FILE - Virus Outbreak Illinois Testing

A member of the Illinois National Guard directs a driver after being tested for the COVID-19 virus at a drive-thru test site for medical personnel and first responders at a closed vehicle emissions testing center, Wednesday, March 25, 2020, in Chicago. 

(The Center Square) – Illinois schools won't have to make up days missed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but will have to implement remote learning starting Tuesday, the Illinois State Board of Education announced.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker closed public and private schools statewide from March 17 through at least April 7. Through Monday, those days were declared "act of God" days. Starting Tuesday, schools will be required to use remote learning.

Remote learning days "count toward the minimum length of the school year and absolutely do not need to be made up," according to a news release from the Illinois State Board of Education. 

"I am deeply grateful to the 63 members of the Remote Learning Advisory Group for giving their time and their expertise to help ISBE and schools across the state navigate a new way of teaching, learning, and caring for our students," state Superintendent of Education Carmen Ayala said in a statement. "We continue to be awed by the phenomenal creativity, resilience, empathy, and problem-solving prowess of Illinois' educators, administrators, and students. The stories we see every day  on social media, in the news, and in our email show us just how focused our educators are on supporting our children in this time of crisis."

The State Board of Education's Remote Learning Recommendations "strongly encourage that school districts' local grading policies during Remote Learning Days embrace the principle of 'no educational harm to any child' and that school districts adopt grading models of pass or incomplete," according to a news release.

In addition, Gov. J.B. Pritzker's signed an executive order that suspended all state assessment testing for the spring.

Regional Editor

Brett Rowland has worked as a reporter in newsrooms in Illinois and Wisconsin. He most recently served as news editor of the Northwest Herald in Crystal Lake, Illinois. He previously held the same position at the Daily Chronicle in DeKalb.