A year after COVID-19, News 19 reached out to a number of North Alabama public school systems, and by all accounts, they’ve seen probably one of the steepest learning curves of any publicly funded institution in adapting to the new normal.
“When it hit and we had to shut down, it was like, ‘OK, this can’t go on forever,'” said Lee Willis, assistant superintendent of Morgan County Schools.
“And the goal we had to figure out quickly was how to get back to teaching and learning as quickly as possible,” said Craig Williams of Huntsville City Schools.
However, achieving this goal immediately has not been easy for most school districts in the region. COVID-19 presented a variety of challenges that most educators had never encountered.
“You know teachers and school people like to plan, we like to plan changes, and we like to plan them, and we spend a long time planning them, but it didn’t stand a chance and so you had to build this plane on the fly,” Ed said Nichols, superintendent of Madison City Schools.
Nichols certified its staff and teachers to have started rapidly developing a range of virtual learning programs for students and implementing COVID-19 security measures to bring lessons back online.