Are We Doing Pandemic Back-To-School or Not?

Are We Doing Pandemic Back-To-School or Not?

Are we doing pandemic back-to-school or not? As if we didn’t have enough on our plate with the bullshit of the past 6 months we now have to make a decision that will have far-fetching implications for possibly the rest of the kid’s lives.

Some background, I pulled my kids out of school a week before they actually shut down for March Break. If you had asked me a few weeks ago I would have said “Fuck no” about my kids going back-to-school because Toronto’s numbers were still not great. But things have improved and with our numbers sitting pretty at below 10 new cases a day I wonder if I should be allowing my kids to at least attempt to go to school.

and then…

I see on the news the case of a whole summer camp having an outbreak and 260 people testing positive or the school that couldn’t even make it one day of being open without having to quarantine students due to a positive case and I doubt my potential choice, hard.

I am lucky enough to work from home so I could technically keep my kids home and get them to do their school work from home. This would empty out the school a little so that those parents that have no choice would have an emptier setting by at least one child in each class.

I see all the parents that are online and just drained from having their kids home clapping and cheering that they are going back. I see the parents that need to go back to work so the kids have to go back to school. I see women who have been steady climbing the career ladder get sidelined these past few months because someone had to stay home with the kids. Do I keep my kids home so that their kids have more space to stay safe?

Do I want to keep them home? Not if I am the one that is responsible for their education.

Do I want to keep them home? Not if I am the one that is responsible for their education. Not if I have to listen to them cry because they don’t understand. Not if that means I have to sit by each of my little kids as they have no idea how to maneuver a computer enough to do online schooling.

Also, if we do decide to send them back-to-school and the numbers start rising can I pull them out and do some school at home until numbers get small again? Will we be able to go back to in person schooling once we pull out or is it wham bam thank you mam?

Here is also another huge hypocritical issue I have: I don’t want to send my big kids to school where they have to wear the masks for 6+ hours but I also don’t want to send my little kids for 6+ hours where they don’t have to wear a mask. Neither of these options makes much sense to me.

In hard times people will always choose to make money and pay the bills, especially when a dose of Tylenol will hopefully mask the issue for the school day

And I know from the bottom of my heart that if kids get sick some parents will be left with no choice but to send their kids to school. In hard times people will always choose to make money and pay the bills, especially when a dose of Tylenol will hopefully mask the issue for the school day. I know when I was working out of the house I did the same thing. When you have no sick days left there is no choice, your kids go to school.

So I keep flipping back and forth. Do I send these kids to school and possibly risk them getting sick? They would most likely not be affected but what about my older mother in law who comes to our home daily and is a higher risk? Because I can probably convince my husband to send the kids to school with the promise of everything being okay even though it very much may not be.

Lastly, I have been having an amazing time with the kids home these past 6 months. Like no complaints at all. I spent a lot of time making independent kids and it paid off large when we were all stuck together for 6 months. We really took the being safe together but apart thing to heart and found ways to not be under each other’s skin. Not everyone has that but I would miss them if they were gone.

So I will spend the next five weeks watching numbers closely because I want to send the kids back-to-school, I do. The thing is I won’t be risking anyone’s health because I am stuck between a rock and a hard place, I won’t. I’m already wondering if I Am Failing at Pandemic Living?

So are we doing pandemic back-to-school or not? Let me know either way and please be kind to people whose decisions do not align with your own. There is no good or easy decision here, just one that we ultimately have to make.

Aneta Alaei
Aneta Alaei

Aneta is a Toronto-based mom of four that loves a good meal, great company, and learning something new. In her free time, you can find her trying to keep yet another plant alive.

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  1. Amanda Masters
    November 19, 2020 / 12:40 pm

    We chose at home learning. Its working well for us.

  2. nicolthepickle (Nicole Graham)
    November 20, 2020 / 7:03 am

    What did you end up deciding? It’s a complicated question.

  3. kristen visser
    November 20, 2020 / 11:28 am

    We decided to have our girls go back. For their sanity as well as mine! It has worked out perfectly for us. I know with the little one having the three of them here with 2 doing online schooling would have been hard. and although it might turned out to be that way at some point, at least they got to enjoy being in their classrooms , meeting their teachers and making some friends beforehand

  4. Janet M
    November 20, 2020 / 3:30 pm

    Things are still changing quickly and it is stressful.

  5. Darlene Burns
    November 25, 2020 / 4:39 pm

    I have 2 granddaughters that are being homeschooled oth age 4 .We were so worried about sending them this year we decided to homeschool.My two older granddaughters ages 8 and 11 are in their schools .I am so worried about them on a daily basis and hope they get through the school year without getting sick.

  6. Alayne L
    November 30, 2020 / 9:15 pm

    Hey Aneta, of my 3 school aged grandchildren, one family opted out of school and are home schooling, they live in the city, while the others are in school in a small town. Either way, what a difficult decision to make and kudos to the parents who are home schooling and coming out in one piece! 🙂

  7. Lynda Cook
    December 2, 2020 / 8:59 am

    My grandchildren had to go back to school because their parents work, they wanted to keep the kids home but they couldn’t, at least the kids are happy they get to see their friends again

  8. Victoria Ess
    February 20, 2021 / 6:45 am

    This was such a hard decision. You have to pick what works for your family.