On Wednesday, June 3rd, the Amherst, Pelham and Regional School Committees will hold the first joint meeting to begin planning for the reopening of schools in the fall. The meeting will be shown via live-stream here and on Amherst Media (Channel 15), beginning at 6:30 PM. Instructions on how to submit public comments are included on the agenda.
At a recent Amherst School Committee meeting, Superintendent Morris outlined the dilemma facing the districts of how to safely bring students back into the schools. Guidance from the CDC includes spacing seating at least 6 feet apart, which would allow for far fewer students in each classroom. With limited building space, teaching staff, and funding, this creates significant hurdles.
South Korea recently reopened their schools with many new measures in place intended to limit virus transmission. High School seniors returned first, followed by a second phase that included high school juniors, middle school seniors and elementary grades 1 and 2, in addition to kindergarten. They alternated school days for different grades, with online instruction at home on the days they weren’t attending classes. Class times and lunch hours were staggered and no extracurricular activities were allowed. However, almost immediately new cases of COVID-19 were reported among several teachers and students and schools were closed again.
The Amherst Indy invites its readers to share any ideas you may have about how best to educate all Amherst Public School students this fall. The Indy will compile responses and share them with the Superintendent and School Committees, and summarize them in a future article.
Please click on this link to go to a google form where you can share your thoughts.