As Carteret County high schoolers return to in-person classroom instruction this week and middle schools open next week, it is time to consider the next steps forward. The disruption of classroom participation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic over the past year requires that school boards, administrators and parents address the need for remediation and plan for permanent changes in the education environment.

In a recent county school board meeting, board member Brittany Wheatly asked county schools superintendent Dr. Rob Jackson if he is planning on providing a virtual academy for students who choose to attend remotely rather than in-person classes. Her concern is that teachers who are instructing both classroom participants and on-line participants will be stressed to provide adequate instruction in both environments. By providing a targeted remote educational system for those students opting for virtual classroom participation, Ms. Wheatly feels this will relieve stress on teachers trying to teach to two different audiences at the same time.

Dr. Jackson acknowledged Ms. Wheatly’s concern but correctly pointed out that there is insufficient time left in the school year to develop a virtual academy but that it is something he and his staff will consider. There is a little irony in this question considering the school board recently voted to shutter the Marine and Science Technology early college program (MaST) but now is interested in creating another learning opportunity that stands to be exclusive, which was one of the arguments resulting in the closure of the early college program.

But there is an even greater concern that the board, administrators and parents should consider and that is the need for aggressive remediation for those students whose academic performance declined as a result of the disruption of classroom participation brought on by the pandemic.

Although students now have more flexibility in classroom participation, predicated on both the conditions set in the classrooms and the willingness of the students to attend, this change will not correct the poor educational experience of the past two years.

A countywide assessment of public school students at all grade levels, K-12, needs to be conducted and the results shared with the public.

This assessment will give both school administrators and the public an understanding of how students are performing in relation to previous standards, and from this a template or outline can be developed to address the academic shortcomings. This template will most likely involve summer school, changes in the school calendar to include an early school starting date, tutoring programs and, as Ms. Wheatly asked, virtual learning programs. All of these will require public support and participation.

Other states are already planning on aggressive remedial action. Governors in California, Kansas and Virginia are pushing their state educators to plan more aggressive summer school programs, while other states are extending the school year calendar.

There is little guidance coming from N.C. Governor Roy Cooper, the State Board of Education and the Department of Public Instruction so it will fall on local school boards and their administrators to begin planning on corrective action.

There will be no simple solution. It will be complicated, costly and inconvenient. But there is too much at stake. Students will be expecting, as will their parents, to advance to the next grade level, including graduating this spring to move on to secondary education opportunities or to pursue jobs. With only three months remaining in the current school year, the need for planning and implementation is immediate, otherwise it will be too late for the thousands of county students and their parents.

(4) comments

mpjeep

Another thing parents should be aware of is Reverend James Ford, the head cheerleader of North Carolina’s Woke Curriculum. He was appointed by Governor Cooper to the State Board of Education, where he leads the Strategic Planning Committee.

Ford is an advocate of Reverend Wright who said while serving as Obama’s spiritual advisor “God Dam$ America”.

Ford embraces anti-Semitic anti-American prejudices, is a BLM activist, and a big supporter of Colin Kapernick and his taking a knee during the playing of The National Anthem. He plays a huge role in what millions of children will be taught in North Carolina schools.

Ford equates middle-of-the-road North Carolinians to being racists. To say he is a radical education leader is an understatement.

NC Lieutenant Governor, Mark Robinson said, second graders, will learn "how various indigenous, religious, gender, and racial groups advocate for freedom and equality" and fourth graders will learn how "revolution, reform, and resistance" shaped North Carolina.

DeadBolt

IMO, you folks need to be halted , and possibly removed if in fact your teaching what PARENTS have been reading in bits and pieces. Lawyers should be involved, and we, as a society, should make real clear, that you have messed with our most precious ASSET. That's REMEDIATION , HOWEVER, RESTITUTION IS IN ORDER. This should remain a focus of said process. ps... the only thing you need to ask that excuse of a PUBLIC SERVANT BALL OF IGNORANCE IN RALEIGH IS, " WHEN CAN YOU VACATE OUR STATE CAPITOL"? (and don't ever, come back)

DeadBolt

Well..... NC made NATIONAL NEWS again, (and not the good kind folks). ////

https://www.dailywire.com/news/with-children-fully-indoctrinated-schools-have-a-new-target-parents ////////// The Law should use RICO against these so called education evangelists , and lock them up. (honestly, it may be better for them, then the concerned PARENT catching them)

Perspective

Anyone can post a link, ya know? Doesn't make it credible. Dangerous days... these in which we live. https://mediabiasfactcheck.com/the-daily-wire/

Welcome to the discussion.

As a privately owned web site, we reserve the right to edit or remove comments that contain spam, advertising, vulgarity, threats of violence, racism, anti-Semitism, or personal/abusive/condescending attacks on other users or goading them. The same applies to trolling, the use of multiple aliases, or just generally being a jerk. Enforcement of this policy is at the sole discretion of the site administrators and repeat offenders may be blocked or permanently banned without warning.