Based on Governor Roy Cooper’s July 14 announcement that students in public schools can return to campus, but in a limited way, schools in Moore County will be open for the 2020-21 academic year. The Moore County Board of Education heard a refined version of Cooper’s plan at its Tuesday, July 21 remote session.
Schools in Moore County will be operating under a tailored Plan B, which has students (K-12) in school two days per week. All schools will close on Wednesdays, so that continual cleaning of facilities and buses can take place.
Attendance for students will be based on completion of daily tasks throughout the week and attendance on designated in-school instruction days.
School start times may be adjusted in order to ensure health screenings for students and staff.
In an effort to keep buildings as safe as possible, several steps are to be taken.
Teachers will receive cleaning and disinfecting products, including gloves, paper towels and spray bottles of disinfectant. Instructors will disinfect shared objects, including art supplies, toys and games, between use. Should a situation arise where the immediate disinfecting of surfaces is needed, teachers will contact custodians.
Classrooms without sinks will have hand sanitizer available. All schools will have a designated isolation space for students displaying symptoms. Five reusable face coverings will be given to students, teachers and other employees.
Hallways will have directional signs and markers.
In terms of athletics, schools in Moore County will operate under NCHSAA Guidelines for Phase One. Emphasis is placed on cleaning facilities, hygiene, hydration and pre-workout monitoring.
Regarding transportation, drivers and students have to wear face coverings. Should a student not have a face covering, the driver will provide one. Parents and guardians must provide a statement of attestation for a student to board a bus. There will be one student per bus seat.
Every bus will be disinfected between routes.
If parents have reservations about sending students back to campus, an exclusively remote option, “Connect!,” is available. The deadline for registering for the virtual program is July 28. Currently, 1,259 students are enrolled in the alternative format.
The main tools for communication and instruction are Google Classroom (K-5) and Canvas (6-12). Grading will follow current district policies. High school students will receive between four to six hours of virtual instruction per day. The same is true for students in grades 6-8.
Learners in K-1 will be taught for between two to three hours daily, while those in grades 2-3 will have between three to four hours of instruction.
~Written by Sandhills Sentinel Reporter Dave Lukow.