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Why aren’t schools listening to the student perspective? | READER COMMENTARY

A demonstrator speaks in a rally organized by Return2Learn Maryland Schools on Saturday as they called for schools to re-open even amid a COVID-19 nationwide pandemic.
A demonstrator speaks in a rally organized by Return2Learn Maryland Schools on Saturday as they called for schools to re-open even amid a COVID-19 nationwide pandemic. (Phillip Jackson)

I just finished 8th grade at Roland Park Middle School. It’s extremely frustrating that even now, when schools are facing something completely new and need all the help they can get, that they are still barely taking feedback from the students (”Parents raise questions over scheduling and safety in virtual town hall with Baltimore City schools about coronavirus reopening,” July 9).

I just took the first survey I have been offered from Baltimore County Public Schools, and it seemed like it was designed to receive opinions on decisions where the options had already been decided. Almost all of the questions were multiple choice, and the three questions that asked for feedback in a way that I could answer with text were limited to 100 characters, which is less than half of the length of this sentence. My mom has been asked to fill out four surveys since the pandemic started.

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I can’t remember a single time when students were asked for input on any major decision, and schools need that input if they want to reasonably have us learn what they want to teach.

Schools should be including their students at all levels of decision making and legitimately listening to what they have to say. The students are the customers. Aren’t they the ones receiving the service the school is trying to provide?

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Naftali Beller, Baltimore

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