#UPDATE — Columbia County schools are opening for students in just one week. However, there are still some tweaks being made to student schedules. The district is changing course for students in middle and high schools. Those who chose in-person learning will now be at school every other day, and they’ll go to school in two separate groups.
“It is a little bit frustrating that is happening so close to the first day of school,” said LaToya Harris. “Now parents, including me, if we are going to make a different decision, we have to scramble to figure out how that plan is going to work.”
Columbia County schools are moving to a 10-day rotation for in-person instruction.
The plan known as the A/B model is designed to help keep social distancing and make it easier to clean buildings. Students whose last names begin with A to K will be part of Group A. Students whose last names begin with L to Z will be part of Group B. Students will attend school every other day and learn-from-home on days not attending school. Elementary students will attend school Monday through Friday.
“The consensus in some of the mom groups I’m in is frustration,” explained Harris. “Frustration, the last-minute changes, and the constant redirection.”
Latoya Harris has two kids that go to elementary school in Columbia County. She says she is concerned that the A/B model only applies to middle and high school students.
“I feel like we are put an increased burden on our teacher to policy social distancing and teach at the same time,” said Harris. “I also think that it’s very ambitious to think elementary school students can do a better job at social distancing than high schoolers.”
The new plan is set to be in place until at least September 4th. Harris believes the school district is ignoring what is happening in the region.
“Richmond County is not two counties away,” said Harris. “It is right across the street. To think we are different or safer than Richmond County, that sounds like a ridiculous logic.”
Children from blended families will be allowed to attend on the same days. The deadline to submit this request is July 30th.
For students who have registered for the Learn from Home Model, the first day of school for elementary students is August 17th, and the first day of school for middle and high school students is August 10th. Teachers will provide information regarding Learn-from-Home to students before the first day of learning.
Photojournalist: Gary Hipps
COLUMBIA COUNTY (WJBF) – The Columbia County School District has issued a new plan for the upcoming school year:
The Columbia County School District is excited to begin the 2020-2021 School Year.
For students opting for the traditional, in-person learning model, the following information applies:Elementary students will begin school August 3, 2020, and attend school Monday through Friday under health and safety measures outlined in the district Return to School Plan.
Middle and high school students will start the school year on the A/B Model as outlined in the Return to School Plan, to help ensure the ability for proper social distancing and to reduce population in classrooms, in hallways, and in common areas to include cafeterias.
Students whose last names begin with A to K will be part of Group-A and students whose last names begin with L to Z will be part of Group-B. Students in Group-A will report to school Monday, August 3rd, and students in Group-B will report to school Tuesday, August 4th.
Students will attend school every other day, learning from home on days not attending school with the exception of August 7th and August 14th, which will be learn from home days for both groups. Please see schedule below for the first five weeks of school.
Children from blended families will be allowed to attend on the same days. Parents may make this request beginning tomorrow by using the link located on each school’s website.
For students who have registered for the Learn from Home Model, the first day of school for elementary students is August 17th and the first day of school for middle and high school students is August 10th.
Information regarding Learn from Home will be provided by teachers to students prior to the first day of learning.
Dates for Virtual Open Houses will continue as planned, and students new to the school district and/or new to school buildings will be offered the opportunity to tour their new schools. Please access school websites and social media outlets for information related to particular schools and the school district website for future updates.Columbia County School District