Do you have options for the upcoming school year?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by K-5_teacherguy, Jul 26, 2020.

  1. K-5_teacherguy

    K-5_teacherguy Companion

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    Jul 26, 2020

    I'm wondering if teachers and students around the country have 100% remote teaching and learning options through their school districts for the upcoming year. Please understand, I'm not looking to get into a debate about whether or not we should be back in-person. I've already seen way too many arguments on social media and I find it exhausting.

    I teach in a suburb of central Ohio. Pretty much every district in my county is offering a full-time option for both students and teachers who aren't comfortable physically returning for whatever reason. The plan for now is to go back in late August with a hybrid model (half the kids come every other day to maintain distancing) for those who didn't sign-up for online. Of course, this could change at any time. My district has around 17,000 students and 1,600 teachers. About 1,800 students and 150 teachers signed up for online.

    Is this pretty much what everyone else is experiencing? Or are districts in other areas simply deciding between in-person, or 100% online for everyone with no real option for teachers and students/families? Just curious.
     
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  3. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Our students have the option of in classroom or online. Teachers do not and are expected to be on campus full time. :(
     
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  4. Ima Teacher

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    Jul 26, 2020

    My district has two options for students: hybrid (2 days in person/3 days remotely) or full-remote. Teachers do not have an option.
    DH’s district has two options, too: in-person 5 days or remote 5 days. Teachers do not have an option.
     
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  5. TnKinder

    TnKinder Companion

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    My district gave parents the option of in-person or virtual. Devices will be issued to all virtual students and hot spots are being set up by the district. Teachers are expected to teach from their classrooms whether it is in-person or virtual, but teachers can request to teach from home. Request have to be approved by the principal before it is sent to the board for final approval.
     
  6. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Jul 26, 2020

    My district is currently planning to start fully virtual, with no option to attend in person. However, when it becomes "safer" in our region, we'll do a hybrid plan. In that case, students whose parents opted for the semester-long virtual instruction will stay at home. The teachers of those courses will also be able to stay at home. Everyone else will return to school. We haven't received any formal communications yet, but one of our district-level administrators has said that teachers can apply for the virtual positions. If there are enough for everyone who wants them, then all will get them. If there are more teachers wanting them than there are available, they will go to those with medical issues first.
     
  7. RainStorm

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  8. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Currently, my district's plan is to offer 100% in person or 100% virtual options to students. Hybrid models have fallen way out of favor here as they were so unpopular with both parents and teachers- they still have all of the childcare issues as 100% virtual while not really being much safer than 100% in person either. My district is also being up front that even with the in person model, it's highly likely that individual schools, classrooms, or the entire district will need to quickly go into remote learning for a period of days or weeks based on outbreaks or county health guidelines. They're advising families who really want predictability to choose the virtual option.

    Per usual, things are changing quickly so it's so hard to say what will stick. Most recently, the information coming out was that more students than teachers are asking for the virtual option. About 70% of families want in person while 90% of teachers do. Personally, with the recent surge in cases and all of the new information coming out about younger/healthier people getting severely ill or even dying I'm more nervous than I was about going back. However, I've been in reopening meetings recently at both my school level and the district level and the teachers I'm hearing from are all wanting to go back. In one meeting, we were asked to state our biggest concern and almost everyone else said, "not being able to go back in person." :rolleyes:

    Based on current information, it seems like there might be more remote positions than teachers who want them. I was toying with asking for a remote position with the caveat that high risk people should be taken care of first. We don't have to indicate preference until next week and with things changing so quickly I'm going to wait until the last minute. I do have concerns that if I did the remote choice, I wouldn't get my exact position back next year. I'm non-probationary, so they'd have to give me a position, but there are no guarantees it would be the same one. One, I really like my school, and two, I'm literally the only person in the district who has this exact position, and others have made it clear in the past that they want it. The tech expectations for the remote school are also going to be very high (nothing like in the spring). While I would say I'm tech savvy enough, I prefer a hands on/real manipulatives etc. approach in my class so I'm just not as familiar with all of the different apps out there like some other teachers are.

    At this point, I also wouldn't be surprised if everyone starts remotely regardless. A few other districts in my area have announced remote starts. A lot of them are currently only saying 2 weeks, but we'll see. I'm not sure what difference they think 2 weeks is going to make.
     
  9. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    My district has been in national news lately because Delores Umbridge called us out. At the time, our plan was either two days in-person, three days asynchronous, or four days virtual, one day synchronous. Parents got their choices, teachers were allowed to express their preference. After Delores had her say, the district decided to essentially give her the finger and move 100% online for first quarter.
     
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  10. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    I always say she reminds me of Umbridge too!
     
  11. whizkid

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    Kids do but not us. We have to be on campus.
     
  12. K-5_teacherguy

    K-5_teacherguy Companion

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    That would be a nightmare for the teachers! I guess I am fortunate that my district has separated the two. If students choose the online option, they have online teachers. Anyone actually in the buildings is only responsible for the kids in front of them. Our superintendent has been very clear about not wanting us to pull double duty like that.
     
