LAFAYETTE, LA (KADN)- With COVID-19 cases rising and the delta variant being most prominent in children, parents across Acadiana are concerned with how the upcoming school year will look for their kids.
Some parents are comfortable with sending their kids to school, as long as covid-19 safety precautions are in place. Others feel they should have the option for virtual learning.
Shawn Bernard is the father of a seven-year-old that will be heading to second grade this year. He is uncomfortable with sending his son to school because he has an underlying health condition.
“My child has asthma and I don't want to risk his livelihood, on the ‘what if’s,” Bernard said.
With the covid-19 delta variant being common in children, he hopes school officials give parents an option to choose virtual learning.
“If they decide ‘we're going to just do it in the classroom and no option to do online.’ That's really telling me what we don't care about your child or the safety of your child, so we're just going to allow anything to happen,” he said.
If virtual learning isn’t an option at his son’s school, Bernard will be pulling him out for the school year.
“I would never be able to live with myself knowing that I let my child go to school, knowing the conditions, knowing the hazard of this virus, and just letting them go without any type of option. I would not be able to live with myself with that decision,” he said.
Other parents are comfortable with their kids resuming in-person learning because of their experience this previous school year.
“Our school followed the city, state, and national guidelines to ensure that my children were safe. They wore masks, they social distanced, they didn’t eat in the cafeteria. And they did a phenomenal job,” Bonnie Simon, a mother of two, said.
Simon’s children will be heading to third and fifth grade. Although she’s okay with sending her kids back to the classroom, she understands why other parents may be hesitant.
“Whatever you choose as a parent is correct. At this point, I think if you feel comfortable with sending your children. That's the right answer. If you feel that you would like to wait and see how this plays out. I think that's the right answer,” Simon said.
The Lafayette Parish School System (LPSS) has decided that masks will be required this fall year. They have not announced if virtual learning will be an option for their students.