Northumberland County’s schools will re-open after a fashion starting August 17... maybe.
At its most recent meeting, the school board voted to re-open the schools on a “hybrid” plan and to offer distant learning via the Internet but since then, the Coronavirus numbers for the county have ballooned to almost 60 cases. Superintendent of Schools, Holly Wargo said Friday that she expects the schools to open as planned by the board but can’t rule out a change if the pandemic situation changes.
Under the “hybrid” plan, the schools will operate with students on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays and Fridays. Half the students will go the first two days and half the last two. On Wednesdays, there will be no students while the schools are thoroughly sanitized.
Students will have the option of studying at home and those who do come to school will have to test themselves before leaving home and will have their temperatures checked as they arrive at school. In school social distancing will be maintained. On the school buses and in other situations where distancing can’t be maintained students and school personnel will have to wear protective masks.
Not all students have computers or Internet service in their homes for distant learning. To address their needs, the schools will provide all students with devices that can reach the Internet. Because there are areas of sparse Internet service,the schools will drive Wi-Fi equipped buses into those areas so the students can get online.