Last week’s confirmation that K-12 students in Park County will not be returning to the classroom for the rest of the school year was a necessary decision.

But as with many other aspects of the pandemic shutdown, there will be consequences. However, nobody knows yet what they will be.

Under Gov. Mark Gordon and other state leaders’ guidelines to reopen the state, special groups of students in a limited capacity can attend school.

Cody School District Superintendent Peg Monteith said school leaders are discussing the possibility of bringing in some students with special needs to attend classes from May through the summer.

She also said special exemptions could be given for high school seniors who are struggling to graduate due to their work slipping since the start of online learning.

For many students online learning is not nearly as effective as in-classroom instruction.

What will lag the effect on those students? Will they be behind the normal amount of learning for their level when in-class school resumes?

Will there need to be refresher classes? Will some of the material have to be retaught? Will parts of their education be missing forever?

At the elementary level, how important is it for teachers to be able to communicate with individual students in person?

While educators seem to be diligently attempting to teach during this pandemic in whatever manner they can, there are many questions out there. Important questions.

We are comforted the education leaders both locally and statewide are looking for those answers now.

John Malmberg

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