GALLUP WEATHER

Navajo Nation students to do online learning for fall semester

One of the hardest hit areas in the country, the Navajo Nation, is now flattening the curve. But what’s their plan to bring students back to school? The Nation’s President Jonathan Nez said they wanted to leave the decision on whether to bring students back to school up to parents and staff. So the Navajo Nation Department of Dine Education sent out a survey to the community asking for their input on how to go about schooling for the fall 2020 semester, amid the COVID-19 pandemic.”Overwhelmingly the parents of these students wanted to move towards online education,” Nez said. Moving all classes online means they’ll have a school start date of Aug. 17. The Navajo Nation is an area that lacks resources, like water, internet access and even electricity. Nez said he knows that an all virtual education is going to be challenging for families.”What we’ve done early on in this pandemic is provide places around the Navajo Nation where students and our staff can go to connect to the internet, so they can turn in their homework,” he said. Nez said their goal is to get high speed inside residents’ homes. He said they’re also working on getting cares act funding approved to purchase more computers for students. “New Mexico Public Education Department has supported the Navajo nation with 2,500 laptops,” Nez said. “But of course there’s more than 2,500 students in New Mexico.” Nation leaders said they’re working with the states of Utah and Arizona to get more resources for Navajo students in those states. While the nation will go into the school year doing online-learning, Nez said that could change depending on what happens with the virus.”There’s going to be some fear, but there are also some positive stories coming out of this pandemic,” he said. “Families are reuniting. Families are staying home– our culture and traditions are being handed down.” Because they’re a sovereign nation, they don’t have to follow guidelines from state governors. The nation does have a mix of public schools, private schools and charter schools.

One of the hardest hit areas in the country, the Navajo Nation, is now flattening the curve. But what’s their plan to bring students back to school?

The Nation’s President Jonathan Nez said they wanted to leave the decision on whether to bring students back to school up to parents and staff. So the Navajo Nation Department of Dine Education sent out a survey to the community asking for their input on how to go about schooling for the fall 2020 semester, amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Advertisement

“Overwhelmingly the parents of these students wanted to move towards online education,” Nez said.

Moving all classes online means they’ll have a school start date of Aug. 17. The Navajo Nation is an area that lacks resources, like water, internet access and even electricity. Nez said he knows that an all virtual education is going to be challenging for families.

“What we’ve done early on in this pandemic is provide places around the Navajo Nation where students and our staff can go to connect to the internet, so they can turn in their homework,” he said.

Nez said their goal is to get high speed inside residents’ homes. He said they’re also working on getting cares act funding approved to purchase more computers for students.

“New Mexico Public Education Department has supported the Navajo nation with 2,500 laptops,” Nez said. “But of course there’s more than 2,500 students in New Mexico.”

Nation leaders said they’re working with the states of Utah and Arizona to get more resources for Navajo students in those states. While the nation will go into the school year doing online-learning, Nez said that could change depending on what happens with the virus.

“There’s going to be some fear, but there are also some positive stories coming out of this pandemic,” he said. “Families are reuniting. Families are staying home– our culture and traditions are being handed down.”

Because they’re a sovereign nation, they don’t have to follow guidelines from state governors. The nation does have a mix of public schools, private schools and charter schools.

Spread the love