As soon as early April, middle and high school classrooms throughout Wake County could be full of students not already enrolled in Virtual Academy. (Photo courtesy of Feliphe Schiarolli on Pexels)
After over a year of mostly online learning, Wake County middle and high school students could return to daily in-person instruction as soon as April this year due to the school board’s impending decision to implement Plan A.
Wake County Superintendent Cathy Moore recommended Tuesday that the district’s schools change from Plan B — an alternating schedule between in-person and online instruction — to Plan A — daily in-person instruction — for all students not enrolled in Virtual Academy.
Her recommendation follows an increasing demand for Plan A, mostly from students’ parents, and the state’s relaxation of Covid-19 restrictions. Wake County elementary schools already offer daily in-person instruction, prompting board members to focus on middle and high schools.
Plan A involves minimal social distancing, a stark difference to the strict adherence to the current 6 feet apart standard. Moore said moving middle and high schools to Plan A for the final quarter of classes “is of tremendous benefit to our students and can be implemented safely.”
“These changes are driven by a growing consensus from health officials at both the national and state level,” Moore said. “The effects on children when not in person now outweigh the diminishing health risks of Covid-19.”
Plan A still requires students and faculty to wear masks, implement appropriate cleaning and hygiene protocols, and conduct screening tests.
Moore recommends that all students in modified calendar schools and early colleges switch to Plan A on April 5. Traditional calendar schools would switch to Plan A on April 8 and year-round schools would switch on April 14.
However, students would still have the option to continue virtual-only instruction. The school board could vote on the topic as early as Monday, March 22.