Getting Back to Normal – How to Prepare for School Reopenings

We are all looking forward to 2021 as a return to a sense of normality. Many parents are curious about upcoming school reopening procedures, so here are Tutor Doctor’s tips to help prepare!

1. Stay up to date on local guidelines. The fact is that the pandemic has been harder on some regions than others. Unfortunately, this also means there isn’t a consistent answer for parents looking for a country-wide “reopening date.” Local health guidelines and state/province policies will largely determine the finer details of the school reopening process, so try to stay informed about what’s going on in your area.

2. Use organizational tools to your advantage. Mark down important dates on your calendar or agenda, and use technology and apps to your advantage. Parents can register for their child’s school email list, and we also recommend signing up for text notifications from local health and government agencies.

3. Research all your options. Like we said, school reopening procedures are going to vary by region. Many school districts have already committed to continuing remote learning throughout the school year, whereas others are planning to offer hybrid models that split time between at-home education and classroom instruction. In some places, schools may have already reopened. Some school districts will provide a combination of these options and are offering families a choice. Many parents are opting to continue at-home education throughout 2021 by implementing pod learning programs. Our advice to parents is to research all the options available to you and make a decision based on what your family is most comfortable with.

4. Talk to your kids about precautions. Although we can all appreciate a feeling of getting back to normal, we also have to acknowledge the reality of the situation. The finish line is certainly in sight, but we need to remember that widespread vaccinations and a statistical decrease in spread likely won’t happen for several months. As a result, parents should remind their kids to keep being “extra safe” when it comes to their hygiene – hand sanitizer and masks are going to remain a staple throughout at least a portion of 2021.

5. Have a heart-to-heart. Try to get your kids to open up about how they are feeling about returning to school. We need to remember that many students haven’t been on campus since last March, and the transition to online learning has been more difficult on some than others. When students finally do return to schools, it may very well be more than a year has passed since they have stepped foot inside a classroom. This last year has been filled with a lot of big challenges, and this new year will bring more changes. Your kids might be uneasy or nervous about going back, and parents can help to provide emotional support during this adjustment period.

6. Get classroom supplies. We’ve mentioned this before on our blog – many students haven’t had a need for “campus” materials in nearly a year. If you need to shop for a backpack, binders, or other school supplies, we recommend getting a head start before the rush!