September 18, 2020
Board of Education Makes Decision to Transition to Plan B for Second 9 Weeks
New Bern, NC- Last night, the Board of Education learned of the many preparations that are being made by the school district to safely return to school while considering the health and well-being of students and staff. The Board of Education voted unanimously to transition from Plan C (all remote learning) to Plan B (moderate social distancing), which will go into effect on October 6, 2020 for the early college high schools and October 19, 2020 for the traditional schools.
The Plan B schedule for students will be as follows:
Remote learning (Craven LIVE) will remain an option for our families who decided they are not ready to return to the school campus yet and want to continue with this learning model until the end of the first semester. If parents wish to change their child’s current placement (into or out of Craven LIVE or Plan B), they will be given an opportunity to submit a request. Each request will be addressed on a case by case basis that will take class size into consideration.
Governor Cooper also announced yesterday his new executive order providing the OPTION for school districts in North Carolina to return PreK-5th grade students under Plan A. This option would not be available until on or after October 5, 2020. The requirements under Plan A, as defined by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, is minimal social distancing, which is least restrictive for school reopening. The Craven County Board of Education has the flexibility to create a more restrictive plan and will consider Plan A when this is the best option based on our local COVID-19 trends and metrics in Craven County. It was the consensus of the Board of Education that the best option for our students and staff is to continue with the progression to Plan B from Plan C.
Craven County Schools looks forward to welcoming our students back onto their school campus under Plan B and will be adhering to strong safety protocols implemented for all students and staff, which are put into place to help stop the spread of sickness. These measures include:
- Wearing face covering over nose and mouth
- Social distancing 6 feet apart
- Daily health screening
- Daily temperature checks
- Washing hands frequently
Additional information will be communicated on the return to school including arrival and dismissal protocols, transportation, school meals, limitations on movement throughout the building, classroom settings, school supplies and cleaning protocols.
In partnership with our school leaders we recommend that all of our staff, students, and community continue to follow the three W’s: Wear a cloth covering over your nose and mouth, Wait 6 feet apart - Avoid close contact, and Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer to help open our school doors. Thank you for your ongoing partnership as we all do our part to slow the spread of COVID-19. As always, we appreciate your patience and understanding as our top priority continues to be the safety, health, and well-being of all of our students and staff. We are all in this together!
September 15, 2020
Board of Education Receives Information on Return to School for Students at the End of the 9 Weeks
New Bern, NC- Today, during the September Board of Education Work Session the Board of Education received several presentations as they consider whether to return to school in Plan B at the end of the first nine weeks of instruction. The system continues preparations to return to school for in-person instruction. If the Board decides to transition the school system to Plan B, the first days of instruction would be October 6th, 2020 for early college students and October 19th, 2020, for our traditional schools. The Board of Education took no formal action during today’s meeting however they plan on receiving public input at the Board of Education Meeting on Thursday, September 17th at 6:00 p.m. prior to taking action on the return to school under Plan B.
Dr. Meghan S. Doyle Superintendent, shared a thorough presentation on the roadmap to returning to school and the importance of having our students in school. Craven County Schools began preparation for the three operational plans directed by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and North Carolina Department of Public Instruction in May. As part of that process the district solicited input from families and staff about multiple components of the return to school for the 2020-2021 school year (instructional and operational). Among those was a question related to returning students back to in-person instruction, blended learning (partial remote and partial in-person), or fully virtual/remote. This information was not solicited as a vote, but instead to identify the preferences related to returning to in-person instruction as we approached our plan to return students to learning while abiding by the requirements of offering a virtual-only instructional option for the remainder of the year and in-person learning as possible. The data revealed the range from approximately 60% to 70% of students, parents, and teachers wishing to return to some form of in-person instruction.
The Board of Education will be taking all of this information into consideration plus many other factors including staff and student health, safety, and well-being when making their formal decision for the second nine weeks of the 2020-2021 school year. To view the Plan B proposed schedule for students and families that will be returning for face to face instruction please click here: http://bit.ly/CCS_PlanB. A press release will be issued at the conclusion of the meeting on Thursday, September 17, 2020, to inform our stakeholders of the decision made by the Board of Education.
Since the decision to adopt an all remote learning plan (Plan C) in July, Craven County Schools has received multiple parent/family concerns related to the challenges of Plan C on learning, the social and emotional toll on students, and lack of internet access for virtual learning. These have been particularly prevalent from the parents of students with significant cognitive and physical disabilities, young students, and those with little or no internet access.
Mr. Scott Harrelson, Craven County Health Director has advocated the return of students to in-person instruction. He shared an article from the Centers for Disease Control, titled "The Importance of Opening America's Schools This Fall." The introduction to this resource states, "...the harms attributed to closed schools on the social, emotional, and behavioral health, economic well-being, and academic achievement of children, in both the short- and long-term, are well-known and significant. Further, the lack of in-person educational options disproportionately harms low-income and minority children and those living with disabilities. These students are far less likely to have access to private instruction and care and far more likely to rely on key school-supported resources like food programs, special education services, counseling, and after-school programs to meet basic developmental needs."
As we began the 2020-2021 school year, Craven County Schools has continued preparations for returning to in-person instruction in the areas of facilities, transportation, instruction, school health, and public relations and communications.
The Board of Education voted on July 28th, to move to Plan C, remote learning for the first 9 weeks of school (October 9th for the Early Colleges and October 16th for our Traditional Schools.) The Board will continue to assess local and state metrics to determine when it is best to move back to Plan B. A decision will be communicated prior to the end of the 9 weeks.
Proposed Plan B Schedule:
July 28, 2020
Board of Education Revises School Reopening Plan for Beginning of School Year
New Bern, NC- In a special called meeting on Tuesday, July 28, 2020, the Craven County Schools Board of Education unanimously voted to revise the reopening plan for the 2020-2021 school year from the hybrid Plan B to full remote learning under Plan C for the first 9 weeks of the school year. This revision was based on the health and safety of our students and staff. The change to Plan C only impacts our families who have chosen to start the school year under Plan B.
Under Plan C, school will start with full remote learning for all students. Families who have opted to start the school year under Plan B will now start the school year online eventually transitioning to some face to face instruction at a time to be decided later.
This update will not impact the students registered for Craven LIVE. These students will continue with their virtual learning journey for the entire semester with an opportunity in November to commit to online learning for the full school year. The registration form will be opened back up for our families who are interested in enrolling their child in this virtual learning environment with teachers form various schools in our district with a passion for online learning. The deadline for our Early College families will be July 31st and August 7th for our traditional schools.
Craven County Schools will continue to plan for the return to school and we understand this change is not ideal for our families however please know our top priority is to ensure the health and safety of all our students, their families, staff, and the community.
The North Carolina Guidebook for Reopening Public Schools-Lighting our Way Forward provides specific requirements that must be followed to return to school.
A few of these requirements include:
- Masks must be worn by all students in grades K-12 and staff
- Daily health screenings
- Social distancing in classrooms and throughout the school campus
- Frequent hand washing
- Limited capacity in school buildings
- Daily cleaning protocols of school buildings