Toledo Teachers want to go virtual in the fall

More than half surveyed don't feel comfortable going back into school buildings
Published: Jul. 22, 2020 at 3:47 PM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - Fifty-five percent of Toledo teachers would prefer to hold their classes virtually come fall, according to an internal survey conducted by the Toledo Federation of Teachers.

“Those kinds of results and these kinds of actions and the fact that Lucas County is on red almost results in the recommendation that we don’t start back at all as hybrid,” says Kevin Dalton, president of the TFT. “That we go back to virtual learning until we get a hand or a certainty to what’s going on.”

Dalton says teachers want a commitment from the district and clarity on safety measures before they head back to the buildings, as well as assurances in case they do eventually get sick from COVID-19.

“Where do those quarantine days come from? Are they taken out of their sick bank?” asks Dalton. “If you are forced to go through several cycles of [quarantine], two weeks a pop, that’s a lot of days to burn through as an individual.”

Then there is the matter of substitutes.

“I think staffing will be very difficult to accomplish on good days,” he said. “We have a hard enough time getting enough substitute teachers. We have a bank of dedicated individuals but they too have concerns.”

Teacher contracts have already expired. Dalton says they are in a 45-day extension.

”While we want face-to-face instruction,” he said, “we are adamant that a reckless re-opening will have disastrous results for everybody.”

Toledo Public School leaders say they are monitoring the situation and will make the best decision for teachers and students.

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