Kids learning in school or online?
Saturday, October 03, 2020
Our small town of 8,000 in Connecticut has opened schools this fall according to what is called a hybrid model. Students spend 2-3 days in school attending classes, and on the other days, they are receiving instruction online.
There has been a lot of discussion - and disagreement about this method.
Some parents have circulated a petition to have students return to school full time with five days of in-school instruction.
Some of the parents need to have their kids in school all day so that they - the parents - can work during the day.
This is especially true for those parents who both must be working to support the family.
Also, some parents feel that their kids are missing the necessary interactions with peers for their social-emotional development.
They also believe that only a portion of the curriculum is provided with a hybrid model. Their kids stand to fall behind their contemporaries in other school systems that are open five days a week. And there are surrounding communities that are open full time.
Other parents in our town have circulated a petition to provide full-time online education for those kids whose parents who do not want them in school at all.
Some parents do not feel it is safe to have their children in school. Some children may have compromised immune systems.
Full time or part time online education of course requires that a capable adult is available for students who require help with the assignments, or with the technology. At risk students are put even more at risk.
Students who do not have that help at home can just opt out altogether from participating in an online program. And unfortunately, many of those students may never recover from the loss.
So in our town, there is a real disagreement about how to proceed with the education of our students for this year. There will be a board of education (Zoom) meeting later this week that I would like to attend. I want to hear both sides of the issue being presented.
I am glad that I do not have to face this issue as a parent. My sons are dealing with it for their kids. My son who is the high school teacher dislikes teaching online because he cannot interact as personally with the students as he can when they are sitting in the classroom with him. Both sons feel their kids are missing out on important social interactions both in and out of the classroom. They both have made arrangements for their kids to socialize with friends after school hours - safely, of course.
This is just one facet of life brought about by Covid.
And this can have far reaching effects for a whole generation of children in our country.