ALBANY — Proms, spring sports and other school activities have been canceled as the state’s closure of public schools will last at least another month as educational institutions deal with the coronavirus crisis.
Students are being introduced to a whole new kind of education as distance learning will no doubt be the new normal for some time. Albany State University, like all of the University System of Georgia institutions, has initiated distance learning for the remainder of the semester, as has Albany Technical College.
And the Dougherty County School System’s schools also are taking that route, having started the process this week of providing laptop computers and mobile Internet hot spots to students.
The Dougherty County School Board discussed the remainder of the few weeks that will be left in the semester when the new state directive expires but made no final decision on the few weeks of classes that would remain on the calendar beyond that date.
“Today, Gov. (Brian) Kemp issued an executive order to discontinue in-person instruction through April 24, with the possibility of school restarting on April 27,” Superintendent Kenneth Dyer said on Thursday.
Other activities, including sports and extracurricular activities have been “suspended indefinitely,” Dyer said.
Since schools closed on March 13, the system has delivered 66,000 meals to students along bus routes and plans to initiate weekend meals.
Dyer also announced that six school system staff members and a second-grade student have tested positive for the coronavirus. Staff members and parents of students who may have been exposed have been notified.
The system will complete curbside distribution of internet devices this week to high school seniors, and will begin distribution next week to dual-enrollment students. After that, distribution will begin to students in other grades.
All Albany Tech locations, including the main campus, are closed indefinitely, and the college has advised students to keep in contact with instructors by email or phone.