During a special meeting on Monday, Cincinnati Public Schools Board of Education voted to follow a blended in-person and remote learning model for CPS students for the 2020-21 school year.
CPS says students will be broken into two groups, basically Group A and Group B. The groups will attend school in person for two days one week and three days the next week. They'll attend school remotely the other days. The days that Group A is in school, Group B will be learning remotely and vice versa.
CPS says it will be observing the recommended 6 feet of social distancing in schools and is prepared to go to a full remote learning schedule if necessary, and is encouraging families to plan for this contingency as well.
The schools have also partnered with Cincinnati Children’s Hospital to work on special COVID-19 health and safety protocols — following CDC and WHO recommendations — which they say include "rigorous prevention techniques and tracking, including at-home and in-school health assessments and temperature checks; students and staff wearing masks; and quick confirmation, communication and isolation in response to confirmed cases of COVID-19." More details on that will be shared later this summer.
This approved blended learning plan was one of five models the BOE looked at. The learning plans were developed based on feedback solicited from community members, teachers and parents via a survey; 6,200 people responded and submitted comments.
Among the other five models was a five-day, in-person school week for all grades with 3 feet of social distancing and an option where grades 7-12 went to school in person two days a week and K-6 went four days a week, with remote learning the other days.
“We thank our community members — especially our parents, guardians, students and staff — for the outpouring of ideas, questions and concerns as we have spent the last few months reviewing more than seven different options for a return to school in the fall,” said Laura Mitchell, CPS superintendent.
“Importantly, parents and guardians can decide between an in-person option and a fully digital approach through our Cincinnati Digital Academy. We will continue to use data to make decisions that balance health and safety of students and employees with academic success. As a result, we all need to be flexible and prepared to quickly migrate to remote learning should the health situation within a school or our community warrant it.”
If any parents are concerned about their kids attending school in person this coming school year, they are able to enroll ages K-12 in the Cincinnati Digital Academy.
CPS said that in July they will begin distributing tech devices for students in grades 2-12 who need them and that it has connected with organizations to provide free internet for one year to "thousands of families."
If you need more information or have questions, visit cps-k12.org or call the CPS customer care hotline at 513-363-0123.