TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Hillsborough County parents are torn on how they feel about bringing students back to a classroom learning environment.
Parents were asked to respond to two questions about the reopening of schools in the fall after Gov. Ron DeSantis last week unveiled recommendations for how Florida schools should reopen.
“In Florida, we’re taking a smart, safe, step-by-step approach to re-opening, and this extensive data-driven plan will ensure Florida students, educators and families have the confidence and support needed to get students back to the classroom, which will, in turn, allow parents back into the workforce and allow Florida to hit its economic stride,” said Gov. DeSantis.
Among DeSantis’ recommendations for reopening classrooms for the 2020-2021 school year, was allowing the decision to reopen to be locally-driven. That would give individual districts the opportunity to assess the coronavirus spread in their own communities.
Survey results were split, with 25 percent of the 52,883 respondents reporting that they would be “very comfortable” sending their students back to the classroom. Another 23 percent of respondents reported not being comfortable with their child returning to a school campus.
Virtual school, which students used to complete the final few months of the 2019-2020 school year, was also a topic with mixed opinions.
Out of the respondents, 48 percent said they would not want their child to continue with virtual learning if the district resumes a normal campus-based schedule. More than 20 percent said they would still prefer virtual learning and 29 percent of respondents said they may want virtual learning to continue.
In a statement along with the survey results, Superintendent Addison Davis addressed the district’s 206,841 students and their guardians.
“I want you to know your district staff is working diligently on school reopening plans for the fall. We are listening to the recommendations by the CDC and the Florida Department of Health to make the best decision for our staff and our students,” Davis said. “We are also taking into account the School Reopening Survey that so many of our families took the time to fill out.”
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