By Jill Fox
No shoes, no problem. Backpacks and lunch boxes are also optional for the first day of school in Broward County.
And when parents take to social media on Wednesday to post their obligatory first-day photos, they will look a bit more informal as students at Broward County Public Schools begin the year remotely.
Although this is not the way we all expected to start the 2020/21 school year, Parkland Mayor Christine Hunschofsky said she is proud of all our students, families, volunteers, teachers, and school administrators “for putting their best foot forward in making it as good as it can be for everyone.”
Despite the uncertainty in the world, parents and administrators are focusing on the positive during remote learning.
From videos on What to Expect on the First Day of School and Virtual Orientations from Marjory Stoneman Douglas to Tutorials for Parents from a teacher at Park Trails Elementary, schools did everything they could to make sure everyone was prepared for the new e-learning model.
Teachers have expressed how the first few days will be used for adjusting to new methods, and parents seem to appreciate the idea of easing into a virtual platform.
“Our goal on Wednesday is that all students sign in, meet their teacher and classmates and start to become familiar with our online platform,” said Heron Heights Principal Merideth Weiss-Schnur.
Alison Wasserman, mom to a first and fourth-grader, said the teachers know the technology is new for a lot of parents.
“During the virtual meet and greet, they keep assuring us that we’re all in this together,” she said.
Park Trails Principal Arlene Manville called parents on Tuesday to wish students a wonderful first day. She spoke about the preparations by the teachers and welcomed the students “with open hands and hearts.”
Kim Bernstein has her daughter all set up for school and posted, “Bring it on virtual school, we got this” accompanied by a comical checklist–build a desk, organize school supplies, order wine…
Meredith Plask, mom to Landon, a seventh-grader, said she is feeling good about how Westglades Middle has everything in order and is uniform throughout.
She said, “We feel as prepared as we can be, and we will try to make the best of this situation.”
According to Superintendent Runcie, the plan is to revisit reopening schools on October 1.
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- Jill Fox is an Emmy Award-winning writer and producer. She has worked on the public relations side as well as the television side of marketing for NBC Universal. A true Floridian, Fox grew up in Ormond Beach and now resides in Parkland with her husband, Brian and their two children, Madden, 10 and Randi, 7.
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