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Madison County Schools seek parents' input about next school year

The district asked parents about students returning to school in August and the technology available in each family's household.

Posted: May 5, 2020 3:26 PM
Updated: May 5, 2020 7:47 PM

As some school districts make decisions about graduation this year, another is getting ready for the next school year.

Madison County Schools sent parents a survey about what they want to see when students return.

The district shared the 15-question survey with WAAY 31. It includes questions about returning to school in August and the technology available in each family's household. The district said so far, it's received about 5,000 responses.

Erica Piell, a parent who has two students in Madison County Schools, said "safely" is the keyword for her about students returning back to school.

"I like the fact that they are wanting to know the parents' concerns and they want our input as far as if they we want our children back in school. I want mine to go back if it can be done safely," she said.

She’s one of about 20,000 parents in Madison County Schools who were sent this survey about the next school year.

One of the first questions is “If conditions in August are similar to today, how likely are you to allow your child to attend traditional school?”

Tim Hall, the school district spokesman, said the majority of parents so far want traditional schools to return in August.

"We'd like your input. We'd like to hear from you. What do you think about if we still have a problem in August? How do you feel about your child returning to school?" Hall said.

Piell is concerned about WiFi connections. It's another question the district asked parents about.

"We don't have the best internet. Online it works for some, but it doesn't work for others. The mobile WiFi is going to [be] inconvenient because not everyone has transportation to the mobile WiFi," she said.

Piell also said this survey, along with what the school district should do, is something just about everyone is talking about on social media.

"There have been a lot of other parents that we have been discussing it with. Some of them are on the fence. More of them are wanting them to stay out a little longer because they are concerned about the health issues," she said.

Piell is hoping for the best, but she knows to prepare for the worst.

"I think they are just trying to plan for the better, because if the numbers get worse, then they aren't even going to try to send them back," she said.

The school district said the survey isn't required to be filled out by parents, but they're strongly encouraging everyone to participate and voice their opinion.

Ultimately, the district has to wait for guidance from Gov. Kay Ivey and the Alabama School Superintendent before making any decisions about next year.

If you didn't get an email with the survey, you can contact the school's central office at mcss@mcssk12.org.

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