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Hundreds Turn Out In West Suburbs To Protest Remote Learning In Schools

WHEATON, Ill. (CBS) -- Protesters came out in the hundreds in the western suburbs Tuesday night, all calling for changes in how students are learning this school year.

As CBS 2's Jermont Terry reported, some teachers even joined the push in Wheaton to end remote learning.

A lot of people have made adjustments or complained about the obstacles associated with e-learning. But the crowd that gathered on Tuesday night insisted it is downright counterproductive to the learning process.

The energetic parents and students – coming from various school districts – made their message about remote learning clear.

"School is not only something we want to return, but school is something we need to come back," one student said.

Hundreds gathered Tuesday in Wheaton to demand School District 200 and neighboring school districts put a halt on computer learning and get back into the classroom.

"There's like 80 percent of the people in our district, which is St. Charles – they voted to go back to school," said parent Joe Bastone, "and we're still not back in school. It's all e-learning"

Bastone said what he has seen from his son while e-learning is doing nothing more than adding stress.

"They're not learning. They're not learning," Bastone said. "They need to be face-to-face."

Wheaton South senior Mia McCoyd told supporters e-learning is not working.

"I'm not learning as well I would be in person," she said.

The crowd wants the option to send kids to school. But as it is, remote learning is the only option.

"Other districts have figured it out. The private schools have figured it out on how to get kids back in school - whether it be a hybrid system or full-time," McCoyd said. "So I think if that they can do it, we should be able to do it also."

Community Unit School District 200 insisted it is following the guidance of the Illinois Department of Public Health, telling CBS 2 it "adjusted our elementary plan for in-person instruction to remove lunch and recess."

But at the middle and high school level, the school district said it "made the difficult decision to bring students back to school remotely," and will continue to work on revised plans based on county data.

The district plans to provide an update on its revised plan as early as Wednesday, and has already scheduled a school board meeting.

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