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Haley23 Haley23 is offline
 
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Thoughts about next school year
Old 12-27-2020, 04:25 PM
 
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I just had a horrible realization. The "talk" in my school/district is that next year would be fairly "normal" because teachers will have had the vaccine by then. But...kids will not have the vaccine. Are there even any trials underway to give children the vaccine? Any vaccine plan I've heard of, they're not even mentioned. How do we possibly get to this "herd immunity" if a huge segment of the population isn't even able to get the vaccine?

Are we going to be doing this horrible pandemic schooling with masks, distancing, cohorts, so much time spent on hand washing and cleaning, constant in and out of quarantines all next school year too? Or will there be more "normalcy" because the majority of children aren't really impacted? My P is ready to lose her mind because we can't run all of the interventions we normally do at my school with the cohorting model. I don't know what it would take for her to agree to do this next year as well.

I know our board is already talking about doing a "normal" calendar, and they've already said they expect us to still be wearing masks at least next fall. The "cohorting" fiasco is something nobody wants to talk about.

What do you think will happen? Any rumors in your area?


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Old 12-27-2020, 06:19 PM
 
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As I understand it, the vaccine will be tested in older kids first and it will take months to be available to younger ages. I think we’re looking at disrupted school for the next two school years at the very least. We’re going to collectively decide what we’re willing to compromise. If the teachers have been vaccinated and kids aren’t at nearly as high of a risk, do we sacrifice their education for as long as it will take to get a vaccine? There are trade offs to be made any direction we go.
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Play it by ear
Old 12-27-2020, 09:18 PM
 
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I think we will be playing it by ear. We haven't heard anything, but I think the plan is to go at least somewhat back to normal, but again it would depend on the cases, the vaccine, etc. I think they will still require masks, but right now, we broke grade levels into smaller sections and used other personnel and other classrooms to accommodate that or kept the class size the same but moved to big spaces to allow for social distancing. I think we may be able to go back to normal classes sizes and normal spaces if there is a vaccine and if if cases go down, but I'm guessing masks will still be needed. I did hear that Dr. Faucci said that even with the vaccines, masks will still be necessary for awhile after.
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Old 12-28-2020, 06:43 AM
 
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Being in the state I am in, I fully expect next school year to be completely “normal.”
I am sure masks will still be required but social distancing isn’t happening in the building now, even with only 60% of kids on campus (parents could choose in person or online this year and can change their mind at the end of each quarter) social distancing can’t really happen.

Herd immunity relies on so many people receiving the vaccine and not only do we have to have widespread access to the vaccine, people also have to actually get the vaccine. I have heard so many people say they won’t get it... so where does that leave us?

(In person classes aren’t cohorting here so that wouldn’t change)
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Old 12-28-2020, 05:19 PM
 
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I have heard a lot of people say they won't get the vaccine as well. I can't stand dealing with masks- both trying to teach in mine and policing kids in theirs all day. But that doesn't impact the quality of the education kids are getting as much as the cohorting thing does. So many services and interventions require there to be a lot of mixing between different classrooms/grade levels/intervention providers, etc. We used to have a really robust intervention system at my school and it's been tough on everyone to not be able to provide that this year. I can't imagine another year of that. Plus the constantly going in and out of quarantine. That's been extremely difficult for teachers and our students/families.


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Cloudy Crystal Balls...
Old 12-30-2020, 07:37 AM
 
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I don't think anyone's crystal ball is very clear so it becomes pure speculation if not simply guessing. We keep looking for the silver bullet. I'm not sure we're going to find one--particularly in view that there's no real agreement on what the problems and priorities are. A while back we thought lockdowns, facemasks and social distancing would get us through this... now everyone is banking on the vaccine and some version of "herd immunity" will get us back to "normal."

What I think will happen might be very different than what I hope will happen. What I hope will happen involves "risk management" that is not solely based on fear. My hope is for a relatively dispassionate approach that involves planning and strategy instead of reaction. My hope is we (for example) start balancing our kids' needs for structure and education with preventing the spread of COVID. My hope is for "reasonableness" in decision making that includes all stakeholders.

The challenge with that is it requires leadership and that leadership must exist at all levels. Without trying to make it political, we've created a system of government (and education) that is focused on regulating at the expense of leadership. There are rare teachers who "lead" their classrooms--most are of necessity focused on making sure the rules are being followed. Push that up through the system and many administrators are doing much the same--making safe decisions within the latest accepted policies and procedures. In the north, prior to the pandemic, when bad weather hit, most superintendents avoided being the first to announce a "snow day." It takes a leader to do that. We could debate whether or not the lack of leadership flows up or downhill or simply accept the reality it's both.

