We say goodbye to a school year that has been anything but normal. This coming week we will return our books and then our laptops and settle into a summer that looks just as unusual. Many camps are online, many pools closed, and many plans cancelled. Everything seems to be a waiting game.
So how about those with special needs? Their world is even more stressful. Extended School Year may also be online or not at all if their parents cannot cope. How does this affect the kids? What will mental health development do to step in? I am not sure the adults have all the answers to this yet.
I think this is a year where everyone will find out who their true friends are because online school shutdown in person conversations with friends. Summer now will pose more challenges as to who can see whom via social distancing or who is going to spend the summer away to escape the house they have been in for 3 months.
I understand some service providers are opening back into the home for kids who need extra support, but not all of them. The consistency is not there yet. Then there is trust to allow people back into your space. This will be hard to navigate for so many.
I am on the fence personally of how to restart. Many things I will not do, like go to public outdoor spaces with lots of strangers but I may start allowing close friends over, and certainly bike riding outdoors is ok with space between you and a friend. Pools I think will take time to consider, if they open at all. Environment is important, trust is important, and safety is important.
Take your time and do what is right for you. This is a strange year for any kid going into a summer of uncertainty. There is no right or wrong, just what is right for you.
Have a great week! -Ava