The Iberia Parish School Board met Wednesday night to release tentative plans for the reopening of schools in the parish this fall. The first day of school is September 8.
Heath Hulin, Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction, explained that the plan is a foundation and is subject to change based on which phase of reopening the state is in once school starts and the subsequent guidance from the Department of Education and the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE).
There are several guidelines implemented by the state board that parish boards must adhere to, Hulin said, including maximum group size, social distancing, and symptom and temperature monitoring for students and teachers.
Iberia Parish specifically created two plans after a planning process with principals, teachers, school boards members, and other educators and stakeholders. The board had intended to begin with Plan A, but Hulin said recent developments such as an increase in case numbers meant the board reverted to Plan B.
PLAN B (Current plan)
Cohorts A and B (middle and high school students) -
Students will have in-person learning two days a week and will have virtual lessons three days a week.
Cohort A - At school Monday and Tuesday; virtual learning Wednesday-Friday
Cohort B - Virtual learning Monday-Wednesday; at school Thursday and Friday
Virtual learning would be graded assignments and an extension of what was taught in person. Both cohorts would receive the same instruction and curriculum by the end of the week.
Wednesday would be used as a planning day for teachers and would also be a day for small group instruction, remediation, and intervention. It will also be a day for teacher office hours, where parents can call in and speak with their child's teacher.
Cohort C (Elementary students) -
Students will receive in-person instruction everyday while remaining in static groups. Teachers would rotate classrooms instead of students. A 25-student class limit will be implemented.
Plan A would include more restrictions for elementary school students. All students would follow the split week of learning (in-person learning two days, virtual three days).
Under both plans, special education students would be accommodated and most would continue to meet everyday because these are generally smaller groups that have separate transportation.
Also under either plan, if any parent feels uncomfortable sending their child back to school, a full virtual option will be available. The virtual option would feature a state approved curriculum and would be available for students in kindergarten through Grade 12. Students would have to register, and those that choose this option would have to continue the virtual option for at least a grading period. They can choose in person learning after that 9-week period.
Lunches will still be available for pickup at school cafeterias regardless of whether a student is at school or at home.
Hulin emphasized that the board has taken all required precautions in terms of sanitization. The board used CARES funding to purchase sanitizer, and students will be required to use sanitizer when entering the building in the morning, after two hours of class, before and after lunch, and before and after recess. The board also purchased touchless thermometers.
The board plans to continue to ask parents for feedback and again, the plans are subject to change based on the state's reopening.
View PDFs of the school board's reopening plans here.
Read more about the state board's reopening guidelines here.
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