Teachers fear they may not be ready for school this fall

Posted July 6, 2020 5:58 p.m. EDT
Updated July 6, 2020 7:28 p.m. EDT

Starting in August, students in Wake County public schools may be alternating between in-class and remote learning, but that doesn’t necessarily mean double the work for teachers.

“You may have one teacher doing face-to-face and another teacher doing the virtual, and that’s how we envision doing the work,” said Keith Sutton, chairman of the Wake County Board of Education.

Sutton says principals will ultimately determine which teachers will be instructing in class and which will be online.

“What is going to happen is a distribution of teacher workload. Principals and teacher leaders will sit down and figure out the best teachers who know virtual learning while others are doing face-to-face instructions,” Sutton said.

Kristin Beller, who represents Wake County on the North Carolina Association of Educators Board of Directors, says teachers are struggling to prepare with just six weeks left before the start of the school year.

“I think it’s an unfair thing to ask of our educators,” Beller said. A big concern among many teachers right now is safety and the potential workload.

“There are some teachers ready to go. A majority of them have concerns just like parents have concerns. This is all new,” Beller said.

Another big question is how remote learning will look like for families of special needs students. “That is going to be a challenge in terms of providing the same level of education and services to special needs students in a virtual remote environment. That’s going to be difficult,” Sutton said.

Sutton says the district’s plan is more of a blueprint for schools. Principals are really the ones in charge of deciding what works best for their school.

Right now principals are taking everything into consideration, and they’ll have a more clear plan in a couple of weeks.

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