Teachers across the country have shared their honest fears of returning to the classroom as the back-to-school debate continues.
A teacher from Colorado shared with Good Morning America what it is like to set up her classroom during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Katie O’Connor, the fifth-grade teacher, shared a video on Facebook as she attempted to create a socially distanced space. Her video has gained over 4 million views.
In the video, O’Connor removed all furniture from the room and tried to space out desks at least six feet apart from each other.
“By the time everyone’s sitting, no one can move,” O’Connor said. “Kids have to wear masks as well as adults ... I use the word ‘anxious’ just because there’s so much unknown.”
Most people across the country expect schools to reopen in the fall, but teachers all across the nation have voiced their concerns. O’Connor’s district plans to open in mid-August, while parents choose to send their kids to class full-time or opt for remote learning.
The teacher has 22 students on her roster and can only fit 20 desks in her classroom. Some children will likely enroll in virtual learning, and O’Connor will be teaching those students as well.
She explained how every teacher has their sanitizing products and will be required to log each time they had cleaned the classroom.
“My biggest hope is for people to support teachers,” O’Connor said. “We are soldiers and this isn’t our war. We’re in a war we didn’t create and we’re doing what we’re told. Understand, we’re doing our best with very little.”
O’Connor has had conversations with other teachers who are sharing their feelings about returning to the classroom.