Shelby County Schools leaders outline plans to reopen schools

WATCH: Shelby County Schools leaders outline plans to reopen schools

SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. — UPDATE: Shelby County Schools has updated its plan regarding students and how they will be handling the start of the school year.

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With coronavirus cases climbing, Monday we learned classes will begin on Aug. 31 this fall for Shelby County Schools.

That’s one of several changes district leaders decided Monday night as they outlined plans to reopen schools.

If you choose to send your student back to the classroom for in-person learning, face masks will be required for all students, staff, and visitors on school grounds.

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And if your student rides the bus, they’ll have to wear it on the bus ride too.

Shelby County Schools staff said social distancing is a key component as they reopen schools in the fall.

Staff said students will notice this during mealtimes. They said students will eat in the cafeteria while others will eat in the classroom.

There will also be meals available for students who are enrolled in the virtual learning option. Staff said there will be morning pickups and afternoon pickups and those meals will be prepared to last two to three days.

SCS is offering training to parents so they know how to use their student’s digital devices and all the virtual tools. Staff said they want virtual learning to resemble in-person learning as much as possible.

“Our focus is ensuring that teachers are able to fully support students on a continued basis, meaning constant communication, we’ll provide high-quality instruction because we really want to ensure that kids are being accelerated throughout the process and learning is taking place on a daily basis,” said Dr. Anthony Burt, SCS Chief Academic Officer.

The district said it will not administer COVID-19 tests for students and staff on campus, but they said temperature checks will be required for all teachers and staff.

But SCS said they will need help from parents too.

“First, stay home when you’re sick,” said Dr. Angela Whitelaw, SCS Deputy Superintendent of Schools and Academic Support. “Second check the temperature of yourself and children before leaving your home each day, so if you’re feeling bad please stay home and finally limit unnecessary travel from our community.”

If a COVID-19 outbreak happens, district staff said they will work with the health department and families will be notified but they should also be prepared for short term closures if necessary

If there is a have a sudden closure, SCS will make sure that virtual learning will continue.

The district will posted updated information here.

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