I was a professionally trained teacher in Utah for more than 37 years. Throughout my tenure I felt like my opinions and concerns fell on deaf ears. We teachers pleaded for class-size reduction and increases in needed funding. Still little was done to remedy pressing school needs.
Recently I sat and listened to teachers, students and parents plead with the Jordan School Board to devise a sane and workable plan to safely let our beloved children and grandchildren return to school. Suggestions of a staggered schedule such as is planned in Davis District were quickly dismissed, even in light of the fact that with the enormous class sizes and small classrooms, social distancing would be impossible. The result of more selective listening.
The board’s solution? Do nothing to effectively address student proximity in the classroom by merely delaying the start of the school year by a week and going with plan A to cram 25 to 40 students in a sardine can to share the same air and hope that parents wouldn’t send their children to school sick just so they wouldn’t miss a day at work.
Yes, kids need to go to school and engage in social interaction, but not at the expense of potentially killing a parent or grandparent. How many loved ones is an acceptable number for extermination? Maybe kids do fare a little better with COVID-19, even though some have in fact died with COVID and from multi-inflammatory syndrome. However, it is a safe bet that cramped classrooms and marginal ventilation will most assuredly result in COVID infections and the exponential spreading of the disease. Think of how a young person’s social well-being would be changed for the rest of their life if they felt that they brought home a disease that resulted in the death of a beloved parent, sibling or grandparent. Jordan School Board’s plan for four consecutive days of school with Utah’s class sizes is neither workable nor sane.
Ronald Langston, Taylorsville