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CPS updates alternative learning plan, plan to restart on Wednesday

COLUMBIA, Mo. (KMIZ)

Columbia Public Schools announced an update to its alternative learning plan on Monday amid the spread of COVID-19.

The email sent out to parents said the alternative learning plan will restart on Wednesday, April 8. CPS spokeswoman Michelle Baumstark said teachers will use Monday and Tuesday to have work ready for students.

CPS announced on Wednesday, April 1 that its alternative learning plan was on pause while district leaders worked to fine-tuning the plan.

The announcement included no letter grades will be given out for middle school and high school students for the spring semester. According to the email, students will receive a mark of 'P' for pass or 'IC' for incomplete.

The email said determinations on receiving a P or IC will be made based on the interim progress report sent out on March 10. Students with at least 60% on the progress report will receive a pass, according to CPS. It added students who wouldn't have a P based on the report will have the remainder of the semester to raise their grades.

"We understand the attainment of grades and the opportunity to maintain or improve cumulative GPA is important for many reasons, not the least of which are the implications for higher education admission, scholarships, honors, and awards. The abrupt change to the education system in Columbia Public Schools, our state, and our nation due to the Coronavirus Pandemic has created a situation in which equitable opportunities for the improvement or advancement of a GPA is not possible. It is clear that institutions at every level across the country are making similar decisions regarding the elimination of grade reporting. CPS high school students will be on a level playing field moving forward. The NCAA, Ivy League colleges and universities, the University of Missouri, and hundreds of other institutions are among those who have stated they will be monitoring and adjusting requirements in response to the COVID19 crisis."

Columbia Public Schools

CPS said the current grading plan will remain in place if students are allowed to return to school. All district schools are closed through April 24.

According to the announcement, elementary school teachers will mail out new work packets to students. It added 5th-grade students with iPads will transition to paper packets.

Middle school and high school subject areas are being scheduled on specific days of the week:

  • Monday: Math, Fine Arts, and English Learners
  • Tuesday: Language Arts, PE/Health, Gifted Education and AVID
  • Wednesday: Science, Practical Arts, Career Center, and Special Education District Classrooms
  • Thursday: Social Studies, World Languages, and Special Education Non-Core Content Areas (Skills for Success, AC Lab, Resource, Work Block, Work Exploration as they apply for your student)
  • Friday: Fun Day, Club Day (A time when clubs, athletics, and activities can check-in)

Students enrolled in AP and dual-credit classes will still receive a letter grade at the end of the semester. CPS said the grade will be based on an average from first semester work and work necessary to complete college credit.

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Matt Ragsdale

Matt Ragsdale is a broadcast and digital producer at ABC 17 News.

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