In a year full of unique challenges, Kentucky School for the Blind (KSB) students and staff continue to persist through the remainder of the 2020-2021 school year.
KSB returned to in-person instruction on March 1 after nearly a year of virtual learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While providing an update during the May 3 meeting of the KSB Advisory Board, KSB Principal Peggy Sinclair-Morris said 17 students currently remain in virtual learning and 52 are learning in person, although not all of those learning in person are staying in KSB dorms.
Since KSB does not have staff specifically dedicated to virtual learning, teachers are leading instruction for both virtual and in-person learners and ensuring virtual students are receiving the same instruction as those learning in person.
“The teachers have stepped up and are doing a good job, but it’s hard,” said Sinclair-Morris.
KSB also is preparing to offer three weeks of summer school, beginning June 7. The first week will be available to both KSB students and other Kentucky students who are blind or visually impaired, while the second week will be only for KSB middle school and high school students. The third week will be available only to KSB elementary students.
More information and registration forms for KSB summer school programs can be found on KSB’s website.
Supplemental School Year Program
Looking ahead to next year, the Kentucky Department of Education’s director of state schools, Carol Ann Morrison, updated the KSB Advisory Board on Senate Bill 128, signed into law on March 24.
The Supplemental School Year Program allows any K-12 student enrolled during the 2020-2021 school year to request to use the 2021-2022 school year as a supplemental year to retake or supplement courses the student already has taken.
Students had until May 1 to submit a request to participate in the program to their local board of education. As the board of education for KSB, the Kentucky Board of Education (KBE) will have a special meeting on May 18 to review these requests.
KDE released updated guidance, Senate Bill 128: Supplemental School Year Program 2.0, on April 16 to assist students and districts as they make their decisions whether or not to participate in the program.
Pages 9 and 10 of the guidance specifically address special education.