Rock Hill parents concerned by large virtual class sizes, school district still hiring virtual teachers

The class sizes are about one teacher to 45 students, regardless of the shortage.

Rock Hill parents concerned by large virtual class sizes, school district still hiring virtual teachers

ROCK HILL, S.C. (WBTV) -Rock Hill Schools are on the hunt for teachers for its virtual program.

Each teacher in virtual learning is responsible for 45 students, despite the need.

The district is trying to keep the virtual students on the same schedule as the in-person learners. To accomplish this, it took teachers already in the district’s schools and switched them to a virtual classroom.

District spokesperson Mychal Frost said that more than 40 percent of the entire student body is going online. That is more than 6,700 students.

Each class will be on a 1 teacher to 45 student ratio.

Frost said the district came up with the 1 to 45 ratio based on need.

He said the district came up with the number to have enough teachers for the 6,700 students going to school virtually while maintaining enough teachers for in-person learning as well.

Frost said some teachers could possibly have more students.

He said some might even have to teach in-person and virtual learners at the same time in middle school.

The reason is to, again, keep the schedule as close as possible for in-person and virtual learners.

”That will be a little different,” said Frost. “A little wrinkle here in Rock Hill, but we believe it will work and we’re providing supports for both the students and the teachers in these environments to help them be successful.”

Rock Hill Schools LEAP days end on Friday and school officially starts Tuesday.

Tiffany Howard, whose son is attending virtual school, is nervous the district is looking for virtual teachers just two days before they are supposed to teach.

”It’s not gonna work that’s ridiculous,” said Howard.

She enrolled her son because she felt schools would go online anyway. Now, Howard’s regrets are setting in.

”Say a student has a question. She’s not gonna have time to answer that question. If he needs extra help, she’s not gonna have time for that. She’s barely gonna have time to get through what she has to get through. It’s not gonna be beneficial to the children at all,” Howard said.

The district trying to hire more teachers only complicated the matters for her.

Frost said at one point, Rock Hill Schools needed teachers for all grade levels.

”It’s a tremendous challenge that few understand from the outside looking in. We do understand we do empathize. It is different,” said Frost. “This whole year has been different. This summer’s been different.”

Frost said the only grade level in need now is elementary.

Although, they are hiring for middle and high schools as well just for added assurance.

When WBTV asked Frost if students could be in classes with more than 45 people, he said it is possible.

He also said parents need to work with the district to make sure students do not get lost in a class that big.

”If you’re concerned, don’t sit back and wait for the teacher to reach out to you. It’s your responsibility to be that person in your child’s life and we want that. We want you to be engaged. Your child deserves it,” Frost said.

It is not a matter of want for Howard.

”As a parent who works multiple jobs, not all parents can do that,” Howard said. “I don’t have a two-person household.”

Rock Hill Schools is actively looking to fill those virtual teaching positions.

Frost said a teacher does not even have to work in the state since it is virtual. The district will work to make sure you are ready to teach in one of Rock Hill Schools’ virtual classrooms.

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