School forms task force to consider opening options
June 25, 2020
With the most recent loosening of COVID-19 orders by Governor Mark Gordon, schools, colleges and universities will be able to resume classes in the fall as long as a few safety measures are in place.
Hot Springs County School District #1 has formed a task force, which is looking at various ways the schools can open up while taking those safety measures into consideration. Those plans will be for each school, the transportation department, food service and more.
One of the plans being discussed is an A day/B day scenario that would divide classes in half in order to keep social distancing, especially in the elementary grades.
This would mean half the class would attend on days marked as A days, while the second half of the class would attend on B days. This particular arrangement is being looked at by schools all across the state.
Another plan would be similar to what we experienced at the end of this school year, with classes being held via Zoom.
One of the complaints parents had with the end of the year format was the over abundance of messages they received from all over the district, so they are working on a single point of contact scenario to better streamline messages for parents, students and teachers.
The board is hoping that school can simply resume as normal with the safety measures in place, but having options is going to make a big difference moving forward.
They are also discussing using spring break week as a ‘flex’ week that could be used, if necessary, at any time during the school year.
For instance, if there was a sudden outbreak in November, that week could be used to close down school and give everything a chance to simmer down without having to lose any class time.
The task force is looking at ways to do parent/teacher conferences, back to school night and other events safely.
As far as sports and activities are concerned, the district has to follow the recommendations of the Wyoming High School Activities Association (WHSAA). They still do not know what sports and activities will look like this year, but it is hoped there will be some kind of direction by July 1.
Another item that will probably be changing will be the school nurse’s office. From this point on, students will not be able to just go to the nurse’s office and get a throat lozenge or something similar and return to class. Instead, students who visit the nurse’s office will be sent home.