Private school taking classes outside

LA PORTE COUNTY, Ind.-- La Lumiere School, not letting the coronavirus pandemic get in the way of conducting in-person learning by taking on an an outside-of-the-box approach.

The boarding school, spreading out temporary tents and pavilions throughout the 150-acre campus for outdoor learning.

“We created 10 different outdoor classrooms and the thought is, that is just a safer environment and a lower-risk of getting COVID, but still allowing that really important inter-personal connection,” Head of La Lumiere School Adam Kronk.

While the outdoor setups are used the majority of the time, some classes that require hands-on work, like labs, are held indoors.

Whether students and staff are inside or out, safety precautions remain the same.

“We’re pretty confident that what we’re doing is safe but we want to make sure is it indeed mitigating the risk as the way we hoped it would, and it really has,” Kronk said. “In addition to the surveillance testing which we do every week, we of course have everyone wear a mask and physically distance themselves at all times.”

As the cold winter weather approaches, the school’s outdoor system will be making some adjustments.

“Our plan is to be in-person, outside until thanksgiving break. At that time, we’ll finish the semester, there will be 3 weeks left after that break is over, then we’ll do remote for review and final assessment,” Kronk said.

Being able to make in-person learning possible, Kronk said, is something he and the whole school is grateful for.

“We have an opportunity here that a lot of schools don’t have,” Kronk said. “We’re so caught up sometimes in let’s keep them on pace academically, let’s make sure they get all this content. They also need to grow and mature socially and psychologically and emotionally and that takes interpersonal interaction.”

Come springtime, La Lumiere plans to re-vamp the campus and do everything that they’ve been doing safely outside, inside.

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