MARTIN COUNTY, Fla. — Monday marked the beginning of a new era in education in Martin County, St. Lucie, and Okeechobee counties.
For Addie Kneiss, a few extra days off from school was nice.
"I was kind of happy," said Kneiss.
But now, the Hobe Sound seventh grader is back to school, even if she’s not back in school.
Kneiss is one of thousands now learning online, a Herculean task for all local school districts as the coronavirus pandemic continues to grow.
"Our teachers have really stepped up to create an alternative learning system that never existed in Martin County. So I’m super proud of them," said Marsha Powers, the Chairwoman of the Martin County School Board.
9,000 laptops were distributed throughout Martin County to make sure students could get connected.
Despite a last-minute purchase of 3,000 laptops, not every child could get their own. But there was at least one per family.
The Martin County School District has set up four laptop sites throughout the county, so if parents and kids are having problems with the laptops, they can get them fixed or replaced.
Kneiss said it wasn’t hard to get started.
"It was really easy to set up because we used a website we’ve been using for years," said Kneiss.
Students in Palm Beach and Indian River counties begin digital remote learning on Tuesday.