Lexington, SC (Paul Kirby) – On Wednesday, July 1, 2020, Lexington School District One released a statement from District Superintendent Dr. Greg Little about their plans for the 2020/2021 school year amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. Several weeks ago, they had released a preliminary plan for the upcoming school year that had several options for parents regarding how their students would learn during the school year starting in August of 2020. The district’s staff had worked countless hours on that plan with many stakeholders that included both parents and staff. Then, in the July 1st release, Dr. Little said that the district was reevaluating that plan based on updated information they recently received.
Dr. Little said they had shared the first plan with parents and had launched their Stronger Together website outlining it for anyone who wished to see it. A few days later, the American Academy of Pediatrics released a document called the “COVID-19 Planning Considerations: Guidance for School Re-entry.” In that document, the AAP said they, "strongly advocate that all policy considerations for the coming school year should start with the goal of having students physically present in school." Little included in his latest communication a link to that so that anyone could read the report. This is that LINK: https://bit.ly/AAP_Guidance
That report stresses the need for student and staff and staff safety saying that everyone needed to wear face coverings, provide social distancing (three feet apart), stress hand washing, limit visitors into the buildings, have teachers rotate instead of students, and more. Many of those things had already been considered in Lexington One’s first proposals.
Since that report was received, Dr. Little has met with medical professionals again and learned their thoughts about this report. The district’s planning team will now review the latest information in the AAP’s report, study it carefully, and see what adjustments they may need to make.
Lexington School District One has developed a unique on-line learning explanation resource called Lexington District One’s Online Learning Academy to help parents and students better understand that process. You can see that on their Stronger Together website. https://bit.ly/L1OnlineLearningAcademy
They are also nearing the release of a frequently asked questions document that was created based on common questions parents are asking. The district has said they will let everyone know as soon as that is ready.
In closing, Dr. Little said, “Planning in the middle of a pandemic is very challenging. The information that we are learning about schools and school openings continues to change as we learn more about the virus. We will continue to be flexible and adjust our plans as necessary based on the most up to date information and knowledge that we gather.”
The district’s priority has always been keeping their more than 27,300 students and 4,000 staff members safe while providing a high-quality education. They continue to do whatever they can to make that happen.