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New York City School Reopenings: To go remote or in person?

New York City is home to the largest public school system in the country. Furthermore, in the city that never sleeps, New York City has one of the most diverse, energized, and passionate student bodies in the world. However, at this time, the energy and vitality of the New York City student body is disconnected by the impending threat of another school year spent remotely learning.


The Argument Against School Reopening

While many parents have voiced concerns about a return to in person school, the most vocal opposition to school reopenings comes from teachers and labor unions, such as the United Federation of Teachers (UFT). Many teachers both fear that a return to in-person education puts them and their families at risk of infections. Furthermore, they feel as if they have not been given adequate resources to plan for a remote or blended learning experience this fall. As teacher unions have prepared for a number of strikes and protests, Mayor Bill de Blasio has continued to push back school reopenings.


The Argument For School Reopening

When New York City school closed in early March, many parents were put in the precarious position of now becoming at home teachers. Juggling school work, working from home, and managing a household during a pandemic has put a strain on most parents. Furthermore, remote education has been particularly challenging for the thousands of New Yorkers who lack access to the necessary technology resources. The education disparities that arise as a result of remote education have influenced many New Yorker’s desire to return to in person education as soon as possible.

 

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No matter what our health and safety come first and we must do what we can to minimize risk of the virus spreading. What are some learning models that you have seen? What do you think?