What happens to the new school year in La Crosse, if it’s not safe to send kids back to the classroom by the target opening date of September 1st?
School superintendent Aaron Engel says the district will have to assess the situation week by week, depending on whether COVID-19 has subsided a bit by September.
At Monday’s La Crosse school board meeting, Engel said surveys show a large majority of parents, 60 per cent or more, want their children back in classrooms.
“We know that for a large proportion of our students, they did not learn on-line,” said Engel. But at the same time, “we have to follow the county’s recommendations in terms of safety. If we’re not allowed to come back and reopen our school buildings, we can’t reopen our school buildings.”
Engel says schools will reopen eventually, but it might not happen until the second quarter, or second semester, or a year from now.
Board members voiced concerns that if next year’s classes are too different from what the students are used to, some families might try to move their kids to schools outside the district.
Before September 1st, the district will identify which teachers will be best able to conduct classes on-line, in a virtual class setting which will be part of the teaching plan.