Survey: 60% Of Canyons Teachers Uncomfortable Returning To Classroom

Jul 22, 2020, 8:05 PM | Updated: Jul 30, 2020, 3:16 pm

SANDY, Utah – More than half of the teachers in the Canyons School District said they are uncomfortable returning to full-time, in-person teaching, according to a survey by the Canyons Education Association.

“It’s not that teachers don’t want to be in the classroom, because we do,” said Erika Bradshaw, a teacher at Hillcrest High School and president of the district’s teacher union.

The association’s survey indicated that 60 percent of teachers are not comfortable going back to the classroom as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact Utah.

“We care about our students. We care about their education,” Bradshaw went on to say. “We just want to make sure that we can return safely.”

Bradshaw said this survey is more revealing than the district’s questionnaire, which found that nearly all teachers are planning to return to in-classroom teaching in the fall.

“When they sent out their survey, it was just, ‘Are you coming back? Yes or no?’” Bradshaw said. “You may say that you want to have your job — because we do want to stay employed — but how comfortable are you doing your job?”

A spokesperson for the district said even though 98 percent of the 1,399 teachers who responded to its survey indicated their positive intent to return in the fall, many did express reservations.

“We’re happy to listen to their concerns and respond and engage in a thoughtful dialogue,” said Jeff Haney with the Canyons School District. “We have teachers expressing concern but we also have heard from teachers saying that they want to come back to the classroom.”

The surveys come as the district releases its “Back-to-School Action Plan” with options for students to select in-person or distance learning options.

The district’s survey showed 33 percent of teachers were interested in applying for online teaching positions instead of returning to the traditional classroom. Haney said they won’t know how many positions are available until students register next week.

“It may well be that 30 to 40 percent of our students choose an online learning option,” Haney said

For teachers and students that do come back to the physical schools, Haney said the district is spending roughly $1 million on cleaning supplies and personal protection equipment.

But Bradshaw said teachers are dealing with unrealistic expectations.

“Our schools are simply not set up for social distancing,” she said. “It’s not possible with the class sizes that we have.”

She wants the school board to listen to teachers and adapt their plan until Utah gets a better handle on the pandemic.

“I feel like we are all trying to do our best, but the situation with cases in Utah right now is really not optimal for what they’re asking us to do,” Bradshaw said.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Back to School

remote learning after snow storm...
Katija Stjepovic, KSL TV

Canyons School District quickly switched to remote learning after Friday’s snowstorm

Friday’s early morning storm impacted multiple school districts across the Wasatch Front. Several districts adjusted start times and some even canceled classes.
8 days ago
This week KSL+ looks at what school districts describe as “chronic absenteeism” in Utah’s sch...
Matt Rascon

KSL+: The Impact of pandemic and “chronic absenteeism” in Utah schools

Months into the new school year, the pandemic’s impact on students is coming into focus.
1 month ago
A school classroom with chairs and desks...
Brooke Williams

Project to provide air purifiers in Utah K-12 classrooms

Cleaner air improves student performance, decreases COVID transmission and school absenteeism. New project provides air purifiers for classrooms in Utah.
3 months ago
Deanie Wimmer

Chronic Absenteeism leads to rise in F grades in most of Utah’s largest school districts

Schools all over Utah are dealing with the problem of chronic absenteeism. Educators are seeing thousands of absences, and as a result, failing grades.
3 months ago
Box Elder High School (KSL TV)...
Eliza Pace

In excessive heat, some districts without A/C move to half days to spare students

With record-breaking, three-digit temperatures and older schools without air conditioning, two districts and one additional high school have announced changes to a half-day schedule to accommodate students.
3 months ago
Shara Park

Taylorsville High Wellness Center sees more students in need of basic items

Taylorsville High created a wellness center to give kids a break, however over the course of the year staff saw an increasing need for basic supplies like food, clothing, and hygiene products.
3 months ago

Sponsored Articles

notebook with password notes highlighted...
PC Laptops

How to Create Strong Passwords You Can Actually Remember

Learn how you can create strong passwords that are actually easy to remember! In a short time you can create new ones in seconds.
house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 reasons you may want to consider apartment life over owning a home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Take this quiz before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t let a ransomware attack get you down | Protect your workplace today with cyber insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Survey: 60% Of Canyons Teachers Uncomfortable Returning To Classroom