Fill Out Your Profile to share more about you. Learn more...

Anyone else work in a school and afraid to go back?

1235789

Comments

  • bcincolorado
    bcincolorado Member Posts: 4,696

    In Colorado many districts are stating doing standardized testing this year is pointless. No way can they be done in the same way for all students in all ways when some are at home learning and some are in the classroom.

    Grandkids told us that teacher one kid would have had this year got COVID from someone. I told them that is why their mom and dad are keeping them at home even though Dad has to go teach at the school anyway for those there.

    Crazy how people do not get it.

  • mavericksmom
    mavericksmom Member Posts: 1,110

    I agree, standardized testing would be pointless. I am not a fan of them anyway, but I guess they are necessary in a non-pandemic world.

    It is weird how Covid is transmitted. I am honestly surprised that more of us in the school system have not gotten it yet. We are trying to be as safe as possible. That said, I have not seen my daughter or grandkids since I went back to school and don't plan to. My daughter and her husband work from home and the grandkids are homeschooled. We will celebrate the holidays alone but with FaceTime! I find it equally disturbing that families with pets have transmitted to their pets! So far no evidence to think pets can give it to their owners, but it makes me wonder.

    I just hope I can stay Covid free while working in the Hybrid Model at least until there are effective vaccines for everyone!

  • spookiesmom
    spookiesmom Member Posts: 8,167

    image


    First grader pumpkin, missing some front teeth.

  • mavericksmom
    mavericksmom Member Posts: 1,110

    Too Cute!!!! This gave me myfirst smile of the day!

  • mavericksmom
    mavericksmom Member Posts: 1,110

    School Board gave the go ahead to "All In" for K-4 on November 30. I think it would have been smarter to hold off until Jan 11 to see what the post holiday numbers bring. I think opening to all , then closing would be worse on young children than staying in Hybrid a bit longer.

    I feel a greater threat from the other adults in our school than from the children. I went into a small lunch room last week, there were people sitting right next to each other all around the long table, not spaced out, normal "next to each other" seating, and none had masks on. Yes they were eating, but these people don't have a clue who or how many people the others have been exposed to. I will eat at my desk in an empty class room, much safer!

    I am expecting the numbers to go up fast after the holidays. Several of my students have told me they are celebrating Thanksgiving with many relatives from out of town!

    There was a guidance counselor at a Lancaster County PA High School who died of Covid. She was 47 and not high risk. Apparently she was infected at a scrapbooking event!

    Lets all hope for Pfizer's vaccine to be available to all by spring!



  • peregrinelady
    peregrinelady Member Posts: 416
    Mavericksmom, I agree. The adults are more concerning than the kids. At my school where all grades have been back in person since the beginning of September, there were teachers who did not wear masks at all during the inservice week before school started. I was the only one, actually. Then when school started teachers wore masks while students were present, but did not after school or while in the staff room. I mentioned my concern to the principal and she did send out an email to tell teachers to wear masks unless they are alone. Now I only see the occasional person not wearing a mask after school. So far, we have no known cases in our school, knock on wood.
  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 4,742

    We are still moving ahead with our plans to open TK-1 on January 4th. The infection rate in my county as well as surrounding counties is going up so who knows what will happen. Parents will have to commit to distance or hybrid in person learning by the end of next week. On a happier note my district, with help from parents, placed a sign like this in front of every employee's home! I actually cried when I saw mine.


    image

  • spookiesmom
    spookiesmom Member Posts: 8,167

    Our district had a meeting Tuesday, discuss the mask issue. Parents were invited to speak. One parent got really hot , was arrested and escorted out. Claims her daughter was injured too and will sue. Probably an anti vax er. Board voted to keep masks on for all, will revisit in 3 months.

