By MADDY VITALE
In a continued effort to improve upon the Ocean City school district experience for students and their parents, the district is seeking input in a survey.
Specifically, the district wants to hear from families about how their children are feeling about the new way education is being delivered in the school year amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Schools Superintendent Dr. Kathleen Taylor said in a letter dated Nov. 12, and posted on the district’s website oceancityschools.org and on its Facebook page, that she would like parents to fill out the survey by Tuesday, Nov. 17, to help the district ensure that students are receiving the best instruction possible.
“Our intention throughout this school year is to continuously improve upon our current plans. We will do this until it is safe for us to return to school without the added layers of safety precautions in place to help prevent the spread of COVID-19,” Dr. Taylor wrote. “Therefore, this survey focuses on what we can control and work to improve — today — for the benefit of your child, as well as your family.”
The Ocean City district closed on March 16 at the beginning of the pandemic. It was a day before Gov. Phil Murphy’s executive order to shut down schools statewide.
The following day, Ocean City schools offered the hybrid learning model, which combines virtual and in-person instruction for students.
Dr. Taylor addressed the teaching models in her statement to families.
“The mix of instructional models that schools are using during the pandemic can be dizzying: virtual academy, hybrid, in person but socially distanced,” she said. “When we began this school year with new schedules, new learning formats, and new practices to protect our community, we knew that uncertainties would remain — even after extensive planning.”
So, Dr. Taylor said, she wanted to hear in a survey exactly how parents and their children are feeling about remote and virtual learning and what can be improved.
“One thing we were sure of is that we could rely on our Ocean City families to help us make this school year a success,” she said. “You have certainly risen to the occasion, and now, we are asking for your help again.”
The superintendent noted that the district is seeking constructive feedback for the student’s teacher and specific ideas to improve the child’s current learning model.
“Please reach out to the appropriate school principal directly. We value your input,” she added. “We also welcome notes recognizing what is working well or acknowledging a teacher or staff member who has gone above and beyond this academic year.”
She emphasized that the year has been difficult.
“We know that this year requires flexibility, patience and understanding — all competencies that are likely wearing thin right now,” Dr. Taylor added. “It also requires a commitment to excellence, and that is something that is unwavering throughout our district.”
For more information visit the Ocean City School District website at oceancityschools.org.