A teacher criticized her "prison-like" plexiglass structures that were set up at her grade school classroom in a Facebook post, and the district responded by telling her to delete the post and stop being so negative.
Fifth-grade teacher Teresa Holmes posted a video of the cubicles set up for social distancing because of the coronavirus at her Forestbrook Elementary classroom in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
Holmes addressed the video to Ken Richardson, the chair of the Horry County Schools Board of Education.
"I'm wondering, this is my classroom, I have a rather large classroom compared to the other classrooms in our building," she explained.
Holmes said she could expect 30 or 32 desks when all the children from virtual study are back in the classroom.
"So I'm just wondering, when we ordered this $5 million worth of plexiglass, did we have a classroom of 28 desks set up to where school board members could see in them and see what this was really going to be like?" she asked.
"Cuz I'm still trying to figure out, how, in between my classrooms, am I supposed to disinfect, how am I supposed to hear my students when they're in the back of the room wearing a mask behind all this plexiglass?" Holmes asked.
The school district responded by calling on Holmes to take down the post on Facebook and instructed her to not "make it look like something negative," according to Holmes.
"Well, guess what? I feel that it is negative," Holmes said to the The Post and Courier Myrtle Beach.
Community leaders and teachers have been publicly squabbling with the school board about the plan to reopen schools with the plexiglass structures. Some teachers say they won't be given enough time to clean all of the cubicles between classes, and there may also be mold issues associated with the water used to clean them.
Some experts also told the Post and Courier that the science behind using plexiglass in classrooms to stop the spread of the coronavirus is dubious, and it's more likely just a "placebo" to make people feel better.
"I'm gonna try to learn to love this," Holmes said to WMBF-TV.
Here's a local news report about the incident:
Teacher calls on HCS board chair after video shows crowded classroom after plexiglass installation www.youtube.com