As the final weeks of August wind down, area schools are gearing up for reopening.
It won’t be easy but much like health care facilities, grocery stores and other businesses that operated through the pandemic, schools must find a way to operate now.
The majority of us want children to be back at school. Children need a proper learning situation and they need to socialize.
Parents need it as well. Not all parents have the means and ability to stay home. Most need to be able to return to work and be confident their children are being taught in a safe environment.
During this time it’s important to remember that school officials are working hard to keep students safe and balance the fundamental need to learn with parents’ concerns.
In early July, the Wyoming Department of Education released a “Smart Start” guidance document for school districts. The guidance document outlines three tiers of possible re-opening scenarios and includes requirements, recommendations and considerations for each tier.
Districts had the four weeks to create and submit plans to meet those requirements and address the focus areas of communications, safety and wellness, school operations and instruction and technology.
On Thursday, the annual Back to School edition will appear in the Enterprise. It will look different from past years but will still provide important information parents need to know before students go back.
Since the start of the pandemic there have been so many unknowns and there will continue to be as we move forward. But we do know the best place for most children to learn is the classroom, where teachers have the resources, training and experience to optimally work with students and where students have the best opportunities for socialization and development of interpersonal skills.
We applaud everyone who has gone to great lengths to make the return as safe as possible for students, teachers and staff.