The Evans County School System has announced another delay of the first day of school, now until Tuesday, Sept. 8. The school board previously decided to postpone the opening until Aug. 24.

In a statement released Aug. 14, the school system announced 12 staff members have tested positive for COVID-19, another nine are in quarantine due to symptoms, and two students have also reported positive results.

“While we believe we have done everything feasible to prepare for a safe return, we do not believe it is wise to do so under the continued severe community spread,” the school statement reads.

The plan is to open with both face-to-face and virtual instruction on Sept. 8. The school is working on developing an A/B model for in-person learning with the goal of returning to full face-to-face instruction on Monday, Sept. 28, “if it is safe to do so.”

The district will be hosting a Facebook Live session on Thursday, Aug. 20 at 5 p.m. and again on Monday, Aug, 31 at 10 a.m. to provide details to parents and the community and answer questions.

The A/B model is still under development, but the school system says the basic components would be:

  • Half of students attend Mondays and Tuesdays.
  • Half of students attend Thursdays and Fridays.
  • Wednesdays will be dedicated to complete deep cleaning and sanitation of all buildings. Buildings will also be deep cleaned and disinfected over the weekends.
  • Groups will be established by bus routes to keep family units attending on the same days.
  • Meals will be sent home with students on Tuesdays and Fridays.
  • The reduction of students on campus will ensure social distancing in classrooms, cafeterias, and playgrounds as well as greatly reduce the number of children on buses.
  • Curriculum and pacing guides will be modified. Our focus will be quality over quantity until we are able to return to a full schedule.
  • After school extra-curricular clubs and activities will be suspended until further notice.
  • Athletic practices and competitions will continue according to GHSA guidelines.
  • Parents who have opted for face-to-face instruction will be informed the week of Aug. 24 about the group to which their child is assigned.
  • All safety protocols will be observed.

Open houses:

Open houses for student returning face-to-face will be held for pre-K, kindergarten, 6th grade, and 9th grade. The formats and details will be released by Friday, Aug. 21.

Details about open houses for students attending virtually will be sent directly to parents.

More reopening info:

Any request to register for virtual learning after July 23 will be taken on a case-by-case basis.

Students opting for online instruction will not be eligible to participate in extracurricular activities.

For those returning in person, temperature checks will be conducted before students enter school buildings.

Should a student or employee test positive for the virus, the school district will not make mass announcements. State public health officials will conduct contact tracing and notification.

Mask policy:

  • Required for students and staff on buses
  • Required for staff in common areas
  • Strongly recommended for students in buildings

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