Parents react to Alabama public school re-opening options

WAAY-31 learned the school system is still working on plans daily to keep students and staff safe.

Posted: Jun 26, 2020 5:35 PM

Friday, parents learned a little more about the state's plan to reopen schools come August.

And while the Alabama state superintendent admitted he does not have all the answers, he said the state is doing everything it can to make the coming school year a success.

WAAY 31 spoke with parents about their thoughts and concerns on whether or not it was enough to bring their kids back to traditional school or not.

Several parents told us they still have a lot of questions when it comes to bringing their kids back.

One mother we spoke with is sending her child back to the traditional classroom and another already enrolled her daughter in virtual school and doesn't plan to take her out until there's a vaccine for coronavirus.

"We can only learn so much from virtual. Until something is right in front of you, and especially with emotional development, I don't think we can learn as much of that without that virtual interaction," said Tara Webb Parker.

Webb Parker believes inside a school is the best place for her 8-year-old daughter to learn.

She thinks that personal connection is needed.

But Tawana Townsend thinks virtual learning is what’s best for her young daughter.

"Virtual, digital, it's just the way of the future. We have to change and we have to evolve and be adaptable," she said.

Both women told us they like having options.

Townsend said online learning gives her the ability to incorporate school work with home activities to keep her daughter engaged.

"Being able to teach her how to cook and incorporating math into that has been interesting but it's been fun," she said.

Townsend and Webb Parker are looking forward to see how the school year will play out... but they know one thing is for sure: they'll do whatever’s needed for their child because education is a top priority.

"Regardless if the dishes need to be washed, laundry needs to be done, or we have to do 15 tasks for work, we have to be able to put that child's needs ahead of whatever else we have going on," said Webb Parker.

The state superintendent said he and local boards of education are constantly in talks about changing plans, and are currently still working out details of how to be creative when it comes to social distancing in and out of the classroom.

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