Local districts to hold meeting Monday, discuss school reopening bill

Local districts to hold meeting Monday, discuss school reopening bill

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - With districts across North Carolina now required to open Grades K-5 for in-person learning under Plan A, the conversation now turns to middle and high school levels.

Several districts are meeting Monday to discuss Senate Bill 220 and the potential to move grades 6 to 12 to the same plan.

Delena Helms has three children in elementary schools and an eighth-grader in Union County Public schools.


“I don’t want to go to Plan A, it terrifies me. He’s asthmatic,” Helms said about her eighth-grader. “I have a 19-month-old son that is asthmatic.”

In Union County, elementary schools have been in-person four days a week under Plan A since January. Helms doesn’t think it’s the right fit for the older students this school year.

“They travel more. I think it’s easier for the virus to spread. I don’t feel safe for the kids or the staff, teachers...I just don’t think it’s a good idea,” she added.

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On Monday, Union County Public Schools, Catawba and Ashe County School board members will hold emergency meetings to discuss the bill and potentially look at recommendations to also move Grades 6 to 12 to Plan A.

Under Plan A, there is minimal social distancing.

Maria Gonsalves believes the district should move the middle and high schools to Plan A.

“I feel the kids can return safely back to school for more than two days a week. My eighth-grade son has steadily earned good grades and he has still been able to do so...but I know there is a daily struggle. There is a lack of social interaction, he hasn’t really developed any real friendships, he can barely remember the names of the kids in his class. When you’re in school, there is a built-in structure, when he’s at home, he is in charge of managing his day,” said Gonsalves.

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No matter what side you’re on, this is something everyone can agree with.

“I wish everything can go back to normal. I can’t stand this virus; I just want it to go away,” Helms said.

Remote learning still remains an option.

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