Just when you thoght that it couldn’t get any worse, dollars for educational institutions is about to drop thru the floor. As schools look to prepare for the post-COVID return, making drastic changes to the facilities in the process they will soon run into some serious unintended consequences. How so you ask?
The Main Tenant
Schools are shifting responsibility back on the parents to educate their kids. As schools look to break up the school week into in class and at home instruction, parents are going to need to take off work to be home with the kids. Look thru the chain of proximate cause and you will see that votes for bonds will diminish, increase personal costs for school supplies, daycare, as well as other items will result in a huge chunk of disposable income being lost to what was once a free and appropriate education.
With all the talk of how wonderful teachers are, the majority of parents, thru direct experience during COVID saw the reality that what was truly being done amounted to know more than “Assigning Homework”. Report after report showed that students spent on average 1 hour a week in an online class with live instruction. Compare that to the 6 – 7 hours of class periods during normal school days and parents got a healthy does of reality. The media can spin it however they like, but parents know that teaching staff fleeced the public.
Now parents are pushing back. Hard. They are challenging the concept of public education. Considering home schooling and alternate methods to education. Couple that with the burdensome regulations here in California regarding school structures and governmental delays and you have a recipe for disaster.
Now way to build COVID-19 compliant schools
The department of State Architect is notorious for “pay the fee” salutes and wait times longer than the DMV. The idea that DSA has to approve a tent as a safe place for a student to go inside of, explains why California lags in education. Look at other countries and their efforts to educate students and you will see a commitment to that matter most – education.
Parents got a taste of homeschooling, its difficulties and its rewards. With that taste they also got a sampling of unemployment, the rewards of working from home and spending that quality time with their kids, dog and family.A lot of parents are not looking forward to returning to work and are expressing their desire to stay home with their kids and start a homeschooling regime. That homeschooling regime may not land squarely in the public sector spheres resulting in a dying cash cow for school districts.
50% of parents that have been surveyed said they are not comfortable sending their kids back to school in August. As the flu season hits and vaccines remain elusive, the number will continue to decline. Cities have started to cut budgets by as much as 20% and schools are laying off staff already.
What to do
First all school districts and teaching staff need to look at this from a different angle. We need to start looking at public school as a business. We need to illustrate the value of public school. Elevate that value and ensure that teachers are putting in value for their students. That means that they need to get online with the students and teach – not just assign homework.
Next, join our fight to get DSA to provide a variance for COVID-19 education tents and outdoor learning centers.