It seems as if public education has found something harder than standard testing to solve, the mandate for masks in public schools.
In Georgia, we have progressive school districts like Atlanta Public Schools driving mask mandates and providing resources for testing throughout the year while other districts like Clayton County are thriving with virtual learning.
There are also metro Atlanta school districts such as Fulton and Cobb Counties that are actively working to reopen schools during increasing numbers of Covid-19 while also not requiring a mask mandate.
The disruption of the pandemic has proven that mandating masks is the great debate of this generation.
Do we realize how many children come to school with the common cold, fevers and even other health impairments that we don’t visually see signs of? Or how many children in lower and working class households don’t have insurance? Or how many middle school and high school students are helping take care of their families? These questions should be discussed in school board meetings.
We need change to get the funding formula right.
The fight over mandating masks is pushing parents out of traditional public schools.
Georgia parents are seeking a different option in how their children are being educated. While many students in traditional public schools are working on packets, my students are working on lessons to complete this year’s standards and begin the next.
School choice is providing parents options to stay masked up and safe. Several parents in traditional public schools have asked if their students can join my online classes at 7 Pillars Career Academy. which is one of the learning options our school offers.
Teaching Special Education through an online curriculum at 7 Pillars Career Academy has been rewarding. We are following our regular school hours. I have been able to teach and help my scholars continue to eliminate their learning gaps.
I don’t believe we would be seeing the growth and balance of our students if we were restricted like many traditional public schools.
7 Pillars Career Academy parents are able to work from home successfully while their children are doing their work, too! Many traditional public schools don’t have the flexibility in their curriculum that meets the needs of all scholars when traditional schools programs aren’t in session, and this needs to change.
Jason has worked in education for over 15 years as a teacher, blogger and community advocate. He speaks and writes primarily about the need to improve education for Black boys, particularly increasing the number of Black male educators in schools. In addition to blogging here at EdLanta, Jason is also a featured writer at Education Post.