schools

Some parents want to hire tutors, start mini schools this year. Most can’t afford to.

CHICAGO – Millions of parents across the nation are facing difficult decisions about what to do with their kids this school year. But the pandemic affects every family differently, for reasons that range from their socioeconomic status to their health to the fields they work in.

Some parents are in a better position than others to ensure their children stay healthy and keep up with schoolwork, and researchers are raising questions about how the pandemic may exacerbate existing educational inequalities.

“Kids who are disproportionately low-income are at highest risk for learning losses,” said Ariel Kalil, a professor at the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy. “When these gaps in learning open up, absent some really serious and sustained intervention, the kids won’t (catch up). That will result in less academic achievement, lower lifetime earnings and even lower productivity in adulthood.”

USA TODAY spoke with more than a dozen

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Online school? Some parents want to hire tutors, start mini schools this year. Most can’t afford to.

CHICAGO – Millions of parents across the nation are facing difficult decisions about what to do with their kids this school year. But the pandemic affects every family differently, for reasons that range from their socioeconomic status to their health to the fields they work in.

Some parents are in a better position than others to ensure their children stay healthy and keep up with schoolwork, and researchers are raising questions about how the pandemic may continue to exacerbate existing educational inequalities.

“Kids who are disproportionately low-income are at highest risk for learning losses,” said Ariel Kalil, a professor at the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy. “When these gaps in learning open up, absent some really serious and sustained intervention, the kids won’t (catch up). That will result in less academic achievement, lower lifetime earnings and even lower productivity in adulthood.”

USA TODAY spoke with more than

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As More Schools Stay Online, One That Opened Now Has a Virus Problem

Greenfield Central Junior High School in Greenfield, Ind., where some students were ordered to quarantine for two weeks after a student tested positive for the coronavirus on the school's first day with students back, July 31, 2020. (A J Mast/The New York Times)
Greenfield Central Junior High School in Greenfield, Ind., where some students were ordered to quarantine for two weeks after a student tested positive for the coronavirus on the school’s first day with students back, July 31, 2020. (A J Mast/The New York Times)

One of the first school districts in the country to reopen its doors during the coronavirus pandemic did not even make it a day before being forced to grapple with the issue facing every system actively trying to get students into classrooms: What happens when someone comes to school infected?

On the first day of classes Thursday, a call from the county health department notified Greenfield Central Junior High School in Indiana that a student who had walked the halls and sat in various classrooms had tested positive for the coronavirus.

Administrators began an emergency protocol, isolating the student and ordering everyone who had come into close

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As Maryland public schools go online this fall, private and parochial schools ready to welcome students on campus

As Maryland’s public schools announced their decisions to keep their doors closed at least for the beginning of the school year, private schools have done just the reverse — arguing they have the ability to give families the in-person classes they want while keeping students safe.

Because of their small size, some experts say private and Catholic schools, are better able to make quick adjustments to their curriculum and often have more physical space to spread students out. But financial forces and teachers unions are also shaping public and private school decisions.

“The driver has been meeting the needs of our students,” said Donna Hargens, the superintendent of Catholic Schools in the Baltimore Archdiocese. “The interpersonal interaction is essential to the learning process and we know that some of our students struggled with remote learning especially those with learning needs.”

Public schools, meanwhile, often have to cope with tightly-packed classrooms

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Who decides when schools close if students, staff contract coronavirus or cases spike locally? Superintendents seek guidance from state

While the state’s plan to leave some school reopening details in the hands of individual districts allows for greater flexibility, it also could leave school administrators having to make tough decisions about how and when to close school buildings if students or staff contract the coronavirus or an individual community becomes immersed in an outbreak.

A number of districts say they want more guidance from the state on how to respond to confirmed infections or spikes in COVID-19 in the wider community. Districts plan to work with local health officials on contract tracing and say they’ll likely send home cohorts of students or close individual schools, but they have not developed benchmarks for those actions, or for opening things back up.

