CHESTERFIELD, Mo. – The Parkway School District began Monday night’s Zoom meeting trying to decide whether or not students should be allowed to return to in-person learning for four days a week. The school board passed the measure by a unanimous 7-0 vote.
The reason the meeting took so long is that the district had a lot to discuss while giving teachers, parents, and students a chance to voice their opinions.
With Monday night’s vote, the school district will allow four days of in-person learning Tuesday through Friday starting on Jan. 19.
Remote learning for middle and high school students started after the Thanksgiving break to slow the spread of COVID, while elementary students continued with blended learning.
Teacher Matthew Conley said the board made the right decision in voting yes.
“We cannot allow fear to be the overriding determination on how we move forward as a district,” he said. “The CDC, along with the American Academy of Pediatrics, advocate for the opening of in-person learning. However, we’ve concluded it’s safe for staff and students to go back to in-person learning.
While that teacher was more optimistic about expanding in-person learning, others expressed concerns about classroom sizes and not be able to practice social distancing guidelines.
Another topic many discussed was the mental health of students struggling with virtual learning and how in-person learning could ease some of the issues their having.