Parents & teachers speak out on WCPS’s distance learning decision

Washington County

"I'm not sure if they took our concern's into consideration, but the decision is made and we need to come together for the kids."

WASHINGTON COUNTY, Md. (WDVM)– Beginning August 31st, students and teachers will be logging back onto their laptops for their 2020 Fall Semester. Once WCPS made the announcement Tuesday night, social media began to stir. Some people thanked the board for their decision and others made their frustration clear.

“Based on the comments coming from the Board of Education’s page, everybody was really angry about it,” said WCPS Parent Roxanne Walsh. “I felt like it’s the decision they made, we just need to respect it, move on and adapt the best we can to get through this.”

Walsh has four children enrolled in WCPS and says she personally see’s pros and cons to distance learning, but urges everyone to come together. Other WCPS parents like Andrew and Paige Hammarlund require special needs services for one of their children and are curious to see what the fall semester brings.

“A lot of kids with special needs require hands on learning and to be there with a teacher and an aid, doing it on the computer or  iPad just isn’t enough for him,” said Paige. “I’m just hoping they have a better alternative or better option for him. They did offer to do school in person for summer school and we were not comfortable with that but there wasn’t an alternative.”

Many teachers voiced their concerns on WCPS’s Facebook page as well, saying the spring semester was nearly impossible.  A local teacher who’s been educating students for 19 years says he and his colleagues definitely struggled last semester, but is hoping for the best this fall.

“The lives of our students and children and families are just as important as learning math, language arts and social studies,” said FCPS Teacher Kristofer Roberson. “Unless we have a healthy and safe system, students can’t come to school and cannot learn.”

If you missed the board’s discussion deciding the fall semester plans, click here.

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