School systems here in the District and those with significantly larger student populations, including both Los Angeles and New York City, have made us a promise.

They say when school bells ring in the fall, we can expect to see the doors swing open and a return to education as usual with students learning in the classroom not online.

Further, most public school systems indicate they will not provide virtual learning as an option, except in specific cases for a very small percentage of students with special needs.

But with the delta variant of COVID-19 now in almost every state and territory in the U.S., and with many Americans still refusing to get the shot, or have their children vaccinated, it’s reasonable to conclude that a spike in infections will inevitably occur.

What then? What will public school leaders do then? How will they adjust? What’s the plan?

While many parents may prefer returning to “the good old days,” it’s doubtful that those days will ever return — at least not in the same configurations to which we’ve grown accustomed.

In fact, recent news articles posit that some people of color want to keep remote learning because students sometimes excel in less measurable ways.

Sure, we would like to see our children be able to engage once again with their teachers and classmates in the comfortable setting of their classrooms. But we must be ready … just in case.

Virtual learning may be part of the landscape for quite some time, if not forever — even after we’ve finally turned the corner on COVID-19. We just hope that those who have made a name for themselves as educational experts have alternative plans in place to help all students learn as easily and effectively as possible — both in the classroom or through remote instruction.

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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