Parents Petition Lakewood City Schools For Ongoing Online Education

From "Today Is Gonna Be A Great Quarantine" by Sarah Bene

A petition launched by Lakewood parents is asking that Lakewood City Schools (LCS) make online learning with Lakewood teachers and classes an ongoing option for families who require it. Currently, when buildings reopen, the online option ends. 

Children from families with health issues, who can't risk going into into buildings, must switch to a generic online eLearning course, losing their chance to complete the LHS courses they've started and contact with their teachers and classmates.

The current reopening policy:  

1.) PROMOTES COMMUNITY SPREAD OF COVID-19 by requiring that children--who would stay home if there was an online option--go into buildings to continue their LCS education. This will increase class-sizes and exposure for in-building learners and staff, along with the chance that vulnerable children and their families will get sick.

2.) DISCRIMINATES AGAINST AT-RISK FAMILIES by depriving their children of access to Lakewood teachers, courses and fellow classmates. These families pay taxes, along with all Lakewood residents, to support the provision of authentic education for all Lakewood children. Some families will withdraw from the District, choosing to homeschool or enroll in more accommodating schools. They may not return.

The petition calls for a Hybrid Model which would keep the school community together when buildings open:

This would allow for kids at home and kids at school to remain classmates, with recorded in-school lectures uploaded for home learners, and weekly Zoom sessions which would bring the classes together. This option also allows for in-building learners who get sick or who have to quarantine to continue their education uninterrupted from home, and would provide a seamless transition back to remote schooling for all students in the event of another shut-down. 

Though this model is being offered in surrounding districts, currently it is not an option for Lakewood. District officials have said they are aware of the need and are “working on it and are committed to finding a solution.” 

Based on these words, families with health risks who would have signed up for eLearning--not because they didn't want an actual Lakewood City Schools education, but because they needed a guarantee that their children could stay home--decided to roll the dice and allow their students to choose the authentic Lakewood teacher-led version of online learning. Their hope is that their students will be able to stay home online with their LCS classes and teachers when buildings reopen. 

They are trusting that this petition furthers the finding of a solution. 

To access the petition go to: lakewood-parents-for-ongoing- remote-learning

Volume 16, Issue 18, Posted 4:58 PM, 09.02.2020