Back to Virtual?
In a week, students in the School District of Philadelphia could be once again be learning from home. On Sunday SEPTA’s transit union members voted unanimously to authorize a strike if no agreement is reached on a new contract. The current contract expires on October 31st. That means workers could walk at 12:01 am on November 1st. The vote doesn’t mean they will, it does mean union leadership can call a work stoppage at anytime.
SDP is not directly involved in negotiations but has said a strike will have a devastating effect on the district’s operations. Nearly 60,000 students use SEPTA to get to and from school. The district is already dealing with a bus driver shortage and is paying parents to drive their kids to school. A SEPTA strike could be the last straw and pause in-person learning.
The district posted the following on its website:
We are fully committed to ensuring that learning continues for all students in the event of a SEPTA strike. While the ideal would be to maintain in-person learning for all students, please know that staffing challenges or other conditions that may result from a strike could require some or all of our schools to shift to 100% virtual learning. We will be exploring all feasible options based on the results of our staff survey, with the goal of continuing in-person learning safely for as many students as possible.
What to do
While the district finalizes a strike plan it’s asking you to do the following
- if your child’s Chromebook is not working or needs repair, be sure to contact your child’s school for a replacement or visit this Chromebook Support Webpagefor information about our tech support centers and hotlines;
- visit the Internet Access Options for Familieswebpage if you need Information about no- or low-cost internet access;
- and visit our new webpage philasd.org/septastrike/regularly for the latest information.
Phillytweens.com will continue to update this story leading up to the potential strike date and beyond.