London Schools lays out plan for reopening this fall


(Posted July 21, 2020)

Josephine Birdsell, Staff Writer

London City Schools has approved a plan for the return to school in the fall.

Elementary school students can choose to attend school fully in-person or fully online, while middle and high school students can choose to attend school under a blended format (partially online and partially in-person) or fully online.

Allowing only one school to open fully in-person allows the district to better pool its resources into that school, said Dr. Lou Kramer, superintendent.

“We know elementary students don’t really learn well in a blended or online model,” he said, so the district is prioritizing an in-person option for those students.

The district will provide computers to middle and high school students, as well as to elementary students who choose to attend school online. The district is working to supply WiFi hotspots to students in need. Students will have to apply for Internet access, and the district will prioritize students on free-and-reduced lunch or students who have another financial hardship.

The district does not have plans at this time to offer meals to students attending school online, although it will consider the number of students choosing a remote learning option who may rely on access to food in schools, Kramer said.

Middle and high school students must indicate whether they intend to attend school using a blended or fully online option by filling out a survey distributed by the district. At the beginning of the school year, there will be a two-week trial period before students are expected to commit to their selected option. However, once the trial period is over, students who choose a fully online option must stay online through the end of the semester.

The district will allocate resources for and assign teachers to online instruction based on the number of students who select a fully online option. Allowing students to switch between blended and online options would require a reallocation of resources, Kramer said.

Students who choose a fully online option during the first semester can switch to another available option for the second semester if they choose to.

Elementary students only need to indicate their preferred instruction method if they intend to attend school online. Otherwise, the district will assume all elementary students will attend school in-person in the fall.

However, the district may move all students online or create a blended learning option for elementary school students later in the school year if the spread of COVID-19 increases or staff attendance decreases.

“The plan is measured. We would love to open the schools to all students all day, every day. However, when we open, we want to do so in a well thought out, well planned way. So, this (plan) is a good starting point. (But) obviously, a lot can happen between now and the start of school,” Kramer said.


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