In the wake of the sudden shift to e-learning archdiocesan schools have undertaken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, many schools are getting creative with their approach to this new challenge. Social media, video calls, and live streams, along with other new platforms, have emerged at the forefront of school communication and community in recent weeks.
Mrs. Emily Roth, recently profiled on this blog, started her new position as principal for St. Cecilia School & Academy early, even in the midst of finishing up her previous position. In addition to joining faculty meetings via Zoom, she has introduced the school to FlipGrid, an e-learning service designed to benefit all ages. The school has also broadcast morning prayer on Facebook Live, and Roth led the prayer on Monday, March 30.
At St. Clement of Rome in Des Peres, principal Andrew Long has been livestreaming books for children on YouTube. He has also used Twitter to contact children’s author Margi Preus to obtain her permission to record her books, and the author promised to make her own recordings for the students.
— Margi Preus (@MargiPreus) March 18, 2020
Many schools have used video to send out morning announcements, prayer, and other morale-building messages. Among these has been St. Joseph School in Cottleville, where the school’s lay and religious facutly taped videos from their homes and convent encouraging their students in their remote learning. The video concluded with all faculty reminding students to “Be a saint!”
Immaculate Conception School in Union, Missouri didn’t let the coronavirus quarantine rain on the school’s plans for Spirit Week, which ran from March 30 - April 3. The school daily shared a graphic on Facebook with family activities to mark the week, culminating in “Fort Friday.” Faculty have also been leading morning prayer and the Pledge of Allegiance via Facebook.
Schools across the area are taking unique initiatives in the wake of the unprecedented pandemic environment. Many are documenting their efforts on social media. School social media profiles can be accessed from institution websites, and a directory of school websites can be found here.
The latest updates to archdiocesan schools and operations can be found at http://archstl.org/coronavirus.