ROCHESTER, Mich. - Prior to any declaration of school closures in Michigan, Rochester Community Schools made the decision ahead of time, anticipating the spread of coronavirus.
Hours after its decision, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer called on every one of the state's public and private K-12 schools to shut down until April 6.
"It's prudent for us to make a decision to close," said Dr. Robert Shaner, superintendent of Rochester Community Schools
School officials are now working to determine what education in the district will look like moving forward.
"We're using some google applications, we're using things like Moodle, Schoology, so it's not really an online platform it's using Internet for our teachers to deliver as personal instruction to our students as we can," said Shaner.
With class canceled for students, teachers and faculty were in the school on Friday training so they can go digital next week.
"And within the perimeters of crisis we're dealing with, I don't want people to think this is going to be everyday instruction that a child receives in a school building," said Shaner.
School leaders admit this is a fluid plan that could change as they meet the needs of the school community
"We're going to make sure we meet the needs of kids both socially, emotionally, and academically," said Shaner.
The school district will also work to help students outside of academic concerns
"We do have students that are on free and reduced lunch, students that don't have Internet accessibility in their home and they don't have computers. We're making provisions for that," said Shaner.
As efforts continue to fight coronavirus, Shaner believes the priority is and will always be the students
"We're really trying to meet the needs of kids and maintain continuity of education and really maintaining the emotional social contact with their schools," said Shaner.