A lot of people want to be told what to do. Well, at least as long as it doesn't cause them too much inconvenience. "Will it be on the test?" shifts the responsibility from the learner to the teacher. On the flip side, the teacher often relies on the curriculum or standardized testing so, in the end, no one is really accountable or responsible for what is learned. It's regulated. One of my colleagues wants to call the CDC every time something happens.

I have several friends who are principals. During a recent conversation with one, she said, "If they (whoever they are--the CDC, DOE, school board, aka the regulators) tell me the kids can't talk during lunch because they're not wearing facemasks, I'm done and out the door." This is a principal who is a leader. Fortunately, she's not an exception but she does seem to be part of an ever-shrinking minority.

What do I think will happen? I truly do not know. Currently, we seem to have a pointless battle between regulators and leaders--the regulators have the power and they seem to be winning. There's room for both, but it's currently way out of balance.
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Old 12-30-2020, 12:40 PM
 
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You will not get herd immunity from a vaccine “if’ you can’t get it from your bodies natural means.
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Old 12-30-2020, 01:03 PM
 
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You will not get herd immunity from a vaccine “if’ you can’t get it from your bodies natural means.
Can you explain more about this?
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Old 12-30-2020, 01:52 PM
 
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My friend who is a pediatrician just posted a summary from a doctor saying pediatricians need to put pressure on the manufacturers to ramp up trials in children, and then her comment was "we need trials of children (2-12) to start now if we want to have any hope of normal school by 2022." She said 2021 would still need masks and distancing if children aren't vaccinated.

My governor is saying she wants everybody back in school ASAP and is authorizing it to happen when we go back in January, but it's not required of districts, just an option, and all the districts that are responding are cautioning parents not to expect it to happen "soon." I haven't heard anything specifically yet.

Last edited by Gromit; 12-30-2020 at 01:55 PM.. Reason: misremembered what she posted
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Old 12-30-2020, 03:45 PM
 
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I just read something similar about pediatricians putting on the pressure to ramp up trials. Someone on our union FB page was saying they've started for children 12 and older but there are not yet plans for younger children (I'd have to fact check that to be sure). By 2022 is a scary thought. Although at the rate we're going, adults won't even be vaccinated by then.

Our governor has been saying all along that K-5 never had any reason to close and should have been in session. Most metro area districts closed sometime in November and then through the winter break. As far as I've heard, pretty much everyone is going back to in person learning in January. I have a friend who works in a charter who is staying remote. I haven't heard any of the districts say that.

Thankfully, cases are currently way down here, but they all made the plan to go back when that wasn't the case, and we don't know what will happen with this new more contagious variant. It seems as if the powers that be have decided in person school is essential and will happen regardless. My district's new plan states they will not close again unless there is a stay at home order. The governor has said umpteen times he will never do one of those again. If we've decided in person learning is that essential, then teachers should be right behind frontline medical workers in the vaccine list, but we're not. There are many, many groups ahead of us. They shouldn't be able to have it both ways.


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Old 12-30-2020, 05:22 PM
 
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. If we've decided in person learning is that essential, then teachers should be right behind frontline medical workers in the vaccine list, but we're not. There are many, many groups ahead of us. They shouldn't be able to have it both ways.
Absolutely!! That’s the problem. We’re putting together this giant puzzle, and you have to pick the pieces that actually connect to each other not just whatever pieces you like best.
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Old 12-30-2020, 07:15 PM
 
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Where are teachers where you are? We’re right behind healthcare workers and nursing home residents in my state.
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Old 12-30-2020, 09:01 PM
 
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Teachers are behind all of these groups: Frontline health workers who have direct contact with covid-19 patients, long term care facility workers and residents, all other healthcare workers (including people like dentists, GPs, pediatricians, all nurses, home health care, etc.), police, firefighters, funeral workers, and everyone age 70 or older.

Teachers are in the same group as many other "essential" jobs such as grocery, manufacturing, transit, post office, etc. as well as homeless people. I'm not sure how things will roll out once we actually get to this phase, as that's a ton of people right there. We were actually even lower and just got "moved up" to this phase today. Even so, best case scenario is that they will start our "phase" in about 5 weeks. Then you have to actually get to all of those people, wait a few weeks for the 2nd shot, and then a few weeks after that for the full effect to kick in.
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vaccine
Old 01-04-2021, 08:46 PM
 
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Also when you receive the vaccines you can possibly still become asymtomatic and spread the virus. That's why social distancing and wearing masks will still be necessary.

Also with this new variant or strain of the virus no one can predict where we are heading.
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