When it was announced that all Pennsylvania schools must close, MMI Preparatory School quickly adapted to an online learning schedule that focused on keeping its students engaged and connected to a sense of normalcy despite the uncertain times.
MMI Head of School Justin Kleinheider noted that students are continuing their fourth quarter studies with online course work in core subjects and capstone assessments.
“Our students and faculty migrated to online learning with impressive speed and enthusiasm. The eagerness to connect renewed the vitality of the learning process and really speaks to our culture of curiosity here at MMI. Students and teachers are excited to learn each and every day,” Kleinheider said.
MMI began its online courses on March 23 with work on core subjects including Science, Social Sciences, World Languages, Advanced Art, Anthropology, Computer Science, Math, and English. Keelyn Radzwich, Class of 2026 parent, said, "I have been pleased with MMI's online learning program. Our son has adjusted very well to the platform. Although distance learning will never replace his experience within the school walls, MMI's design has been a smooth transition for him to continue his learning. I'm impressed with all of his teachers and their accessibility." Two weeks after starting the online learning curriculum, MMI began implementing live lessons into the program during the week of April 6. “Our approach takes into account the varied resources and tools students have at home which was served better by not requiring students to attend class at a certain time but rather using a weekly content posting schedule and periodic live sessions. When we began, our primary goal was to reestablish connection and communication with students and families and then we began scaffolding up the workload and expectations on a weekly basis. Moving a curriculum designed for face-to-face teaching into an entirely online environment is no easy task. All the credit goes to the subject area department chairs and faculty for the incredible dedication and effort they have put into making this transition a success,” said Justin Vincent MMI Dean of Academics
In a letter to parents, Kleinheider outlined MMI's plans for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year. He said MMI remains “committed to a fourth quarter graded experience” with its online classes and will have capstone assessments to mimic exams. The capstone projects will require students to demonstrate cumulative understanding of the course content through an online project-based assignment. Current MMI policies regarding exam exemptions will be upheld. AP exams will take place online per the College Board.
Seniors will complete their classes and capstone assessments by May 15. Students in grades 6-11 will end classes on May 28 and complete their capstone assessments from June 4-8.
Kleinheider said that MMI administrators are working on alternate plans to celebrate the school's annual Upper School Awards Convocation and honor the graduating Class of 2020 in true MMI fashion.
“Rest assured that we will celebrate all our students with academic and athletic awards ceremonies as well as honor societies at a later date. Most importantly, we will celebrate our seniors and show how proud and blessed we were to have each of them in our community. Shining a light on their accomplishments and service will remind us all about the power of the MMI experience. We will have details on all of these events in the near future, as the administrative team is evaluating the state and national restrictions to make sure that we provide the most compelling and safe experience possible for our students and families,” he said.