Cincinnati Public Schools to Return to the Classroom in October

Some students will begin a blended in-person and virtual learning model starting Oct. 5

Sep 22, 2020 at 10:20 am
click to enlarge Withrow University High School - Photo: Dale Browning
Photo: Dale Browning
Withrow University High School

Starting Monday, Oct. 5, Cincinnati Public Schools will be heading back to the classroom. 

The CPS Board of Education has voted for students to return to school using a blended learning model, where the kids will be divided into two groups: Group A and Group B. Group A will attend in-person learning on Tuesdays and Wednesdays; Group B will go to school Thursdays and Fridays; all students will do remote learning on Mondays. Days that Group A is in school, Group B will be learning remotely and vice versa.

CPS is using a "phased-in" approach to returning to the classroom: 

  • On Oct. 5, preschoolers and students in specialized classrooms will "phase-in" at 50%.
  • Oct. 12, 100% of the above students will attend school Tuesday-Friday in person and do distance learning on Monday. 
  • Also on Oct. 12, grades K-2 and 7-8 will begin with remote learning on Monday, then follow their blended learning schedule the rest of the week.
  • Oct. 19, all CPS students will resume some version of in-person learning with grades 3-6 and 9-12 starting their Monday remote schedule, followed by their blended schedule.

So basically, grades K-2 and 7-8 start the blending learning model Oct. 12 and grades 3-6 and 9-12 start Oct. 19. Preschoolers and those students in specialized classrooms start their in-person and remote learning schedule earlier, on Oct. 5. (This info doesn't apply to Walnut Hills High School, which says their student body is too large to be safely spread out in two groups.)

“We appreciate the work of the community to help lower our transmission and positivity rates in the last several weeks,” said Superintendent Laura Mitchell. “Our team is committed to providing the safest possible environment in our schools, and we will continue to regularly review the data. Agility and flexibility continue to be crucial as the health situation evolves.” 

CPS is following these COVID guidelines and is prepared for a quick shutdown if cases begin to rise: "To keep everyone safe, Cincinnati Public Schools may decide to shutdown a classroom, one school, or all schools, if too many people get sick. Be prepared! Take home every day what you will need to do your schoolwork at home, just in case," reads the document.

If parents do not want their children to return to the classroom, they can enroll them in a full-time distance learning program at Cincinnati Digital Academy. This is for kids grades K-12. 

CPS will be hosting three different virtual town halls for parents to learn more: 6 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 22 and 4 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 23 for English speakers; 5 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 24 for non-English speakers. All will be posted to the CPS website after. 

For more info, visit or call 513-363-0123.