Livingston Schools plan phased reopening Aug. 7
LIVINGSTON---Livingston Parish School Superintendent Joe Murphy announced this week that district leaders have been closely monitoring and developing reopening plans for the 2020-2021 school year, and those plans include multiple phases and options pending what policies may be put in place by the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) and recommended guidelines from the Louisiana Department of Education, Louisiana Department of Health and the Governor’s Office.
Murphy said Livingston Parish Public Schools still plans to begin school on Aug. 7.
“Our leadership team created a COVID Committee of administrators – representatives from all grade levels for elementary, middle and high school – who have been working closely with individual school principals over the past few weeks to develop reopening plans. This has been a highly collaborative effort,” Murphy said. “Although current guidelines are in place, and our committee is taking action to adhere to those recommendations, we know those guidelines are subject to change. As a result, Livingston Schools will be issuing a parent transportation survey by Friday of this week to ascertain how our students will enter and exit our campuses during the phased reopening.”
“Livingston Schools is defining three general plans for reopening – Phase 1, Phase 2, and Phase 3. These options give general structural plans that can be quickly implemented to meet guidelines,” he said.
• Phase 1 – Livingston Schools will be forced to open schools with all students in a virtual environment, save for a very few small groups with specific needs who would require fact-to-face instruction and interaction.
• Phase 2 – Livingston Schools would reopen in a blended format with an alternating schedule that facilitates student learning through both virtual and in-person instruction. In this phase, Livingston Schools would maximize, to the greatest extent possible, the number of days students can attend their home campuses while remaining within established guidelines.
• Phase 3 – Livingston Schools would welcome students back to their home campuses with social distancing provisions in place, including some restrictions on activities during the school day to remain within established guidelines. This phase is the most desired among education professionals and local families based on feedback from individual school principals who have been in contact with their faculty, staff and parents.
“It’s important to note that BESE has been obligated by the State Legislature, through the passage of House Bill 59, to adopt and implement policies regarding COVID-19 and the reopening of school for all districts no later than July 15,” Murphy said. “Our administrative committee is anxiously awaiting the release of the state’s plan, and based on those recommended guidelines, will announce which phase we open with and give more details of how that will look, no later than July 17.”
“Be assured that Livingston Schools is working on a fully functional plan that is focused on what is in the best interest of the education, health and well-being of all our students, employees and surrounding communities,” Murphy said.
“Much thanks to all our employees, parents and community members for their continued support of our system, their patience in this uncertain time, and their faith in our ability to work together to implement a plan that is best for everyone.”