USA: LOCAL NEWS Former administrator, teacher question charter school over promises to keep students safe from COVID-19

Publicado: 18 septiembre 2020 a las 12:00 pm

Categorías: Noticias América

USA/ 18 September 2020/ Source/

Academy of Advanced Learning touted its procedures for in-person learning during summer and fall classes.

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AURORA, Colo. — Depending on who you ask, the Academy of Advanced Learning sounds like two different schools.

In July, 9NEWS visited the charter school in Aurora which touted a plan to have in-person learning safely. At the time, Principal Linda August said that in addition to strict cleaning protocols, classes above kindergarten would be split up into two groups capped at a maximum of ten people.

She said one group would learn with the teacher and the other group would be in an area next door learning from the same teacher through Zoom. The groups would then switch places the next day. The idea, August said, was for COVID containment.

«For most of our grade levels, we have them in groups of ten and if something happens with one student, then we can trace that better,» August said on July 23.

Since the 9News visit in July, Principal August has quit along with two assistant principals including Mary Higgins.

«It made me highly uncomfortable to the point which is why I walked,» Higgins said.

Higgins said the initial 9NEWS visit was staged by Mike Miles. Miles is the CEO of Third Future Schools, the charter school network that governs the Academy of Advanced Learning.

«With COVID, we weren’t even following through with all the measures that he claimed we were doing for the safety of our students and staff,» Higgins said.

Higgins said she was instructed to mislead parents about having a new HVAC system, about the number of kids capped in each room, and about how often the school was being sanitized.

«That the bathroom will be cleaned every hour on the hour. I never once saw a cleaning staff member during the day. I only saw them come in the evenings,» Higgins said. «I couldn’t stand, as a leader, as a face of the organization anymore knowing that we weren’t practicing what we preached.»

Three weeks into the school year, five teachers also quit including Corbin Smith.

«To be entirely honest, I didn’t think it was good to have the news in there in the first place,» Smith said. «I thought what we were doing was irresponsible.»