The stakes have never been higher. Even with a shot at humor, school districts are feeling the weight of their decisions.
“That is what I’m asking for tonight, for the board to approve those two options, so we can move forward and continue working on these plans, not knowing if the sun will come up next week,” said one Robertson County school board member.
Robertson County administrators are still ironing out details for an August 10 start date.
“That’s still our number one concern, keeping kids safe, and teachers safe.”
There will be an in-class option and a virtual option. At a board meeting Monday night there was a strong focus on limiting the number of students per classroom. Transportation is another concern, with the idea of masks on buses being floated.
“You can imagine how many car riders we’re talking about having if you tell them they have to wear a mask on a bus, which I do believe is the right decision,” another member of the board said. “We may have some folks who want to bring their child to school, and we’re okay with that.”
Also meeting Monday, Maury County district leaders, who will not require masks for students or staff, but strongly encourage them.
“How are we going to meet the needs of our students if they can’t come to school,” asked one educator.
The district estimates more than 800 kids with a heightened risk for severe illness because of COVID-19. K-12 virtual options will be made available, though educators acknowledged, the playbook for this does not exist.
“We’ve got the cards that we have, we’re playing through them the best we can,” said MCPS Superintendent, Michael Hickman. “We do have a plan,’ and we do want you to feel confident in that we’ve worked extremely hard in what we do in the circumstances that we’ve got.”
Rearranged classrooms for distancing, cleaning buses day and night, it will look different, it will feel different, much like most of 2020.
News 2 digs deeper into how schools are moving forward safely for the new academic year. See how other districts around Middle Tennessee are handling everything from classroom concerns to the future of sports in our special series. Click here to see more.
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