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First day of school delayed in Montgomery County

Published: Jul. 26, 2021 at 11:44 AM EDT|Updated: Jul. 30, 2021 at 3:44 PM EDT
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MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Ga. (WTOC) - UPDATE: The start of school in Montgomery County has been delayed by a week.

According to the interim superintendent, the first day of school will now be on Tuesday, Aug. 10. The delay is due to a staff shortage caused by COVID-19.

The interim superintendent said staff will be at the school next week and will stay in their classrooms to work. They will require 6-feet social distancing.

UPDATE: Eagle Academy in Montgomery County will now start school on Monday, Aug. 9.

Approved virtual students will start class on Tuesday, Aug. 17.

PREVIOUS STORY: School during the COVID-19 pandemic came with a ton of challenges and unknowns.

“The biggest fear was, are my children going to bring it home,” parent Amy Wickstrom said.

Parents who found it difficult to put their children into virtual classes say this was one of their biggest questions during the 2020-2021 school year. However, this year Wickstrom says she feels a lot more comfortable.

“I’m treating it like it is going to be a normal school year. I really anticipate it being a normal school year,” Wickstrom said.

Montgomery County Interim Superintendent Mark Davidson says getting back to normalcy is their goal. Although, some of the district’s COVID protocols from last year will remain.

School officials say most of what was implemented for the safety of the students last year will be in effect this year. This includes things like temperature checks to get on the bus and inside the school.

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Davidson adds that students will still be required to mask up on the bus. While they’re keeping some safety measures, they still want everyone to come back for face-to-face learning. If a student wants to do virtual schooling they’ll have to be approved first.

“Right now, from what I’m understanding we haven’t had any who are going virtual that we know of,” Davidson said.

Davidson says all the teaching staff are in place for school to start on Aug. 3, but the district does need some full-time bus drivers. Parents should know this won’t affect any routes.

“I believe everybody is excited to come back,” Davidson said.

This year is also the first year for the Eagle Academy. The school is for high achievers in grades K-8th.

“They’re just going to have some different types of lessons. More rigorous and high learning skills. I think we have 73 enrolled and we have availability for 80,” Davidson said.

School leaders say the pandemic taught them a lot and it made them a better school system.

“You cannot be overly prepared for anything. It was an unprecedented year,” Davidson said.

As of now, Davidson says there are no schedule changes, and the year will be run as it’s reflected on the school calendar.

To give an update on the superintendent search, the interim superintendent says the district does have some applicants for the position. However, there’s no specific timeline as to when that person will be selected.

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