CMS parents staying optimistic, cautious as thousands of children return to school amid rise in COVID-19 cases

State law limits all school district’s abilities to make all schools shift to remote learning.
CMS students return to class despite COVID surge
Published: Jan. 4, 2022 at 4:23 PM EST
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Hundreds of thousands of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools students returned to the classroom Tuesday.

North Carolina is continuing to see record-breaking numbers of positive COVID-19 cases, but unlike last school year, districts are limited in how they can do remote learning.

“I’m expecting it to increase of course since it’s after the holidays,” said CMS parent Ashlee Carnes. Carnes’ daughter is in second grade.

State law limits all school district’s abilities to make all schools shift to remote learning.

Now they can only do it for classes or a number of schools on a temporary basis due to staff shortages and necessary student quarantines.

“Fully virtual isn’t going to be an option anymore based on what the state decided, so I’ve appreciated the constant communication, the continued emphasis on masks, distancing, and things like that,” said parent David Roberts who’s daughters are in kindergarten and second grade.

Carnes is hoping safety measures will reduce the spread of COVID-19.

“But as long as everyone is wearing their masks as they’re supposed to, which we appreciate that it is mandated by the schools, washing their hands, obviously staying safe the best way that they can,” Carnes said.

Masks are required inside of all CMS buildings. There is also enhanced cleaning/disinfecting of classrooms, bathrooms, cafeterias, and other areas. In addition, some buildings have air purification systems.

Click here to read the other COVID-19 Safety Protocols in CMS.

Related: CMS students to return to school as scheduled following holiday break

A letter from CMS Superintendent Earnest Winston to CMS families acknowledged the concerns from parents and the community about the high level of COVID-19 spread.

“Masks are still required indoors, and distancing will remain to the greatest extent possible. We will continue to review our practices to help mitigate the impact of the virus on our students and staff. Please keep your children home if they are ill and consider getting them tested,” the voicemail said.

Both of Roberts’ daughters are on the road to being fully vaccinated, it’s something he says made him more comfortable with them learning in person.

“They’ve had both of their initial doses that their age group is allotted so I think that helps a lot from an ease of mind standpoint,” Roberts said.

Carnes says in-person learning is best for her daughter’s social and learning abilities - but she’s hoping everyone can avoid the virus.

“I’m glad she’s back at least for now and hopefully it will stay that way and everyone stays healthy,” Carnes said.

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