CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - The Charlotte-Mecklenburg School Board announced Wednesday night they will begin a phased in approach of students returning to in-person learning.
“One of my students at the end of our lesson yesterday she said I just want to give you a hug!" First grade teacher Erin DeMund told WBTV. "Obviously we can’t give them a hug when we go back but we want that too, we want that ability to be together.”
DeMund teaches first graders at Oaklawn Language Academy, meaning she will be back in the classroom in November.
The start dates for the phases go as follows:
- Sept. 29: Students in Exceptional Children (EC) programs return.
- Oct. 12: Pre-K students return.
- Nov. 2: K-5 students return (grade levels rotate with A,B,C cohorts).
- Nov. 23: Middle school students return (grade levels rotate with A,B,C cohorts).
- Dec. 14: High school students return for end of semester in-person testing, but in-person instruction doesn’t start until Jan. 5. (grade levels rotate with A,B,C cohorts)
“I feel like the phased approach could have gone faster," Myers Park High School sophomore Christopher Mallis said.
He wants to return sooner.
“A whole semester of just online, that’s too challenging for students and it really isn’t preparing us for that final exam that they expect us to come back to," Mallis said.
But DeMund is questioning whether the district is ready. She is also a parent to three CMS students.
“I’m concerned about this being even more complicated for parents then what’s going on right now and then not having things in place if someone makes a mistake and sends their kids on the same day," DeMund said.
From a teaching perspective, she wants clarity on the expectations.
“What are the limits on what I’m going to be asked to do as far as teaching in-person and remote at the same time?" she said. "Because teachers, we are hard working and dedicated to our kids, but we’re not super heroes!”