LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — The decision wasn't received very well by many parents who prefer to send their kids back to school, but as of now, they won't have that choice in Fayette County until January.
"There's no need to rush and get children into school, and then you have a COVID-19 outbreak and you're back to learning remotely," said Superintendent Manny Caulk.
Caulk spoke with LEX 18 from Lafayette High School, where he visited with a couple of teachers honored today as being among the best in Kentucky.
Caulk knows the school board pleased almost no one with the decision, given most parents wanted to be at least given an option through a hybrid model. But as the board assessed those plans, it became more and more apparent that the remote students would get lost in the shuffle, especially in the middle of a term.
"If you're a student and you have a teacher, and you're preparing for midterms, changing to a cohort or a model that has two cohorts, A and B, and remote learning would be very disruptive."
Caulk also knows his district provides an NTI curriculum and experience that other districts do not offer, including real-time, face-to-face learning between students and teachers. He said if they moved to a hybrid model now, they wouldn't be able to provide that type of teaching. He feels that remote students would likely receive pre-recorded videos and messages concerning their school work and assignments.
Planning is underway now for incorporating hybrid models following winter break, which offerS a natural break in the calendar for a smoother transition.
"It's about our plan to be able to provide remote learning in a way that our students have an equitable education, and not getting less than what they receive under the NTI, 2DL," Caulk stated.
Caulk has a child who graduated from Lafayette High School and another coming through the district now, so he is not blind to the many challenges parents, and students continue to face while learning from home.
"I see it every day with my own child and the need to get my child back in school. But we have to do it safely," he said.
And he prefers to do it once, rather than starting and stopping due to a rash of cases.
The school board will meet again on Monday, Oct. 26.
You can watch a full replay of the board meeting here at our Facebook page.