Teachers and staff don’t trust the school district to keep them safe.
Parents don’t trust that unions want to get kids back in school.
Districts don’t trust the county and the state to provide clear and consistent guidance.
It feels like an intractable problem.
Instead of trying to solve everything at once, we are better off collaborating on taking smaller steps that get us going in the right direction. We can’t get every kid back in school tomorrow, but let’s start getting some kids back on campus very quickly.
Start with the small groups that have already been approved- let’s prioritize getting them on campus. Next, let the teachers who want to return to in-person instruction do so. Let the students of those teachers come back, even if it is just for a few hours a couple of times a week to start. This is essentially what Dr. Clark has proposed for MDUSD.
Let’s give teachers and staff the opportunity to trust that all the safety measures are being taken to protect everyone. Let’s build trust for families who are concerned that students won’t even come back in the fall. Trust that we will look out for each other- parents won’t sent kids to school who might be ill. Give parents an opportunity to help with the return and be involved in supporting it.
It isn’t perfect for anyone. But it is a start. It get kids back in the classroom. It allows the District to build on it over the summer and help catch up students who have fallen behind. It is a foundation for having the next school year provide full-time campus instruction.