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  • Writer's pictureLindsey Valente

School By The Pool

Does the possibility of another shut-down make you want to hibernate until 2022? I know that for me, if school goes all virtual again I will absolutely be opting for a change of scenery. If you haven’t yet read my post on the health benefits of having a trip planned, take a moment to look it over and come back to me. For those of you cringing at the mere mention of remote learning, here is something new to consider: the “schoolcation” (I didn’t coin the term).

Resorts and hotels around the globe have had to pivot to stay relevant in the pandemic. Hotels such as The Four Seasons, The Ritz Carlton, and Great Wolf Lodge (amongst others) are offering school packages geared towards families living in a remote-first world. They have made changes by improving wifi, adding poolside classrooms, and implementing new sanitizing methods. Many of these properties have added a personal touch to virtual schooling services by tapping staff who typically run the children’s clubs to switch tracks and oversee virtual classes, or creating new positions to help families manage the tech-heavy burden of school these days.

One example of these new services is The Four Seasons Orlando (not my top travel destination, but you take what you can get this year). The Four Seasons Orlando is offering full and half day supervised virtual school sessions. A limited number of spots are available for students to each get a desk, provided lunch, “ultimate recess” breaks, and guided arts and crafts projects. In the meantime, parents can work from the hotel room without being interrupted by endless questions of, “when will Zoom school be over?!” Or better yet, they can either lounge poolside with a cocktail or take in a round of golf. 

Another East Coast example of remote-school perks is The Kimpton Muse Hotel in New York. They are offering a special Schoolcation Package that includes everything your kid needs during the school day. From a complimentary “snack pack,” to access to the hotel’s Chief Zoom Officer, they have families visiting the big apple covered.

Do keep in mind that these kinds of programs range in price and are typically $100-$150 per full day. Private tutoring can often be arranged for an additional fee in many locations. 

When you choose the resort for your next getaway, it would be prudent to inquire about dining options available. Is there a full kitchen? Grocery delivery? Room Service? Many resorts have altered their operations to accommodate the new travel landscape, so be sure to inform yourself and know what to expect.

Something else to consider when booking your next getaway is that museums and local attractions are all open in many cities both big and small. Remember to call ahead to secure your spot and find out about any changes to their operations or hours. 

Although nothing can provide the same benefits of in-person schooling and I can only hope another shut-down doesn’t come anytime soon, the “schoolcation” options available worldwide are softening the blow of the possibility.

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