Letter to the Editor

Surprised and Concerned

To the Editor,

I am surprised and concerned as a resident and member of the City Council that the schools are considering a hybrid education model for February. In September when numbers of positive cases for Covid-19 were significantly lower, the decision was made to keep the schools closed. Now that we see numbers increase to all-time highs it shouldn’t be a time to talk about how to roll out the hybrid model of learning in our city. I spoke at a School Committee meeting recently asking that the members not send children back until science shows us it is safe to do so. I once again put that same request out to the members of the School Committee. We are only a few short weeks away from February vacation which should be a real concern for all.

I spoke with nearly 200 individuals over the weekend about this matter, many of them are strongly against talks of hybrid learning until numbers decrease and the vaccine is made able for teachers and staff. I think as the Superintendent stated herself several times we need to go by science and see the numbers significantly down for several weeks before moving forward. However, we should be talking about how else we can support children and families over remote learning during this winter.

In closing, the number one thing I heard from families this weekend was they would greatly appreciate being a part of the discussion, of when they feel it is safe for their child to return to in person learning. We must return to the new normal as a community of one.

Michael McLaughlin

Ward 6 City Councilor

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