“We’re not safe yet” – Del. educators say schools are not ready to return completely to a hybrid model

DELAWARE – Educators are responding after Delaware Governor John Carney and the Division of Public Health urged all schools to return to hybrid learning on January 11th. “The community is not doing what it needs to do as a whole to keep us safe at school. So the idea that schools are a safe place, the safest place to be, is one that’s not going over well with our members,” said President of the Delaware State Education Association Stephanie Ingram.

Ingram says even though health officials say schools are not dangerous environments when it comes to COVID-19, many educators disagree. She adds there’s always the risk of the virus getting into schools when students interact with family or other community members outside of school. “The best decision in most cases would be to stay remote so we can get a handle on the COVID spread. We are still in the post-Christmas. We’re not really sure if folks went here and there. They might have traveled outside the state,” said Ingram.

Ingram tells 47ABC that even though remote learning might not be equitable for all students, she thinks that overall remote learning has been successful. “For some students this is not equitable and we’re working on overcoming those challenges. But personal safety is more important. Being safe, not contracting COVID for right now – this month – is more important,” said Ingram.

Meanwhile, Governor Carney, Director of DPH Dr. Karyl Rattay, and Secretary of Education Susan Bunting say they are confident that schools are safe enough for students and educators. In a letter sent to educators across the first state, they wrote “As we have said many times, we do not believe there is a public health reason to close schools.”

The letter went on, “We have spent the past four weeks helping schools try to address the operational challenges they are experiencing. And we can all agree that students learn best when they’re in school. For all of these reasons, we are recommending that districts and schools make every effort to return to hybrid learning on January 11.”

Categories: Coronavirus, Delaware, Education, Local News