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Madison City Schools parents confused on whether to send kids back to school or not

Parents in Madison City Schools say their children have had a difficult time adjusting to the virtual program, but they aren't ready to just send their kids back to school just yet. They want to know more details on how kids will be protected and what in person school will look like.

Posted: Aug 31, 2020 9:11 PM
Updated: Sep 1, 2020 4:14 AM

Monday night the district answered some questions sent in by parents on their website

After Friday's surprise announcement that Madison City, Huntsville City and Madison County schools will start offering in-person classes a few weeks earlier than expected, some parents say they aren't yet comfortable making a decision for their children.

They thought it would be almost two months before their children would transition from at-home to traditional learning.
Now in some cases, it's just a few days away.

Parents in Madison City Schools say their children have had a difficult time adjusting to the virtual program, but they aren't ready to just send their kids back to school just yet. They want to know more details on how kids will be protected and what in person school will look like.

"I was shocked it was so early. I expected the first nine weeks to be virtual," said parent, Machelle Naulty.

"Scared. I got really scared," said parent, Janelle Arbuckle.

"I felt like it was too soon," said parent, Tara Bailey.

"I don't really know what the best answer is," said parent, Jessica Serrett.

Confusion and worry: two emotions some parents in Madison City Schools say they are feeling after hearing the district is allowing students to come back to school as soon as September 8.

"There's a lot of to and fro when it comes to making that decision," said Arbuckle.

Parent Janelle Arbuckle says she wants her young children to go back to in-person school.

"They are at such a crucial age where there are so many things they can only get from the classroom," said Arbuckle.

She's worried about what the experience will be like.

"You can't share toys, you can't share books, you can't play with anyone because you have to be far apart," said Arbuckle.

"We don't know how many times the kids are going to take off their masks," said Naulty.

Parent Machelle Naulty says her husband has asthma, and she's worried her daughter may bring Coronavirus home.

"We don't really know what the COVID virus would do to him," said Naulty.

She says her daughter would also benefit from learning in a classroom setting.

"To be in front of the teacher, to be able to ask questions all day and virtually, they don't have that opportunity," said Naulty.

Naulty says she wants to know how many students will be back at school and parents agree, they want answers from the district before making a final decision.

"We need to know what in-school looks like," said Bailey.

"It's like there's no real, right answer," said Arbuckle.

Parents tell WAAY 31 News they would prefer the district bring back students two weeks after Labor Day Weekend.

They say the holiday could cause a spike, and it would be better to decide if students should come back then.

Madison City Schools states parents filled out a form before the school year started, letting them decide whether they prefer their children being in virtual or traditional school and those were used to make class re-entry rosters.

If a parent wants to transition their child to traditional or virtual school now, they will need to email the principal and that child will be put on a waiting list.

For more information on Madison City Schools re-entry plan, click here. The school system is expected to release even more details on Tuesday.

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