Four day school weeks begin

Published 11:06 am Friday, March 19, 2021

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Due to improving health data, the Charlotte County School Board approved Superintendent Robbie Mason’s recommendation to begin four-day in-person instruction during the board’s Tuesday, March 9, meeting.

Four-day in-person instruction began Monday, March 15.

Robbie Mason

Fridays will continue to be remote instruction days for all students.

“Everyone understands that most students perform better within the structure provided by classrooms and schools,” Mason said. “The recent health data including significant decreases in daily case counts and percent positivity over the past few weeks have allowed us to now safely offer a four day in-person instructional option for all students.”

Mason said school administration has been evaluating health data since last summer, balancing health considerations and the need for in-person instruction.

According to Mason, parents who wish for their children to remain remote have that option. “These parents do not need to take any action to remain remote,” he said.

CCPS will utilize six-foot distancing in classrooms whenever possible; however, some classrooms will utilize distances as close as three feet due to class size and space limitations. Three-foot distancing has been approved by the World Health Organization and the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Masks must continue to be worn by students at all times except when they are eating.

Mason said this is the only way CCPS will be allowed to use three-foot distancing.

As for bus transportation Mason said students would be seated one per seat on each school bus with household members being allowed to sit together.

“Since face coverings are mandated on our buses, we can safely use less than six-foot distancing,” Mason said. “We have encouraged parents to drive their students to school if they can do so.”

Schools will not accept bus notes asking for students to ride a different bus to go home with another student. This creates a problem with space on buses and the ability to assign seats.

Mason said school administration would continue to monitor COVID-19 health data, and if spikes in cases in the schools or community become an issue, it may become necessary to return to hybrid or fully remote instruction for a period of time.

“Please continue to keep your child at home if they exhibit any symptoms or have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 symptoms or someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19,” Mason said. “Being very diligent is the only way that we can keep our schools open.”