Several counties in the region return to school on Monday

LONG CO., Ga. (WTOC) – This week kicks off the first day of school for many districts in Southeast Georgia.

On Monday August 2, students will walk back to the building from Screven, Bulloch, Candler, Bacon, Appling, Tattnall and Long counties.

Long County district leaders say they are excited and feel ready for the first day.

Last year, Long County students could be in person or virtual. This year, there is no virtual option. All students will return for face-to-face instruction.

Every year as they come home from summer vacation, there are worries about the loss of learning, but this year Long County schools are taking extra steps to address it. They hired additional teachers to reduce class sizes and provide more individualized instruction. The district has hired additional counselors to help students with social and emotional needs this year.

With all of these changes, district leaders say they feel ready to begin the school year.

“We are very happy in Long County, delighted to have our students and staff back for a great year. We are grateful for the support of the Board of Education, our superintendent, parents, teachers, staff, all of our stakeholders in Long County are very supportive of our school system and we look forward to a great year for our children. , ”Said Lisa McCallister, Long County Assistant. Superintendent.

Wearing masks for students and staff will be mandatory on school buses and during class transitions. The school district not only updated the mask policy, but also changed the attendance policy due to virus issues. For parents who don’t think it’s safe for their children to go back to school, they get a five-day extension without an attendance penalty. They will be responsible for catching up with all the work, but parents must call the school on Monday to let them know. District leaders say they will continue to monitor the number of COVID-19 cases and follow guidelines from state and local health departments.

“In the event that we have a positive case, student or staff member, we would ask that person to self-isolate as per DPH guidelines and we would do contact tracing so that all contact of that student or staff member are informed and receive advice based on the DPH guidelines for quarantines, ”said McCallister.

If a person is fully vaccinated after exposure, they do not need to self-quarantine unless they develop symptoms.

There are some things the district plans to keep in place this school year, such as additional sanitation practices and the use of Google Classroom. Students will be able to eat in the cafeteria. USDA will expand its free dining programs and all students will receive free breakfast and lunch. And all dismissal deadlines have also returned to normal this year.

McCallister says that while this year will be a more traditional school year, they will continue to be flexible and adaptable to meet each student where they are and help them with what they need.

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