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Broward County School District survey finds students miss socializing in class

BROWARD COUNTY, Fla. – The Broward County Public School District held a news conference Thursday to announce the initial findings of its distance learning and wellness survey.

The purpose of the survey was so students, parents/guardians and staff members could share their experiences with the transition to online learning amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Superintendent Robert Runcie said the majority of students who partook in the study said they wanted to succeed in distance learning, but missed their peers and schools.

According to the school district, more than 65,000 people took part in the survey to share “their feelings about the successes and shortfalls of distance learning and pinpointed areas where additional wellness support may be needed.”

Runcie said 67 percent of students said they either don’t receive or infrequently receive help from an adult at home.

He noted that the pandemic has also been hard on parents and guardians, some of who are essential workers who have not been able to stay home with their children during the school day.

Still, the superintendent said 98 or 99 percent of students have been engaging in distance learning on a regular basis.

Runcie said 3,600 people who completed the survey requested to speak with a teacher or counselor. He said all of those people have been contacted, and some have been referred to other parties for additional support and services.

During the news conference, the superintendent stressed that having that “face-to-face connection” is critical for students. He said some schools have brought in school janitors and other staff members to virtually see the students during their online classes.

School officials said they will use the results of the survey to make future decisions about education and wellness services, “as well as the allocation of resources.”


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