Griffin-Spalding County schools to continue distance learning through March 1

STAFF REPORT :::

The Griffin-Spalding County School System will continue distance learning until March 1, when in-person learning will resume.

School officials say Spalding County has maintained high COVID-19 counts since before the school system’s Christmas break. Area hospitals remain full and some continue to defer patients elsewhere.

Griffin-Spalding County School System (GSCSS) officials on Tuesday met with two regional epidemiologists and others from the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH). Based on the data reviewed during that meeting and subsequent discussions, GSCSS officials determined the continuation of distance learning is the best course of action.

In the past few days, the COVID-19 case count has begun to show a slight downward trend. DPH and GSCSS officials hope this trend will continue.

Until March 1, students will continue to complete learning tasks remotely from home. Safety and protection of all human life is of greatest importance, GSCSS officials said.

On March 1, GSCSS will resume its hybrid model where families have previously selected their choice of in-person learning or remote at-home learning.

“The GSCS Board of Education and district leadership have a strong desire to return to in-person education as soon as we are confident it is safe. All involved have great empathy for parents, students and staff. On one hand, parents are experiencing challenges and frustration as they try to arrange childcare and assist with virtual learning,” said Interim Superintendent Donald Warren. “On the other hand, the virus continues to affect our community, COVID-19 hospitalizations and death rates continue to climb, and some families and staff members are afraid. It is a difficult decision, and one that is not taken lightly. We’re making every effort to follow the science. It is crucial that all members of the Griffin-Spalding community support us by following CDC guidelines to reduce the spread of this virus.”

Chairperson Zachery Holmes said the Board of Education favors this decision.

“The board of education supports this decision,” Holmes said. “We believe this is the best decision for GSCS to ensure utmost safety for teachers, staff, students and their families.”

“Thank you to Dr. Warren and The Department of Public Health task force for providing the latest data needed to make an informed decision for all parties involved,” said BoE Vice Chairman Sue McDonald. “These decisions are not easy as this governance team desires our employees and staff to resume a normal way of life and learning. It’s coming but we must remain steadfast in protecting our dedicated employees and our greatest asset, the students of Griffin-Spalding. Thank you.”

Free multi-day breakfast and lunch packets will continue to be offered to all children in Spalding County between 2 and 4 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays at any of the seven pick-up locations. The meals may be picked up at the bus ramp of the following locations that include Anne Street Elementary, Atkinson Elementary, Beaverbrook Elementary, Carver Road Middle School, Cowan Road Middle School, Griffin High School and Spalding High School.

Cowan Road Middle School pick-up will remain open on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2 to 6 p.m. for working parents that need a later pick-up time.

High school athletics will continue as planned per the Georgia High School Association guidelines.

Middle school officials will be contacting students regarding the start dates for middle school athletics.

All teachers (except those with documented health accommodations) will return to work in their classrooms and staff will return to their buildings on Feb. 22.

Teachers and staff members will continue to be permitted to complete their professional duties and responsibilities from home until Feb. 22. School buildings and central office will remain open to employees who need access to the internet and other resources to complete their job functions. Principals and district leaders will ensure that building access is available to employees during normal workday hours. Specific building access schedules and requirements will be communicated directly by principals and supervisors.

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Comments

  1. no school no property tax says:

    no in-person education, no property taxes.

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