Online or in-person learning

Back to School During COVID-19: What You Need to Know

Fall is the season when kids get back from a long summer break to hit the books in a new grade. At least that’s how it was last year before the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The 2020 fall semester is unlike any other semester we’ve ever had. For parents with school-aged children, the debate of whether or not schools should reopen has left things in limbo. Everyone wants to get schools back to normal, but safety is the top priority. Despite kids being less susceptible to the virus, there have been outbreaks in other countries that were connected to schools reopening. 

As we head into September, more parents and kids are still wondering what the new school year will be like. Will kids be in the classroom or online at home? Could it be part classroom part online? With over 13,500 school districts in the country, anything is possible.

In-Person or Online: How Will Your Child Learn This Fall? 

The biggest change is how and where children will go to school this fall. And those factors are different from one school district to the next.

The last thing most Americans want is a resurgence of the virus, which some worry is more likely with opened schools. That concern alone is prompting some parents to advocate for online learning until there’s a vaccine or treatment. 

If you’re in the online learning camp we’ve provided some tips below that make getting back to school easier on your electricity bill. 

Tips for Lightening the Load While Learning Online

Many parents across the country are bracing themselves for taking on the role of a teacher once again. Even if your child’s school is planning to reopen, you may have decided as a family that online learning is the safest option. But as you already know, more time learning at home means more electricity use and added school expenses. 

Every dollar saved is a dollar that can be put towards buying your kid’s school supplies and setting up a positive learning environment at home. And at Major Energy, we’re all about helping customers maximize their money. Here are a few ways parents can do just that while school is in session at home.

Use a Smart Power Strip for Your Home Office/Classroom 

School is in session for only part of the day, but your devices and office equipment may continue to drain power 24/7. It’s something known as vampire energy. Even when most devices are switched off they draw power because they are in standby mode. 

The easiest solution is using a smart power strip for your home office equipment. This advanced power strip can completely cut the power when devices aren’t in use so vampire energy doesn’t add to your bill. Some even have added features like motion detection and timers that automatically cut power to devices when they aren’t in use.

Hold Class Outdoors

In some areas of the country like Southern California, one idea for improving safety at reopened schools is bringing the classroom outside. It’s a strategy that’s been used in the past to help prevent the spread of pandemics and plagues. Today, Italy and Germany have been conducting classes outside with success. Advocates like Green Schoolyard point out that there are other health benefits that make learning out in nature the best option. If you plan to teach at home Green Schoolyard has fantastic resources for outdoor learning during COVID-19.

Another great benefit of outdoor learning is reduced energy use. Outdoors there’s no need for lighting or air conditioning. As the school days go by that reduction can really add up. Learning outdoors is an option for at least a few hours a day just about everywhere at the start of the school year. Take advantage of those first few months by starting the school day in a shady part of your yard or on a covered patio. 

Improving your electricity plan is another way to make homeschooling a little easier this fall. See if you can get a better rate by switching to a Major Energy electricity plan. In deregulated energy markets you have the power to choose who provides your electricity. Let’s see if we can help you save this fall semester!

Get more tips on how to reduce energy use during stay-at-home advisories.

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