Pandemic survey results are in from the Pelican Rapids schools.

About half of parents in grades kindergarten to 12 concluded that the spring 2020 distance learning was “satisfactory.” About 30 percent ranked the COVID-19 distance learning experience “unsatisfactory.” 

Asked to respond to two separate surveys were parents, and Pelican school staff. 

One of the questions posed: “What factors would help you feel more comfortable sending you children back to school?” 

—Spaces cleaned, sanitized daily was ranked as “most comfortable,” at 76 percent. 

—Mandatory symptom checks of both employees and students drew a response of 65-68 percent. 

—Nearly 50 percent stated social distancing would make them “most comfortable” in sending kids back to schools. 

Meanwhile, 20 percent of the parents responding said “nothing” would make them feel better about sending their kids back to school. 

148 of the school staff respond to the survey, and 20 to 30 percent stated that “in-person contact” in the classroom was their biggest concern. But the larger shares of concerns were following health regulations and availability of disinfectant materials—at about 42 to 44 percent of the staff responses. 

From this very preliminary look at survey results, one conclusion can be drawn with certainty: And that is “uncertainty.” 

Folks like chief executives, business managers, elected officials, and school administrators don’t always get a lot of sympathy. Every decision they make is “wrong,” at least in the eyes of part of the populace. 

But with COVID-19 pandemic, it’s hard not to be a little sympathetic to those people “at the top” of the food chain. 

Whether its a local school board member, a city council member; a county board member or legislator; a state governor–and let’s be fair here, even the president of the United States–they are in extremely difficult situations. 

No decision will be the right decision for everybody. 

Parents, staff respond to survey topic on masks 

On the subject of masks-face coverings, over 57 percent of Pelican Rapids parents concluded staff should be required to wear masks.

For students, about 53. percent of parents concluded that kids should be required to wear masks. 

Meanwhile, 46.9 percent of parents concluded that students need not be required to wear masks. 

School staff responded that about 41 percent would be “more comfortable” if there was a mask requirement. 36 percent had no opinion. 22 percent of Pelican school staff stated that a mask requirement wouldn’t necessarily make them more comfortable returning to the classroom.