One CPS parent feels comfortable with new classroom requirements
COLUMBIA - Columbia Public Schools announced on June 29 students will have to wear masks to school for the upcoming fall semester. With this announcement came pushing the deadline date to July 6 for parents to decide if they want their kids to attend classes in person or online.
But one single mother to a soon-to-be 8th grader at West Middle School said she made her decision on June 26, as she knew sending her daughter back to school was the best decision for them both.
But, she had many factors to consider. One being that her daughter has asthma.
"I am a little anxious about sending my high risk child to school," Amie Rhoads said. "You know, I won't lie in that aspect, but I also feel like I can't lock her up forever and this isn't gonna go away tomorrow. So we have to continue to live our lives and just take precautions and wash our hands and put on the mask to protect ourselves and others, you know, teach her to social distance, elbow bump, stop hugging because mine is a hugger."
Aside from Rhoads being a working, single mom, she said going in person also allows them more flexibility than virtual.
"If you chose virtual from the beginning, you're stuck in that," Rhoads said. "There's no going back for the first, until the second semester, which will be after Christmas. I believe."
Another reason in-person was the best option for Rhoad's daughter is virtual class lacks the in person help she wouldn't be able to give her daughter, as she is expected to return to work soon. Her daughter was initially considering virtual classes until Rhoad's broke it down for her.
"I said, 'I have to go back to work. So eventually you'll be, I have to sign on all day by yourself and you can't raise your hand and ask for help because they won't be there,'" Rhoads said. "So she did agree that she thought that was maybe too much for her to handle all alone at 13. So she did say, 'Yeah, mom, let's buy some masks and, and I'll just go to school.'"
Changes are happening fast for the school district and Rhoads explained she understands this is not easy for CPS.
"I hope people that know that CPS is doing their best for us," Rhoads said. "I really do think that they have the parents and the kids in their hearts when they're making these decisions. And it's not easy for them either."