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The only polling data we have on how parents are feeling about homeschooling in light of all of the coronavirus restrictions is from a school-choice organization, but the results were shocking:
A survey of just over 2,100 people, conducted by the school choice advocacy group American Federation for Children, says 40% of parents are considering continuing to teach their kids from home.
Frankly: I don’t think it’s that high. But it is higher than most public policy advocates realize. There are parents who suddenly realizing how little their kids were learning in school and that they are capable of educating their own children. But a large number of parents who opt to homeschool next year will choose to do so based on the way schools will be reconfiguring their classrooms in a post-COVID world.
In my state of Maryland this is what it’s shaping up to look like:
The “new normal” for school districts likely includes:
- Mandatory masks
- Daily temperature checks
- Enhanced/more frequent cleaning procedures and sanitation methods
- Enforced social distancing, especially for elementary students in areas like playgrounds.
Class sizes are likely to be reduced so that all desks can be kept six feet apart, and schools may choose to host classes outdoors or in large, open spaces like gyms or cafeterias. Some classes or meetings that involve hands-on instruction (art, PE, parent-teacher conferences) may be hosted virtually, and large school gatherings (assemblies, school dances) may be reduced or canceled.
Would you send your kid to a classroom where they can’t get near another child, play on a playground, and sit in a desk all day in a mask? And then there are the parents who understand the painfully obvious: Kids are not going to social distance and there’s no keeping this virus at bay. And for those with at-risk kids or individuals at home, they know that they’ll be bringing home COVID no matter what.
If there is a significant surge in homeschooling, it’s going to be because schools are forcing parents’ hands by enacting anti-child policies in a hopeless effort to keep the virus out of the building.Published in