% US K-12 Students attending 'Virtual only" schools = 39.3% (vs 42.6% last week)
% US K-12 Students Attending 'Traditional In-person/Every day" schools = 36,3% (vs 34.7%)
% US K-12 Students Attending "Hybrid" Schools = 24.4% (vs 22.7%)
Note: Our data is presented as "students attending schools that offer this learning plan" - most districts also offer virtual even when providing in person For above, 39.3% of US K-12 students are currently attending schools that offer only virtual plans, 36.3% offering traditional, etc.
Trends and Observations
To review, Burbio launched the audit on August 11th showing 52% "virtual only" and it shifted dramatically as the month went on and increased to 62% by Labor Day as large districts such as Hawaii, Dallas, small cities in the Northeast, Boston and parts of the Midwest reversed previously announced in-person plans. In our Labor Day releasewe noted that many districts had announced plans to shift from virtual to in-person during September, and that trend has taken hold as the virtual-only number is now 39.1%.
Burbio issued apress release this week highlighting the post-Labor Day information regarding in person school trends.
Again this week over 3% of US K-12 students moved from attending virtual-only schools to traditional in-person or hybrid plans. Large parts of Harris County, TX (Houston), Marion County IN (Indianapolis) and chunks of Lake County, IL, and Travis TX (the Austin area) brought students back into the classroom. We also saw some school openings in North Carolina and some returns in Washington state, where some districts are planning to introduce younger grades in over the next 2-3 weeks.
In short, any district that hasn't already introduced in-person learning is facing serious headwinds due to the use of this criteria for the indefinite future
We reported last week some districts that had temporarily suspended in person learning due to community wide Covid levels. It's a fluid situation that we continue to monitor and it's worth noting the districts often take a week to close beyond the announcement date. We saw it in St. Cloud, MN in last week's report and this week in Barrington IL but did not see a marked increase this week. We'll be trying to put a number on percentage of closures we see in our data set in the coming weeks, but to date it has been tiny.
Many of the bigger urban districts that are not going to be introducing general in-person education between now and January (or later) are reporting they will be making efforts to bring varying levels of special needs, at-risk youth and very young children into schools before then.