DANVILLE — Danville District 118 parents have until midnight tonight to give their opinion on how they feel about their children returning to school in the fall.
As of Thursday morning, the district had received more than 650 responses to the survey after it was posted to the district’s website and to social media on July 1.
“We have had 656 families who have responded to the survey,” Curriculum Director Mary Ellen Bunton said. “We did a Google survey so we can see them in real-time and we can review them as they come in.
“Our goal in creating the survey was to make it comprehensive enough to get the pulse of the parents,” Bunton said. “We worked collaboratively on the questions. We did a lot of research to come up with the right questions to ask.
“This (survey) also enables us to reach out to as many families as possible,” she said. “We are trying to get as many parents to do the survey as possible.”
District officials plan to use the parents’ input to inform their decision on how to proceed with reopening schools safely in the fall. The results of the survey also will be presented during the next school board meeting on Wednesday night.
“We’re going to share the results of the survey with the public,” she said.
The survey asks parents their preferred learning options: all in-person, a hybrid of in-person and remote learning, or all remote learning; whether they will send their child to school for in-person learning knowing that their child will have to wear a mask, have their temperature taken and follow social distancing; and whether they feel comfortable supporting their child’s learning at home.
Other questions include whether the parent can transport their child to school during the school year, and whether the household has access to the Internet and a computer.
The last question asks parents to share their feelings, considerations or concerns about starting school in the fall.
“The last question was super important to us,” Bunton said. “All of the questions are giving us great information, but that last one is letting us know what parents are thinking.
“By having the parents share with us, we are finding out that our questions are the same as their questions,” she said about reopening schools. “We have the same concerns.”
In addition, some of the parents who have responded to the survey have indicated they have read the 62-page guidance from the Illinois State Board of Education about reopening schools.
“They understand that figuring out how to reopen schools safely is going to be challenging,” Bunton said.
“It has confirmed to us that, as a community, we have the same goal which is to provide the best education as possible while keeping everyone safe,” Bunton said of the survey responses.