By WECT Staff | March 16, 2021 at 6:17 PM EDT – Updated March 16 at 6:17 PM
NEW HANOVER COUNTY, N.C. (WECT) – The New Hanover County Association of Educators (NHCAE) urges board of education members to be cautious when considering moving middle and high school students to full-time, in-person instruction at an interim meeting Tuesday evening.
Governor Roy Cooper announced March 10th that all K-12 schools are eligible to reopen under Plan A because the number of COVID-19 cases is going down.
NHCAE members are concerned about potential disruptions due to outbreaks and more quarantines if the transition is not planned carefully. Members believe any outbreaks could lead to mistrust within the community which could cause problems for in-person instruction in the next academic school year.
“I also would just love to see some consistency this year I think we have, after spring break, about six weeks left of the school year — two of those weeks will probably be used for end of grade testing; so, really we’re making this big shift just to get four weeks of in-person instruction,” said 6th grade teacher Kaleigh Pare.
Amanda White, president of NHCAE, asked the board to consider the additional workload for educators in a statement released earlier this week.
The NHCAE asks that middle and high school teachers continue to have remote Wednesdays for as long as we are teaching in the hybrid model. Remote Wednesdays also give us time to focus on remote students. These remote days also provide teachers with much-needed planning time.
Members believe students and families deserve consistency and clarity in the decision-making process and would like the New Hanover County School Board to create a staff advisory council to open up lines of communication for return to full-time instruction.
The NHCAE wants the board to end the hybrid learning model by the start of the next academic year and asks that if remote learning is to be offered, the board must find educators who are remote-only instructors.
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