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  13. K-5_teacherguy

    K-5_teacherguy Companion

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    That's tough. I have my preferences, but I'm fairly young and relatively healthy (or so I'd like to think), so I'm pretty much okay doing whatever the district decides. But for a higher risk teacher or someone a little older, I can't imagine the stress that must cause.
     
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  14. K-5_teacherguy

    K-5_teacherguy Companion

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    This seems similar to my district. Most teachers want to go back (at least the ones I talk to). Some of the larger, more urban districts in my state have teacher's unions that have come out very emphatically and made public statements about NOT wanting to go back, but that hasn't been the case for us so far.
     
  15. whizkid

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    Whenever our kids come back, that's what our district will expect.
     
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  16. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    We will be doing double duty as well and it annoys me that no one making these decisions seems to see it as such.
     
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  17. MntnHiker

    MntnHiker Rookie

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    Jul 28, 2020 at 4:37 PM

    Students will start 100% remote but we have to go in and teach online from our classrooms.
     
  18. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Jul 28, 2020 at 4:45 PM

    We haven’t been given any direction beyond knowing that we will begin remotely. I don’t know if the expectation is going to be that teachers will have to report to campus, but I hope that’s not the plan. It’s unsafe.
     
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  19. miss-m

    miss-m Devotee

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    Jul 28, 2020 at 5:18 PM

    I've been making as much as I can on Google over the summer just in case this happens in my district. I think my P is planning on having remote teachers and in-person teachers for if/when students start to return in person, but I'm trying to streamline just in case. Everything will be digital, even if they're in the room with me. That way I can just post all the same thing and every kid has it.

    That said, my district is starting online for the first 9 weeks and unless our numbers drastically decrease in that time, I can't imagine we'll be returning anytime soon. The BOE voted unanimously to do remote learning (surrounding districts are not following suit; they're letting parents choose), and everyone is pretty relieved.
     
  20. whizkid

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    Jul 28, 2020 at 5:22 PM

    That's why I asked that question about if everyone in your district would be virtual including teachers. Everyone virtual to me is teachers also at home. These leaders are making wild decisions.
     
  21. miss-m

    miss-m Devotee

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    Jul 28, 2020 at 5:25 PM

    I think my district (as far as anyone knows right now) will be having teachers teach from school, which I am personally really thankful for. I mentioned this in another thread as well, but I'd much rather teach students online with me in my classroom than try to teach from home. I like the routine of going to work, and having everything I need on hand will be a vast improvement from last quarter. I got lazy working from home; it was really hard to stay motivated and feel like I was doing my job well.
     
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  22. otterpop

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    Jul 28, 2020 at 5:57 PM

    Yeah, I’ll be giving the same assignments to both my on campus and off campus students. Everything will be on Google Classroom. Still, though, the online students require more emailing, phone calls, one on one help on classwork... this normally happens during classroom hours if they are in the classroom. Not parent emails, but the “I don’t understand how to do the assignment” type questions. For my in class kids, I’ll help them at school, but the online kids will need to be helped during prep periods and before or after school. That’s normally my planning time, and it’s not planning time if I’m helping students with classwork, it’s teaching. I feel that we should get an hour or so each day at least to “teach” our online students. Otherwise they’re expecting instruction during non-instruction time.
     
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  23. whizkid

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    Jul 28, 2020 at 9:15 PM

    Plus additional compensation.
     
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  24. Lisabobisa

    Lisabobisa Companion

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    Jul 29, 2020 at 11:37 AM

    100% online. Teachers have the option to come on-campus.

    I will probably take that option for some days. I found I was unmotivated to work from my couch (lots and lots of naps!) through the first go-round.
     
  25. TeacherNY

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    Jul 29, 2020 at 11:38 AM

    It seems like they need a better system so they have ONLINE kids with ONLINE teachers and IN CLASS teachers with IN CLASS kids.
     
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  26. whizkid

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    Jul 29, 2020 at 1:04 PM

    This thing seems like it's going to be a huge mess for everyone.
     
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  27. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Jul 29, 2020 at 2:53 PM

    Our province's plan is supposed to be announced tomorrow. At this point, I am predicting a full return, with the expectation that school boards do the best they can to meet social distancing and other health recommendations (there is unlikely to be any additional funding for smaller class sizes, additional caretakers, PPE, etc.) I'm not sure how it's going to work and there is a fair bit of anxiety around that.

    Now, our provincial numbers are certainly going in the right direction, with well under 200 cases/day for most days in the previous 2 weeks. In a province of 13.5 million, that's exceptional. However we have still been very shut down, and are just getting to where the largest cities are reopening most things, still under restrictions.
     
