to be ready to finish the school year by April 13.

Tess DeGayner is a student reporter for WCMU News. She is a senior at Central Michigan University studying Journalism and Broadcasting. Her hometown is Fenton, Michigan.