LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – The Fayette County Board of Education on Monday night unanimously approved this year’s school calendar, according to the school district.
Classes will begin online only on Wednesday, August 26, two weeks after the original start date, due to the surge in coronavirus cases in the community, according to the district.
The last day of school is scheduled for May 13, 2021.
Spring Break is scheduled for March 29-April 2, 2021.
The board also voted to add ten minutes to the instructional day, according to officials.
The school system says Chromebooks have been purchased for every student in the district. Hotspots will be available for families who don’t have access to the Internet, according to the district.
Lessons will be delivered via Google Classroom at the elementary level and Canvas at the middle and high school levels, according to the district.
The district says it will continuously monitor the pandemic with the hopes of eventually transitioning to in-person instruction in the classroom or a combination of in-person and online learning, according to officials.
Below is a letter sent to families Monday night by Superintendent Manny Caulk:
Dear Fayette County Public Schools Families:
The first day of school for the 2020-2021 school year will be Wednesday, August 26, following a unanimous vote of the Fayette County Board of Education this evening. Given that COVID-19 is currently surging in our community, the school board had previously voted to begin the year with Non-Traditional Instruction (NTI).
Please be assured that the distance learning offered through NTI this fall will be very different than it was last spring. Under “NTI 2DL: Differentiated Distance Learning,” students will have more time with their teachers, more direct instruction, and more consistency.
Chromebooks have been purchased so that every student in the district will receive one and will have access to digital curriculum programs. We also have hotspots available for families who do not have access to the internet. Lessons will be delivered via Google Classroom at the elementary level and Canvas at the middle and high school level. Teachers will focus on new learning, assess students for individual areas of unfinished learning, and hold students to high expectations.
Pushing the first day of school from August 12 to August 26 will give our staff more time for professional learning and planning. District staff have been hard at work developing modules to help our teachers prepare for the 2020-2021 school year and learn creative ways of engaging students in distance learning until we can return to campus. More information about the Virtual Learning Academy – for families who do not want in-person learning for their children – will be available during the first week of August.
My hope is that our community will double-down on efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19 so that it will be safe to return to in-person instruction soon. We are committed to revisiting decisions about the model of instruction at least every six weeks, but we are in close contact with the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department to monitor infection levels and will make shifts more frequently as warranted.
Our reopening task force has developed detailed health and safety protocols for a return to campus and implementation of those measures is already underway. We have developed a booklet to outline the preventative practices and enhanced mitigation measures that we have been working on. It is attached to this email, but can also be accessed online.
Your voice is critical to ensuring a successful 2020-2021 school year. To share thoughts with all members of the Fayette County Board of Education, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your continued support.
Fayette County Public Schools Superintendent