Holden said parents will be presented with two options.
Under one option, all students would do 100% remote/online education taught by Yellow Springs’ own teachers. A Q&A on the district website says students would be provided with Chromebook computers and “hot spots” for internet access if needed.
If the district chooses the other option, families would choose between two pathways. There would be an in-person model where students were divided into two groups, with each group going to school two days a week and working from home the other days. That would improve social distancing in the schools.
The other pathway families could choose within that second option is 100% online education, but students would take those courses through a third-party provider. Those courses would be with a third party because of the difficulty of Yellow Springs’ own staff simultaneously teaching in-person and online models.
Yellow Springs’ teachers union wants the first 100% online option, taught by local teachers. Union co-presidents Kate Lohmeyer and Sarah Amin argue there are still “too many unknown factors about the true impacts both in the short- and long-term, of COVID-19.”
“It is unsafe for our school community to be gathering indoors in groups in any location, however, it is particularly unsafe to do so in Yellow Springs Schools’ facilities without proper air ventilation,” Lohmeyer and Amin wrote in a letter to Holden and the school board last week.
The teachers union said the schools should start online while working to address internet access issues for students and the burden they acknowledged at-home education can place on parents and families.
“We hope to move toward in-person experiences when the data and evidence strongly support it is safe to do so,” they wrote.