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Central Bucks School District announces reopening plans

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In a change from its earlier recommendation, the Central Bucks School District will offer a traditional, five-day, in-person school week for elementary students in the upcoming school year, Angela Linch, the district’s communications administrator, said Wednesday.
 
The decision came during a special school board meeting Tuesday, when board members voted 6-3 to approve the district’s health and safety plan as it prepares to open schools during the COVID-19 pandemic.
 
Earlier this week, John Kopicki, the district’s superintendent, informed families the so-called traditional option would not be available, citing new state guidelines that would make it “impossible” to meet social distancing requirements.
 
Now, however, parents with children in grades K-6 can chose between the traditional option, a “hybrid” option where students have in-person classes two days per week and a combination of live and online instruction during the other three days. A full-time cyber school option, with the entire school week being offered online, will also be available. For children with an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) there will be a choice between attending school in-person four or five days per week, Kopicki said, in his letter.
 
Families will be asked to select their option through a registration process beginning this week. Detailed information on each method will be distributed to families and available on the district’s website, officials said.
In his earlier letter to parents, Kopicki said, much consideration went into the plan, including daily meetings with administrators, teachers, community stakeholders and other district staff members. Guidelines from the Bucks County and Pennsylvania health departments, the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control and advice from local medical doctors were also studied.
 
Pennsylvania’s department of education required planning in four primary areas, the superintendent said. Those included cleaning, sanitizing, disinfecting and ventilation; social distancing and other safety protocols; monitoring of student and staff health; and other considerations for students and staff.
 
Some highlights from the Central Bucks plan include:
- Prohibition of lockers and locker rooms
- Controlled bathroom use
- Increased number of lunch periods
- Seating that encourages six-feet distancing whenever possible
- No visitors or volunteers are permitted in schools unless considered essential











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