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'There is no ideal solution here' | Guilford County Schools discusses options for reopening in the fall

The district discussed the possibility of bringing kindergarten through 8th grade back to schools and keeping high schoolers virtual.

GREENSBORO, N.C. — Guilford County Schools held a meeting Tuesday evening to talk through its reopening plan.

The district discussed a mixed version of in-person and remote learning throughout the district. 

Superintendent Dr. Sharon Contreras said she is adamant about not returning to the classroom on Aug. 17 for a number of reasons.

"We have to essentially divide each class into two and then put all of the health and safety protocols into place," Contreras said.

The superintendent said the district is not only making sure there's adequate time to get the schools set up but hoping the coronavirus cases in the county will start on a downward trend. 

"We must consider the health and safety of all parties concerned because that’s our first priority," Contreras said.

The district discussed the possibility of bringing kindergarten through 8th grade back to schools and keeping high schoolers virtual.

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"The reason the task force recommended this, and we have about 150 members on the task force, it is because the children K-5 and even six through eight don’t have foundational skills. They don’t know how to read yet. They need to be practicing those skills every day," she said. 

Some board members expressed concern about high schoolers not having face-to-face interaction with moving all classes online.

Contreras said the district has been in touch with churches to help provide support to high school students who need it during the week.

The district said this option would require more personnel to cover the younger students spread out across the schools in the district.

Nothing is set in stone yet. Contreras said the option to hold classes both in-person and online for all students is still on the table. 

There's been discussion about giving parents the opportunity to visit schools by appointment to see the precautions schools will be taking when the academic year starts.

Precautions in the classroom include keeping desks at least six feet apart, installing plexiglass dividers and have students eat lunch in their classrooms.

The district is set to continue the discussion this week.

To learn more about the school district's presentation, click here

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