On Tuesday, September 8, Wayne County Public Schools transitioned from Plan C, full remote, to Plan B, a hybrid of face-to-face and remote instruction. Approximately 11,460 students are taking part in Plan B, which incorporates many health and safety restrictions, including health screenings, reduced numbers of students in classrooms, and social distancing. In Plan B, participating students are split up in cohorts, which allow students to attend school on-site while others are remote on A, B, or C Days. Approximately 6,000 students are attending the district’s 100% virtual school program.
“Overall, the opening went smoothly for schools,” states Dr. James Merrill, interim superintendent. “We did have a small number of bus delays and some slowdowns in the car rider line during the health screening process, which was to be expected. We also had a 95% attendance rate with teachers.”
Information specific to the district’s response to COVID-19 can be found at www.waynecountyschools.org/2020-2021SchoolReopeningUpdates.aspx. Here a few key updates from WCPS:
Cleaning & Sanitizing
WCPS continues using special state and federal funding to purchase cleaning equipment and supplies to support sanitization and disinfectant efforts at schools. Every school has been provided disinfectant cleaning equipment that can be used daily to disinfect both the air and contact surfaces in all of the classrooms, common areas, restrooms, and other areas where people have been. Additionally, similar disinfectant cleaning equipment has been purchased for daily cleaning of buses. Classroom supplies continue being purchased to support teacher and staff efforts to sanitize desks and other contact surfaces in between students. At this time, teachers have been provided refillable hand sanitizer, wipes and spray cleaners, which will be refilled and resupplied as needed. Hand sanitizer stations have also been provided to all of the schools for placement in key areas of their campus.
WCPS is actively restocking schools and classrooms as needed while at the same time it is working to keep supplies ordered and on hand. In addition to all of the cleaning, disinfectant, and sanitization supplies already provided to the schools, WCPS currently has: more than 500 gallon refills of hand sanitizer and approximately 800 16-ounce bottles of hand sanitizer; over 2,400 packs of alcohol wipes (50 in a pack) and one hundred fifty-six containers of wipes (75 wipers per container); 31 buckets of alcohol wipes (300 wipes in a bucket) with 3,000 more buckets expected later this week; and over 4,000 quart bottles of cleaning spray with another 6,000 bottles on the way (Spray heads are also on the way – At this time, bottles are being used with rags to clean contact surfaces).
Health Screenings, Masks & Social Distancing
All students, parents, staff and visitors have to take part in Health Screenings to remain on a WCPS campus, which includes a temperature check and answering three attestation questions specific to COVID-19. All Plan B students and school staff have been provided five washable/reusable masks. There will be some instances where someone has a verified exemption, such as a medical condition, which will allow them to be on a WCPS campus without a mask. Unless they have a verified exemption, all students, staff and visitors are required to wear masks on campuses and school buses. Everyone is also being required to maintain 6 feet social distancing, which is reinforced with spaced seating in the classroom.
Curbside Meals for remote students
Daily curbside pickup will continue to be available at most schools from 11:30 AM until 1 PM for remote students to receive a free and healthy lunch or breakfast. Edgewood and Wayne Academy students who are remote need to visit a school closest to them if they would like to pick up their meals.