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Elkhart Public Library helping students with eLearning

Published: Sep. 14, 2020 at 5:15 PM EDT
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ELKHART, Ind. (WNDU) - The Elkhart Public Library today became more kid-friendly.

“We do not have seating for the general public unless they’re using the computer center, and so all of our open space is pretty much right now reserved for students,” said Mary Beth Schlabach, the library’s Assistant Director of Public Services.

Schlabach says the library is ready to open its doors to K-12 eLearners.

The move comes a little late in the eLearning game—but hopefully not too late to make a difference.

At the main branch today, socially-distanced work stations for up to 14 students were opened in an open air portion of the first floor.

The area is reserved for K-12 eLearners.

The main branch will even be open 13 additional hours per week to better accommodate students.

“I anticipate that if there are students that don’t have internet at home this would be a good place to come. If they need space because they just don’t have the space this is a place to come,” said Schlabach.

The library’s four satellite branches will each be able to host two eLearners each.

In the Elkhart Community Schools all students do some eLearning. Some choose 100 percent virtual schooling while others attend school in person two days per week and eLearn the other three days.

While no students showed up for today’s morning session at the main branch between 10:00 a.m. and noon, “This is day one and actually we just sort of announced it on at the end of the day Friday,” said Schlabach.

The afternoon session ran from 2:00 p.m. through 6:00 p.m. after the library had closed for a two hour deep cleaning.

Student eLearners must wear masks and use headphones when playing sound.

Children 7 years of age and under must be accompanied by someone age 14 or older at all times.

Students between 8 and 10 years old must have a caregiver who is at least 14 in the building with them.

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