Return to school the right call

The de Blasio administration made the right call this week announcing that when the new school year starts on September 13, all learning will take place in person.
No more remote or hybrid learning. Pods will be gone. (On a side note, one good thing for kids is that with remote learning a thing of the past, snow days will return!)
Even with the city’s gradual return to in-person learning, over 50 percent of students still don’t go to school at all. Many of the city’s youngest students go to school five days a week, but many of the high schoolers who opted to return to classrooms are only allowed in one day out of five.
The city will still require masks, try to keep students, teachers and faculty three feet apart while indoors, and continue to track COVID outbreaks. Currently, the seven-day positivity rate is well below 1 percent.
Students lost a lot over the past year.
Even under the best of circumstances – and by that we mean a parent or parents who have the time to help with their child’s learning, the technology and Internet access to take part in remote learning, and the ability to stay focused and on task – the education of the one million school kids in the city no doubt suffered over the past year.
But the pandemic didn’t just affect their education, it affected their emotional well-being and set them back socially. That’s especially true for high schools students, who missed out on competitive sports and events like prom and graduation.
For the many students who relied on free school meals, some were even set back nutritionally.
Now that vaccines are readily available, it’s time to get our kids back on the track to success.