ST. LOUIS COUNTY, MO – Many parents are including their children in the discussion about returning to school.
Basiyr and Tamara Rodney are parents and teachers. Basiyr is the Education Chairman of Webster University. Tamara teaches high school in Webster Public Schools.
“It’s just been crazy trying to separate the two – trying to feed the kids you know – answer text messages from your students, so I didn’t do it too well in the beginning,” said Tamara Raodney.
As she’s learned, she’s passed on important lessons to her children, who are just starting out in St. Louis Schools. Hannan will begin Pre-K and Aleem will begin kindergarten.
They will likely choose the option of attending in person, so they are talking a lot about how to stay safe doing that.
“My father who is living with us is in his 70s and so we want to be careful not to bring a debilitating disease to him,” said Basiyr Rodney.
Tamara added, “You know those roach commercials where the roach takes the bait back to the nest? Ha ha ha. That’s what Corona feels like, we’re taking it back to the nest, so we just don’t want to raid…ha ha…the other people around us.”
Basiyr asked his daughter Hannan, “The Coronavirus? Where is it?”
Hannan answered, “My brother told me it’s small.”
Basiyr laughed, “It is small, absolutely ha ha.”
Basiyr said Hannan once fearfully said to him “Daddy don’t go outside – the pandemic is out there!”
Basiyr used it as a moment to teach.
“It’s our responsibility to learn what we can about the virus and its effects and to teach our young ones,” said Basiyr.
He added, “In her saying that to me, telling me that oh daddy don’t go outside because the coronavirus is outside, it kind of triggered the fact that we had been able to at least successfully tell them they had to watch their own behaviors and their own attitudes right? So, I think it’s really critical that this also a teachable moment because we’re teaching them about how to stay clean and how to engage publicly.”