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Remote Learning for the 2020-2021 School Year

The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education's (DESE) Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance Download PDF Document outlines requirements and considerations for fall reopening plans with the goal of safely returning as many students as possible to in-person school settings to maximize learning and address students' holistic needs. In all reopening scenarios, remote learning will be necessary for students who will not be attending school in-person, as part of a hybrid learning model, and in case changing COVID-19 conditions require a shift to full remote learning as determined by local and state leaders.

Continuum of fall reopening models; Continuum with four boxes: return without restrictions, in-person learning with new safety requirements, hybrid learning, and remote learning.

This web page contains remote learning guidance and expectations, remote learning program models and supplemental information, and related resources.

Remote Learning Guidance for Districts and Schools

On August 31, 2020, DESE provided supplemental remote learning information and resources (Updated December 11, 2020) Download Word Document, which provides recommendations, resources, and examples for remote learning across three critical areas:

  1. High quality curriculum and instructional materials;
  2. Organizing student schedules for structured learning time; and
  3. Organizing educator time to maximize time with students

On July 24, 2020, DESE released official Remote Learning Guidance for Fall 2020 (Updated October 19, 2020) Download Word Document, which contains the following information:

  • Important information about policy requirements and related guidance for remote learning this fall,
  • Criteria for meeting foundational technology needs, and
  • Conditions and considerations for selecting an appropriate remote learning option for your school or district.

Additional guidance and resources related to remote learning for more specific areas can be found on the following pages:

State Partnerships for Remote Learning Course Content

Following the release of our Remote Learning Guidance for Fall 2020, DESE identified specific partners from which districts can purchase virtual courses or a learning management system, as described under options 4 and 5 of the remote learning guidance (pages 13 and 14).

The Department released an overview document Download Word Document (August 4, 2020) that identifies specific partners that are able to provide these services and includes cost and other information to support school and district decision-making about remote learning resources. Districts are strongly encouraged to review all the information carefully and to contact each partner directly to determine what will best meet the needs of the district's students and families.

The Department has also developed an FAQ document Download Word Document (August 28, 2020) and is pleased to announce free professional development Download Word Document for Massachusetts educators in districts that have chosen to partner with Edgenuity and FLVS Global to support remote learning for their students and families. Districts who have contracted directly with either partner can get registration information from them. Registration information for Edgenuity trainings will be available online on Monday, August 31. FLVS Global will be sending registration links for trainings by Monday, August 31 directly to the primary and technical contacts of districts who have executed contracts to partner with them.

Last Updated: February 18, 2021

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Disclaimer: A reference in this website to any specific commercial products, processes, or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the public and does not constitute endorsement or recommendation by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.