Survey: Most Duval parents, teachers want to continue online learning until it’s safe to return to schools

Duval County Public Schools releases results of a survey that asked parents, students and teachers how the district should proceed this fall in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Copyright 2020 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Most Duval County Public School teachers and parents want to continue online learning if it’s not safe to return to campuses when the new school year begins later this year, according to the results of a survey released Thursday by Duval County Public Schools.

The district said it received nearly 50,000 survey responses from students, teachers and district employees. According to DCPS, about 73% of classroom teachers responded to the survey while 9% of students and 23% of parents answered questions about the potential of reopening schools as the state continues to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic.

On a scale from 1 to 10, with a score of 10 indicating “most comfortable,” parents were asked to indicate their comfort level in the following scenarios for their child(ren) coming back to school next year.

Based on average scores, most parents said they were most comfortable continuing online learning until it is safe to return to brick and mortar schools. Parents also said they were more comfortable with their child returning to school on Aug. 10 to a regular full-time schedule than they were having their child return after Labor Day with personal protection equipment and hand-washing protocols.

Teachers also said they were most comfortable continuing online learning until it is safe to return to brick and mortar schools, with the next most popular option selected being a combination of face-to-face and online learning to ensure social distancing.

Students favored a return to classrooms full time with the next most popular option being going back full time with everyone wearing a face mask and washing hands often.

Students, parents, teachers, district personnel and DCPS employees all felt least comfortable going to a completely online platform when returning for the school year.

The district put out a list of recommendations along with the results of the survey:

• Monitor current infection levels within the district

• Follow CDC protocols, when feasible

• Prepare for several scenarios

• Provide options for families

• Ensure adequate signage, PPE, health screening and hand washing/sanitizing supplies are available

• Review available scheduling options

• Continue to provide readiness

Using the results of the survey, Superintendent Dr. Diana Greene said she will continue to work with the local medical community, the Florida Department of Health, the Department of Education and other superintendents around the state and nation to determine the best way forward for next year.

The district said its goal is to provide students and employees with the best possible education environment with appropriate health and safety precautions.

Take a look at the entire survey here.