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Parents offer mixed reactions to FCPS Board's non-traditional instruction decision

Posted at 11:16 PM, Jul 23, 2020

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Parents are reacting with mixed feelings after the Fayette County School Board voted Thursday to begin the 2020-2021 school year remotely.

The board voted unanimously to begin the school year with non-traditional instruction, with Superintendent Manny Caulk citing a "summer surge" in coronavirus cases and less testing availability as the basis for his recommendation.

Many parents agreed with the decision and said it prioritizes the health of students and teachers, but others are concerned about how to juggle the responsibilities of work while having to help kids with school.

"I think they've done a really good job of listening to people and just trying to figure it out the same way we are," said Karen Wilkerson, a Fayette County parent who's also concerned about the health of her immunocompromised daughter.

Wilkerson said he district should start with NTI lessons and re-evaluate based on COVID-19 cases at a later date.

Parent Traiel Spencer, a teacher in another district, said she knows challenges will come with having kids at home, but she believes it's the right decision.

"I think it's going to be so much harder than people realize it is but everyone is just trying to do the best they can," she said.

Her husband lost his job because of COVID-19 and hasn't been able to find a new one because of concerns about caring for their children when she goes back to work.

It can be difficult without a support system, she said, something single mom Angel Ahilon is worried about as well.

"It's kind of scary," Ahilon said. "I thought about it for the past couple months. Me myself, I don't have a support system, I don't have friends and family and everything that I'm surrounded by. It's pretty much me and my daughter."

Ahilon said she would benefit from having the option to send her daughter to school, but she doesn't believe all children should have to return to class.

"I know it's a fine line between safety and danger right now," she said. "So it's kind of like danged if you do danged if you don't, left or right is the wrong way right now."

All three mothers agreed there is no easy option for this upcoming school year.

The school board will meet again Monday and is expected to discuss a start date for the school year.