From staff reports
The Beaufort County School District will resume face-to-face educational instruction five days a week beginning Jan. 4.
The announcement came at Friday’s Board of Education meeting.
“It’s always been our goal to resume five days a week of face-to-face instruction,” Superintendent Frank Rodriguez said.
Rodriguez noted the challenges of hybrid instruction. “It’s hard for some students academically and socio-emotionally,” he said. “It’s hard for teachers who are delivering both virtual and in-person instruction, and it’s hard for parents to try and juggle it all.”
The district decided to return to face-to-face instruction after reviewing COVID-19 infection rates in other South Carolina school districts that have resumed face-to-face instruction.
“What we and other districts are finding,” Rodriguez said, “is that most COVID-19 cases among students and staff are from engagement in outside events and activities.”
“While we have many safety precautions in place at schools, I urge our citizens to continue taking the necessary precautions against the COVID-19 virus so we can open our buildings and keep children and educators safe.”
Rodriguez acknowledged the physical distancing challenges of returning to a traditional schedule in some of the district’s more crowded schools. “District and school-based administrators are working to mitigate these challenges.”
Sixty-two percent of Beaufort County School District students currently participate in hybrid instruction, with the remaining 38 percent receiving virtual instruction.
If a family wishes to change their student’s preference from virtual to face-to-face instruction, they will be able to do so for the second semester, which commences Feb. 2. All requests for changes will be handled by schools directly during the window of Nov. 16-24, allowing administrators and educators sufficient time to plan accordingly.