  28. tchr4vr

    tchr4vr Comrade

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    Jul 30, 2020 at 7:12 PM

    My district is fully online the 1st nine weeks. My son's district is K-8 and CTE hybrid, high school virtual. Teachers are expected to go to their rooms to teach, which I am fine with, I need the appropriate space. My issue is this--both of these districts did surveys about what parents and teachers wanted. In my district, 65% of parents wanted in-person learning and 95% of teachers. Those who didn't had a totally virtual online option. My son's district, 58% wanted in person, and also, an option for a totally online option. So, if you didn't want to risk your child going in, or as a teacher, going in, you had an option. But, the school boards decided to ignore the majority and vote for online. And social distance would have been possible, since a large percentage were not choosing to go to school, and they were grouping the kids for alternate days. In my son's school, for instance, there would have only been about 300 total for the beginning of school, split in 2 groups of 150.

    I think fear of lawsuits has won out.
     
  29. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Jul 30, 2020 at 9:32 PM

    I don’t know... I don’t think it’s fear of lawsuits. In my district, some of the school board members said that they couldn’t have it on the conscience that someone died due to their decision to open schools, so they voted to close them. Others said that it doesn’t matter what people “want” but matters what science tells us. In fact, the district lawyer publicly said that she felt confident that the district could reopen with all of the planned precautions in place and not be at risk for lawsuits. The board still voted to close because it’s what they believed to be right.
     
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  30. gr3teacher

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    Jul 30, 2020 at 11:10 PM

    Keep in mind here that in this context, a "fear of lawsuits" would involve children or staff members getting seriously sick and/or dying. I think that's more where the fear would lie.
    See, for example, this excerpt from the reopening plan for a district in Utah:
    upload_2020-7-31_0-9-46.png
     
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  31. MntnHiker

    MntnHiker Rookie

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    Aug 1, 2020 at 6:18 PM

    Well when I first posted about being remote, we all thought we'd be allowed to teach from home. No mention was made to the contrary. We just found out a few days ago that they want to require teachers to come in. Our union is currently fighting it.
     
  32. MntnHiker

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    Aug 1, 2020 at 6:21 PM

    I think teachers should be given the option of going in to teach but not required. If districts truly care about mitigating risk as much as possible and care about the health and safety of their staff, they would allow us all to work from home if that's our choice. Going in should be a choice right now, not a mandate. IMO
     
  33. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Aug 1, 2020 at 6:25 PM

    Our PD has to be virtual because there is a limit on the number of adults who can gather at once (but not students :rolleyes:). I assumed that meant we'd be meeting from home. Nope. We have to go into buildings and basically get on zoom from our classrooms. Why take totally unnecessary risks? That also doesn't make me feel very valued or trusted as a professional- clearly the ONLY reason to do something like this is that they think teachers can't be trusted to do the PD from home.

    The online teaching from home/from classrooms is currently being debated in other districts. At least as of this moment, my district is still saying we're going in person. I think for online teaching it should be a choice. If teachers want to go in and access their classrooms, let them, but don't force people who are perfectly capable of doing the same work from home. If there are truly teachers who are "not teaching" then admins can do their jobs and deal with those people.
     
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  34. MntnHiker

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    Aug 1, 2020 at 6:29 PM

    Exactly! Sure, if someone can't fulfill their job duties at home (maybe they don't have Internet for instance), I understand telling them they'll have to go in then to complete their job satisfactorily. But for everyone who can do this at home, I feel we should be able to. No one questions all the other professions currently working from home; why are teachers questioned and basically accused (either outright or implicitly) of not actually doing our jobs when at home? Frankly, there are way more ways to find out if I am working or not than my husband, who is in IT and has been home since March. If I'm not logging on to do my classes live via video every day, I'm pretty sure students/parents will notice and tell admin!
     
  35. otterpop

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    Aug 1, 2020 at 6:44 PM

    When we worked at home in the spring, we had ridiculous requirements for tracking our work time, parent contacts, etc... I get requiring some but ours was absolutely excessive. No one trusts teachers. It seems like every decision that’s made actively makes our job more difficult. It’s definitely enough to make me reconsider other career options, which makes me sad because I love teaching but not the other junk that goes with it, but it’s the way it is.
     
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  36. miss-m

    miss-m Devotee

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    Aug 2, 2020 at 3:33 PM

    Agreed. So far it's sounding like my district is not requiring staff to be at schools; it may end up being left to principals. Personally I'd prefer to work from school, but I completely understand that's not the case for everyone. I wish people making decisions would accept that this is not going to -- and CANNOT -- be a normal school year. It should have to be. Everyone is dealing with a lot of stress, many are dealing with trauma from losing a loved one, and cases are not under control in the majority of the country.

    Everyone wants life to get back to normal, and kids and teachers want to be back in school, but it's just not reasonable to expect that to happen by pretending everything is normal already.
     
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  37. otterpop

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    Aug 2, 2020 at 3:39 PM

    I don’t think that the parents who are calling for schools to reopen fully understand what that will look like either. Our school plans to have students wear masks all day, stay at desks all day with even lunch in the room, no group work, nothing but technology because things can’t be passed out... home sounds like a much more comfortable option considering all of that.
     
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