Osseo Teachers, Staff Protest Back-to-School Plans
A group of teachers and staff from the Osseo School District are protesting the hybrid model recommended for back-to-school plans. They protested outside of the Educational Service Center Thursday afternoon.
Teachers say the hybrid model of both in-person and online learning puts them at higher risk for contracting COVID-19.
“School shouldn’t be completely open until the data matches up with it being safe,” said Lindsey Burdick, a teacher at Park Center Senior High. “The school should be completely providing for safe distancing, PPE, and whatever else. We shouldn’t have to deal with ‘safe enough’ conditions. The numbers aren’t there yet. It’s now low enough.”
Burdick says she’s not aware of how the district is prepared because it hasn’t been communicated with staff.
“When the school board is still meeting virtually to vote, it seems not quite lining up to be meeting at school with that many people,” said Burdick.
Burdick says many parents might feel like in-person learning is best for their students, but the safety should come first.
Superintendent Cory McIntyre provided a statement to CCX News in response to the protest:
The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted everything we thought was “normal” about starting a new school year, and we recognize the stress that our staff and families are experiencing. Based on the state’s Safe Learning Plan, on July 31 I recommended starting the school year in the hybrid model. Since then, my team has been in regular contact with county and state officials to monitor virus activity in the county and in our communities. We know we will need to be nimble and prepared to pivot among the three safe learning scenarios throughout the year, based on virus activity and state guidance. While there are varying opinions about the “right” way to start, I am confident that our employees are sharing their perspectives out of their love for the students they serve.” –Superintendent Cory McIntyre.
To learn more about Osseo Area Schools hybrid learning policy, click here.