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ETHS teachers give remote learning higher grades

Students and parents have more reservations, survey says.

D202 board members and staff during Monday's meeting.

Staff members at Evanston Township High School are more satisfied with how remote learning is going this semester than are ETHS students, parents, and guardians.

Results of a just-completed survey were presented to the District 202 Board of Education during a virtual meeting Monday night. ETHS has been on remote learning due to the coronavirus since school began in August.

One of the key survey questions was phrased this way: “Given that we are currently in a pandemic, overall how satisfied are you with remote learning so far this fall?”

On a zero-to-100 scale, the average staff satisfaction (teachers and non-teachers combined) was 77%, parents and guardians 71%, and students 60%.

About 42% of ETHS students responded to the survey.

Among other issues covered were amount of time devoted to social-emotional learning, use of support services, the number of hours spent on homework and other projects and how much help students receive from parents or guardians with online assignments.

One particularly interesting response showed 29%of students had their remote cameras on just 30 minutes or less during a 70 minute class.

Administrators said they plan to go over the data and use it to improve not only remote learning, but also education once ETHS students return to in-person school.

For example, about 75% of the staff indicated they incorporate social-emotional learning either a lot or somewhat in their online courses. “When we return to in school in person,” said Assistant Superintendent Pete Bavis, “it will pay huge dividends integrating that into the curriculum.”

Social-emotional learning helps students set goals, manage their feelings and learn to work cooperatively.

Besides the quantitative data, the survey also led to more than 1,000 narrative responses. Those have not been processed yet.

ETHS will remain on remote learning the rest of this semester, due to the coronavirus pandemic. With the number of COVID cases increasing in Illinois, it’s uncertain if or when ETHS students will return to school in person next year.

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Jeff Hirsh

Jeff Hirsh joined the Evanston Now reporting team in 2020 after a 40-year award-winning career as a broadcast journalist in Cincinnati, Ohio.

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