Parents weigh in on how they want schools to look come fall, Columbus Co. Schools announces plan

Parents weigh in on how they want schools to look

SOUTHEASTERN N.C. (WECT) - School districts in southeastern North Carolina asked for parent feedback on what the 2020-2021 school year should look like.

Governor Cooper decided on Plan B with a choice to go with Plan C.

Bladen County

Bladen County Schools posted a survey on their website on July 2.

The survey comprises 13 questions that ask for feedback and suggestions to improve blended and remote learning.

The survey closes on July 15.

Brunswick County

Respondents preferred a plan where Brunswick County Schools students would alternate which days of the week they would have face-to-face instruction, according to a survey by the school system.

More than 5,000 people responded to the survey on “Plan B” options for the upcoming school year.

Here’s how the options fared:

1) 47.2 percent, or 2,423 responses, favored the A/B Day option where “all students alternate days for face-to-face instruction with 50 percent of students face-to-face Monday-Tuesday (Group A) and 50 percent of students face-to-face Thursday-Friday (Group B). Wednesday becomes a remote learning day for all students and a day to deep clean facilities.”

2) 20.9 percent, or 1,076 responses, favored the A/B Week option where “all students, 50 percent in Group A and 50 percent in Group B, alternate weeks for face-to-face and remote learning. One week face-to-face followed by one week remote learning and continued alternating. Deep clean facilities on rotation.”

3) 13.3 percent, or 685 responses, favored the hybrid learning option 1 where “high school students start with 100 percent remote learning M-F (for a nine-week period). K-8 students start 100 percent face-to-face learning with some K-8 students utilizing the high school buildings for a nine-week period. Deep clean facilities on rotation.”

10.8 percent, or 553 responses, favored the hybrid learning option 2 where “high school students start with 100 percent remote learning (for a nine-week period). K-8 students start 100 percent face-to-face learning with some K-8 students utilizing the high school buildings for a nine-week period.-Monday-Tuesday/Thursday-Friday with Wednesday being a remote learning day for all students and a day to deep clean buildings.”

4) 7.8%, or 401 responses, said they were exploring other education options and that their child will not be attending BCS for the 2020-2021 school year.

Responses for high school students can be found here.

Responses for elementary school students can be found here.

“Our survey looked at basically three versions of Plan B to gauge which one was favored the most in case he goes that route. B is the most complicated,” said Daniel Seamans, the Chief Communications Officer for Brunswick County Schools. “It doesn’t mean board members choose the most favored, but it is additional information to think about and consider.”

Columbus County

Columbus County Schools most recent survey has approximately 2,000 respondents.

It found 40 percent of parents wanted to be in physical school full-time (Plan A), 27 percent of parents wanted to be virtual 100 percent of the time (Plan C), 33 percent of parents wanted a combination of physical school and virtual.

Kelly Jones with Columbus County Schools says the most important takeaway from the survey is the high demand for the 100% virtual option.

According to a statement from Columbus County Schools Superintendent Dr. Deanna Meadows, the first priority for the first month of school is getting students in kindergarten through third grade back into a physical school setting.

“There are many reasons for this, but the importance of teacher interaction with students in this age group is a primary concern,” said Dr. Meadows. “We fear without taking this step these students could fall behind at a crucial point in their development, especially in their reading skills. In order to bring K-3 students back on campus and also meet the social distancing guidelines set forth by the state, we have planned to use additional schools and school spaces.”

Because of more school space needed, lower teacher-to-student ratios, and the number of students that can be on a bus, the school district has decided on a plan for the 2020-2021 school year.

In summary:

  • K-3 will begin the school year on campus for the first month of school through September 11th. Students will be socially distanced, expected to wear face coverings, and the school system will continue to implement stringent safety and sanitation guidelines.
  • Grades 4-12 will begin the school year virtually and return to school on a staggered basis beginning on September 14. With the guidance from Gov. Cooper, the school system may be able to get more grades on campus. They say they will know after completing additional studies and if it is feasible; they will add 4th grade and then 5th grade if possible.
  • Parents may choose for their students to be 100% virtual. CCS will share all safety procedures soon so that parents can make this decision.

“We recognize that this may not be the best option for parents,” said Dr. Meadows. “We hope that this plan will allow parents the opportunity and time to put a plan in place for their younger children when we begin the staggered schedule on September 14. Our belief is that the best educational experience for students is in a face to face environment and want to provide as much opportunity for all students to have that experience as we move through this school year. We will provide additional information after we have been able to work through these changes from the guidance today. "

New Hanover County

New Hanover County Schools released a survey for parents on July 7; the survey closed on July 13. The school system plans to release the results of the survey on July 15.

To learn more about their plans, click here.

Pender County

Pender County Schools (PCS) is asking for parents of its students to fill out a survey as it makes plans for the upcoming school year.

“The Restarting Together Community Survey will shape school in August,” PCS said in a tweet.

“We wanted to get feedback on how anything would look,” said Alex Riley, the Communications Coordinator for Pender County Schools. “What works best for you? We’ve got those questions in there. How will your kid get to school? Will they be riding the bus? Will you be transporting them? Do they have a mask available that they can wear everyday? What’s the internet situation at your house? What type of device do you have available for your child to learn on?”

The survey can be found here. It will be open through Thursday evening.

“The whole survey, I think it’s about 15 questions or so,” said Riley. “It’s touching on all three potential scenarios that we could be in and we’re trying to get as much information as we can on all of them.”

Riley says school leaders and officials will meet and discuss final plans for the school year throughout the next week.

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