Where the top US school districts stand with virtual vs. in-person learning

WRAL | by Elizabeth Stuart, Mirna Alsharif and Holly Yan, CNN | January 27, 2021

CNN — In the effort to balance health, jobs and quality education, the nation’s biggest school districts are divided on how to teach students this semester.

Of the 20 largest school districts:

— 9 are teaching entirely online.

— 8 offer fully in-person learning and a choice of fully online learning. (Several of these districts are in Florida, where the governor ordered schools to offer classroom learning.)

— 2 have a hybrid plan, with some virtual and some classroom instruction.

— 1 has a combination of plans, depending on the infection rates.

Here’s how each of those school districts are teaching, ranked by size:

New York City Public Schools

— Elementary schools have a hybrid plan.

— Middle schools and high schools are all online.

Los Angeles Unified School District

— All instruction is online only.

— The superintendent said he wants all teachers to get vaccinated.

Chicago Public Schools

— All classes are currently online.

— Elementary school students are scheduled to return February 1, but the teachers’ union is pushing back.

Miami-Dade County Public Schools

— Families choose which type of learning they prefer, fully online or fully in-person.

Clark County School District in Nevada

— The fifth-largest district is expediting its plan to bring students back for in-person learning after a rise in student suicides.

Broward County Public Schools in Florida

— Families have a choice between fully online or fully in-person learning.

Houston Independent School District

— Instruction can be fully in-person or fully online.

Hillsborough County Public Schools in Florida

— Families choose between fully online or fully in-person learning.

Orange County Public Schools in Florida

— Families have a choice between fully online or fully in-person learning.

The School District of Palm Beach County in Florida

Parents have the choice of enrolling their children in the following:

— Brick and mortar: Students attend in-person classes five days a week on campus

— Distance learning: Students learn remotely from teachers

— Palm Beach virtual school: Students participate in a self-paced learning guided by virtual teachers

Fairfax County Public Schools in Virginia

— All instruction is online due to coronavirus infection rates in the area.

Hawaii State Department of Education (Hawaii public schools)

— Instruction plans are based on each island’s infection rates.

— As of this month, various islands had in-person learning, at-home learning or a combination.

Gwinnett County Public Schools in Georgia

— Families choose between fully online or fully in-person learning.

Wake County Public School System in North Carolina

— Instruction will be entirely online through mid-February.

Montgomery County Public Schools in Maryland

— Teaching will be online only until small groups of students return for in-person instruction on March 15.

Dallas Independent School District

— Middle school and high school students have a hybrid plan.

— Fully in-person learning is available for elementary school students.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools in North Carolina

— All instruction is online.

— Kindergarten through eighth grades are scheduled to start classroom learning February 15.

— High school students are due to return to classrooms February 22.

The School District of Philadelphia

— All instruction is online.

— The superintendent has said he hopes to bring students from kindergarten through second grade back to classrooms in February.

Prince George’s County Public Schools in Maryland

— All instruction is online.

— Employees are tentatively scheduled to start getting vaccinated February 1.

— “We will reassess our reopening plans in mid-February,” school district CEO Monica Goldson said.

Duval County Public Schools in Florida

— Families have a choice between fully in-person or fully online learning.

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