Then there’s the collective population of the entire public school population. Including students, teachers, staff and bus drivers, BCPS comprises nearly 100,000 persons, one-in-six of the total Baltimore City population.
With a lag time of two to three weeks before COVID-19 fully displays symptoms, and with current test result turn-around times as long as seven to 10 days, an outbreak in the city school system would be catastrophic before it was ever determined there was a problem.
While all of these issues are being weighed, there are other pressing logistical issues that must be resolved. In the event that students were to return to the classroom en masse how would social distancing be maintained for students transported by bus? If capacity is reduced on buses how will all students be transported to school on time?
If all students are taught virtually at the start of school how will the shortage of laptops and electronic notebooks be addressed? What about students who don’t have Internet access?
Then there is the question of nutrition. Under the long-distance learning scenario, how will students continue to receive school-served breakfast and lunch, particularly during inclement weather?
These concerns are very real. Tune-in and stay tuned to developments regarding city school reopening plans and to COVID-19 in general.
Adopting “Closing the Distance” as its theme becomes crystal clear when you consider how far Baltimore City Public Schools has to go to safely and effectively educate our children in the age of COVID-19.
West Baltimore native, Regi Taylor is
a married father of four. He is an artist, writer and media professional specializing in political history.