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Launch Program Will Offer New Options To Educate Students

Students wishing to tackle a subject that cannot be taught on the Ste. Genevieve High School or Ste. Genevieve Middle School campus may have a new option for learning.

The Ste. Genevieve R-II Board of Education voted on October 15 to enter into a partnership with Launch, a statewide program out of Springfield that offers schools a chance to take part in distance learning.

The program also could be useful for students kept at home by health issues or those kept out of school for disciplinary reasons.

Missouri public schools are now required to provide virtual instructions to students “if it’s in their best interests,” assistant superintendent Dr. Paul Taylor told the board.

Launch is one of a handful of virtual programs approved by the state. Taylor said he had spoken to officials at schools who have joined Launch who “were pleasantly surprised at the rigor of the program.”

It also offers flexibility.

“It’s not just for students who are struggling,” Taylor said. “It’s not just for students who are advanced. It can be fit to all types of students.”

That includes suspended students.

“It’s still our responsibility to provide them an education,” Taylor said.

He believes Launch will allow those students to keep up with school work “and maybe not get so far behind.”

Launch, which began in 2017, has already enrolled 228 Missouri school districts.

All of the instructors are Missouri-certified teachers. In addition, all R-II teachers will have an opportunity to gain certification to be Launch instructors.

See complete story in the October 23 edition of the Herald.

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