Bladen County school board votes to bring students back for in-person instruction

Bladen County school board votes to bring students back for in-person instruction

BLADEN COUNTY, N.C. (WECT) - The Bladen County Board of Education on Thursday voted for a plan that would bring students back to the classroom for in-person instruction later this month.

Please note: Families of all students will have the option to send their child to school for face-to-face learning or to have their child participate in full semester 100% remote learning.

Under the board’s plan, PreK-4th grade students can return to class for face-to-face learning four days a week with Wednesday being remote learning so schools can be cleaned and disinfected.

Elementary students and staff will be required to follow the state’s guidelines for Plan A, which include:

  • Minimal social distancing in classrooms; 6-feet of social distancing in all other school areas (hallways, restrooms, cafeteria, media, office, etc.);
  • Continued daily cleaning and disinfecting protocols;
  • Face coverings are required while riding a bus and inside the school;
  • Daily temperature and screening checks prior to entering the building for students, staff, and visitors; and,
  • No required social distancing or passenger limits on the school bus; buses with Prek-5 students can have two passengers per seat; buses that have 6-12 students mixed in with Prek-5 students are only allowed one passenger per seat, with siblings being able to sit together on the same seat; schools only are encouraged, not required to limit the number of passengers as in Plan B.

All 5-12 grade students, including exceptional children, can return to class under Plan B which is a combination of remote learning and alternating days of in-person instruction.

Both plans will begin on Oct. 19.

Middle and high school students and staff will be required to adhere to the following guidelines for Plan B:

  • Maintain 6 feet of social distancing in all areas of the school, including classrooms;
  • Reduce the capacity of students in the school to adhere to social distancing;
  • Continued daily cleaning and disinfecting protocols;
  • Face coverings are required while riding a bus and inside the school;
  • Daily temperature and screening checks prior to entering the building for students, staff, and visitors;
  • Limit the amount of out-of-classroom activities (other than recess) by students and teachers, keeping cohort groups together; and,
  • Limit school bus ridership to one passenger per seat.

The board also approved for middle and high school athletes and coaches to return to voluntary conditioning workouts beginning October 12.

Under a proposal submitted by the district’s athletic directors and approved by the board, high school athletes and coaches will begin Phase 2 of the NCHSAA guidelines for conditioning and workouts. The conditioning and workouts are voluntary, and not mandatory.

Copyright 2020 WECT. All rights reserved.