Share to Google Classroom

Should all public school districts offer an option for online learning?

As the COVID-19 pandemic forced schools to move instruction online, many students struggled with virtual learning. Teachers also faced increased stress as they had to adjust to a vastly different form of instruction. However, some students benefitted from virtual learning environments, learning more than they might have via in-person schooling. Considering this fact, should all public school districts have an online learning option?


As Many Parents Fret Over Remote Learning, Some Find Their Kids Are Thriving

Superintendent On Why Some Students Might Thrive Under Virtual Learning

5 Things We've Learned About Virtual School In 2020

Additional resources to think about

Distance Learning Isn't All Bad...Is It?
In this episode of Above the Noise, Miles explores if there are benefits to online learning and what it means for students.

For some students, virtual learning means falling further behind
This PBS NewsHour segment looks at the difficulties many children and family face in supporting online learning.

The Unexpected Benefits of Remote Learning for Neurodivergent Students | EdSurge
This article looks at the benefits of virtual learning for neurodivergent students which became apparent during COVID-19 lockdowns.

The Toll Of Remote Learning On One Chicago Teacher: 'I Am Learning Everything Again' | WBEZ Chicago
This story speaks to one teacher in Chicago in order to shed light on the difficulties many teachers faced when moving to online instruction.


Who created this message?

  • What kind of “text” is it?
  • How similar or different is it to others of the same genre?
  • What are the various elements (building blocks) that make up the whole?


What creative techniques are used to attract my attention?

  • What do you notice (about the way the message is constructed)? 
  • What’s the emotional appeal?
  • What makes it seem “real?”
  • What's the emotional appeal? Persuasive devices used?

How might different people understand this message differently from me?

  • How many other interpretations could there be?
  • How could we hear about them?
  • How can you explain the different responses?

What lifestyles, values, and points of view are represented in, or omitted from, this message?

  • What type of person is the reader/watcher/listener invited to identify with?
  • What ideas or perspectives are left out?
  • How would you find what’s missing?
  • What judgments or statements are made about how we treat other people?


Why is this message being sent?

  • What's being sold in this message? What's being told? 
  • Who is served by or  benefits from the message
    – the public?
    – private interests?
    – individuals?
    – institutions?

5 Key Questions of Media Literacy used with permission from the Center for Media Literacy.
Copyright 2002-2021, Center for Media Literacy,


Should all public school districts offer an option for online learning?

How was your Thinkalong experience?

We actively use feedback to provide better resources to students and educators, so please take 1 minute to provide feedback and help us improve.