The Hybrid School Model

Sometimes the ideas that make the most sense also are the ones with the worst outcome. The hybrid school model is being widely implemented across the United States as a way to get kids in school instead of learning remotely. It has been praised for being the safest and most effective way to get kids into classes. It has also been criticised for being the worst and most dangerous way to conduct school.

The idea of the hybrid model first started off as most things do, as an idea that everyone thought made sense. It would, on the surface, make sense to have kids only come in on assigned days. It would in theory make it to where kids would reduce the risk of spreading covid because of there being less people, and it would ensure that everyone received in-person learning for at least part of the week. 

In theory this idea is great; it combines the best of both worlds and is a happy medium. It is also, according to Stancy Macha, a first grade teacher at Wanamaker Elementary School, “the only way we can have school right now at the middle and high schools because of social distance regulations.” If hybrid is the only option, even if some say it is not the best, it is still better than no in-person or remote learning. 

On the other hand it might be one of the worst ideas we could have implemented. Think about it like this, if all of the kids in our school are in person they are all in the same place for most of the week and if no one at school has covid, everyone is safe. 

If half the kids are out on their own for a day instead of in school imagine all the places during the day they might go and all the possible exposures that they might get from those places. According to multiple experts, that might be more dangerous than going five days a week at full capacity.

You also have to think about grades. According to Macha, “Some grades I think are overall lower because students need more direct instruction.”

Image learning Algebra online with a teacher you can barely contact, that doesn’t post helpful lessons, or just doesn’t post lessons in general. Is that really fair to students who need that instruction and can’t just look it up online and learn it?

Another thing to take into consideration is that hybrid might just not work for some kids just like online. Some kids might not do any work on the days they don’t come into school because they think that they will just get everything in person and not realize that they have online work as well. 

On top of that how do you combat cheating while at the same time not being able to do much about it? It is almost an impossible task for administrators and teachers. 

The hybrid school model is an interesting yet logical take on school in the midst of a global pandemic rocking the world. On the surface it seems like the best of both worlds and an easy solution. If you look into the details though the models viability doesn’t always seem as bright as it might seem.