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    Learning pods, hybrid learning facilitating reopening of schools

    Posted by Samantha Johnson

    Posted on 24th Sep 2020 in Office Culture, Sustainability, Workplace Wellness


    Schools districts across California are taking individual approaches to educating students and potentially reopening during the coronavirus pandemic. Some Los Angeles County schools are particularly unique in their approaches. The Torrance school district is allowing 200 elementary school students to take remote classes from the actual physical location of the school, according to the LA Times. The program is run by the YMCA and provides parents that cannot stay home from work options for their kids to be in school all day. These programs are officially called "day camps" and are thus exempt from COVID-19 mandates related to schools.

    Mandatory coronavirus testing of students and staff has not only been a financial barrier, but also a contentious and controversial one. The California Federation of Teachers posted a public letter on its website in July demanding regular testing for both students and staff in the event schools reopen. But some union members voiced concerns about breaches in medical privacy as a result of mandatory testing. Many districts across the country have made randomized testing part of reopening. Rhode Island schools are testing 5,000 students and staff every day across the state. Boston school are testing 5% of unionized teachers weekly.

    Bay Area schools are a mixed bag when it comes to reopening. Both San Jose and Santa Rosa schools announced last week that they are fully distancing learning for the remainder of 2020. Santa Clara County was recently lowered from purple to red on the state's color-coded tier system for COVID-19 mandates. The new classification allows them to reopen schools. San Francisco schools are also preparing to reopen. St. Vincent De Paul School is the example of how many institutions across the county will look. Desks are not only spaced out 4-6 feet, but also separated by plexiglass barriers. Masks are required; and hand sanitizer is in every corner of rooms.

    Another phenomenon popping up around the country is learning pods. California schools and parents are watching closely to determine their viability.

    Private learning

    Parents across the country are getting creative to ensure their children are getting the same quality of education that they otherwise would in classrooms. Many parents are worried about their children's social development due to being isolated away from other children. Learning pods are fast becoming a remedy to this issue.

    Freelance educators, mostly substitute teachers, have both found a way to earn income during the pandemic and provide a valuable service to their communities. Learning pods consist of up to five families that get their kids together everyday, rotating between homes. The education professionals act as both daycare providers and teachers for the students. Thus children are still getting a similar experience they would otherwise have at school, except on a smaller scale.

    Creative parents

    Many students are upset that they are not allowed to go to school and be around their friends. Parents are getting crafty (literally and figuratively) to give their children a school-like experience on their at-home days.

    Elizabeth Murray is a mother of three children that are learning from home. She told ABC 4 in Charleston (South Carolina) that she built makeshift cubicles out of items she purchased from craft stores. Other parents are decorating separate rooms with their children's favorite themes, whether its mermaids or monster trucks.

    Eco Office provides solutions for schools across the Bay Area to get into compliance with state mandates. Whether its plexiglass sneeze guards or portable partitions, we're facilitating social distancing to ensure safety and efficiency in classrooms across the Bay Area. Give us a call today at 408-437-1700 to discuss your office furniture and other needs.

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