Davenport parents, administrators look ahead towards next semester

The school will finish their current semester on December 18
Published: Dec. 11, 2020 at 10:15 PM CST
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DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) - With one week left of one of the most challenging semesters ever, one thing has been made clear for parents and administrators alike—get students back into the classrooms.

“There’s no replacement for face-to-face learning with a teacher, in my opinion,” said DCSD interim superintendent TJ Schneckloth.

“I know there’s lots of variables that makes it hard for in school learning, but like I said there’s no substitute (for in-person),” Father of three Davenport students David Cruz said.

Although many unknowns need to be addressed before a return including vaccine distribution, COVID-19 positivity rates, and perhaps finding a new superintendent after current superintendent Dr. Robert Robylski sent a letter of intent to the school board to retire. The board will vote on that during their meeting Monday. But, for now Schneckloth, has hope of a return of 100% in-person learning by the end of the school year.

“Being optimistic, at some point in the second semester, we will get all of our students back face-to-face full-time, so when that happens...then you know, what does it look like to make up the learning that some of our students have lost, what does it look like to build intervention plans for students, what does it look like to extend for those students that did maintain,” he said.

The change can’t come soon enough for Cruz and his family, he said after being forced to switch his kids from the hybrid model to 100% online, he saw a drop in grades.

“Their (the kids) pace is on but their grades are down, and I think it’s for a lack of being able to navigate their computers and do stuff,” he said.

Cruz is also concerned with how a semester like this will impact his kids’ future.

“My kids, long term effect, is it going to be harder for them to get a job, later down the road?” He said. “When they see their birthdate and the time that they went to school and how much time they missed at school.”

Schneckloth’s biggest concern comes short-term, with addressing disparities between students when the return to in-person learning does happen, with his question being “What are the effects of the online universes that our students are interacting in?”

Both agree everyone is doing the best they can, but recognize students won’t recover until 100% in-person learning resumes.

“I don’t feel that the kids are getting the brain food they need to get educated,” Cruz said.

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