On a normal first day of school, Texas children would wake up early to make it to the bus on time. They would be excited to socialize with their classmates before running off to their classrooms. As public schools in Texas starts to reopen. This could be one of the most important things on the Texas ballots this year.
This year things would run a little differently due to the pandemic for a lot of Dallas Independent School Districts campuses they would start with virtual learning. Classes were back in session September 8th due to them still waiting to see how the pandemic would playout.
As the election approaches, we must keep ourselves informed with those who wants to improve our education system. Early voting will start the second week of October, and we must get to the polls and vote for a change in the education system.
Classes started later than normal this year when students would have returned in August instead of September. Virtual learning has been difficult for a lot of teachers and students. Parents would have to be present to help younger children access their classes. Teachers would have to personally call parents if students logged off or was not in class.
Many teachers would still go into their classrooms as their base for their virtual learning. For some students it was hard to get logged in if they were not registered on time as well as not having internet at home to access their classes.
Dallas ISD realized that internet would be a huge problem for a lot of students and they invested $20 million to ensure students have the resources they needed to learn while at home. They handed out backpacks to all secondary students in August to make sure they were prepared for the first day of school.
"We will finally realize our vision of providing one-to-one technology for every Dallas ISD student," said Dallas ISD Chief Technology Officer Jack Kelanic. "The computer and home Internet access are foundational tools to help ensure every student is successful this school year."
If a child in a higher-grade needs access to a computer a lot of them had to go on to their school's website and fill out a form to make sure they get the proper materials. On the Bryan Adman website, they have a link you can click on as well as number you can call to request Wi-Fi internet.
A few weeks after virtual learning on September 28, the first group of students have the option to on campus learning and the second group would be allowed back on October 5th. School would be different when students return to class. They will have to wear a face mask all day, they would have to have shields on desk if they did take their mask off and they would have bag lunches instead of a normal lunch setting in the cafeteria.
At Williams they have signs placed all over the school and stickers placed on walls so teachers will know how far to keep students apart. They have signs near the bathroom to limit the amount of people who can go in at a time. Everything is different because of COVID-19, and being able to keep the teachers and students safe is even harder.
"I'm glad my students are back in class," said new teacher Debbie Obi. "It is easier for me to teach and have my student's attention."
For students and teachers at LG Pinkston Middle and High school learning has been different since they returned for in person learning. They have 14 kids for high school and 22 kids for middle school that returned for in person. Most teachers would have one to two students in their classrooms and more tuning in from their devices at home.
We have a few teachers that wanted their students to return to in person learning because it was easier to teach in person rather than on a screen. It was easier to explain and to see if students was struggling. A lot of new teachers found it difficult to adjust to the thought of teaching online while a lot of the old heads did not care.
"I preferred virtual learning over in person learning because it was safer for a lot of us," said Teacher and football coach Simeon Brinkley. "But when they said we could still play football I was okay with the idea of in person classes."
Sports are always important to teachers and students and when they heard they will be allowed to play sports. Students and teachers were thrilled and excited to see each other back on campus. Practices and games continue as normal they do take safety precautions to make sure everyone is safe.
As COVID-19 in the Dallas area continues to rise we have to think about the safety and education for children. The election is coming up and we have to pay close attention to who has the best intentions for your children and the education system.
Remember to vote in this upcoming election. Early voting starts October 13, 2020 - October 30, 2020. Its up to you to make a change and for us to see that change you have to mark it on the ballot.
Having to wear a mask and have a shield in front of your desk is something a lot of us did not see coming in 2020.
Football practices and games still go on until there is a COVID-19 break out.
Empty classrooms are starting to be the new normal for some teachers.
Setting charts must be kept everyday
Not being able to drink water anymore at school but only using a bottle to fill it up
Crowed bathrooms are a thing of the past as they limit the number of students allowed in the restrooms.
Teachers did not think that they would still have to be behind a screen when in person returned. Parents want to keep their children safe but are they learning?
Students are no longer running around the gym during gym class but behind screens