The Lenoir County Board of Education met in person Monday for the first time in 2021 and unanimously voted to transition middle and high schools to adopt option A under the pandemic policies for school reopening.
“In Lenoir County, we already had four days a week available for some students, the problem is that it wasn’t available for all students,” said Lenoir County Public Schools Superintendent Brent Williams.
Prior to the school board meeting, there were waiting lists for students at different schools throughout the county because Option B under the pandemic policies allowed for 50% of the school’s capacity. The transition to Option A eliminates the waiting lists.
“Transition to option A for middle and high school will allow all students whose parents who want them to go to four days a week of face-to-face instruction will be able to do so,” said Williams.
Parents who prefer for their children to remain virtual, or remote learning, can continue to do so. The transition to option A does not force any child back to face-to-face instruction.
“We will have so much more flexibility without the six feet of social distancing,” said Williams.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updated K-12 school guidance to recommend students should maintain a distance of at least three feet in classroom settings with universal masking.
“It’s a big step forward for us,” said Williams.
Regular bus transportation, or pre-covid bus transportation, students were assigned a bus to take them to and from school. During Option B, that was not something available to all students. The transition to Option A will allow for more bus space, especially with the pandemic policy guideline of six feet changing to three feet.
“One of the most exciting things from parents and students is about our end of the year activities,” said Williams. “We’re not canceling anything.”
The guiding goals in planning the end of the year activities are to provide as much as they possibly can for their students and to give them every opportunity they can.
“We believe they deserve all that we can give them in making those events the best they can be,” said Williams.