The variations of how students are getting educated is as individualized as our students. Start dates (or proposed) for in person varies per district (all over San Diego county) and re-opening plans are crazy detailed. Imagine telling elementary age students to not mingle during recess and to stay within 6 feet boundaries. They see their friend in a different circle and off they will want to go. Yes, the County Health Dept. and Governor’s office set the criteria but it means that many of our special kids won’t have any access for generalizing with neuro-typical peers, except by Zoom. One small north county district opened Sept. 8 full time (5 days/week) for in person classes. The days are shorter, children are kept to “cohorts” so no mingling, etc. Other districts are planning 2 days on campus with 3 days virtual (staggering the days and planning a sanitation day). Some districts are remaining on line most of this semester, with some options for families to stay online all year. Colleges are struggling with students not following the rules, causing experts to wonder if they should be quarantined on campus or sent home to possible spread to their families.
In all of this parents are being asked to be flexible, yet again, and to be guiding their children’s learning. The upside of this is that parents should have more say in the IEP process about what their child can and can not do. The downside is the frustration all around. However, there are some students (especially those with social anxiety, etc.) that are thriving right now. And, from what I see out in the community (a shopping trip to Trader Joes yesterday), the children are wearing their masks better than many adults. A little one yesterday looked less than 2 years old and he was right in there with his big sister waiting in line to go into the store with a mask that was a little too big for him. We are in a different world. Guess we learn, like the little ones, to adapt with few complaints.