Recently, the governor, in cooperation with the Commissioner of Education and the Department of Public Health and medical experts, released the framework and guidelines for reopening Connecticut schools in the fall with in-person learning. As a follow up to this announcement, I asked the people of North Haven to complete a brief one-question survey in order to gauge their thoughts about school reopening. A total of 278 individuals completed the survey, and here is an overview of the information collected. 55 percent of individuals said “Yes. Schools should reopen with the proper safeguards and protocols in place,” 26 percent indicated that “No. It is still too early to open schools,” and 18 percent said “I’m not sure about reopening schools this fall”.
Some individuals also left additional comments and here’s what they had to say about the matter:
“There needs to be more things done at the school besides just wearing a mask.”
“Let them go back. No masks. Distancing and hand washing but please no masks!”
“Conditions and infection rates are in a state of flux nationally. At this time it is impossible to predict what the status of the virus will be in our community come September. However, I believe it is prudent to plan for a reopening of schools, even if it is to ultimately be further delayed because of an increased risk due to COVID-19.”
“Schools will be unable to reopen to the degree that every protocol is adhered to. Students will be unable to social distance in classrooms, it is unrealistic for students to keep on a face mask the entire day except for lunch, keeping students in “cohorts” and confining to classrooms all day, will be unmanageable socially and emotionally, especially for elementary students. The teacher workload will increase which will impact the quality of planning and instruction. Classrooms need to be more than wiped down every night. What will be done for teachers who may be exposed and put into quarantine? Will they be forced to use their own sick days for 2 weeks? What PPE supplies will be available to students and teachers? There are too many questions and concerns to start school onsite in the fall.”
“I do think our children need to go back to school, however, I’m very concerned about mask wearing all day. I think it’s unrealistic and unconstitutional.”
“Students need to occupy their time and interact with other students to provide purpose to their days and essential interactions needed to grow. Students must reinforce safety, and success will come while in school!”
Thank you to everyone who took the time to complete my survey, and I hope you find the information as helpful as I did. I remain in contact with school officials at both the state and local level, and I will be sure to keep you updated as more information unfolds.
In the event that you have questions or concerns pertaining to this topic or other matter related to state government, feel free to contact me at Dave.Yaccarino@housegop.ct.gov.
State Representative Dave Yaccarino