#schoolsafety | Medina Superintendent discusses students returning to buildings

MEDINA – Superintendent Aaron Sable kicked off the school board regular meeting with further discussions on the start of the school year.

“I know that some of this might be repeat from our work session but, I think it’s important to bring this back up at the regular meeting,” said Sable. “I want to welcome all the students back to school. One week from today, we are going to have students from throughout the district in our buildings. All our teachers are back and working in their classrooms and, I know, are excited to have students return.”

The district has been working on doing a soft start to getting students back into their buildings. This transition back into the buildings will be starting soon.

Students in sixth and ninth graders who will be starting a new building this year will be getting into buildings first. This is because they missed their orientations and having time in their new buildings will allow them to learn their schedules.

After this, half of the students will return to schools for a couple days in order to learn the Covid-19 procedures and then the second half of the students will do the same.

“We are excited for our students return,” said Sable.

Sable also discussed Online 2.0 and the Medina Online Digital Academy. He shared that they have received a lot of feedback from parents on these programs.

“One of the challenges that we face with both of these programs is that there’s very different viewpoints on the programs depending on who we talk to,” said Sable. “We talk to some parents and they feel like their students are overwhelmed and they need more flexibility within the schedule or they need decreased amount of work. We talk to another parent and their feeling is that it’s not enough.”

He shared that well rounded feedback is very important so a survey will be going out to parents in the near future.

“I do have to say, in general, I’d say 99 percent of the parents I’ve talked to, whether they have frustrations or not, have shared that things are much better this fall than last spring,” said Sable.

He said that where he cannot disagree is the fact that these programs have room for improvement and the district will continue to improve.

Sable also discussed the districts hybrid model at the high school.

“I do want to bring up that we have been talking about a hybrid model throughout the summer,” said Sable.

He shared that, throughout this process, he feels as though he could’ve done a better job at communicating with parents about the hybrid model and where the district was with this model.

The hybrid model came about because there were some concerns with having students back at the high school and this was a way to safely transition back into being at the high school full time.

Hallways and classrooms weren’t the concern. Concerns come into play when considering things like lunch periods and study halls.

For study halls, students can be seated three feet apart with masks. It has been suggested that the PAC be used for study halls to make social distancing possible.

Sable shared that the only concern with this is that, with only four to five minutes between periods, it would be hard to get the PAC thoroughly cleaned for the next study hall.

Figuring out lunches are a little bit harder but administrators have been working to come up with a plan for this.

Having an open campus at the high school has also been discussed to reduce the number of students on campus at any given time.

“It is priority for us to make sure that we get our high schoolers back into the high school and to be able to do this sooner rather than later,” said Sable. “The High School Safety Committee is continuing to work on different avenues where we can bring our students back five days a week.”


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