Coweta County Schools release School-Opening Guidelines

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From Coweta County Schools Press Release

Coweta Schools will begin the 2020-21 school year on Thursday, August 6 with both in-person and online options for parents.

In response to the ongoing COVID-19 health crisis, the Coweta County School System has developed draft plans for the reopening of schools that provide for the health and safety of students and staff, 180 days of student instruction during the new school year, and flexibility of choice for Coweta parents.

The Coweta County School System released the draft guidelines for the August 6 reopening of schools on June 30.  Superintendent Evan Horton discussed the guidelines with Board of Education members at their June 30 meeting, and said that the plans had been released to principals and would be discussed with school staff and school councils.

These guidelines have been made available for public review and comment through an online survey open through July 10.

Below are links to the School System Guidelines, “Empower” Digital Learning Option and a Parent Survey.

Click the link for Coweta County School System Guidelines.

Click the link for the “Empower” Online Digital Learning Option.

Click the link for the Parent Survey.

Under the plan, Coweta Schools will open with two classroom choices this year: face-to-face instruction, or remote virtual learning.  Guidelines for face-to-face instruction allow for the reopening of schools as long as community and state health conditions allow.  Parents also have the option  of signing up between July 6 and 17 for an online, virtual learning option as an alternative to face-to-face instruction, on a semester by semester basis.

Coweta’s guidelines for classroom instruction are based on health guidance distributed by the CDC, Georgia Department of Education and Georgia Department of Public Health, and presume that Coweta County remains a county of “minimal to moderate” spread of COVID-19 as identified by the Georgia Department of Public Health.  These protocols are subject to change as the guidance of local, state and national officials change in response to the spread of COVID-19.

Parents opting for face-to-face instruction will be asked whether their child or children will require bus service (morning, afternoon or both).  They will also be made aware of the protocols and expectations under the guidelines, such as:

  • Social distancing enforced where practicable in cafeterias, classrooms and other school facilities.
  • Staff and student health monitoring and increased hygienic practices such as hand washing and hand sanitizer.
  • Allowing and encouraging (but not requiring) face coverings for students
  • Expanded daily cleaning and disinfecting protocols.
  • Group size limitations for students in settings such as the cafeteria and during recess and PE, and limitations of non-essential visitors to the school.

Parents opting for remote learning will be asked to review Coweta’s “Empower” platform, and sign up for the option between July 6 and July 17.  Parents will be contacted regarding the sign-up period. They will also be asked to verify:

  • That they are committed to the daily implementation of the remote learning environment.
  • And that they are committed to ensuring that their child receives daily work assignments.
  • That they are committed to the choice through the first semester (from August 6 through December 18).

Students in the virtual option will remain enrolled in their base school, with use of their assigned Chromebook and other materials.  Students will remain eligible for school extracurricular activities.

Superintendent Horton said that the school system realizes that the COVID-19 epidemic is an evolving health situation that will continue to change, and the system will update school operational protocols as needed.  “These guidelines will change,” he said, noting that they could be altered as a result of future guidance from the state, or refined through parent feedback in the coming weeks.

The guidelines released June 30 take into account current health advice based on Coweta County as a county of “minimal to moderate” spread of COVID-19.  If Coweta County is designated as a county showing substantial spread of COVID-19 cases in the school and/or the community, additional steps will be taken, including school closures if necessary.  In that case, face-to-face instruction would be suspended and students will participate through distance learning.  Teachers have created digital lesson plans that may be used along with other methods of remote instruction in the event that periodic school closures are necessary after August 6, 2020.

Go here to provide feedback through a short parent survey. 

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