Back to School: Striking the Right Balance in Our Communities
Posted on August 31, 2020 by Admin
On Monday, Wilton students returned to school for a new academic year that will feature exclusively virtual classrooms for the first week of instruction. Beginning on September 8, Wilton, Norwalk, and Westport will all begin using a hybrid model where our children will spend some time with their peers, and the remainder in their homes. Families will also have the option of using a totally remote learning model that their children can navigate from home.
Whether you believe learning should be completely remote, hybrid, or in person, the one thing we can all agree on is that every student in Wilton, Norwalk, and Westport deserves the best education we can provide them. Our respective towns and school districts will decide, on their own, how best to approach this, and I will support whatever decisions the parents and administrators make because I believe in local control. State government has a very important role to play in making ample public health information, guidelines, and data available in a clear and transparent format so that it can provide a sound basis for local decisions. But those decisions must not be imposed on our communities from the top down, because we know what is best for our children.
I know many parents are concerned about the new school year and what it will mean for their kids. As is the case with so many critical issues we face this year, it’s a question of finding a delicate balance. While we all want to do the responsible thing by taking precautions and practicing social distancing, we also want our children to have the opportunity to interact, in-person, with their teachers and fellow classmates. I know as well that it’s challenging for parents to play the role of teacher’s assistant, primary caregiver, and working professional all at once. It is my hope that the hybrid model will prove successful, and safe, and that in the near future, we can begin full-time instruction once again.
I’d like to extend a heartfelt thank you to our teachers, staff, and administrators as they welcome their students for the new school year, in whatever form that may take. I want them to know that they perform an invaluable service to our towns, and the students and their parents are lucky to have such a devoted and talented group of individuals invested in their future. Their opinions matter, too, and I hope they will have the resources and support they need to feel safe in this new environment.
We all take great pride in our local school systems, and I want you all to know that I am here for you if you have questions about any state or local issue, whether it be related to education, the governor’s executive orders, or any state government matter of concern to you and your families. Serving all of you here in our communities is my number one priority.
It is said often, but worth repeating – we are in this together, and we will get through this together.
All the best,
World Turns Upside Down