BCSD makes changes in preparation of students returning to class
MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) — Bibb County students will return to the classrooms next week.
School officials will limit class sizes to 20, and each student will be at least 4.5 feet apart depending on the number of students in the class.
Superintendent Dr. Curtis Jones says students are not required to get tested before returning to school. They’ll only take a test if they have symptoms.
Since students can be asymptomatic, Dr. Jones says they’re following recommendations by both the CDC and North Central Health District.
“We take temperature, we look for symptoms, and we are doing contact tracing,” said Dr. Jones. “If something develops. Then that’s when we will be able to follow through but again I just don’t think that there is a capacity for everyone to test.”
With over 20,000 students in the district, Dr. Jones acknowledges the difficulties for health professionals to handle such a large number of test requests.
To protect students, air filtering devices will be installed in all county schools.
The small device helps purify the air of dirt, dust, and mold and has already been installed at Hartley Elementary, John R. Lewis Elementary and Appling Middle School.
“That for us was more important,” said Dr. Jones.
Desk shields will also be installed by early March.
Some students will continue to learn remotely to ensure social distancing, and all students will learn virtually on Wednesdays. This gives teachers time to prepare for classes in person and online. It also gives staff time to disinfect the school buildings.
North Central Health District
According to the North Central Health District, COVID cases did increase following the holiday’s. Michael Hokanson says the district did the right thing.
“Not everyone’s home situation is the same, and one student might be going back to a perfectly healthy family. Another student might be going home to an immune-compromised family and elder,” said Hokanson. “So we just want to make sure those students are safe and they are not bringing in or taking out anything that could be detrimental to the health of anybody in the school system”.
Dr. Jones says all schools will continue to follow safety protocols by doing what’s recommended by local health officials and the CDC.
Dr. Jones also recommends students double mask for extra protection when returning.