Monday was the first day for distance learning for students at Jackson County and East Jackson high schools, where students and teachers have been hit by spikes in COVID cases.
Oglethorpe County schools become the latest to revert to virtual learning: rising coronavirus case counts in Oglethorpe County led school officials to make the transition, which happens tomorrow. School Superintendent Beverley Levine, in a latter to parents, says more than 300 students have been absent from school in recent days. Students in schools in Elbert County will revert to distance learning Thursday and Friday.
From Oglethorpe Co School Supt Beverley Levine...
It takes a village to educate our children! We have had a strong start in all four schools with face-to-face instruction. Alarmingly, last Friday we had 42 staff members absent for a variety of reasons. Twenty of these positions went unfilled by substitutes. As a result, teachers, support staff, and even administrators had to cover classes throughout the day. We also had 311 students absent from school. That is 14% of our student population. Of the absent students, 165 have been absent for three or more days. This is creating a tremendous amount of extra work for our teachers. Our teachers need additional time to regroup, plan, and prepare make-up work. Also, many of them need to get Google Classroom or Microsoft Teams set up to assist with instruction for absent and/or quarantined students.
Friday, September 3rd is a scheduled distance learning day. After careful deliberation we have decided to extend the distance learning days to include Wednesday (September 1st) and Thursday (September 2 nd) to give our teachers much needed additional preparation time. This means our students will be out of school from September 1st – 6 th. Students will return to face-to-face instruction on Tuesday, September 7th .
Teachers will send home assignments for students to complete on Friday’s distance learning day. The district will send out suggested activities for Wednesday and Thursday, so that teachers are not further burdened. Information will follow about school meal opportunities.
I understand this may be an inconvenience for parents who have to arrange childcare. However, I feel a great need to look after our staff right now and ask for your understanding. Again, thank you for supporting our staff as they work to keep face-to-face instruction going for our students.
Sincerely, Beverley Levine
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