Manhattan-Ogden USD 383 board of education continued to hear from concerned parents on the current model of learning.
Parents, as well as a student and staff member, voiced their concerns over the quality of education being given in the hybrid model. Manhattan High School Sophomore Wesley Zika says she is a straight A student and has never had difficulty with school, but the hybrid model has changed that.
“Hybrid is not working for me. I began having multiple breakdowns every night and decided to talk to my mom about how much I am truly struggling socially, mentally, and emotionally,” says Wesley.
Special Education Teacher Ashley Eckelberry has been teaching in the district for 13 years and is the current Elementary Teacher of the Year. Eckelberry has also been working as a remote teacher during the hybrid model. She says teaching remotely has been hard, and the students have been struggling as well.
“We were not prepared to teach kinders or others to write through a screen. We were not prepared to engage with students at their own homes with all of their belongings around them. We are not prepared to seemingly do this on our own,” says Eckelberry.
Another member of the public, Mellissa Rundus, went against the majority of comments by wanting to stay in the hybrid model. She says the model may not be ideal, but it is the best the district has to protect students and staff.
“I guess I would ask you to just work on the hybrid more and look at other places where the model is successful. Talk to parents and teachers about what’s working and give it a chance a little bit longer before we scrap it and end up in all virtual again,” says Rundus.
Later on in the meeting, the board of education was presented the results of a recent survey about the hybrid modeling of learning. The survey was generated after the Sep 16 meeting and was sent out to both parents and staff. Over two thousand surveys came back from parents and 670 from staff.
For the option of secondary students moving to a non-block schedule, results showed a response of 3.38 out of 5. The result for how comfortable they felt supporting their students on remote learning days was a 2.45 out of 5.
On the staff side, Assistant Superintendent Eric Reid says there were some notable differences of opinion. Continuing the current model was a little higher 3.76 out of 5, but returning to five day schedule with the positivity rate under 10% was higher than the parental response.