Why Can’t Schools use Virtual Learning on Snow Days?
Maryland Public Schools are mostly closed or opening late today because of the first snowstorm in some time. One can’t wonder but ask why they can’t jus use virtual learning for today. When the pandemic first hit, school systems adapted to the virtual style of learning very quickly. At the time, those in education (students, teachers, and staff) thought they had seen the last of “snow days.” Well apparently, not.
It doesn’t seem to make sense that schools can’t flip a switch when the need arises. Teachers’ unions would certainly resist that. They would most likely cite childcare issues or the like. The only thing they seem to want is school closed with no learning at all. In those situations, they are happy.
There are several instances where systems are switching back and forth as needed. Such flexibility in school systems’ instructional models appear to be increasingly normal due to the pandemic, and many stakeholders are calling for more virtual learning.
Thirteen Baltimore County schools will switch to online instruction this week, including Woodlawn High School. Another four schools are having a single grade go online for a week, including sixth graders at Stemmers Run Middle in Essex.
In Baltimore City, parents and teachers called for a delay in the return to school buildings this week to give the system time to get COVID test results back for all employees and students. The system is already extending winter break through Monday and Tuesday so that staff and high school students can get tested at school. Elementary and middle school students will be tested Wednesday. They, along with other systems, told students to make sure they took home their computers; an indication that virtual learning is a distinct possibility and easy to implement.
Education is in a state of chaos. Perhaps not of their own doing but chaos, nonetheless. If virtual learning is possible due to the virus, it can certainly be available on a snow day here and there.
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The MEN was founded by John Huber in the fall of 2020. It was founded to provide a platform for expert opinion and commentary on current issues that directly or indirectly affect education. All opinions are valued and accepted providing they are expressed in a professional manner. The Maryland Education Network consists of Blogs, Videos, and other interaction among the K-12 community.