The Madill Public School system announced today, July 30, 2020, that the starting date for the 2020/2021 school year has been pushed back a week. The school posted on Facebook announcing the delay first. The original date for the first day was scheduled for August 13.
“In order to address the drastic change to education during the COVID-19 pandemic, Madill Public School will move the first day of student instruction to August 20, 2020,” the release stated. “This decision is based on so many different factors. Primarily, the more time we give our staff to become more comfortable with new COVIDsafety procedures and the new learning management system, the more successful the school year will be. This additional time will be used for professional learning and strategies that will support students transitioning back to the classroom. Delaying the start of school will also allow us to monitor the number of positive cases and the levels of community spread.”
This announcement comes on the heels of the school board scrambling to make a concrete plan for the ‘20/’21 school year after the COVID-19 pandemic forced schools to close their doors in March.
Madill Public School Superintendent Larry Case posted on the MPS website in the early part of the summer delaying the reopening plan and outlining what to expect in the upcoming year for the students who choose to have any type of in-class learning.
“Our students, school community, and staff members are of utmost importance to our school system,” Case wrote on the page. “After several months of preparation, our administrative team was prepared to release our reopening plan. However, with so much uncertainty, we will delay our announcement until the end of July. As your superintendent, I feel it is more substantial to wait for further guidance from the State Department of Education, State Department of Health, and CDC. With that being said, I would like to highlight a few points of safety for reopening schools this fall which are subject to change as time progresses.”
The list of things that the school plans to do to keep everybody safe is doing daily temperature checks, strongly encouraging students and staff to wear a face mask, practicing safe hygiene and encouraging students and staff to bring a personal water bottle to keep from drinking from the same water fountain.
The school is also asking parents to transport their children to school if at all possible, to alleviate crowding on buses and allow social distancing.