Bradford County schools ditching ‘Essentials’ online learning option

The administrative office for the Bradford County School District is in Starke, Fl. Image captured on Oct. 16, 2020.
The administrative office for the Bradford County School District is in Starke, Fl. Image captured on Oct. 16, 2020. (Copyright 2020 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.)

Starting next semester, the Bradford County School District is dropping its Bradford Essentials online learning format and shifting students back into brick-and-mortar classrooms.

Sherree Alvarez, the district’s director of school improvement and accountability, confirmed the change in an emailed statement Thursday. Alvarez said families will no longer have the option to enroll students in Essentials, but a limited number can be enrolled in Bradford Virtual Select, a separate format.

The Essentials option, which allows students to learn from home, was originally created in response to Gov. Ron DeSantis' executive order calling for districts to reopen for in-person instruction five days a week. It was among five options available to families, including brick-and-mortar and home schooling.

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“Moving into the second semester, Bradford will not have the Innovative learning option (Essentials) which was created under the Governor’s emergency order for the fall semester,” Alvarez said. “Those students will be moved back to Brick and Mortar,” but may apply for the Bradford Virtual Select program.

Alvarez said enrollment for the Select learning format will be limited, and that students who struggled to complete coursework or pass online courses will be steered toward brick-and-mortar learning.

She said families who want to apply for that option must do so between Nov. 16 and Nov. 30.

For the second semester, students will have four options: brick-and-mortar, Bradford Virtual Select, MyDistrict Virtual School and home schooling. For an explanation of what each of those options entails, review the school district’s infographic below:

Bradford County students will have four learning options beginning next semester. (Via Bradford County School District)

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