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PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY EDUCATION BRIEFS: Reopening Q&A

Will PGCPS reopen schools this school year?

Yes. On Thursday, April 8, Phase 1 instruction will begin with a two-day hybrid learning schedule for students in prekindergarten through sixth grade and 12th grade as well as special education students in kindergarten through 12th grade. On Thursday, April 15, Phase 2 instruction will begin for all remaining seventh- through 11th-graders.

When do PGCPS teachers and staff return to work?

In March, PGCPS educators and central office staff began returning to the classroom and to their assigned work locations.

What happens if I do not wish to send my child back to school in April?

You will have the choice to continue virtual learning through the end of the school year. By now, families should have received a survey to indicate their plans to either continue virtual learning or begin hybrid instruction two days a week in April until the end of the school year.

Will the return to school affect the academic calendar?

Spring Break will proceed as scheduled from Monday, March 29 through Monday, April 5. The last day of school for students will be Tuesday, June 15; for teachers, Wednesday, June 16.

What is PGCPS doing to ensure safety in school buildings?

Vaccination clinics will continue in collaboration with the Prince George’s County Health Department and Kaiser Permanente.

What are the protocols for cleaning amid the ongoing pandemic?

Current cleaning protocols require the PGCPS Environmental Team to respond with thorough cleaning and disinfecting of any facilities or areas within 24 hours of a known case of COVID-19.

What will happen in case a student or staff member is found to be COVID-19-positive?

School principals and nurses are responsible for responding to COVID-19 concerns. Schools will provide written notification to staff or families who have had a possible exposure to anyone with COVID-like illness symptoms or a positive case of COVID-19.

How will student meals work once schools reopen in April?

All food items will be prepackaged in single-serve units. Meals will be served and eaten in the classroom, cafeterias, or other areas designated by the school administration. Staff will receive support to ensure that everyone is following CDC guidelines during mealtime. Students participating in hybrid learning will be offered breakfast, lunch and dinner. Take-home meals will be available and offered to students for the days they are not on campus.

Will before- and after-school care be available for families who choose the in-person hybrid schedule?

No. Before- and after-care will not be available this school year.

What is PGCPS doing to ensure safety on school buses?

PGCPS will adhere to CDC guidelines in implementing school bus safety measures. The Reopening Plan outlines steps to ensure adherence to health guidelines and social distancing amid COVID-19. At a minimum, students and drivers will be required to wear masks on buses, and under the hybrid model, PGCPS will transport fewer students at a time.

Will students be required to wear uniforms during hybrid learning?

No. During the hybrid model of instruction, students are not expected to wear a school uniform. Students must adhere to the systemwide dress code, which requires students to dress appropriately.

Can a student remain virtual and still participate in spring sports?

Students can participate in sports whether they are attending school virtually or on a hybrid schedule.

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Dorothy Rowley – Washington Informer Staff Writer

I knew I had to become a writer when at age nine I scribbled a note to my younger brother’s teacher saying I thought she was being too hard on him in class. Well, the teacher immediately contacted my mother, and with tears in her eyes, profusely apologized. Of course, my embarrassed mother dealt with me – but that didn’t stop me from pursuing my passion for words and writing. Nowadays, as a “semi-retiree,” I continue to work for the Washington Informer as a staff writer. Aside from that, I keep busy creating quirky videos for YouTube, participating in an actor’s guild and being part of my church’s praise dance team and adult choir. I’m a regular fixture at the gym, and I like to take long road trips that have included fun-filled treks to Miami, Florida and Jackson, Mississippi. I’m poised to take to the road again in early 2017, headed for New Orleans, Louisiana. This proud grandmother of two – who absolutely adores interior decorating – did her undergraduate studies at Virginia Union University and graduate work at Virginia State University.

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