Looking Ahead :: Questions Surrounding the 2020/2021 School Year

As this crazy unpredictable school year comes to an end, I can’t help but wonder how school will look come August. The city of New Orleans is moved into Phase 1 this past weekend. While we have guidelines to go by, the uncertainty for Phase 2 and beyond is still unknown. Will we make it to Phase 2 in June? At what phase can we resume school? As a mother of school aged children, I seem to have all the questions.

Will we be able to do in person learning in the fall?

Virtual learning has had its ups and downs over the course of these past nine weeks. I can say for sure I’ve learned more about Google Classroom and Zoom than I have ever wanted to. However, in person learning seems to be much more beneficial for learning for most children.

Reduced class sizes? Classes on different days of the week?

The normal size classroom varies from grade to grade and from school to school. Some may have 12 in a class, where others have 25. Will there be a magic number where we can have in person learning? If our current grade exceeds that, how will we proceed? Will we split the grade up into smaller classes and go on opposite days?

Daily temperature checks?

The new normal of taking temperatures in the workplace or entering a hospital is now in place. Will the same thing be taken into account for schools if we are in the classroom? What happens if we find out one of the students has a fever? Must they quarantine until their COVID-19 test comes back?

Keeping the schools clean

We have all been keeping our houses as clean and disinfected as possible. Will schools do the same? Cleaning the school is one thing, but disinfecting it every day I imagine would be not only labor intensive but costly. Will schools get rid of soft surfaces that are hard to disinfect?

What about the immunocompromised kids?

The guidelines state that those with chronic illnesses or those who are immunocompromised should stay home. But what about the children? Will exceptions be made for those children? Or should they just assume that they will do online learning for the foreseeable future?

While we don’t know answers to these questions yet, we should be prepared for it. These past few weeks have helped education administrators learn what works and what doesn’t. I surely hope we are IN the classroom come August.

What questions or concerns do you have for the start of the 2020 school year?

Mary Olivio
Mary is a caffeine addicted boy mom to Noah, Liam and Luke. This “stay at home” mom can typically been found cruising in her minivan, jamming to Beyonce with a Starbucks in hand on her way to carpool or after school activities. Mary has been married to her high school sweetheart since 2007. She is a founder of Delivering Hope NOLA and the Vanessa Wolff Scholarship Fund at her Alma Mater. Mary is passionate in the local preemie community and has been heavily involved with the March of Dimes since her sons Liam and Luke were born premature.


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