Parents Starting To Push For Mask Mandates, Distance Learning As COVID Cases Rise. Palm Beach County School District Responds…
BY: ANDREW COLTON | Editor and Publisher
BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) (Copyright © 2021 MetroDesk Media, LLC) — In an uncharacteristically terse email being blasted to parents of students in the Palm Beach County School District Tuesday afternoon, officials are reminding parents that Governor Ron DeSantis “sunsetted” his approval for distance learning — meaning all kids must be back in school on August 10th. The only exception: families who sign up for the state-run Florida Virtual Academy, which means pulling out of the Palm Beach County School District.
As BocaNewsNow.com has been reporting, an increasingly vocal group of parents is pushing for a reinstatement of the “mask mandate” when school starts in just a few weeks. It is currently “optional” for all students. Parents, fearing the increasing spread of the COVID-19 “Delta” variant, want the school district to develop a plan of action that at least mandates face coverings for children too young to be vaccinated.
An unscientific survey conducted by BocaNewsNow.com revealed results that completely contradicted similar surveys half a year ago: the vast majority of parents responding believe a mask mandate should start the school year, at least for kids in elementary and middle school. Six months ago, almost every response was “anti” masking came from “anti” maskers.
While the school district is holding to its “optional” policy, school board member Dr. Debra Robinson — a medical doctor — has added an agenda item for Wednesday’s meeting to discuss the “reopening plan.”
This is the email sent by the Palm Beach County School District to 180,000 families:
”As a reminder, the Governor’s Executive Order which allowed Distance Learning during the 2019-2020 school year has sunsetted. That means that distance learning is not an option when school begins in Palm Beach County on August 10, 2021. Students will return to in-person instruction.
For parents and guardians, including students with disabilities and/or English language learners, who want to maintain virtual schooling, Palm Beach County Schools will offer additional Exceptional Student Education (ESE) and English Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) consultation services in the form of ESE and ESOL certified teachers to Palm Beach Virtual School’s elementary, middle and high school programs.
If you are a parent or guardian of a student with a disability or an English language learner, a meeting will be coordinated by PBVS to review your child’s Individualized Education Plan (IEP) or Limited English Proficiency (LEP) plan to determine if your child’s needs can be met.”
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