NREA Weekly Updates September 4th, 2020

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NREA Resources COVID-19
NREA "The Rural Voice" Podcast Series
Become A Member of NREA Join Online
50 States in 50 Weeks:
Each week, NREA and the I Am A Rural Teacher Campaign share how vast rural America is. Check out our 50 States highlight on Facebook:

We now have a public-facing spreadsheet showing every state featured so far, where to see it, and a story from the state! Check it out:

We'd love to hear from you! Submit today at We are also still taking COVID-19 submissions: And we recently began accepting perspective for the Black Rural Teachers Matter Project:

Feel free to contact Hailey Winkleman, the NREA Advocacy Liaison for this campaign, at with any questions about submitting your story.
IDLA’s Continuous Learning Categories

Category A - Parent Directed Learning
Resources sent to Parent or Guardian to work with their child
Category B - Teacher Directed Distance Learning (Remote Teaching)
Teachers replicate their traditional classroom in a remote classroom setting. Districts use their existing content.
Category C - Interactive Teacher Directed Distance Learning (Remote Teaching)
Teachers replicate their traditional classroom online using content specifically designed for online learning like IDLA’s content. Teachers use resources designed for online learning.
Category D - Full Online Learning - IDLA Course
Teachers completely change their pedagogy. All content and resources are designed for online learning. Differs from the traditional classroom. Example: Districts/Charters can enroll their students in full IDLA classes and receive all IDLA supports for students registered in IDLA classes.
Synopsys of Offerings
  • IDLA is providing IDLA course curriculum (online textbooks) to schools.
  • IDLA hosted multiple training webinars covering a variety subjects. (Examples: How to plan for an eDay, how to use IDLA content, how to use Google Meets to hold a virtual class, best practices in using synchronous tools for a virtual class, and strategies and example activities to use in a synchronous session.)
  • IDLA provided a support desk where district/charters can obtain support on how to implement their eDays, and provide additional resources and services through the spring.
  • Districts/Charters can enroll their students in full IDLA classes and receive all IDLA supports for students registered in IDLA classes. Custom Sessions and Flex courses are available to meet district needs.
  • Direct professional development to school districts throughout the summer on blended learning strategies.
  • Created a series of HyperDocs, asynchronous training documents, for use by teachers to learn about blended learning.
  • Help Desk staffed throughout the Fall and Winter to support teachers.
  • Summer Reading Program. In conjunction with IPTV, IDLA offered a summer reading bootcamp to help students prepare for back to school.
  • Elementary School. Offer K-6 ELA and Math program.
  • Governors K12 Emergency Council
  • Digital Divide Committee

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Rural Education Achievement Program (REAP)

The Rural Education Achievement Program (REAP) team is pleased to announce that 4,238 Small, Rural School Achievement (SRSA) grants have been issued to local educational agencies (LEAs) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2020, totaling more than $92,000,000 in funding. SRSA funds can be used to carry out activities authorized under Title I, Part A, Title II, Part A, Title III, Title IV, Part A, and Title IV, Part B.
The FY 2019 and FY 2020 SRSA awards have a 27-month obligation period. Additionally, the FY 2018 SRSA grant performance period has been extended – FY 2018 SRSA funds must be obligated by September 30, 2021 and liquidated (drawdown funds from G5) by December 30, 2021. See the chart below for a breakdown of current SRSA grant cycle timelines: See below and click image for more information.
Rural Broadband
A strong rural America starts with connectivity
A strong rural America starts with connectivity
Over the last several months, COVID-19 has changed our lives in a multitude of ways. Our routines were digitized almost overnight as business meetings transitioned to conference calls, classrooms became virtual meetings, and time spent with loved ones and friends became a luxury.
While we all depend on broadband connectivity every day, the global pandemic has underscored just how much we rely upon this technology.
In 21st century America, reliable connectivity is something many of us take for granted. Just like flipping the switch to turn on your lights, we’ve come to expect reliable, fast, uninterrupted access to the Internet.
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Sharing Information From Our Partners and Sponsors:
VHS Learning
VHS Learning
VHS Learning’s Online Teaching Best Practices—These 5 articles include how to give effective feedback, build your teacher presence, keep students engaged, set a positive tone, and build an engaging classroom homepage.
Read More
NEF (National Education Foundation) – SUNY (State University of New York) Grants for Schools and Colleges:
NEF (National Education Foundation) – SUNY (State University of New York) Grants for Schools and Colleges:
  • 100% Grant: NO COST QZAB (K-12 Sustainability and STEM+)
  • 100% Grant: 12-hour SUNY Digital Literacy online course for 6-12 grade students, teachers and college students, to help improve their remote learning ability by 40%. See
  • 90% Grant for 9-12 Grades CTE, and College Career Prep using 7,000 top-rated online courses, and 200 industry certifications with live mentors and SUNY certificates. See
  • 80%Grant for K-8 math and Reading (an average student advances one grade level in math or reading in 25-35 learning hours as per SUNY evidence-based evaluation).See
  • 80% Grant for 9-12 all high school academic subjects. See
These are highly effective grant programs suited for Classroom, Online, Remote Learning or Blended Learning. With our 80%-100% grants, the cost to school districts/schools/colleges is a fraction of the market cost just for the learning software.What makes our Total STEM+ System Solution (TSSS) most effective is our IMPACT services, which no one else provides!
Legislative Updates
Good morning Superintendent,
As you kick off the 2020-21 school year and navigate the return to school—whether in person or online—in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are writing to invite you to participate in a nationwide effort called the National COVID-19 School Response Dashboard. This initiative is motivated by the need for better data on COVID-19 in schools as school leaders are still navigating through uncertainty as the school year has begun. The goal will be to provide educational leaders, such as yourselves, with information you need to answer important questions such as: How many cases are in your community? How are schools in your surrounding community reopening?
We will collect baseline information on schools as the school year starts and follow them over time and record information on COVID-19 cases. We are interested in schools which are reopening in person, but also those who are opening hybrid or fully remote. We are committed to making the data entry straightforward and simple for districts and schools, and the data will be available publicly in a navigable dashboard.
This effort is a collaboration between AASA, The School Superintendents Association; the National Association of Secondary School Principals; the National Association of Elementary School Principals; Brown University Professor of Economics Emily Oster; and Qualtrics, the experience management company.
Important note: The publicly available data for this project will be identified only at the county and state level and will not be identified by school, to ensure privacy. You can see more details on the dashboard here.
At the core of the effort is the collection of data at the school level, including a baseline survey and a bi-weekly survey. You can preview these: Baseline Survey; Bi-Weekly Survey. We have prioritized making the survey as light in touch as possible, and to make the time required of you, as superintendent, minimal.
What are we asking?
  • At the district level, you can enroll in this effort in two different ways.
  • You provide us with a list of your schools and a contact person at each school. We then communicate with the schools directly with the baseline survey and each iteration of the biweekly survey.
  • You collect/report this data directly from your central district office. We would be happy to organize the data collection in a way that works for you.
Next Steps:
  • Enroll Your District: With this first outreach, we are asking you to enroll your school district in this effort. You can access an enrollment form here. In this enrollment form, you can indicate the best way to organize accessing your district data.
We look forward to your participation and feedback. You will receive a follow up email from Qualtrics once you enroll. Please reach out to with any additional questions.
Noelle Ellerson Ng
Associate Executive Director, Advocacy & Governance
AASA, The School Superintendents Association
Twitter: @Noellerson
NREA State Affiliates
NREA Virtual Conference Info
NREA Sponsors & Partners
The Rural Educator
Rural Ed. Instructional Support
NREA Foundation & Research Awards Announcements


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