Salt Lake City, Utah — On Monday, thousands of Utah students will return from temporary remote learning and head back to the classroom. With the mask mandate no longer in place, It will also be the first day back to school in Salt Lake and Summit counties.
According to Heidi Matthews, president of the Utah Education Association, all these changes now leave teachers wondering what will happen next.
“What other local control, classroom control, school control is going to be removed from the authority of the professionals and we are left with holding the pieces together?” she said.
Teachers are “at their breaking point,” Matthews said.
“Boy, does it send a message when this authority is taken away. When there are inconsistencies of in-person or remote. Masks or no masks,” she said.
School districts hope the few days off last week were enough to be the reset they need.
“Before the decision to go remote, four of our schools had hit the two percent threshold that would trigger the test-to-stay protocol,” said Yándary Chatwin with the Salt Lake City School District.
The Salt Lake City School District is encouraging everyone to wear masks and get vaccinated to help keep kids in classrooms.
“They’re going to make a difference. And they have already made a difference. Even amid the surge, it could’ve been so much worse if we hadn’t had those things in place,” said Chatwin.