Parents in Verona rally to call for return to in-person learning

The parents say that virtual and hybrid learning are not enough for the students any longer.

News 12 Staff

Mar 5, 2021, 11:54 PM

Updated 1,194 days ago

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Many New Jersey students have not been back in their classrooms full-time in a year because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Parents in many school districts in the state are demanding that the students return by the spring session.
Parents in Verona held a rally on Friday to push for in-person learning. They call their group “Verona Voices for More In-Person Learning.” They say that not having the children in the classroom is having a negative impact on them.
“There’s learning loss for this year. So we can’t stay still and accept this as being the model going forward,” says Kristin Donohue with the group.
The parents say that virtual and hybrid learning are not enough for the students any longer. They say that it is not just taking a toll on education, but also the students’ mental and emotional well-being.
“While hybrid is better than fully remote, we feel strongly hybrid is not equal to open, as some folks in Trenton might say," says Mike DuPree. "Hybrid is inadequate.”
With neighboring communities back in school full-time or getting close to returning, the Verona parents say that they feel that their district administrators aren’t being transparent enough and that they aren’t making in-person learning a priority.
The parents also say that their children aren’t excited about learning anymore and are simply just getting through the day – an aspect they call “troubling.”
The Verona school superintendent says that 85% of parents do want in-person learning at the elementary school level, but that 6 feet social distancing marks this difficult. The superintendent says that the district is working with committees of parents and teachers to find a solution.


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