  • peregrinelady
    peregrinelady Member Posts: 416
    We have several people at every board mtg. who speak against masks. Last time a woman brought in her 3 children and they sang a song. Half of the board members wear masks and half don’t. One of the parents pointed that out as a reason to quit having kids wear them. Will be interesting to see if those board members are wearing masks next time. Meanwhile we have more Covid cases than ever before and a hospital that has like 4 ICU beds and the larger hospitals nearby saying they are not taking transfers. I am wearing a mask and shield when close to students and slipping the mask off while teaching at the white board.
  • ajminn3
    ajminn3 Member Posts: 284

    We have a state mask mandate with mandatory masks in school and Covid is still running rampant. I was considered a “close contact” with a coworker that tested positive and therefore must quarantine along with over half my class, so we switched from hybrid to distance for 2 weeks, but I think we will hardly return before the entire district switches to all distance. We don’t have enough staff. Almost half of our staff is either covid positive or quarantined as a contact and there are few subs taking jobs...

  • whatjusthappened
    whatjusthappened Member Posts: 178

    Our students have been doing a hybrid schedule to keep the class sizes down, but the board just voted to go back to a full five days a week. There is no possible way to socially distance a full class in my room. I think it's a bad idea to do this right before the holiday season when cold/flu season hits its peak, but I guess I'll just see what happens. I think they're caving to pressure from the parents, because they sure didn't ask the teachers what we think.

  • kksmom3
    kksmom3 Member Posts: 101

    I work in the #3 hotspot in the nation, thanks to all the people who refuse to wear masks, I think! We were forced to go virtual, 25 out of 60 staff either had /have Covid or were quarantining and 3 classrooms quarantining as well. It's not the kids that are the problem, it's the adults. I wear a mask and shield, I wear gloves also if I have car duty, and when they come to my table, they wear a shield along with their mask. They are kinders and they can do it! We aren't opening back up until Nov. 30th, and the general fear is not until January, if then. I'm a para, but I teach small groups, it is not easy on Zoom!! I am home until further notice!

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 4,742

    kksmom,

    I hear you about teaching over Zoom! I have 3 whole class meetings daily. In between I do small reading and math groups that are leveled to the students ability. I like small groups better because if you think that’s tricky , try 22 at a time. They don’t even fit on to one screen.

    I also want to say that most teachers, even in pricey places to live, don’t make the big bucks. We make far less than those with comparable education and professional credentials. So whether one is a credentialed teacher or an aide/para, education is something you do for love, not money

  • ShetlandPony
    ShetlandPony Member Posts: 3,063

    https://english.elpais.com/society/2020-10-28/a-room-a-bar-and-a-class-how-the-coronavirus-is-spread-through-the-air.html

    Peregrinelady, you might want to read this and re-think slipping the mask off while in the classroom. It appears that the aerosolized virus builds up indoors in such a way that distance is not protective. As I understand it, distance is helpful when it comes to droplets, but with aerosols not so much. This article specifically analyses classroom scenarios.

  • peregrinelady
    peregrinelady Member Posts: 416

    Thanks for the link, Shetland. I have been opening my classroom windows even with the colder temps and I only work with a few students at a time. However, I will be more careful with the mask, especially since we now have a teacher that tested positive. It is just difficult to teach reading if the students can't hear you clearly. 😷😷😷

    Edited to add: the students are 9 feet away when I am at the whiteboard. Also, I think I am the only teacher opening my windows.

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 4,742

    We are still aiming for a January 4th date for reopening on a limited basis. All HVAC systems have been reset so the fan is on at all times, MERV13 filters have been installed. We will need to keep some windows open and the door partly open as well. We rarely, almost never, have freezing temperatures and never have snow. Parents are being advised to send sweaters or sweatshirts for students to wear in the classroom because temps in the 50's are typical in the daytime. Since the heat will still be on the classroom won't be quite as cold as it will be outside. Yes, the district acknowledges the huge energy waste this will create but they believe that if it prevents COVID19 spread it will be worth it. And all of this planning may come to nothing as our county's infection rate has been on the rise 🤷🏻.

  • ajminn3
    ajminn3 Member Posts: 284

    My district has decided to go full distance K-12 starting 11/30. Cases are spiking in the Midwest and our school district has seen cases in schools triple from the beginning of the year. We’re also in MN, so opening windows in the winter can’t really happen to help circulate air. There’s no determined date to return to hybrid at this point. I’d anticipate it may not be until after spring break time (March) unless numbers decrease significantly.

