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Anxious in Atlanta
There’s a lot to unpack here. Let’s tackle the second part of your question first: Can you send your children back for some isolated in-person activities, even if you’ve opted for fully remote learning? This is going to depend on your school or district. Many places are requiring families to choose one model and stick to it, at least for a set time period. (For example, some districts have asked families to choose a model from now until the end of December, at which point families will be able to reassess.) In that case, you might not have a choice about this—it’s all or nothing.
If your school does allow you to go “a la carte,” if you will, then the choice is yours, and you shouldn’t feel pressured to send your children to in-person school just because you’ve opted for a single extracurricular opportunity. (By the way, take a look at Khan Academy for some really top-notch SAT prep that your child can do from home. Khan features a diagnostic tool that allows your student to target their areas for improvement and provides practice problems to help them do so.)
The other part of your question is a little more complicated. How do you make sure your children are getting the best educational experience possible through remote learning, even while most students have returned to school in person? First, it would be helpful to get clear on the bar here. Were there expectations around structures for remote learning that were set at the beginning of the year when more kids were remote? What worked well during that period? Do those things feel like they’ve lagged recently? If so, document the things that were in place and are now falling short. Share your observations with the teacher, and ask to reset expectations to ensure your kids are learning.
In the current environment, if you’ve been given the option to keep your children enrolled in fully remote learning, it doesn’t matter why you want to do so—they have the right to an education regardless. When you ask to receive the instruction that was promised at the start of the year, you’re not asking for anything extra.
“In the current environment, if you’ve been given the option to keep your children enrolled in fully remote learning, it doesn’t matter why you want to do so—they have the right to an education regardless.”