SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - The Savannah-Chatham County Public School System will welcome back more students to the classroom on Monday, Oct. 26. This as the school district enters phase three of its reopening plan.
We’re getting a closer look at how many people requested to return and how the district is getting ready for a new group of students.
The numbers are in and more than 3,700 students want to go back to class in the district’s hybrid model. But interestingly, data accountability specialists with the district say about the same amount elected to remain virtual.
“It does show us that there is quite a diversity of opinion that we’re almost at a 50/50 split however we only had about 40 percent of eligible parents participate in the survey," said Joe Austin, Executive Director of Accounting Assessment and Reporting Services at SCCPSS.
Those who did not fill out the registration survey will remain virtual. This means of the approximately 19,600 eligible students, only 19 percent elected to return. But even those aren’t guaranteed a spot in a classroom as it all depends on staff availability.
District officials say 902 full-time teachers have returned but they have about 2,500 teachers. While accountability assessment and reporting services have compiled the data, academic affairs now takes that information to create cohorts and schedules. Teachers will not be resurveyed for phase three, but leaders say they can work with the district to return.
“If a teacher is willing to come back later that has to be evaluated by the building principal and the associate superintendent because we’re forming these cohorts and these schedules and we cannot disrupt a child’s schedule every week because of constant staff changes. So we have to have a certain amount of consistency.”
Officials say they will use a holistic approach when looking at staff return to evaluate the subject matter, need, and more.
The board, during their last meeting, made it clear they didn’t want to force teachers to return, but they did discuss incentivizing their return. We asked district representatives about that plan and they say there’s no resolution yet, but they are working on it.
Comparing phase three to phase two, the numbers are pretty similar. In phase two, 3,798 families elected to do hybrid learning while 3,109 elected to remain virtual.
Though in phase two, more families did opt to return to hybrid in-person learning in proportion to those in phase three.