Madison County teacher finds alternative way to teach during the pandemic

Even though there's a shortage of teachers in Alabama, some don't feel safe going back to the classroom.

Posted: Oct 8, 2020 6:31 PM
Updated: Oct 9, 2020 12:30 PM

Teachers aren't immune to coronavirus or to being sent into quarantine when one of their students tests positive for the virus.

That's contributing to a shortage of teachers in Alabama schools and State Superintendent of Education, Dr. Eric Mackey, told WAAY 31 for the first time ever, there's even a shortage of elementary school teachers.

WAAY 31 spoke with a teacher who didn't feel safe going back to the classroom this year.

Dr. Tammy Walker's passion is teaching and she's been doing what she loves for more than 25 years. She said her fiance is a cancer survivor and she works with the elderly, so when she had to make the decision to either go back to a traditional school setting or find an alternative teaching solution, like Zoom, she decided to go with something new.

“It was definitely thought-provoking. Do I want to put myself in an environment where there would be so many unknown factors, so much interaction with so many different people and even though the schools have tried putting up Plexiglas, I just didn’t feel that was a complete answer to what’s going on right now," said Walker.

When schools announced plans to reopen, Walker was working at a private school in Madison County. She said she didn't feel the safety precautions in place would be very practical for her students.

“When have you ever known a student to be sitting in their desk facing forward?" said Walker. "It doesn’t happen, you know? They’re everywhere else, so I'm not sure. I don’t even see that as a viable solution.”

She now runs "Educational Solutions with Dr. Tammy Walker." She said it's like a catering service, with a few educators teaching students via Zoom.

Walker said this allows teachers to have a say in what they're comfortable with instead of being told what they have to do.

“If I was working for someone else and they told me I had to report and I had to interact and I had to be in a hallway with, you know, 200 other children, that does not give me a choice, that gives me exposure," said Walker.

To make sure everyone is healthy when they do provide in-person learning, the teachers wear masks and check their temperatures before the meetings. 

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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 242874

Reported Deaths: 3572
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson31944500
Mobile19687361
Madison13065148
Tuscaloosa12983154
Montgomery12286236
Shelby1020377
Baldwin860398
Lee773566
Morgan653850
Calhoun6240119
Marshall621355
Etowah621066
Houston523038
DeKalb481336
Cullman435442
Limestone420645
St. Clair415855
Elmore404564
Lauderdale400454
Walker3634111
Talladega349054
Jackson313423
Colbert309342
Blount288840
Autauga271642
Franklin251033
Coffee242615
Dale231854
Dallas225932
Chilton221938
Russell22143
Covington218534
Escambia197931
Chambers176550
Tallapoosa175791
Pike158314
Clarke158019
Marion137936
Winston132323
Lawrence127336
Pickens122318
Geneva12138
Marengo121024
Bibb117317
Barbour117110
Butler115341
Randolph102021
Cherokee101524
Hale96131
Clay91124
Washington90919
Fayette89816
Henry8526
Lowndes79529
Monroe78711
Cleburne77114
Macon73122
Crenshaw71130
Bullock69419
Conecuh68414
Perry6846
Lamar6718
Wilcox63218
Sumter57722
Greene42418
Choctaw42113
Coosa3414
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 356716

Reported Deaths: 4526
CountyCasesDeaths
Shelby47088658
Davidson42057419
Knox18467149
Rutherford17439160
Hamilton16555152
Williamson1116779
Sumner9573136
Wilson731678
Out of TN721051
Montgomery649683
Sullivan630096
Washington5844106
Maury578367
Putnam578282
Blount540660
Madison5275110
Bradley508435
Sevier476831
Unassigned449222
Robertson371052
Tipton357738
Hamblen340860
Dyer316051
Gibson315064
Greene300672
Dickson284833
Anderson283328
Coffee277641
Bedford270130
Carter266055
Lawrence263934
Obion260449
Cumberland248536
McMinn244555
Roane230929
Warren229419
Loudon224519
Hardeman223237
Jefferson222732
Fayette219138
Weakley212636
Monroe207444
Franklin204434
Lauderdale202523
Trousdale190212
Hawkins189834
Wayne189110
Henderson181533
Macon179228
Hardin174825
Marshall171520
White170918
Carroll169234
Rhea162931
Haywood160830
Cocke159530
Lincoln157914
Cheatham155317
Overton152935
Campbell152723
Henry149317
Giles143949
Johnson141321
Smith140919
McNairy138733
Fentress118920
Lake11656
Hickman116219
Bledsoe11595
Crockett113326
DeKalb111322
Marion107719
Scott10507
Chester101120
Grainger95416
Decatur93713
Unicoi83626
Claiborne8029
Benton78714
Grundy76914
Lewis74714
Cannon7293
Morgan7096
Union7065
Humphreys6948
Jackson67510
Polk65015
Houston58620
Stewart58415
Clay54018
Sequatchie5215
Meigs48313
Perry47721
Moore3893
Pickett38413
Van Buren3482
Hancock1563

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