CINCINNATI – As the Cincinnati Public Schools prepare to return students to their classrooms part-time, Kristen Heinlen believes it cannot be done while her three children are safe.
She mainly worries about the size of the school, she said.
“Even if you cut the number of children in the school to 1,500 from 3,000, there will still be a foot of each other in the hallways. It’s as full as it is,” she told WCPO.
She wasn’t alone when she thought that the school that students in Grades 7-12 might live in might be too crowded to revert to a blended learning model where students study in the classroom two days a week and work remotely the other three days. At the start of the school year, when other district schools switched from completely remote to mixed, Walnut Hills stayed virtual due to the school population.
Vanessa Scocchera, another Walnut Hills mom, wants to know what’s the difference now.
“We’re on a purple alert,” she said, referring to Hamilton County recently purple designation on the Ohio COVID-19 transfer map. “I don’t know why in the world you want to open school.”
According to the district’s return planWalnut Hills High School students will begin their time in the classrooms on February 15. The district’s decision came with support and resistance
Heinlen said she also worries about her children’s ability to keep up with her curriculum in a mixed model where students are less structured and have to independently keep up with the material on their distance learning days.
“If they become hybrids, they’ll be the two days in school, but the two days they don’t go to school they are expected to study on their own,” she said. “You have to learn the material yourself, which is absolutely impossible for many of these children.”
Both parents have signed a petition asking the school to stay far enough away until all staff can get the vaccine and even then they said they still had their reservations.
“What about the 3,000 unvaccinated students who are exposed and bringing it home to their families?” Said Heinlen.
In a statement to WCPO, district spokeswoman Frances Russ wrote:
“Starting the week of February 15, grades 4-6 and 9-12 are returning to the A / B blended learning schedule set this fall. Walnut Hills High School will be migrating from distance learning and the A / B follow blended learning schedule and students will get their A / B group assignments later this week. Families who would like their children to have five days of distance learning, including families currently at Walnut Hills High School, can enroll at the Cincinnati Digital Academy. “
During its session on January 20, the The CPS Board of Education voted against a request for re-examination The previously approved return to hybrid learning plan was adopted nine days earlier.
Melba Moore, director of the Cincinnati Health Department, said Monday Your employees received the first vaccination doses for CPS employees early onThis means that on January 28, the district can begin vaccinating its employees four days earlier than originally planned.