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Remote, blended learning mean educators are scrambling to adjust curriculum

Posted at 8:46 PM, Oct 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-14 20:46:00-04

NEW YORK CITY — “We are not able to deliver the quality of instruction that I think all of us would feel better about."

It's not exactly a ringing endorsement of the current plan for teaching New York City students.

Speech Therapist Danielle Bello said on Tuesday her 6th grade remote learning class was divided into two, because every day, new students choose to do all virtual classes.

More than 80% of the students at M.S. 324 in Washington Heights choose remote learning, and that number is growing every day.

Because of the daily changes, teachers are forced to scramble to set up new students and teach a curriculum for a constantly changing class size.

This seems to be the case across New York City, with the latest numbers showing 52% of students have opted to learn online.

Mayor Bill de Blasio said as a parent, he understands the trend, but doesn’t think it will last.

“I think it makes sense. Parents are going to bide their time, watch what is happening, talk to other people they know, friends who have kids in school” said de Blasio.

Bello said DOE-issued iPads do not run the websites the DOE authorized teachers to use remotely, so the students using DOE technology are falling behind, at least until learning materials can be issued another way.

Another sad reality comes for students who use school as a safe space away from home, to confide in teachers and their peers.

Being at home all day and learning among family members can leave students feeling trapped and lonely, with the stress of making it to the next grade weighing on them.

And for now, state testing is still on the table, and educators are preparing students to meet those standards, even though many aren't in the classroom.