Written by Julianne Foster
The public is stressed over the impact of COVID-19 on students’ ability to learn and retain information, and what schools will look like after the pandemic recedes. San Diego County Board of Education Member Mark Powell believes that the virus has changed public education forever.
“From this point forward, school districts will need to offer students a distance learning option, and should also provide distance learning training and IT support for parents so they can facilitate their children’s instruction,” Powell explained.
Despite beliefs that COVID-19 will somehow disappear with enough lockdowns and after the introduction of a vaccine, the reality is that the virus will likely continue to spread and infect people. A vaccine could help save lives, but the virus cannot magically disappear as fast as it appeared.
In an interview with KUSI News, Powell expressed his personal opinions and parents’ feedback being received by the San Diego County Board of Education on distance learning methods. It’s true with the amount of time schools were given, their ability to provide distance learning was impressive, but has still fallen short of the needs of students. Issues with technology and access to it—or parents being unavailable to assist in their child’s learning—falls as a burden on their ability to be successful in school.
“Distance learning for students is something that needs to be experimented with sensibly, considering all aspects and outcomes, and parents must be involved every step of the way to make sure our future hybrid educational system is fair, just, and equitable,” Powell argued.
Because distance learning does not suit every child, Powell thinks it’s important to push the perfection of a hybrid model to maximize student learning. Such a model will surely change public education for years to come.
You can watch Powell’s entire interview below: