​​​​​​SOUTH CAROLINA ORGANIZATION OF RURAL SCHOOLS

 

What do we do now?

As of this writing, we have over one thousand of Covid 19 cases in our schools. 25% of the cases are staff and the other 75% are students. Those are good numbers in comparison to other states. Sometimes it’s good to be conservative. It also bespeaks of the leadership of the individual school districts.

Let us not be fooled by saying we are doing well, we are still in a state of chaos, but we have moved very slowly to an eventual opening of in-person education. The pressure to do that is immense, from the parents, local communities, state education authorities and the President of the United States.

Our schools have taken their responsibility for protecting the children in their charge very much to heart. That is not surprising to me. What many do not understand is that when an educator becomes a superintendent, he/she absorbs the credo that children come first.

So, it should not surprise us that when superintendents run up against those who would open schools without regard to the safety of children and staff, they do not accede to those pressures.

We even have instances when school districts are threatened by superordinate’s that they sometimes don’t react to threats but keep the children and staff in mind. That should tell us something.

The future is not really clear. The need for funding is growing with every school day. The federal government does not seem to want to help with a Corona virus package to help local schools, municipalities and states. School districts are limping along financially, absorbing all of the increased costs for almost everything.

So, what comes now? Most probably, nothing will happen until the election is over. Depending on what the outcome is, there will be a wait until the new congress and administration are seated or continue to be in control.

At this point, the state is the only entity that can help. Increasing local taxes may be a diminishing return because of unemployment and business closings. Even large entities like USC are furloughing their upper end employees for weeks at a time.

Do the best you can for your students and communities. They are all really hurting.