I am reaching out to you today to say, “thank you” for an outstanding first nine weeks of school! As some school systems in the State of Georgia have still not provided an option for in-person learning, your commitment to Bryan County Schools’ plan for reopening has been paramount to our success.
It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving break will shortly be upon us, and we are already discussing graduation plans for May 22, 2021. You, your student(s), and our staff have done an amazing job navigating this new normal that we are now living. We appreciate your support and patience as we follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Department of Public Health (DPH) guidelines for close contact investigations and quarantining students.
As we communicated with you in August, on November 2nd we will open the window for you to change the instructional delivery model for your student(s) for second semester. The window of time for making a change will close at 11:59 p.m. on November 6th. Based on the successes of the first nine weeks, we anticipate a large number of students returning to in-person learning. Opening the window from November 2 – 6 will provide us with enough time to make adjustments with staff, bus routes, e-Learning and other school-based routines. If you plan to make no change for second semester, no action is required. Otherwise, information will be sent to you on November 2nd regarding what steps you need to take if you wish to make a change for second semester.
Our staff continue to go above and beyond as they support students in either an in-person or a virtual learning environment. However, I strongly encourage you to consider returning your student to school if they are currently in an e-learning environment. There is nothing more powerful than face-to-face student engagement with a teacher and school-based peer social interactions. If your student has an underlying health condition or is medically fragile, I fully understand and support your desire to continue with e-Learning.
The data that we and other school systems across the state and country have collected over the last ten weeks is very encouraging when considering COVID-19 and any school-based student spread. The steps Bryan County Schools has taken, and will continue to take, to mitigate the spread are definitely paying off. Our COVID-19 numbers remain low and our teachers and principals are ready to have their students physically back in the building. If you are curious about system impact, please go to bryancountyschools.org and click on the COVID-19 Information tab to see our numbers.
Student and staff safety continue to be our top priorities. As of right now, we will continue using the same mitigating steps during second semester that we are using during first semester. This includes required mask wearing among students and staff, along with all cleaning requirements and social distancing when possible.
Thank you again for your commitment to Bryan County Schools!
Paul T. Brooksher, Ph.D.
Bryan County Schools