Ardmore Board of Education approves, outlines return to school plan

Sierra Rains
The Daily Ardmoreite
An Ardmore school bus delivers bagged meals to student in March, weeks into the pandemic. Ardmore City Schools on Tuesday released their plan to reopen campuses next month. {File photo]

The Ardmore Board of Education approved a return to school plan at its regular meeting Tuesday night. Details of the plan were released the following day, with the board noting that the 20-21 school year will be like no other. 

“We have spent the last several months working on our return to school plan by looking at local, state and federal safety guidelines, reviewing the current situation in our area and looking at guidelines from other local and state school districts,” the school board stated in a document detailing the plan. 

According to the school board, the plan is flexible and will be reviewed and modified as necessary. At this time, Ardmore City Schools’ students will return to face-to-face learning at all campuses on August 20, with increased sanitization measures at all schools. Two different academic instruction options, on campus and virtual offerings, will be offered in order to include families who may be impacted by health concerns. 

Students who do not have an electronic device or access to internet can meet with their principal to discuss options. Parents who are issued a school district device will be required to sign a user agreement and pay a small fee, and Wi-Fi may be available around all schools. 

Parents who choose to send their children back to school campuses will be required to conduct self-assessments at home on a daily basis before arriving on campus. Any student, parent or employee who has any symptoms should stay at home for at least 72 hours after they are free of symptoms, regardless of whether they have been tested for COVID-19. 

Masks will not be required unless there is an increased risk of community spread, but are highly encouraged for staff, students and parents. Students will still be able to ride the bus to school, with a few extra precautions in place. Temperature checks will also be done before riding buses or entering school buildings.

“We are excited to have your children back at school and understand if you feel you must make a different decision for your child. When you have concerns about anything at your child’s school, please contact your principal and give them the opportunity to assist you,” the board stated in the reopening plan.