MIAMI (WSVN) - With the start of online classes a day away, Miami-Dade Public Schools Superintendent Alberto Carvalho went into detail about how the school year will be structured and said he is holding out hope that students will be able to return to physical classrooms sooner rather than later.
In a video posted Sunday, Carvalho said he understands virtual learning continues to present challenges for students and their parents.
“This year, things are a bit different as a result of COVID-19,” he said.
“It’s going to be a new experience,” said teacher Caroline Kelley.
“We have to work with what we have to do right now,” said parent Sharon Fine-Zebede..
It all begins Monday morning, as the county’s public schools start the new school year completely online.
Parents said they’re aware of the obstacles ahead.
“He’s only 9 years old. It’s going to be a different experience,” said Fine-Zebede.
Carvalho said the school year will be broken into three stages, with virtual learning kicking things off first.
Fine-Zebede said she’s hoping this way of learning runs smoothly.
“I don’t want that added stress of the thing crashing and my son not being able to get on and him being frustrated,” she said.
Teachers are also feeling the frustration.
”I’ve seen a lot of parents that their children, they have meltdowns. They don’t want to sit at that computer screen, and it’s hard,” said Kelley.
“These kids are transitioning from one to two teachers a school day to six teachers on this unknown online platform that might not even work,” said teacher Leonor Rodriguez, “and this is going to be their first exposure to middle school, which is not fair.”
If Miami-Dade continues seeing a downward trend of positive cases, the superintendent said he is hopeful students will be able to return to campus, perhaps earlier than anticipated.
“Once local conditions allow us to transition to Stage 2 of reopening, those students whose families have chosen the ‘School/House’ options for their first semester will return to district classrooms without skipping a beat, and those who have chosen ‘My School Online’ will continue their courses uninterrupted,” he said.
But until then, Fine-Zebede wants her son’s experience to be as normal and productive as possible.
“I want to be there, be available to him, to help him, but I want the teachers and him to feel that he’s a part of a classroom,” she said.
Students are reminded that online classes will begin as scheduled Monday morning.
For more information from Miami-Dade County Public Schools about the upcoming school year, click here.
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