After months of social distancing and stay-at-home orders, a new school will start in a few days. However, this one will be significantly different from our usual ones. Since the outbreak of the coronavirus in January, all schools have moved their classes online.
More parents are starting to ask themselves if they will send their children to school this year. This predicament is seen throughout the country, which is why they turn to their local government. States have different protocols and plans in reopening or planning to reopen schools.
Although many are born in the digital age, some students are more comfortable with in-person learning. Some organizations, like the American Academy of Pediatrics and School Superintendents Association, support in-person learning because it’s an ideal learning environment.
Aside from learning through their books, students highly benefit from in-person learning that offers nutritional support. It also gives children the emotional and physical safety they need during the day.
However, not all schools are required to provide in-person learning. This type of education should not be considered in locations where there is a continued SARS-CoV-2 transmission. Generally, consider in-person learning if their percentage of positive cases and hospital admissions are steadily declining. This rule, however, should be observed over four to six weeks.
Parents, teachers, and school administrators should also look into health screenings. All school personnel and the students should have daily screenings. Schools can go beyond and do two health screenings: before entering school and when exiting the school. Checking everyone going inside and outside the school is the easiest way to prevent infection.
Rudimentary protocols and guidelines should always be present in schools. School administrators and teachers can prohibit students or other people if they do not follow protocols. Here are the basic guidelines that schools should follow:
- Everyone should wear face masks.
- Practice social and physical distancing in classrooms; students should have at least three feet of distance between them.
- Have one-way traffic in the hallways.
- Practice handwashing.
- Schools should always disinfect the classrooms and hallways before and after the school day.
For more advanced protocols, schools can buy special equipment to combat the spread of the virus. Administrators should always talk to the local government officials on more ways to have safe in-person learning.
The coronavirus is disrupting education. Running and managing schools in this pandemic lets administrators gauging health risks against the effect of interrupting in-person learning. However, there are pros and cons to both remote learning and going to school. It is now up to the parents and guardians to decide the best route for their students.