  • mavericksmom
    mavericksmom Member Posts: 1,110

    Just got another email from our Superintendent. Basically, even though elementary is scheduled as all in Nov 30, 4 days/week nothing is absolute. There was mention that elementary may still go in (Hybrid or full) and middle/high school may go all virtual until after the holidays. If that happens, staff will still go in the building to work, special ed students will still come into the building.

    I feel better knowing that they will error on the side of caution while keeping in mind what is best for students and staff. I am way more afraid of getting Covid from the grocery store than I am working in the school. So far, I have felt safe in the Hybrid mode, but I am happy with the changes they are ready to implement if needed due to high community spread.

    All of my holiday gifts are done on line this year and my husband and I will be celebrating via FaceTime with our children and grandchildren!



  • mavericksmom
    mavericksmom Member Posts: 1,110

    Update: Still a go for all in K-4 in my district. I am praying we stay in hybrid in middle school/high school or go all virtual after until January. I know I won't work in the school if they bring back all the students before everyone is vaccinated.

    PA sent out a mask mandate again. I didn't really see any difference from the old one but I guess something changed. I work in one room with a teacher who stands in front of the class with no mask or shield on. She believes she is far enough away from the students. She does put the mask on when she walks in the room. I had hoped she would change that behavior, but she didn't and all I can do is protect myself and distance from her.

    One student told me she is traveling to Mexico for Thanksgiving. I don't know if that is true, when you work with young kids (elementary age in a middle school) you tend not to believe everything they say. Still, many have told me they are having large family gatherings.

    I can't wait for the vaccines to come out and be available for everyone!

    Happy Thanksgiving to everyone celebrating in the USA!

  • ajminn3
    ajminn3 Member Posts: 284

    Our entire district is going distance after Thanksgiving with the exception of some populations of students, mainly our special education students that have a demonstrated need for in person instruction. Therefore I will still be teaching in person. I have mixed feelings on it. My students certainly need in person instruction, but there are of course health and safety concerns for the students and staff being in person with covid numbers so high. Our governor has put out some restrictions “pausing” restaurants, etc as well as banning get together with others that do not live in your home. We were planning on staying put with no family visitors this year anyways, but I’m sure no everyone will be doing the same. Most of my school families have indicated they will be staying home and following guidelines, which makes me feel a little relieved.

  • peregrinelady
    peregrinelady Member Posts: 416
    Maverick, that teacher’s behavior is criminal! Even in my rural town in a red state, we are required to wear masks unless alone. The virus can stay in the air unless there is ventilation. Try to open a window if you can. Our county went to red, but we are staying in yellow zone, with “additional safety measures.” However, it is up to the teacher to implement them which is difficult unless it is schoolwide. So basically, nothing has changed. I open my windows every day, despite cold temperatures.
  • mavericksmom
    mavericksmom Member Posts: 1,110

    I agree Peregrinelady. I sent an email to my Principal asking to remind everyone to keep masks on etc. They announced over PA both hybrid days but Fridays we zoom so I won't know until Monday if she changed her habit. If not, I will say something directly to her, if that still doesn't work, I will tell my supervisor that I am not going to be in that class. I don't think it will come to that, at least, I can only hope. She is not a defiant person, she just doesn't see that what she is doing is wrong!

    I thought because cases are skyrocketing in our county with huge increases in hospitalizations and deaths, that we would go to shut down, at least until numbers go back to a manageable number, but apparently parents are pushing to keep kids in school so they are going ahead with plans to go "all in person" K-4. I notice a lot of vacancies for staff and teachers in the elementary schools. I feel so bad for them. I already made my mind up that I will take an unpaid leave if they go all in for middle/high schools. I simply can't work in that environment without being properly vaccinated.

