To the Editor:

We must find a way to transition from a limited hybrid model (two half days of in-school instruction per week) to full in-school instruction for all students as soon as possible. Failure to do so greatly impedes Shelton students’ academic and social progress and puts our children at an extreme disadvantage.

We cannot go on forever with half days. Other Connecticut school districts have successfully transitioned to full day learning. Why can’t Shelton? Now that we are not seeing COVID-19 spread within the schools, we must look for solutions and not hide behind excuses. Students must return to expanded in-school learning sooner rather than later.

Our first step is to take the burden off our teachers from having to teach a group of in-person students and then a group of 100 percent distance learners. If we do this, it will allow Shelton to return to full day learning. We need to either implement technology to conduct livestreamed classes to distance learners or hire additional educational staff (paraprofessionals, tutors, substitute teachers) dedicated to meeting the needs of remote learners. The next step is to move to five full days of in-school learning, mirroring how other Connecticut school systems have been able to accomplish this, following social distance guidelines.

We must proceed with a sense of urgency. Now is the time to act.

Bill Quartuccio