Parents in the Ozarks again making decisions about virtual learning options

Published: Nov. 17, 2020 at 11:45 AM CST
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NIXA, Mo. (KY3) - Virtual learning or a seated education? Parents again in the Ozarks must decide how to proceed as the second semester nears.

The Nixa School District reports a little under 800 students virtually learning. More than 100 students opted for seated classes after the new school year began because virtual was not working for them. Next semester, nearly 40% of those doing virtual learning decided to return to the classroom. The school district will offer the virtual option for the rest. And they understand some families need that option. Kindergarten through fifth-grade students have a live teacher every day.

In other classrooms, kids are in seated classes, but even kindergarteners are wearing masks. The district says they have had to quarantine some students, but have never shut down a building because of COVID-19. They’re pleased more students are coming back to seated classes next semester, and say they’re hearing a variety of reasons why families are making that choice.

“It’s difficult for them to focus on the work that they need to do and then focus on the work that their students are doing in making sure that those routines are happening,” said Josh Chastain, Nixa Public Schools Executive Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment. “And then some know that their kids really want to be in that social environment seeing their friends. And then some feel that what we’re doing is a very safe place and they know, over our semester, how we have done and what our numbers look like. But they feel confident enough to send their kids back.”

Parents of kindergarten through eighth-grade students in the Springfield Public Schools must make a decision by Tuesday whether they will go virtual or seated.

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