  • peregrinelady
    peregrinelady Member Posts: 416
    Yes, I may do the same, Maverick, if our numbers keep rising. We had our first student Covid case announced yesterday, but no one is being asked to quarantine as he/she was home before for several days before showing symptoms and we are off this week for Thanksgiving. We did have a kindergartener tell her teacher that her father has Covid and that he lost his taste and smell. The principal called and asked him if he had it and he said no. However, he is anti mask and when he picked her up after school, he had on a face covering for the first time ever. Some people will not get tested because they will have to admit that Covid exists. Now I wonder if this family was the reason one of our teachers got it, since she has the older brother of the kindergartener in her class. So frustrating when people don’t care about endangering others!
  • bcincolorado
    bcincolorado Member Posts: 4,696

    Saw a story on the news about a kindergarten teacher here who just got out of ICU because got COVID teaching. He is still hoping he can go back to the kids before Christmas break but is a long way from getting back to the classroom.

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 4,742

    Hours before our school board meeting this past Monday, Gov. Newsom announced that most of the state was back to the purple level. With sad announcement, our January 4th reopening date went out the window. Who knows what will happen going forward...

  • mavericksmom
    mavericksmom Member Posts: 1,110

    I guess there are so many "officials" that claim school is the safest place for children to be, that my district is still pushing the move to "all in" with K-4. I know the teachers unions sent a letter to the superintendent, but of course that will not change things. Anyone else finding the teaching/support staff unions have become less effective? Our unions were once powerful and stood up for our jobs, not so much anymore. The only reason I am still a member is because they provide legal assistance if a student sues. This change began many years ago, maybe 15 or so, and gradually the influence of the union has withered away.

    I heard 4 members of our HS soccer team tested positive. They were still in the state championship games. Not sure about any of the information because we are basically kept in the dark. Transparency???? What's that?????

    Stay safe everyone!

  • exbrnxgrl
    exbrnxgrl Member Posts: 4,742

    mavericksmom,

    I am the union rep for my school site. Each bargaining unit for unionized employees bargains for their own contract, so what unions can or cannot do is dictated by their contracts. Despite a survey that showed about 60% of out teachers were willing to go back to in person learning, the 40% who don’t are very upset. While I understand their feelings, whether or not we go back to in person teaching is not something we can bargain for nor can we strike as that would be an illegal strike. The decision about when to open schools for in person learning is entirely in the districts hands. My district, in an effort to maintain good relations with our union and the union which represents non-credentialed employees, has done a good job of getting/doing things to make us more comfortable when we return .

    I don’t feel like my union has gotten weaker but I think the current situation has made members aware of the fact that not every aspect of our employment is subject to collective bargaining.

  • mavericksmom
    mavericksmom Member Posts: 1,110

    It's official, last night school board approved opening K-4 to "all in" in spite of increasing Covid numbers! Not smart and I still wonder how many will call out on Monday???? One issue is that the union states that you must work the first day after a holiday break in order to be paid for the holiday, so anyone who calls out on Monday will lose their holiday pay.

    I feel so bad for all who work in the elementary schools!

  • mavericksmom
    mavericksmom Member Posts: 1,110

    I asked my MO if having lymphedema compromises my immune system and she said no, that my immune system is as good as anyone else’s?!?! Seriously? My left arm is twice the size of my right arm and I don’t wear garments because they never fit properly and Medicare doesn’t pay anything towards them.

    I asked because I was planning on taking a leave of absence from work if they bring in all the kids in January. I might take a leave soon anyway because I just found out today that the teacher who never wore a mask while teaching in the front of the room, is being tested for Covid and has all the symptoms except high fever!

    Of course the earliest she can get a test is tomorrow afternoon, that means days before she gets results and I will know if she is positive or not! I am in he class twice Monday’s and Wednesday’s! Meanwhile every student in her class, myself and the rest of the team could have been infected! At least the team is aware, but not the students, not their families! What a mess!

  • kksmom3
    kksmom3 Member Posts: 101

    Was she one of those, who thinks a mask is unnecessary? Meanwhile, she put how many people at risk? At least here where I am (SW Iowa) our test results come back in 24 hours. What a hot mess this all is! Hoping you and your students are ok!