Raleigh, NC – In the first week of his return to school a year and a half later, seven-year-old Benmedrin was exposed to a COVID-19 classmate and sent home with 7,000 others district students. paddy field. 14 days of quarantine.
I didn’t learn much at Ben’s House.
One day last week, the teacher did not give the second grader a job. According to her mother, by 9:30 a.m., others had completed their daily homework of solving 10 math problems or punctuating 4 sentences.
“It was a very, very, very easy task, just prepared a lot,” said Kenan Medlin.
Some governors, education departments and local school boards have been hampered, despite billions of dollars in federal funding available to them to prepare for emergencies. to augment.
In addition, some school systems are handcuffed by laws or state policies aimed at keeping students in class and blocking or severely limiting their return to distance education.
The turmoil and the risk of seeing young people fall further academically disturbed both parents and educators.
The Benz District Board of Education in Union County, a suburb of Charlotte, resigned on Monday and voted to allow most quarantined students to return to class unless they are infected or present. symptoms. The state’s Supreme Health Authority on Wednesday threatened to take legal action against the district unless it reverts to more stringent quarantine procedures.
Union County school officials do not provide virtual instruction, but contact parents of affected children to help them match guardians and other helpers for the children. He said he was looking for it. One in six students in the Mask Option district was quarantined last week.
In rural Wellington, Kansas, students were a week away from school when the COVID-19 outbreak occurred. Instead of going online, the district decided to add 10 minutes a day to make up for the time lost during the resumption on Tuesday. I also needed a mask.
Kansas districts stand to lose money if they offer more than 40 hours of online or hybrid learning per student per year.
In Georgia, the Ware County 6,000 student district closed the school completely for three weeks in mid-August. The school district said it was unreasonable for teachers to provide both virtual and face-to-face instruction. It is also mentioned that there is a lack of internet services in some rural areas.
In Missouri, the school board in July withdrew a rule allowing school districts to provide blended and distance education for several months at a time.
As the eight small rural school systems did this year, the district, which has been completely closed due to the COVID-19 outbreak, is currently limited to 36 hours of alternative education, such as zoom classes. Then they have to make up for lost time later.
The Illinois State Board of Education recently passed a resolution requiring districts to make remote counseling available to quarantined students.
Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, said the law limiting virtual education was shortsighted. She said some of those states also don’t have mask or vaccine requirements.
“It’s just crazy because it’s still a pandemic and Delta revealed that it’s not over as much as we all wanted,” she said. ..
In North Carolina, state health officials removed the requirement for districts to provide distance education to isolate students in July. “
Meanwhile, parents are faced with difficult decisions.
Medlin is pulling her two children out of school Thursday and is planning home schooling as was the case last year.
Emily Goss, another Union County parent, said a five-year-old kindergarten child was also planning home schooling after being quarantined for six days in the school year with no learning options to distance.
“He’s supposed to play outside, ride a bike, and learn to make new friends. I wonder what he’s going to do. It’s not what childhood should be, it’s just sad, ”she said. “It’s not possible all year round.”
Hollingsworth was reported by the Kansas Mission. Associated Press writer Jeff Amy of Atlanta and Colin Binkley of Boston also contributed. Anderson is a member of the Associated Press / American Houses of Parliament News Initiative Report. Report for America is a national, nonprofit service program that places reporters in the local newsroom to report on unreported issues.
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