Photo by CDC via Unsplash

A new Biden administration survey shows that while nearly half of U.S. elementary schools were conducting in-person classes, the groups of students with in-person instruction varies by region and race. 

The survey shows that most non-white students have been taught entirely online.

This survey was released on March 24, and marks a pivotal starting point for President Joe Biden’s plan to fully open all K-8 schools during his first 100 days in office. 

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The survey shows that about 76% of elementary and middle schools were offering hybrid learning to students. Only 24% offered exclusively remote learning.

The number of students going into the classroom has likely increased since February, when the data was taken. Since vaccines have been rolling out, and case numbers have gone down, the number of students learning in-person is likely to increase continually

Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said even though the survey data is encouraging, it shows “critical gaps” for in-person learning, especially for students of color.

“While schools continue to show us what’s possible as they work to open their doors and meet students’ needs, we know that we still have a lot of ground to go,” Cardona said

“We owe it to our students — especially students in underserved communities and students with disabilities — to get all our schools opened safely and to meet the social, emotional, mental health and academic needs of all students.”

The Biden administration is also releasing $81 billion in education assistance from the $1.9 trillion virus relief bill.

They plan to use the survey findings as a baseline, updating it monthly, to show the progress of schools. 

The new monthly data will show how many U.S. schools are teaching online, in-person, or through hybrid methods. There has not been government collected data of these factors yet.

The information comes from 7,000 public schools in 44 different states. The survey asked about teaching methods as of February, along with other data from January.

Written ByHaley Weger

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