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'It's just baffling for a parent...' Parents disappointed with plan to reopen Metro Schools

MNPS school board.jpeg
Posted at 5:59 PM, Jan 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-27 21:42:21-05

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Many parents with students in Metro Nashville Public Schools don't think it should be a numbers game.

According to MNPS, students cannot return to classrooms until there is less community spread of COVID-19 in Nashville.

"Unfortunately, community spread reached uncontrolled levels which required us to go back to all virtual learning," said Sean Braisted, the spokesperson for the school district. "We are optimistic about the trends in the reduction of community spread and look forward to welcoming students back into the classroom when it is safe to do so."

On Tuesday night, the Metro Nashville Board of Education met for the bi-monthly meeting.

Parents with Let Nashville Parents Choose expressed disappointment that the five-hour meeting involved a ten-minute discussion about reopening schools.

"It's just baffling for a parent that they're not addressing that at the beginning of the meeting, at the middle of the meeting, at the end of the meeting," said Amy Pate.

Amy Pate has three children in Metro Schools and considers herself an advocate for public schools.

"I feel like just as a good, community citizen it is my duty to support public schools. I feel like it's every child's right to have a free public education, but I don't know how much longer I can take this," Pate said.

Pate is confused why the district is relying solely on Metro Nashville's metrics.

"They keep pointing back to the metrics, the spread through Nashville, but that is not a reopening plan, that's just showing where the city's COVID numbers are. To have a reopening plan you say 'we need more distance' or 'we need more masks' or 'we need more money'," she said.

But with the plan it has in place, MNPS is optimistic schools can reopen in the near future.

"I am optimistic about the numbers we’re seeing lately, and hope the community will continue to do its part to reduce transmission of the virus, so we can make that happen as soon as possible," said Dr. Adrienne Battle, director of schools.