Gov. Ned Lamont Wednesday said the state would “have a strong recommendation that you close those schools” if the rate of positive coronavirus tests reached 10%, but stopped short

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Trump suggests delaying election; Miami schools defy Gov. DeSantis, go online-only; FDA sets at-home test rules

President Trump suggested delaying the November election Thursday, saying reliance on mail-in voting due to the pandemic would be “inaccurate and fraudulent.”

The Commerce Department issued a record-breaking report of the U.S. economy, announcing that the gross domestic product contracted at a staggering seasonally adjusted annual rate of 32.9% in the April-June period. A surge in virus infections and deaths that has slowed business reopenings in many states could signal more bad news ahead.

In Florida, reeling from rising daily death reports, the state’s largest school district announced that it will begin the school year virtually on Aug. 31. This despite a push by Gov. Ron DeSantis to have school districts provide an in-classroom options.

And in Washington, D.C., Democratic leaders and Trump administration officials said they were far apart on a $1 trillion stimulus package. Without it, there won’t be another round of $1,200 stimulus checks or another cash

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Should Your Children’s Schools Reopen Yet? The Facts & the Unknowns

If you’re looking for a straight yes-or-no on whether it’s safe to send your children back to school in August or September … sorry, we can’t give that to you right now. Actually, no one can. But what we can do, as this debate rages on in households, state capitals, school district offices, and the federal government, is help you gather the info you’ll need to make that decision. This is not to say all of that info exists, exactly, but maybe it will eventually. All we can say is maybe it will help you to have all the confusing bits and pieces of information on the very difficult dilemma of school reopening distilled into one place.

There is also the chance that the decision won’t be up to you. Maybe you live in a place that’s opening schools no matter what. Maybe you have a job that requires you

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Here’s How to Make Schools Safer for Reopening in the Fall

(Bloomberg Opinion) — During the weekend, the New York Times highlighted some of the comments it has received in reaction to articles about reopening schools. They were not a cause for optimism.

“Despite all my love for my students, I don’t really want to die for them or anyone else. Neither does my partner, who is living with cancer,” a teacher from Minneapolis wrote.

“Of course we need to reopen schools,” said a teacher from Maine, who then asked whether school nurses would be responsible for all the coronavirus testing that would be needed and where the schools would get enough personal protective equipment. “How many teachers receive combat pay while being forced into mortal heroics?” he added.

A parent from Massachusetts: “Does my daughter want to go back to the classroom? Yes. Do I prefer that she does? Yes. Do I want to risk her health in order for

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Back to school? Despite CDC recommendations, most major schools going online as COVID-19 cases spike

As COVID-19 cases rise in most states, the prospect of in-person learning this fall at the country’s major school districts is becoming increasingly remote.

So far, nine of the top 15 school systems by enrollment plan to start the fall semester online, with two more currently planning a hybrid of in-person and online classes, according to Education Week magazine’s reopening tracker. Other top districts shifted school schedules later, hoping for cases to decline or for teachers and administrators to have more time to plan for the school year. 

As back-to-school season approaches, it’s highly likely the majority of big districts will start learning remotely while they work out plans for socially distant reopenings, said Annette Anderson, deputy director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Safe and Healthy Schools.

The biggest factor: whether the community where the school is located is seeing infection rates decrease, said Kristi Wilson, superintendent of the

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CDC COVID-19 advice tells schools to wash hands, wear masks, don’t touch. But not when to close

School districts across California continue to debate how and when to reopen — if they should at all.
School districts across California continue to debate how and when to reopen — if they should at all.

Parent check-list for back-to-school: Label your child’s face mask with permanent marker. Have them practice putting on and taking off their mask without touching the cloth. Make a labeled, resealable plastic bag to store their mask during lunch time. 

Those are among the suggestions the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has for school administrators and parents as families prepare for school to resume in the fall.

Students should wear masks, wash their hands frequently and socially distance to protect against COVID-19 as schools reopen this fall, CDC urged in new guidance documents for administrators published Thursday.

“It is critically important for our public health to open schools this fall,” said CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield in a release.

“I know this has been a difficult time for our Nation’s families. School

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