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e-learning Day FAQ

District Plan for E-Learning Days
Ridgewood Community High School District 234

The purpose of this document is to outline how Ridgewood High School will utilize, account for, structure, monitor, and communicate e-learning days in the event of an emergency (weather or otherwise) that requires closing the school building.

Public Act 101-0012, effective July 1, 2019, allows all school districts in Illinois to utilize e-learning days in lieu of emergency days on the ISBE-approved school calendar.  

Communication will be sent via email to all students’ school-issued email addresses.  Communication will be sent to students’ families/guardians via the email addresses on file in Skyward; a phone call and text message will also be sent to all families. Staff will receive notification through an email blast and through the Skylert (Skyward) system. Communication of an e-learning day will also be posted on the school website ( When possible, this communication will occur the night before the e-learning day is to take place.

Access to Technology and Wifi
According to Public Act 101-0012, “The school district will ensure access from home or other appropriate remote facilities for all students participating, including computers, the Internet, and other forms of electronic communication that must be utilized...” Students are issued an iPad upon entering Ridgewood High School. All materials necessary to complete the learning experiences on an e-learning day can be accessed via the district-issued iPad.

Students/families who receive free lunch and do not have access to the Internet should check to see if they qualify for the Federal Broadband Benefit through Internet Essentials from Comcast. Click here to see if you qualify for this service. This is the most cost-effective way to obtain internet access for a family who needs Internet access and the access from Comcast will apply to the entire household. If/when the Emergency Broadband Benefit is lifted, or if a family does not qualify for this benefit, the District will loan a hotspot for use during the school year. 

Students who do not have access to the Internet on an e-learning day will not be penalized. Due dates for students without consistent internet access, or an internet outage due to the circumstances that resulted in an e-learning day, will be adjusted.

Learning Experience Expectations
Students must be provided with meaningful learning experiences within the current scope and sequence of their classes. The learning that takes place on an e-learning day should be within the progression of the learning in class at that time, not “work” that stands in isolation. Additionally, teachers should be able to measure, upon students’ completion of the learning activity, that learning did, in fact, take place. A student’s experience in an e-learning day should be equivalent to a regular school day (five hours). A teacher’s e-learning lesson plan should mirror a traditional class period to the greatest degree possible.

E-Learning Day Schedule
The E-Learning Day schedule will follow the normal schedule for that day.  Students should login to Zoom each period of the day.   

Student Expectations

  • Log into the Zoom link provided by your teachers for each period of the E-Learning Day Bell Schedule.
  • Each class period will run synchronously for attendance. It is up to the teacher’s discretion whether or not to hold the entire class synchronously. 
  • Complete/participate in all e-learning day learning activities as directed by the teacher.
  • If a student cannot access Zoom, the student should:
    • Email the teacher to communicate they are having an issue logging in.
    • Ask a parent/guardian to call the attendance office (708-456-4242 ext. 1258) and communicate the reason for the student’s “absence” from class as an internet connectivity issue.
    • Log into Canvas and/or follow expectations provided by the teacher.
  • A student is considered absent from class if they do not log into the synchronous class period. They will also be considered absent if they are not actively engaged during Zoom class through teacher-determined methods (breakout rooms, Zoom chat, Pear Deck, exit slips, etc.). 
  • A student’s absence will be excused if the absence is due to a lack of internet connection that has been communicated to the attendance office. The student would still be responsible for the assigned work. 
  • If a student is ill and cannot access Zoom, parents/guardians should follow normal procedures by calling the attendance office. The student would still be responsible for the assigned work. 

Educator Expectations

  • Prior to e-learning day
    • For each class, teachers will post the Zoom link on the front page of Canvas. 
    • During each class period, teachers will show students:
      • How to access ZOOM
      • How to access the activities/assignments for an e-learning day
  • On e-learning day
    • Conduct a synchronous, virtual class for each teaching period in the day. In each virtual class period, teachers should:
      • Take attendance in Skyward by the end of the class period.
      • Remain in the virtual classroom space if the synchronous portion of class is concluded prior to the end of the period so students can ask questions or seek support.
      • Monitor email for information regarding students who are unable to access the virtual classroom space.
  • Teacher absences on an e-learning day
    • An e-learning day absence for a teacher is defined as the teacher being unable to login and synchronously meet with each of their classes.
    • E-learning day absences must be entered in Skyward and coded appropriately (sick, personal, professional development, etc.).
    • E-learning day absences should also be entered into Aesop in order to request a substitute.
    • If a teacher will be absent on an e-learning day, the teacher should immediately contact the Assistant to the Principal and their Division Head as soon as they know they will be absent.
    • The absent teacher should provide lesson plans and Zoom links to the Assistant to the Principal, placed on Canvas, and sent to their Division Head prior to the start of the e-learning day.

Specific Special Educator (Case Manager) Expectations

  • Prior to e-learning day
    • Case Managers will complete the following for each student on their caseload:
      • Verify access to Internet outside of school
      • Determine what e-learning supports are needed/will be provided
        • The IEP team should discuss e-learning plans at the annual review each year
    • Communicate the specifics of students’ e-learning plans with students/families and ensure that students have all necessary materials
      • The e-learning plan for students who do not access the general curriculum will include information about how students will access materials and how evidence of learning will be shown
  • During e-learning day
    • Special Education teachers should attend all virtual classes - both those for which they are the co-teacher and those for which they are the primary classroom teacher.
    • Co-teachers can determine how best to support students through breakout rooms or secondary ZOOM sessions.
    • A teacher should create the modules with the individual student in mind.  These modules may include PDFs, Podcasts, presentations, multimedia, Google Docs, etc.
    • If the student typically receives intensive support throughout the school day or one-on-one adult services, the same level of support should be available through direct and indirect special education services, including telephone contact, synchronous classrooms, email, Google Docs, etc.

Related Service Responsibilities

  • The speech therapist and other related services providers should operate as consultants when the teachers are putting together the modules for students who receive related services.  Although the services may not be replicated through an online platform, there should be plans for the parents to implement some of the services at home under the guidance of the related service provider.  If the student does not have access to the related service over multiple days due to inclement weather, it may be necessary for the District to provide services at an alternate time upon return to school.


Educational Support Personnel (ESP) Expectations:

  • The ESPs listed below are approved to work from an alternative location provided the alternative location meets the outlined expectations:
    • Paraprofessionals should follow their typical, daily schedule and join each class they support via ZOOM based on the e-learning day schedule.
    • Clerical Staff/Administrative Assistants will work during their regularly scheduled work hours from the building or an alternative location.
      • The employee’s alternative location will allow the employee to have regular access to email, phone service, and to the extent possible, address assigned responsibilities.
    • Student Monitors can assist the attendance office during an e-learning day.  An abbreviated schedule of building coverage may be available depending on weather conditions. Please coordinate with the Dean of Students. 

District Responsibilities

  1. If the eLearning day option is exercised, it is the District’s responsibility to make sure the students and parents can access the eLearning instructional activities and understand the expectations on a date prior to the actual eLearning day.
  2. Provide special training for students to learn about the eLearning days.
  3. It is also the District’s responsibility to ensure that students have relevant assistive technology available when an eLearning day is implemented.

*In the event that the severe weather is associated with loss of power/internet access, these expectations will be altered accordingly.  In the event that the severe weather is associated with widespread loss of power/internet access for a large portion of the District attendance areas, an eLearning Day will NOT occur; instead, the day will be a traditional “snow/emergency” day and be made up at the end of the school year.

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