CCS to Reopen School Doors in January for Students, Staff
Published by Angel Hoggard on November 13, 2020
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Fayetteville, N.C. – Beginning in January 2021, some students will return to the classroom for in-person learning. Contingent upon positive COVID-19 metrics, Cumberland County Schools (CCS) will transition to Plan B (Blended-Remote and In-Person Learning) following a staggered entry approach beginning January 7, 2021, for traditional calendar schools and January 11, 2021, for year-round schools. Pending positive COVID-19 metrics, CCS will transition to Plan A (Traditional Face-to-Face Learning with Minimal Social Distancing) for K-5 students beginning February 1, 2021.

The Pathway to a Safe and Healthy Return Plan calls for staff to report to work on January 4, 2021, with high school teachers and staff involved in testing reporting to work beginning December 11, 2020.

The Cumberland County Board of Education approved the school re-entry plan during a special Board meeting this morning. Families have the option for their child to participate in a combination of in-person and virtual instruction or for their child to remain fully virtual.  Students participating in the blended learning model will be assigned to one of two cohorts to attend school in person two days per week. Wednesday will be designated as an independent remote-learning day for all students and a telework day for all staff.

“Our team has worked extremely hard to prepare for a safe and healthy return to in-person learning,” said CCS Superintendent Dr. Marvin Connelly, Jr. “We will continue to follow guidance from health officials as we prepare to welcome students back to the classroom. I urge everyone to continue to practice the three Ws — wear a cloth mask over your nose and mouth, wait six feet apart and avoid close contact, and wash your hands or use hand sanitizer. These actions will help slow the spread of COVID-19, providing the opportunity for in-person learning to move forward as planned.”

The district’s COVID-19 Medical Advisory team, which is composed of local health officials as well as internal and external stakeholders, will continue to monitor the metrics to prepare for a safe return to in-person learning. 

Staggered Re-Entry Approach for Blended Learning

In an effort to provide a smooth and safe return to in-person instruction, the district will use a staggered re-entry approach for students enrolled in the blended-learning model:

Traditional Calendar Staggered Re-Entry

  • The approach to stagger re-entry prioritizes bringing in Pre-K, EC Separate, K-2, 6th grade and 9th-grade students first.  
  • On the traditional elementary calendar, EC Separate and Pre-K students begin daily in-person instruction January 7.
  • Kindergarten, 1st, and 2nd-grade students in Cohort B begin January 7.
  • Kindergarten, 1st, and 2nd-grade students in Cohort A begin January 11.
  • 3rd, 4th, and 5th-grade students in Cohort B begin January 14.
  • 3rd, 4th, and 5th-grade students in Cohort A begin January 19.
  • For secondary schools on the traditional calendar, secondary EC separate students would begin daily instruction January 7.
  • 6th and 9th-grade students in Cohort B begin January 7.
  • 6th and 9th-grade students in Cohort A begin January 11.
  • 7th, 8th, 10th, 11th, and 12th-grade students in Cohort B begin January 14.
  • 7th, 8th, 10th, 11th, and 12th-grade students in Cohort A begin January 19.

Year-Round Calendar Staggered Re-Entry

  • For year-round schools, EC Separate and Pre-K students begin daily in-person instruction January 11.
  • Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd,  6th and 9th grade students begin their in-person cohort rotation the week of January 11 – January 15.
  • All other grade levels begin their in-person cohort rotation the week of January 19.

Schools will communicate with parents to confirm their child’s learning selection and inform them of their child’s cohort assignment. This will give families a final opportunity to change their learning selection if they desire, so that schools can plan accordingly.

Fall Testing

The Board voted to allow End-of-Course (EOC) testing and Career and Technical Education (CTE) post-assessments to take place from December 14-18, provided positive COVID-19 metrics are present.  Currently, there is no waiver from statewide testing or accountability for the 2020-2021 school year. 

To learn more about the district’s re-entry plan, including safety precautions, student cohorts and more, visit www.reentry.ccs.k12.nc.us

        

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