One of the most controversial issues in education has been how safe it is to reopen our schools. There have been all kinds of guidelines and requirements placed on our schools and those of us who are providing educational services have had to jump through a number of hoops to make sure our schools are safe and within compliance.
A recent study by WalletHub that measured 15 different key metrics has ranked Pennsylvania among the top three states for safety for schools that are reopening during this pandemic. Maine and Vermont were the only states ranked higher than Pennsylvania. I think congratulations is merited to all three of these states.
Of those 15 key metrics, the study included the number of child COVID-19 cases and deaths per 100,000 children, the average public school class size, the ratio of students to school nurses, public mask usage, and more. The study also considered the number of seniors living with school-aged children, as well as those living in crowded housing.
Many Pennsylvania schools are now considering moving from hybrid to live. It is well-documented that students will do better emotionally, relationally and in their academics if they are back in their classrooms having personal instruction. Although we should not be rushed to reopen, there is great hope that if we remain vigilant as a state our rate of outbreak can be minimal, and for some schools non-existent. This is such great news for our schools, our students and their families.
If you would like to track your school in your state and how they fared in the study here is the link to the study results. I think it is a good indicator of which procedures have been helpful if implemented well in schools.
We all need some encouraging news about the spread of COVID 19. There has been much discussion and criticism of some of our leadership about the requirements placed on schools.
I believe the results that we have realized in this study have validated our approach and credits our school administrators and staff for effective implementation of protective protocols.
For Lakeside this has been a significant set of changes in how we have managed our facilities, classrooms, vans, etc. Our staff has been amazing in how they have managed this crisis. Our students have been also handling things well. So even in a pandemic there can be some good news that we can be proud of in our state and in our schools.