Columbia school board considers in-person options for older students

The Columbia Public Schools Board of Education talks about plans to return middle and high school students to some in-person learning.

The board during Monday’s work session instructed district officials to bring members plans on how older students could learn in-person. Members mentioned wanting more info on what two-day and four-day-per week models would look like, possibly starting in November. The board will take an official vote during its Nov. 9 meeting.

CPS board president Helen Wade said the district cannot continue with the uncertainty that exists now for families.

“When we voted to bring elementary back, but we deferred on middle school and high school, it left the community with the sense of ‘Well what the heck are we doing’, right? And that’s what we need to resolve. We need to resolve that question fully and finally as of that date what they are doing.”

CPS elementary students returned to in-person learning, four days a week, on Oct. 19. Middle and high school students are still learning online-only because of coronavirus concerns. District officials say older students could not stay in small, stable groups while in buildings like younger students can.

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