WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — The School District of Palm Beach County will hold a special meeting Wednesday to consider changing its reopening plan after receiving suggestions from the Florida Department of Education.
Under the current plan, students would return to the classroom in phases starting with pre-kindergarten, once health conditions improve. The new proposal would allow parents to have a choice on when their child goes back into the classroom.
If approved, students in Palm Beach County would still begin the year virtually Aug. 31.
In a telephone interview, Palm Beach County Classroom Teachers Association President Justin Katz told WPTV the new proposal is a reckless strong-arm tactic that is a step in the wrong direction and jeopardizes the safety of teachers and students.
SPECIAL SECTION: Back to School
"I think that's just dangerous and I don't think the governor or the commissioner of education have the authority to make these demands, let alone make the threats behind these demands to cripple a public education system by defunding it," Katz said.
Some parents, on the other hand, are in favor of the proposal.
Nadine Sirota has a daughter who will start second grade this month. She said the quicker her child kids can get back into the classroom, the better. She added that virtual learning has been a challenge and has played a crucial role in daughter's emotional and social well being.
"I do feel there's more negative impact from the kids just staying home," Sirota said. "My child had a hard time distinguishing the difference between learning from home and being at home, it was very hard to separate the two."