More work to be done before the first day of school


EVANS, Ga. (WJBF) – The inside of Evans High School is being cleaned on the regular. Even on the weekend leading up to the first day of in-person classes on August 3. According to the school’s Principal, several, high-powered, germ defoggers are now part of the daily routine.

“We’re also social distancing ourselves. Six-feet apart where possible. We’re not three feet apart,” said Principal Michael Johnson.

In the lunchroom, stickers are on the ground so students can be spaced out. Seating is arranged in accordance with social distancing guidelines. There are more lunch periods this year, four, so there are not too many people in the lunchroom at a time.

Principal Johnson explained, “And with the county switching to the A/B day, it’s been great because we are actually going to have less students in the building, in the brick and mortar. You’re looking at going from 1,900 students, that’s a lot of kids, but when you go AB schedule, we’re looking at anywhere from 750 to 800 students in the building.”

About 22% of Columbia County students will be virtual learning, while the other 78% opted for in-person classes.

“We’re strongly encouraging our students to wear masks. Making it mandatory for our staff to wear masks, especially during transition,” said Principal Johnson.

Employee temperatures will be checked and they are encouraged to take them before they get to school. Also when they get to the building but it’s a different case for students.

Principal Johnson said, “We’re not going to able to check their temperatures coming in but we’re asking that our parents help us with that because we’re basically going on the honor system.”

If a student starts to feel sick at school and shows symptoms of COVID-19, they will be sent home after a series of tests.

“If an employee tests positive or a student tests positive, they will automatically be quarantined and sent home. They have to stay quarantined for 14 days. Once they have gone through those 14 days, if they are symptom-free, not showing any signs of COVID-19, not running a fever, not taking medications to control that fever, then they’re allowed back,” said Principal Johnson.

He added he doesn’t feel the pressure of returning to in-person classes and his school is built for this. Virtual learning for Columbia County students will begin August 17.

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