OPS moving to hybrid plan Thursday

OPS moving to hybrid plan Thursday
(Source: WFIE)

OWENSBORO, Ky. (WFIE) - Owensboro Public Schools will head back to the classroom Thursday with their A/B hybrid model.

Students in the B group will be in their classrooms that day while group A stays in distance learning.

Here is the full letter sent to OPS families:

Beginning Thursday, January 14, 2021, Owensboro Public Schools will return to in-person learning on the A/B hybrid model. Being that the 14th is a Thursday, only students in the “B” group will return in-person on that day. Students in the “A” group will learn virtually as a part of their distance day that day. There will be no school Monday, January 19 in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

As we have learned throughout this school year, there is no decision that everyone can agree on, but we ultimately have to make the decision that is best for our students and there simply is no substitute for in-person learning. Many will ask why we came to this decision and I want to highlight a few points:

1) The language in the governor’s Executive Order now permits us to return to school in the “Red”. His previous Executive Order did not allow for that. 2) We did not have a single case of person-to-person spread in our school buildings when we were previously in an A/B hybrid model. 3) There are numerous studies, including a report from the CDC, that provides evidence that schools are not responsible for spreading the virus. 4) We have reviewed the most recent “Healthy at School” guidelines from the Kentucky Department of Public Health and have ensured we are following those guidelines.

It is our intention to remain on the A/B hybrid model as long as we are able to maintain daily operations. There may be occasions when it will be necessary to close individual schools for a short time to minimize the spread of the virus and it may be necessary to return to virtual learning if numbers in the district pose a risk to our population or affect our daily operations.

While screenings will continue to happen at the entry to school, students and staff are encouraged to screen themselves daily before coming to school or getting on a bus. No one should attend school if they answer “Yes” to any of the following: a fever greater than 100.4, and/or a cough, and/or vomiting or diarrhea, and/or a new rash, and/or exposure to a positive COVID case within the past 48 hours. Attending school if you can answer “Yes” to any of those questions puts the entire district at risk of having to return to virtual learning. It is better to stay home than risk infecting others.

We understand there will be some families who are signed up for A/B, but do not wish to send their kids to school with the current numbers in our county. If that is the case for your family, you will need to email virtualacademy@owensboro.kyschools.us to work out a plan. Virtual Academy will remain the same during the second semester.

We would not take this step to return to in-person learning if we did not feel it was safe to do so. We look forward to seeing our students back on January 14, 2021.

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