Thursday, July 30, 2020

Wellsville school looks at splitting classes

Staircases and hallways in the Middle/High School buildings are being designated one way or up or down as plans to reopen school are made.
As boards of education across the state get ready to submit their school reopening plans to the governor Friday, Wellsville’s plan calls for splitting high school students into two different groups.
The plan discussed at the recent meeting of the ReOpening School Committee is still being worked on and will be subject to change.
“This is largely a template that will allow us to add. It is a living document that will be subject to change right up to the start of school,” School Superintendent David Foster told those in a ZOOM meeting Monday. Attendance in the meeting included committees which have been working on the reopening plan, staff, students, the public, board members and Dr. Mohamad-Zahi Kassas, the school physician.
Foster stated in the beginning that his goal was to bring all the students back to school full-time. “But that isn’t possible with the guidelines handed down by the Governor and the with the amount of room available in the school buildings for social distancing,” he told the group.
The plan calls for:
>All students coming to school to have a daily temperature check at home and sign an app that they have not been subjected to the coronavirus before attending school. Temps may not be above 100 degrees Fahrenheit.
>Pre-K through 6th grade students will attend school Monday through Friday at their regular times.
>Students in 7th through 12th grade will attend school in the buildings only two days a week. Each grade level will be divided into two groups, A and B to be determined by the school.
>On Mondays   7th - 12th grade students will tune into ZOOM for their day at school. Students designated in the A group will physically attend school on Tuesdays and Thursdays and work at home on Wednesdays and Fridays. B-group students will attend school on Wednesdays and Fridays and work at home on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
>Special Education students will attend classes in school five days a week and students taking special curriculums at BOCES will attend every day.
>All students will be required to wear masks and have their own hand sanitizer (the school can supply refills). In the middle/high school building students will be required to sanitize their desks before passing to another classroom.
>Breakfast and lunches will be provided. Elementary students will eat in a variety of locations including the gym and pre-school gym, and the multi-purpose room. Plans are still be discussed for the middle/high school. Breakfasts and lunches will be sent home with students for the days they are not in the building.
>Teachers are encouraged to open windows and hold classes outdoors when possible.
>Extra-curricular programs such as band and choir will be held in smaller group sittings due to the need to social distance.
“We don’t have the room for 18 or 20 students in choir or band to social distance,” Foster said.
According to Foster transportation will also be difficult (1-person to a seat on buses) so parents are being asked to utilize the new drop-off drive which is currently under construction.
The Re-Opening of School Committee is still working on the plan and the group is planning on more meetings. The public is invited to tune in. The plan will be made available to the public and student’s parents and caregivers will be given instruction before school starts on Sept. 8th.