Learning Reimagined


Jordan Deupree

The Hutchison fountain which sits in the courtyard now includes a mask for Covid-19

At the end of July Hutchison made the difficult decision to partially reopen its campus. As students return to school this fall at Hutchison everyone is very grateful for the opportunity to occasionally attend school in person. With this Hybrid learning model students are given the choice to attend in person classes every other day. While students and parents are kept up to date with the emerging details, Hutchison has spent countless hours working to put together the new schedule. 

Hutchison’s hybrid learning model consists of two different cohorts who attend in person classes on alternating days. Navigating the logics of three different divisions within Hutchison is what made putting this schedule together most challenging. Hutchinson partnered with the One Schoolhouse organization to learn more about what a hybrid learning environment looked like. When going over the possible hybrid schedule options, Hutchison wanted to ensure they are staying as true to Hutchison as possible. Chemistry teacher Rein Reem, said “transitioning to a blended model has been an adventure.” Teachers worked hard all summer to ensure they were ready for school in the fall.

Head of Upper School Adrienne Forgette played a key role in crafting the new schedule. Students were anxious to get back to school after being gone for so long however Mrs. Forgette said “we still wanted to make school a place people wanted to go, we want to make sure people actually want to be here.” Hutchison has always stood apart due to their unique schedule. The school feared that if too much of that was changed no one would want to be here. 

When playing around with different possibilities they decided to change the traditional 90 minute classes to 70 minute classes. Although this was a difficult decision, these are unprecedented that call for change. The school knew “it is very hard for girls to sit in front of computers and learn for an extended amount of time without distraction.” There was constant pressure from parents to know how the school year would look. The school tried their best to accommodate the senior class. The majority of their senior privileges have been taken away which was a mess to incorporate into the schedule. During normal times the senior class was allowed to leave during their free periods and during lunch. The first day of school was also a milestone that the senior class looked forward to. A major change to the schedule allowed for all students to leave campus during select study hall periods. It was important to balance the students needs along with accommodating CDC guidelines. 

Although the new schedule looks very different than previous schedules the school had to make it work. Most students are just glad to finally be back on campus. “ I would not care what the schedule was as long as it meant I could return to campus. As we adjust to this new way of learning, everyone hopes to return to campus completely in the future. Hutchison continues to work closely with the Shelby County Health Department to decide when is the proper time to return to 100 percent capacity.