As schools across the country wrap up another unusual school year, most K-12 education is being facilitated with remote learning. However, educators are beginning to see the long-term value in a hybrid approach to teaching, according to AT&T’s 2021 Future of School Report.
The report shows:
- 94% of teachers are open to the idea of hybrid learning with the proper resources, curriculum and support
- 71% of teachers support virtual days for inclement weather
- 78% of teachers are in favor of virtual tutoring sessions or enrichment programs
- 60% of teachers are open to livestreaming their classrooms for students who are home sick
These sentiments are consistent across teachers of all grade levels and low- and high-income schools, as well as parents:
- 83% of parents support virtual school days for inclement weather
- 84% of parents support virtual tutoring or enrichment programs
- 85% of parents want the option for their kids who are home sick to join class virtually
Today, 66 percent of teachers and parents say students still are learning either fully remote or in a hybrid format. While remote learning got off to a rocky start, with 43 percent of teachers noting their experience a year ago was challenging, many have adapted to this new environment and learned tips, tricks and best practices to navigate virtual classrooms. Additionally, 48 percent of teachers voice a need for curricula better suited for hybrid or online teaching. Assistance from administrators was widely acknowledged by teachers with 83% reporting they felt supported with new online teaching technologies and strategies.
These findings come as the FCC stated the first application window of the Emergency Connectivity Fund will prioritize forward-looking connectivity for school districts to help close the homework gap. This $7.17 billion program is funded by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 and will enable schools to purchase laptop and tablet computers, Wi-Fi hotspots, and broadband connectivity for students and school staff.