There’s a growing chorus among New Jersey parents asking for something truly shocking. They want to bring virtual learning back.
Yes, the same virtual learning that failed our children so miserably when Covid-19 hit and all schools (and almost everything else) closed. The same virtual learning, hastily thrown together but even when later refined, still turned out to be even worse for students than educators first feared.
Since then, how to effectively catch up with children has been debated. This affected college admissions. Higher education is trying to figure out how to address the pandemic learning loss when virtual learning has proven such a poor substitute for traditional classroom instruction.
So why should parents in their right mind embrace the return of virtual learning as an option for everyone?
Well, to be fair, some parents who want virtual classrooms that keep their kids at the kitchen table have children with serious health concerns. This is an aside and possibly understandable fact that depends on the nature of the medical problem.
The rest? Say it like this. New Jersey Parents for Virtual Choice is a grassroots group whose website states, “Any reason is the right reason, no reason is the wrong reason. COVID started it, but it won’t end the fight for virtual voting.”
They want it for every family. They want it for emotional reasons. For shyness. Because of bullying. Whatever the reason.
The group calls for the election of a permanent, free virtual public school program. They also make other claims, which you can read more about here on their website.
Gov. Phil Murphy is not a fan. A spokeswoman, Alayna Alfaro Post, said:
“The evidence shows that there is no substitute for personal education. And virtual education during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated mental health issues and learning loss for our students.”
I rarely find anything in common with Phil Murphy, but I found it here.
Virtual learning is a proven failure and parents who ask for it when it isn’t absolutely necessary are underselling their children. If this idea was an assignment, I’d reach for my red marker, because that gets a big, bold F.
The opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Jeff Deminski only.
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