SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Deciding how to reopen schools in the fall is a tough decision that’s being made after lengthy discussions. There’s dozens of options that take into account the safety of thousands of students and staff months before we know the coronavirus status come August.
As Savannah-Chatham leaders talk about what they will do they are also asking families what they think before making a decision.
Students finished their school year digitally weeks ago, but now leaders are busy discussing how they will return in the fall.
“Bottom line for me is just how are you all going to be able to keep these kids healthy and keep these kids safe,” said Caitlin Milligan, SCCPSS mom.
These are the questions parents are asking as a task force of more than 100 business leaders, school officials, health professionals and more meet to discuss reopening school this fall. While they are talking through how they deliver instruction, transport students, feed them and more, families are able to weigh in too.
“Their perceptions are very important as well as their comfort level because you know this is truly a collaboration,” said Joe Austin, executive director for accountability, assessment and reporting services. “When you say it takes a village to raise a child it truly does and so we really need to weigh everyone’s perspectives and input and take it very seriously and use it to craft a plan that we think is going to work best for the greatest number of families.”
Monday the district sent out surveys to the families of their more than 37,000 students to see how they feel about reopening school. The results will be used by the task force to craft a plan.
“Those will be data points on how we make decisions for delivery of instructional models, for student supports, for transportation and delivery of school nutrition,” explained Austin.
Some parents say they were glad to fill out the survey, but are still unsure about what they will do. Caitlin Milligan says her 4th grader wants to go back to the classroom, but she wants to see the district’s plan before making any decisions.
“I know for me, I am just basically playing it by ear just to see exactly what the school system comes up with as options and whatnot,” explained Milligan. “So, based off of what they offer us then I will just go with what that is and see which one the better option for our family.”
The survey for families is available until June 26 and then the district will compile results for the task force to review.