Park Ridge Junior and Senior High School experiments with virtual classes

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Michelle Charlesworth is in Park Ridge with the story.

Imagine going to high school without ever leaving your house.

A school district in New Jersey is experimenting with virtual classes.

That means learning without ever having to show up at school, and as you can imagine it's a big hit with the students.

Students learned sign language to convey a song in theater. Each class went on as usual, only the classroom classes were 90% empty and kids were signing in from places like coffee and bake shops.

"Social Studies for instance we are doing a walking tour of Egypt, so pretty much the students are walking a town in Egypt," said Troy Lederman, Principal of Park Ridge School.

Every single student in grades 7 through 12 has a laptop, paid for by the school budget, and as they logged on Monday morning, administrators realized attendance and participation were already better than on a normal day.

"I think more and more people are working from home, it's being done online, and hopefully this experience will give them the opportunity to see what their future is going to be like," said Robert Gamper, the superintendent.

For the "Algebra 1" class, the teacher says that everyone signed on early and has been doing math problems, when they are supposed to be at lunch, which is fine with him!

Some friends decided to kick off their shoes and meet at one house to spend the school day together.

"I was a bit more focused here than at school," one of the students said.

The students say this virtual school day has tested their concentration, shaken things up, and seems more like real life.

"So you're not getting any questions like, 'How am I going to use this in my life?' Right? That's the question you guys always get, but this is self-evident," Eyewitness News said.

"You got it, you got it," Lederman said.

Tuesday, it is shoes back on as classroom school fires back up again.
Related Topics:
educationstudentshigh schoolcomputersPark Ridge
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