From Staff Reports
The kids are going back to school.
After nearly a year of exclusively remote learning, students in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro district will head back to in-person classes in April. The school board has voted unanimously to reopen schools under a hybrid plan of in-person and online learning.
The discussion to move to the hybrid Plan B comes after state officials, including Gov. Roy Cooper and Health Secretary Mandy Cohen, urged districts statewide to provide in-person classes and many districts have started doing so.
Under the Chapel Hill-Carrboro plan, students in pre-k through second grade, sixth grade, ninth grade and exceptional children’s programs would return to a hybrid schedule on April 19. Students in grades 3-5, 7-8 and 10-12 would return a week later. Staff will return to their schools the week of April 12.
Groups of students would have the option to attend in-person instruction on Mondays and Tuesdays or Thursdays and Fridays, with Wednesdays used for cleaning each school building. Students not attending school during one of those two stretches of days, or who choose to not have any in-person instruction, would continue to receive their instruction remotely.
Families will receive their assignments to either in-person cohorts or fully remote options by Feb. 26. Families will have ten days to request a different learning option based upon “health or family hardships.”
For several months, the board had pushed back a decision on whether or when to re-open schools. But pressure had been growing for the reopening, from local parents, the general assembly and from other districts, which had already moved to in-person instruction.
At its meeting, the school board also approved the purchase of safety equipment including personal protective equipment, air filters for campus buildings and other necessary materials to safely reopen the schools.