The 2020-2021 school year is almost over. Many schools are still remote or doing a hybrid schedule, but what will next year look like? As the schools and universities plan for graduations and for the upcoming year many things are being considered when it comes to Covid-19 safety measures. Will mask wearing continue to be a mandatory? Will social distancing remain 6ft resulting in limited class sizes? Will students over 16 be required to show a Covid-19 Vaccination record?
School during the Covid-19 pandemic had been nothing short of a scholastic nightmare. From elementary to college, students spend their days on zoom. This may not have been too big a deal for college students, but for elementary through high school it was and is a struggle. Much of the things children learn, they learn through doing, seeing and interacting. All activities were canceled this year. No sports, concerts or plays. No graduation. It is understandable why this year turn out the way it did. But will next school year be different?
As we near Summer schools are already deep in planning their Fall return. Many colleges have already stated that they will be requiring students to have proof of their vaccination to return to in person class. NY Times writes, “A growing number of schools will require proof of a coronavirus vaccination for on-campus students this fall, including Cornell, Rutgers, Oakland University in Michigan, Brown University in Rhode Island and St. Edward's University in Texas (April 2021).” Other schools are still going to be requiring masks and offering incentives to students to do vaccinate.
When it comes to the younger students that cannot vaccinate yet, most schools will be back to full-time, in person class or a hybrid. They will still be requiring masks and keeping 3 feet social distance. Washington Post reports, “All teachers and staff who want vaccinations will have them, but children will not. Masks and other virus mitigation measures will remain in place in much of the country (April 2021).”
Schools will have their policies available before the new school year for students and parents to review. It does seem like even into next year safety precautions for Covid-19, including mask wearing, will continue to be part of the school atmosphere.