VIGO COUNTY, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) – Vigo County Schools Board of Trustees gives their approval of re-entry plan for school in the fall.
Monday in front of a socially distant crowd, the Vigo County School Board approved a re-entry and COVID-19 mitigation plan for the upcoming academic year.
“August 11th, we will begin school and we might be making changes throughout the entire school year,” said Dr. Rob Haworth, VCSC superintendent.
To assist with the creation of the plan, Vigo County school officials called on parents or caregivers to complete a survey that allowed for the community to give their input on what school should look like in the fall.
“It really was a part of our guiding force for a lot of the mitigation techniques that we’re going to use and strategies we’re going to use,” said Tom Balitewicz, VCSC director of student services.
The entire plan for re-entry reads 26 pages, but some highlights include a virtual schooling option for those who are not comfortable with a return to in-person classes, distancing of six feet when possible, and a requirement for students and staff to wear masks when distancing is not possible.
Monday, local medical professionals weighed-in on the plan.
“As we trace corona spread through not only the local community but also the state, everything has the ability to flex and to move, which has been good,” said Dr. Darren Brucken, Vigo County chief medical officer.
As for parents, medical leaders say now is the time to prepare students for changes as they head back to the classroom, especially in regards to masking.
“Between now and when schools starts parents can really be actively trying to to get them adjusted to it so it’s not so new and unique,” said. Dr. Jackie Holder, Union Medical Group medical director.
Dr. Brucken also says the benefits of a return to in-person learning outweigh the risks.
“Is there some risk of kids getting sick? Absolutely. Is there risk of teachers becoming ill? Absolutely. The school system has done a great job of controlling as many variables as possible,” Brucken said.
Monday, the school board also approved a general obligation bond that will provide Chromebooks for 3rd through 7th graders.
The school corporation has also ordered Chromebooks for 8th graders and all high school students.