Roanoke Co. Public Schools to bring 3rd graders, certain 4th and 5th graders back into schools Oct. 26

Back to School

ROANOKE COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) — According to an update from Roanoke County Public Schools on Monday, more elementary school students will have the opportunity to attend in-person classes starting the week of Oct. 26.

In order to allow teachers time to prepare for in-person classes, officials says third graders will complete their assignments remotely on Oct. 22 and Oct. 23.

However, starting on Oct. 26 — which marks the start of the second nine weeks of the school year — third graders will attend school five days a week in a schedule similar to that of younger students, according to the school district.

While students who wish to continue remote learning may do so, Roanoke County Public Schools says there will not be a hybrid alternative, which means any elementary students who are 100% online as of Oct. 26 will stay 100% online throughout the second nine weeks of the school year.

In addition, school officials warn many third grade classes will move to larger spaces — like the cafeteria or the library — and some students may be assigned to a new teacher in order to fit all the third graders in school every day.

“We are glad to be able to expand opportunities for in-person attendance for students, and we hope to continue with all of these opportunities for as long as we can keep outbreaks from occurring at school. This will require a continued effort from our entire community. Thank you again for all your efforts and support.”

Dr. Ken Nicely, Superintendent of Roanoke County Public Schools

As for older elementary school students, the school district says fourth and fifth graders who receive English language services or daily special education will attend in-person classes four days a week — excluding Wednesdays — beginning Oct. 26.

However, some students may be regrouped for additional classroom spaces in order to fit all the students in the schools, according to Monday’s statement.

Starting Oct. 28, officials say Roanoke County middle and high schools will offer a “Hybrid Help Day” for students who need extra support, are failing a class, or have an excess of missing work. During these help days, students will be supervised in a quiet area while they complete assignments, but teachers may also work directly with the students on a temporary, as-needed basis.

This announcement comes after Roanoke County Public Schools reported 11 coronavirus cases — including nine students and two staff members — at seven schools on Sunday, Oct. 11, and Monday, Oct. 12.

For more information on Monday’s updated learning plan from Roanoke County Public Schools, click here.

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