As school year nears, parents grapple with challenges to come
One West Fargo parent says she's scared for her family
WEST FARGO, N.D. — As parents across Fargo-Moorhead prepare for the fall semester, some say they’re left with no good options.
For one West Fargo mom, sending her daughters back to school wasn’t an easy decision.
“They need to go back,” said Ntakirutimana Berita. “There’s nothing I can do.”
She says distance learning this past spring simply wasn’t effective.
Her 6 and 8-year-olds weren’t learning as much, and finding someone to watch them while she worked was a struggle.
She explained, “To take the kids to daycare was very, very difficult. Sometimes, nobody wants to watch your kids.”
Her daughters will be heading into 1st and 3rd grade at Freedom Elementary in a few weeks.
“I don’t know how they can handle themselves, so I’m so scared,” Berita said. “I’ve been telling them: do not touch anything. When you go to the bathroom, make sure that you wash your hands. When you go to lunch, make sure that you wear a mask. When you’re done, just wear the mask.”
West Fargo Public Schools Superintendent Beth Slette says the hybrid model her district is implementing allows for a safer return to school.
“I think most of our families are happy that we’re going to take it slow,” she said. “We’re going to bring our children back in in smaller numbers, we’re going to teach those protocols about how to wear a mask, how to wash their hands, how we’re going to enter the building, exit the building, what 6 feet feels like.”
Slette adds that taking it slow is the best way to be able to get back to a normal learning environment.
Her message to families is, “This is going to pass, and in the meantime, we are going to do everything we can to keep your children safe and our staff safe; and when it’s safe, we’re going to bring all of our families back as soon as possible.”
West Fargo’s school year begins September 3rd.